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Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Long Strange Trip of Anthony Demasi

A couple days ago, John Kass wrote about the trials and travails of Anthony Demasi. Demasi is a name that most likely won't know even in the city of Chicago, where he's located. Yet, he may one day play a role in unraveling a lot of the corruption here. Demasi was a playboy, club owner, and financier until winding up in jail a couple months back. His company, Tsunami Capital, held millions for many of the power brokers in Chicago. Then, in the last couple years, Tsunami Capital went under and with it many of the millions the power base in Chicago invested in it. So, began the quick decline of Anthony Demasi.

Besides money management, Demasi also had a knack for club ownership. He is the money behind nightlife mainstays like Reserve and Crescendo. He was often spotted in the glitzy Chicago area known as the Viagara Triangle (where often older men with money scout for younger attractive females) Of course, in Chicago, if you are a club owner, it also means that you are in tight with much of the power base. That's because in order to own a club you need such things as a liquor license and building and occupancy permits. In a clean city, such a process involves filling out the right forms, meeting the right standards, and waiting your turn. In a corrupt city like Chicago, it means scratching all the right backs and pay all the right dues. In the shadow government of Chicago all the real power is in the hands of those on the board of such organizations as the liquor licensing board. Put more bluntly, here's how Kass described it.

That's because Demasi knows whose itch he scratched for the city liquor licenses and building and occupancy permits, which determine how crowded a club can be. And he knows what he says he paid to promote legislation in Springfield permitting VIP bottle service, which allows club owners to milk the suckers.

Demasi was on the inside of the seedy and corrupt world of liquor licensing and permits. He knows where all the bodies are buried. Then, a month or so ago, he was arrested on a domestic battery charge. It seems that he bit his girlfriend on the cheek. For this he received a million Dollar bail, which means he would have needed to come up with all the money. The whole thing was suspicious to Kass and he was openly questioning Demasi's safety in jail.

Since he was locked up Feb. 5, news began circulating among his old crowd. Some are worried. And I don't want Demasi getting accidentally hit by a bolt of lightning or choking himself to death with plastic bags in the jail shower. That might ruin Chicago's reputation.

Then, two days ago, the story began to unfold even more, and Kass was there with an update.

Like I said, it was strange. But it's all becoming clear to me now.

Because a few minutes ago, the U.S. Attorney's office indicted Demasi on charges that he defrauded investors at his Tsunami Capital investment company out of millions of

Now, Demasi is facing serious charges and serious jail time. It's likely that he will be in a very talkative mood, especially if it means that less jail time. Demasi is not the fish any Fed prosecutor wants. The big fishes are the one's who's backs he scratched, and you can bet the Feds will be very interested in what Demasi says about them.

Here's the full story of Tony Demasi.


Anonymous said...

Is he related to Katamari Demasi?

Anonymous said...

Tony Demasi is a man of great character. Yes he acted in seedy ways but in a town and state that is full of corruption can you really blame the little guy? The feds dont want Tony, they want the information in his head. And trust me Tony's heads not easily cracked

Anonymous said...

The guy is a joke. He screwed people out of money, shameed himself and his family. Now he will rot in jail like he deserves.

Anonymous said...

Don't think that Tony DeMasi didn't get screwed himself. He ran into this slick lawyer on Ohio Street who econned DeMasi out of 10% of the 250,000-275,000 loan.

Silent Observer

Anonymous said...

DeMasi met his match in a smart Ohio Street lawyer who skimmed off 10% of s $250,000-$2275,000 loan.

Anonymous said...

I met Demasi a few months before he received his first FCC allegations. He's a super friendly guy. If you have met and talked to Tony, you probably made friends with him at first. Or, if you were like me, you immediately had your suspicions... but that's all they were.

His world came crashing down on him.

I think he will serve time. But in the long run, he just knows too many (corrupt) people to put him back on his feet.

I never liked him so good riddance. Best of luck to you, though, Tony.

Anonymous said...

I know first hand about how bad this guy is. Someday everyone will know how bad he screwed people. He will be sent to jail someday and deserves everything he gets. Anyone that says he is a good guy or says he doesn't deserve it must be "on the payroll" of good old boy Demasi. I will be in court the day he gets his verdict and I will be smiling at him when he is in tears getting ready to be someone's girlfriend!