National

Jun 8, 2010 2:43 PM by Greg Boyce

Opening statements begin in Blagojevich trial

A federal prosecutor says former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich was trying to use his power of government to get something of personal benefit for himself.

Federal prosecutor Carrie E. Hamilton is making the opening statement for the government at the corruption trial of the former governor. She says Blagojevich was part of "a series of illegal shakedowns."  She says he wasn't thinking about what he could do for the state of Illinois, but about what he could get for himself. She says there was also a plan about what he could do for his inner circle to cash in.

Blagojevich has pleaded not guilty to trying to sell or trade President Barack Obama's former Senate seat. He also denies that he plotted to turn his power as governor into a moneymaking scheme for himself and insiders.

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