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Sentencing hearing set to begin for former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich

Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich arrives at a federal courthouse for a hearing in Chicago July 15, 2011. AP Photo

Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich arrives at a federal courthouse for a hearing in Chicago July 15, 2011. It is Blagojevich's first time in court since a jury convicted him of multiple corruption counts in June. Judge James Zagel warned Blagojevich that he could lose his Chicago home and a condo in Washington if he tried to flee or otherwise violated his bond terms.
Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich arrives at a federal courthouse for a hearing in Chicago July 15, 2011.
AP Photo
(CBS) CHICAGO - The sentencing hearing for former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich begins today and he could be facing as much as 20 years behind bars.

Blagojevich was convicted on 18 counts of corruption earlier this year, including attempting to sell President Barack Obama's Illinois Senate seat.

CBS Chicago reports that prosecutors are asking for 15-20 years in prison, and the defense says Blagojevich should serve no more than 4 and-a-half years although they  are asking for probation.

The station also reports that legal analysts have speculated that the former governor will likely receive at least 10 years behind bars which is a sentence similar to the one handed down to his former fundraiser Antoin Rezko.

Blagojevich is expected to speak on his own behalf, but according to CBS Chicago's legal analyst, Irv Miller, Judge James Zagel is unlikely to be lenient with the former governor.

"If he's been consistent with the way he's been, the judge will throw the book at him, because he doesn't like the antics. He doesn't like what he did. He doesn't like that he hasn't shown any remorse or accepted responsibility," Miller said.

Judge Zagel is not expected to hand down a sentence until Wednesdsay.

  • Crimesider Staff

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