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

Blagojevich trial: Attorneys talk forfeiture plans; no word from the jury

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Reporting with Natasha Korecki

The courtroom was packed this morning for a 10:30 hearing with attorneys -- but if the crowd was expecting a bombshell, they left disappointed.

In a speedy, five-minute meeting, Judge James Zagel and attorneys hashed out plans for forfeiture -- a final hurdle the jury may need to clear if they convict Rod Blagojevich.

If jurors convict Blagojevich of racketeering, the government will then move to seize the former governor's Ravenswood Manor home and the former first couple's Washington D.C. condo.

Prosecutor Reid Schar said the government would present about 10 minutes of testimony for the forfeiture proceedings, and would show the jury evidence about the Blagojevich's bank account balances.

The defense said it would not present evidence.

Zagel said he would wait to decide whether the forfeiture hearing would take place immediately after the verdict is announced or whether it would wait until the next day. It will depend on what time of day the verdict comes in, he said -- and how tired the jury looks.

"You can usually tell from looking at a jury how exhausted they are or how fresh they are," the judge said.

Meanwhile, there's no word from the jury as they trudge through Deliberation Day Six.

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Michael Jackson's trial was a field day for the judge. Who did not consider that Jackson really was of fragile health. And, one day, had Jackson showing up in his pajamas. For daring to be "late."

Of course, that was another example of prosecutors COUNTING on a conviction. It didn't come. (And, yes. The jurors were all televised after the verdict. Decent people.)

Again, maybe, that's what our Founding Fathers were counting on? Not judges who brought the rope. Or who choose to go out of the way to make hangings easy.

By the way, I read somewhere that Rod & Patti have a $700,000 mortgage. Plus, there's an apartment in DC.

If "going for forfeiture" at this point isn't trying to guild the lily, then what is?

When Blago announced that he suddenly decided NOT to testify it reminded me of the scene in Godfather II when Michael was in front of the Senate commitee investigating organized crime.....and Frank Pantangeli got on the stand and suddenly recanted after seeing his brother in the gallery.....
Wonder who "inspired" Blago to make the sudden change of heart....the Black Panthers, perhaps???

*god's name

michael jackson's trial? what in go's name are you talking about, carol? im thinking that your legal knowledge is being drawn from everything you've ever seem on tmz. nothing, absolutely nothing, in your above post makes any sense at all.

With the market the way it is, this might just work out to their best interest...What do they owe on the house? How much is it worth & what can the government get at auction? Do they have to pay Patti half of what they get?

Well, well. The defense said nothing. My guess is that Zagel was hoping for a big IED blast. Given the way the crowds come in to watch these extremely boring performances.

And, Patrick Fitzgerald, I am sure, was among the "best dressed men." Plus, tanned. So he can roll out his "Abraham Lincoln rolling machine," I think he didn't quite judge the crowd. yet.

And, I don't remember this crap being tried at Michael Jackson's trial, either. So, I guess the Groucho Marx "word of the day" ... is "racketeering." IF "racketeering" is involved. BOOM. But how, exactly, do you get to racketeering? Just by living in Chicago?

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This page contains a single entry by Sarah Ostman published on August 4, 2010 10:54 AM.

Rod Blagojevich jurors: And ... we move on to day 6 was the previous entry in this blog.

What's weighing on Blagojevich jurors -- here's a rundown of counts, evidence. is the next entry in this blog.

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