Former Ryan Aide Pleads Guilty

By  | 

A woman who worked for a one-time top aide to former Gov. George Ryan has pleaded guilty to mail fraud in a bid-rigging scheme involving an $11 million contract.

Alexandra Coutretsis Thursday admitted giving information on sealed bids to an employee of a politically connected lobbying firm.

Prosecutors say that information ended up in the hands of a St. Louis company that lowered its own bid to win the McCormick Place contract.

In a signed statement, Coutretsis said her boss at the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority, Scott Fawell, told her to turn over the information.

Fawell, who was both an aide and campaign manager for Ryan, now is also charged in the bid-rigging probe. Coutretsis worked under Fawell in the secretary of state's office and in Ryan's campaigns.