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Press Release

Former Ohio Deputy Treasurer and Friend Sentenced for Roles in Bribery and Money Laundering Scheme

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

Ohio’s former deputy treasurer and a Chicago businessman were sentenced to federal prison today for their roles in a bribery and money laundering scheme involving the Ohio Treasurer’s Office.

Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, First Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark T. D’Alessandro of the Southern District of Ohio, Acting Special Agent in Charge John A. Barrios of the FBI’s Cincinnati Division and Attorney General Mike DeWine of Ohio made the announcement.

Amer Ahmad, 40, and Joseph Chiavaroli, 34, both of Chicago, were sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Michael H. Watson of the Southern District of Ohio to serve 15 years in prison and 18 months in prison, respectively.  Ahmad was ordered to forfeit $3.2 million, and Chiavroli was ordered to forfeit $400,000.  Last year, Ahmad pleaded guilty to federal program bribery and conspiracy to commit honest services wire fraud, federal program bribery and money laundering, and Chiavaroli pleaded guilty to money laundering.  Following his guilty plea, former Deputy Treasurer Ahmad fled to Pakistan and was sentenced today in absentia.  He is currently in Pakistani custody pending an extradition request from the United States government. 

According to the defendants’ admissions in connection with their guilty pleas, from January 2009 through January 2011, Ahmad used his position as deputy treasurer to direct official state of Ohio business to securities broker Douglas E. Hampton in return for bribes.  Ahmad and Chiavaroli concealed the payments received from Hampton by passing them through the accounts of their landscaping business.  Hampton also funneled more than $123,000 to Mohammed Noure Alo, an attorney and lobbyist who was Ahmad’s close personal friend and business associate.  Over the course of the scheme, Hampton paid in excess of $500,000 in bribes and received, in exchange, approximately $3.2 million in commissions for 360 securities trades on behalf of the Ohio Treasurer’s Office. 

Hampton and Alo were sentenced on Nov. 12, 2014, and Nov. 13, 2014, to 45 months in prison and 48 months in prison, respectively, for their roles in the scheme.    

The case was investigated by the FBI’s Central Ohio Public Corruption Task Force, which includes special agents from the FBI and the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation.  The case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorneys Eric L. Gibson and Menaka Kalaskar of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Douglas W. Squires of the Southern District of Ohio.

Updated December 1, 2014

Press Release Number: 14-1339