According to abclocal.go.com the ABC7 I-Team is following the money, from the jewelry, trips and clothing to the celebrity trinkets, all paid for by the Jacksons’ “personal slush fund”– to use the words of Washington’s top federal prosecutor.
The assistant head of the FBI in Washington Wednesday night says of Jesse and Sandi Jackson, “They can hide no more.” For years, they hid lavish spending of campaign money, but the I-Team has learned that U.S. officials plan for the government to make money off of some of their purchases, auctioning off some of those Jackson treasures. At the same though, that very same government may also be paying ex-congressman Jackson monthly disability, and later, a pension.
First the pensions, for both Jacksons. They were public employees: his work for the federal government since being elected to Congress in 1995; her work for the City of Chicago since being elected alderman in 2007.
Ex-congressman Jackson is eligible to receive $8,700 dollars per month in disability pay due to his bipolar condition and could receive a partial federal pension of $45,000 per year once he reaches 65.
While on the city council, Sandi Jackson had automatic pension contributions of more than $50,000 withdrawn from her pay, even though she chose not to be a member of the city pension fund.
The Jacksons spent some of the $750,000 in campaign funds on property– some of which has already been forfeited to the government. Twenty-four items valued at more than $61,000; twelve items surrendered that are listed at more than $21,000, including some Michael Jackson memorabilia and a mink cape.
According to these records from the U.S. Marshal service, there is a guitar once owned by the dead pop star; a gold Rolex watch valued alone at $43,000; a Bruce Lee wall hanging and a pair of elk heads that once hung in the Jackson home. Much of it now headed for a rogues gallery auction block.
No date set yet for the government’s Jackson family auction. If you are wondering why Mrs. Jackson won’t receive a city pension, she wasn’t on the job quite long enough. And the reason Mr. Jackson will receive only a partial pension is because his offenses were related to his official duties. That was part of pension reform legislation Congress passed in 2007– legislation that Mr. Jackson voted in favor of.