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

Blagojevich judge dismisses motion as "hare-brained"

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By Abdon M. Pallasch

U.S. District Judge James Zagel took a mere three minutes Monday morning to dismiss a motion by former Gov. Rod Blagojevich's attorneys as "hare-brained."

Blagojevich's attorneys sought a new trial based on a report that the jury forewoman had displayed a juror questionnaire in a public talk she gave about the trial. Those questionnaires are not supposed to be taken from court, Blagojevich

Just beyond belief, attorney Lauren Kaeseberg argued.

It was unclear whether the forewoman displayed a filled-out or blank questionnaire.

"The motion was prepared without any adequate thought," Zagel scolded Kaeseberg. "You should seek outside counsel ... and send a letter of apology to the juror."

Zagel said he could hold Kaeseberg in contempt of court but was cutting her slack because she was a fairly new lawyer.

"By the absence of precedent, I assume you couldn't find precedent," Zagel said, calling the filing "beyond my imagination."

Zagel two weeks ago sentenced Blagojevich to 14 years in prison on charges of trying to use his office to enrich himself.

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This page contains a single entry by Natasha Korecki published on December 19, 2011 11:32 AM.

Cellini juror issue holds but reporters off the hook was the previous entry in this blog.

Blagojevich lawyers say they acted "in good faith" is the next entry in this blog.

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