Ex-Illinois Governor Blagojevich indicted on federal corruption charges

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Chicago, Apr.3 (ANI): A 19-count indictment on corruption charges has been leveled on former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.

Blagojevich and his closest advisers were indicted by a federal grand jury Thursday on a slew of corruption charges, including a conspiracy to sell President Obama's former Senate seat, reports the New York Daily News.

Blagojevich, who was impeached and removed from office earlier this year, was charged with 16 felony counts in connection with his role in a "wide-ranging scheme to deprive the people of Illinois of honest government," a statement from the U.S. attorney's office said.

Blagojevich, 52, is accused of lying to the feds and using his gubernatorial powers to pressure a congressman to funnel money to his campaign. He's also charged with attempting to extort a children's hospital, a race track executive and a highway contractor.

The indictment also states Blagojevich discussed trying to trade the seat for an appointment to Obama's cabinet or a highly paid position at a private foundation. Blagojevich also allegedly attempted to get campaign money from potential appointees.

In addition to Blagojevich, the indictment lists Blagojevich's brother, Robert, 53; two former top Blagojevich aides, and two businessmen as co-defendants.

Blagojevich was reportedly in Florida with his family enjoying a visit to Disney World.

He has denied any wrongdoing and has promised to fight the charges in court. (ANI)

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