Blagojevich Files Appeal, Says Judge Favored Prosecutors
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CHICAGO (CBS) — In a move that was fully expected, deposed Gov. Rod Blagojevich is filing an appeal to overturn his conviction on corruption charges.
In a 158-page motion filed late Monday, Blagojevich claimed his trial was fundamentally unfair. He claimed U.S. District Judge James B. Zagel ruled too often in prosecutors’ favor, and he asked for a new trial.
Attorneys claim the Blagojevich was deprived the “presumption of innocence.”
Blagojevich’s attorneys have also asked permission to speak with jurors. Defense attorneys often interview jurors in a search for fodder that could bolster their case in an appeal.
Blagojevich was convicted last month of 17 of the 20 counts against him at his retrial last month.
The counts for which Blagojevich was convicted included trying to sell the U.S. Senate seat that was vacated by President Barack Obama in 2008. It was his second trial, after the first ended in a hung jury on all but one count.
Earlier this month, Blagojevich filed a motion asking to preserve the questionnaires that potential jurors filled out at the start of jury selection in April, in what is likely a move toward filing an appeal.
Blagojevich’s sentencing date has not been set, but most legal analysts say Zagel will probably sentence him to about 10 years.
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