AP source: Hastert paid to keep old sex abuse claims secret - WNEM TV 5

AP source: Hastert paid to keep old sex abuse claims secret

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CHICAGO (AP) - A person familiar with the allegations against former House Speaker Dennis Hastert says the Illinois Republican paid hush money to conceal claims that he sexually molested someone decades ago.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing and the allegations are not contained in an indictment issued Thursday. The specific nature of the claims was not immediately clear.

The federal indictment accused Hastert of agreeing to pay $3.5 million to keep a person from the suburban Chicago town where he was a longtime high school teacher and wrestling coach silent about "prior misconduct." The court papers did not detail the wrongdoing.

Several media outlets reported similar details, citing unidentified federal officials.

The Los Angeles Times, which was the first to report the specifics, cited two federal law enforcement officials, one of whom said Hastert paid a male to keep quiet about allegations that the former speaker molested him back in his coaching days.

The official said the case had nothing to do with public corruption or Hastert's time in elected office.

Hastert was a little-known GOP leader when he was chosen to succeed Newt Gingrich as speaker.

 Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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