Whats Next For Blago

Wednesday, August 18, 2010 - 4:17pm

Prosecutors vow to prosecute former Illinois governor on 23 counts that left jury deadlocked.

The U.S. Attorneys Office is preparing for a retrial of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.

Yesterday a jury found Blagojevich guilty of just one of 24 counts on corruption charges.

The remaining 23 counts ended in a hung jury.

The jury found him guilty on a single count of lying to federal agents.

On the more serious charges including racketeering and attempted extortion the jury was deadlocked.

"The major flaw was the complexity of the case. The amount of information we had to digest. The length of the judge's instructions to us," foreman James Matsumoto said after the verdict was handed down.

The hung jury was partial vindication for Blagojevich.

"This government threw everything but the kitchen sink at me on every count, except for one, and every charge except for one, they could not prove that I did anything wrong," he said.

Prosecutors plan to re-group for a retrial on at least some of the charges.

"We have a court date set for next Thursday to set a trial date so for all practical purposes we are in the mode of being close to jury selection for a retrial," said prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald.

Jurors say they were as close as 11 to 1 for a guilty verdict on some of the charges, including the one involving the Senate seat vacated by President Obama, but agreed it would be pointless to deliberate any longer.

"We did everything in our power. It is what it is," said juror Erik Sarnello.

The maximum sentence for lying to the FBI is five years in prison.

Blagojevich said he plans to appeal his conviction on that charge.
 

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