Chicago Sun-Times
Inside the Rod Blagojevich investigation and related cases

Blago trial could start in less than a year

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A federal judge said today that he would like to start the former governor's trial as early as April 1 of next year.
U.S. District Judge James Zagel put lawyers on notice this morning that he'd like to start Rod Blagojevich's trial between April and July of next year.
"My preference is to begin it in April," Zagel said.
Prosecutors said their case in chief would take about three months.
"If that's what the judge orders I'll be ready," one defense lawyer, Sam Adam Jr., said of beginning the trial in less than a year.
Rod Blagojevich, and five others were indicted April 2 in a wide-ranging corruption scheme. The former governor is accused of using the state of Illinois as an enterprise to cash in personally while making official decisions. He's also accused of trying to sell President Obama's vacant Senate seat to the highest bidder.
Zagel also seemed open to the idea of allowing a fourth defense attorney to come on the case. But Zagel asked defense lawyers to put that issue before him after they start going through evidence in the case.
Zagel also discussed the possibility of having an anonymous jury -- at least during the trial. Zagel said he's received letters and emails from the public dictating how he should rule in Blagojevich's case.
"I would not want members of the jury to be subjected," to that, Zagel said.
Sheldon Sorosky, another Blagojevich attorney, said that might be a "wise" decision.

Contributing: Tess Fardon

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Why will it take so long to get the Blago trial started. A year is ridiculous and it just shows the laziness of our judges and the court system. Our judges need to get to work for a living and this trial should start no later then September of this year. If lawyers are holding it up, then they do need to work harder and longer.

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This page contains a single entry by Natasha Korecki published on June 1, 2009 11:43 AM.

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