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Ex-dump owner with Blagojevich link faces charges
Associated Press
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Published: 8/30/2010 3:24 PM

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A former owner of a landfill whose temporary closure sparked a feud between then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich and his father-in-law has been charged with federal tax evasion.

The U.S. Attorney's office in a Monday statement accused Frank Schmidt of failing to pay more than $2 million in taxes over the last five years.

The 40-year-old Glenview man's a distant relative of Blagojevich's politically powerful father-in-law, Chicago Alderman Richard Mell.

In 2005, Blagojevich ordered the Joliet dump closed for environmental violations. Mell claimed the move was meant to punish him for criticizing the then-governor.

Schmidt is charged with five counts of tax evasion. He faces a maximum five-year prison sentence on each count.

Messages left for Schmidt's attorney weren't immediately returned.