The owner of a mixed-use condo property on the 7500 block of Madison has been charged by federal agents with bribing a Chicago alderman in an attempt to win restaurant contracts at O’Hare and Midway airports.
Wafeek “Wally” Aiyash, 50, is the proprietor of West Madison Investments LLC, which owns the building at 7507-11 Madison in Forest Park. On Nov. 5, the Federal Bureau of Investigation arrested Aiyash for offering Chicago Ald. Isaac Carothers a series of cash payments totaling $100,000 in exchange for Carothers’ assurance that Aiyash could open as many as seven restaurant franchises at the airports. According to federal court records, investigators have audio and video footage of Aiyash handing envelopes stuffed with cash to the alderman. Aiyash, a Naperville resident, had allegedly agreed to pay $10,000 up front. Aiyash has pleaded not guilty, and was released on bond.
Carothers was charged earlier this year with taking bribes and has pleaded not guilty. He has been cooperating with investigators, perhaps since early 2008, according to reports in the Chicago Sun-Times.