Fattah Jr. says he rejected plea deals

Posted: August 08, 2014

CHAKA "Chip" Fattah Jr. says he can't afford to pay a high-profile lawyer to fight the government.

So the embattled son of a Democratic congressman did the next best thing: He hit the conservative talk-radio circuit yesterday to proclaim his innocence in the court of public opinion.

It was similar to a book tour - except the book, in this case, is a 23-count fraud-and-tax-evasion indictment unsealed Tuesday.

"I think this is something that your listeners can relate to. Overreach, big government. I don't think people like this," Fattah told Dom Giordano on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT.

Fattah, 31, who was released on unsecured bail after turning himself in Tuesday, also did a call-in segment with Chris Stigall, who hosts an earlier show on WPHT.

"It's about people trying to take down my dad and, in this case, attempting to go through me," Fattah told Stigall, referring to his father, 10-term U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah.

Rep. Fattah has been under investigation for at least seven years and has fought at least one federal subpoena seeking documents from his congressional offices.

His son, an out-of-work management consultant charged with defrauding banks and the Philadelphia School District, said he rejected plea deals that would have required him to serve some jail time and cooperate in any ongoing criminal investigations, including, presumably, the one involving the congressman.

"They won't say, 'Your father.' What they'll say is, 'You have to answer any questions truthfully,' " Fattah told Giordano.

In an interview with the Daily News, Fattah said that he knows little about his father's political dealings, but that the feds are using the indictment to embarrass the congressman and possibly get the son to turn against him.

"I just look at this as an abuse of power by people that obviously shouldn't have been entrusted with it," Fattah said of federal prosecutors.

Despite facing significant jail time if convicted, Fattah seemed to be basking in the media spotlight yesterday. He retweeted stories about his indictment and laughed freely during interviews.

As for his Instagram account that shows him living large, Fattah told the Daily News that he never owned a Lamborghini or Ferrari, and that some of the photos were from when he was pulling in six figures as a consultant, before the 2012 FBI raid at his home and office.

"Everything was like a throwback Thursday," he said. "I do like the rock shrimp at Pod, though. It's only $16."

- Daily News staff writer Chris Brennan contributed to this report.

On Twitter: @wbender99

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