Blagojevich Defense Team Files Final Brief On Appeal

CHICAGO (AP) — Rod Blagojevich’s lawyers laid out a final set of arguments in writing before they step before appellate judges next week to argue that the imprisoned ex-governor deserves a new trial.

The 33-page filing with the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals repeats arguments made before, including that trial Judge James Zagel displayed bias against Blagojevich. The brief was posted late Monday.

The defense and prosecution will get 30 minutes each to deliver oral arguments before a three-judge panel Dec. 13.

Underpinning those arguments will be voluminous written arguments. Lawyers for the 56-year-old Democrat filed a 100-page appeal in July. Last month, prosecutors offered a 169-page response. Monday filing’s was a defense reply to that government response.

Jurors convicted Blagojevich of wide-ranging corruption in 2011. He’s serving his 14-year prison term.

(TM and © Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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