Cook County assessor’s employee charged with taking sports tickets, home improvements in exchange for assessment reductions

An employee of the Cook County assessor’s office was charged federally Wednesday with conspiring to accept gifts in exchange for reductions in assessments for commercial properties, the US attorney’s office announced.

Lavdim Memisovski was accused of accepting “home improvement materials, home improvement services, jewelry, meals, sporting event tickets” and other items in exchange for the reductions, according to documents filed in US District Court.

Memisovski allegedly conspired with two unnamed people between 2016 and July 2018 to accept the rewards for altering his work. Prosecutors said they were seeking the forfeiture of at least $20,000.

In one instance, according to the federal information, Memisovski allegedly had sprinklers installed in his home as part of the scheme.

An attorney listed for him in court records, Chris Gair, declined to comment on the case.

Scott Smith, a spokesman for the Cook County assessor’s office, released a statement Wednesday evening.

“On day one of his administration, Assessor Fritz Kaegi put a strict ethics code in place for all employees, which forbids the use of the assessor’s office for personal gain. The leadership of the assessor’s office has upheld and continues to uphold the highest ethical standards for all employees,” the statement read. “Though this person remained an employee of the office, the events mentioned in the charging document occurred during the prior administration and do not reference any activity during this administration. The assessor was not aware of these charges were being considered.”

Chicago Tribune’s Stephanie Casanova contributed.

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