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Lawyers evasive about ex-U.S. House speaker's alleged sex abuse

downloadFormer U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert's lawyers declined on Saturday to directly address sexual abuse allegations from federal prosecutors, who asserted that he molested at least four boys decades ago when he served as a high school wrestling coach.

Hastert, 74, faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison when sentenced later this month for his guilty plea in October to a federal charge of illegally structuring large bank withdrawals in small increments to evade currency-reporting rules.

As part of that plea, the former Republican speaker of the House of Representatives admitted paying $1.7 million in cash to someone he had known for decades as hush money and compensation for unspecified wrongdoing toward that individual.

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