White-Collar Crime

Ex-Chief of Staff for Blago Says Sorry, Gets 10-Day Jail Term; Former Ill. Gov Is Serving 14 Years

A former chief of staff to Rod Blagojevich who served as a star witness at the political corruption trial of the impeached former Illinois governor was sentenced on Wednesday to 10 days in federal prison after apologizing to a federal judge in Chicago. Blagojevich is serving a 14-year sentence.

Attorney Terry Ekl, who represented John Harris, had sought probation, portraying his client as one of a number of staffers worn down by Blagojevich into doing things he shouldn’t have. However, U.S. District Judge James Zagel said some prison time was required, the Chicago Tribune reports.

“The offense is so serious and so crucial that I cannot impose upon you a sentence that does not involve custody,” the judge told the 50-year-old Harris.

The Associated Press and Politico also have stories.

Related coverage:

ABAJournal.com: “Ex-Gov of Ill. Could Be Alone at Trial as Other Defendants Sprint for Exit”

ABAJournal.com: “Blagojevich Found Guilty of 17 Corruption Counts”

ABAJournal.com: “Impeached Former Ill. Gov Enters Club Fed in Colo. for Likely 12-Year Stint in Corruption Case”

Associated Press: “Judge: I won’t send former Blagojevich aide to prison”

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