Former Illinois Governor Blagojevich rests in corruption trial
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Despite promises he would testify in his own corruption trial, lawyers for former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich rested their case yesterday morning. His defense did not call a single witness, and apparently feels the prosecution has not proven their case. Closing arguments are scheduled for Monday.
Speculation that Blagojevich would not testify began on Tuesday, when U.S. District Judge James Zagel adjourned 90 minutes early after a private meeting with the lawyers involved. Robert Blagojevich, the former governor's brother and co-defendant in the case, had already testified on his own behalf. Blagojevich's defense team apparently considered resting their case on Tuesday, but Zagel gave them an extra day to consider their decision more carefully.
When Zagel directly asked the former governor about his decision, he replied that he understood what he was doing. "It is my decision, under the advice of my attorneys. I make the decision fully and voluntarily," he said.
Blagojevich is charged with trying to sell the U.S. Senate seat that had been vacated by Barack Obama when he won the 2008 presidential election, among other crimes. Robert Blagojevich testified that his brother was trying to manipulate the political situation to his advantage, but emphasized that he engaged in nothing illegal. According to some sources, Blagojevich was interested in leading the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
- "US Supreme Court rejects Blagojevich motion to delay Illinois corruption trial" — Wikinews, May 29, 2010
- "Blagojevich defense team wants to restart jury selection in Illinois corruption trial" — Wikinews, May 27, 2010
- "Former Illinois governor Blagojevich asks US Supreme Court to delay corruption trial, prosecutors to respond by Friday" — Wikinews, May 22, 2010
- "Former governor of Illinois indicted on corruption charges" — Wikinews, April 3, 2009
- "Governor of Illinois arrested on suspicion of corruption" — Wikinews, December 9, 2008
- Todd Feurer. "Rod Blagojevich Might Not Testify After All" — , July 21, 2010
- "Defense rests without Blagojevich testifying" — , July 21, 2010
- Katherine Wojtecki. "Blagojevich defense rests without calling former governor" — , July 21, 2010