CHICAGO (Reuters) - The judge who presided over Rod
Blagojevich's corruption trial refused Wednesday to throw
out the conviction of the former Illinois governor on a single
count of lying to investigators.
The jury failed to reach a unanimous verdict on 23 other
corruption counts, and the ousted two-term Democrat faces
retrial in April.
Blagojevich was charged with trying to trade official acts
for campaign cash and jobs, including attempting to sell an
appointment to President Barack Obama's vacated U.S. Senate
Judge James Zagel of the U.S. District Court in Chicago
rejected defense arguments that prosecutors unfairly cut off
"meaningful cross-examination" of prosecution witnesses with
their "improper objections."
"The arguments made here are weak in themselves.
Defendant's motion is founded in substantial part on the
well-known principle that if a lawyer cannot attack the law or
the facts in a criminal prosecution, the only recourse is to
attack the prosecutor," Zagel wrote in a three-paragraph
statement filed in court.
(Reporting by Andrew Stern; Editing by Doina Chiacu)
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