School Contractor Says Chaka Fattah Forced Him to Rehire Son

Pennsylvania Democrat serving 10 years in jail, son serving five years

Former Pennsylvania Rep. Chaka Fattah, seen here campaigning in Philadelphia last year, is currently serving a 10-year prison sentence. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A former Philadelphia school contractor said then-Rep. Chaka Fattah threatened him in 2011 if he didn’t rehire his son for a $144,000-a-year job.

David Shulick, who served as president of a now-defunct for-profit network of schools, said the Pennsylvania Democrat gave him “no choice” but to rehire Chaka “Chip” Fattah Jr.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that in a deposition made public Wednesday, Shulick testified the former congressman summoned him to a meeting shortly after he fired the younger Fattah. The testimony was read into the record during the second day of a civil case Fattah Jr. has filed against the U.S. government.

The younger Fattah, 34, is currently serving a five-year sentence for bank and tax fraud charges. He was convicted in 2015 of cheating banks, clients and taxpayers out of thousands of dollars so he could live a luxurious lifestyle.

His father is also in prison, serving a 10-year sentence for racketeering. The former congressman from Philadelphia was accused of misusing more than $60,000 worth of government and nonprofit money by directing it to his campaign and for personal expenses instead. He asked to remain out of jail as he appeals his sentence. U.S. District Judge Harvey Bartle denied the request.

Shulick’s new allegations that Fattah pressured him to rehire his son add to the already tarnished image of the Pennsylvania Democrat. During his trial, federal prosecutors said he misused federal grant money while serving on the Appropriations Committee.

The younger Fattah was in court this week to persuade a federal judge to award him $1 million in damages due to bad publicity from the 2015 investigation.

Shulick refused to testify in the civil case but faces his own federal indictment for allegedly paying nannies and maids with money he skimmed from his own company.

Correction 1:44 p.m. | An earlier photo accompanying the story misidentified another member of Congress as former Rep. Chaka Fattah. We regret the error. 

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