Blagojevich pleads not guilty to revised charges -

Blagojevich pleads not guilty to revised charges

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By Afton Spriggs By Afton Spriggs


 CHICAGO (AP) -- Ousted Gov. Rod Blagojevich has again pleaded not guilty to federal charges that accuse him of scheming to sell or trade President Barack Obama's old Senate seat and swap official favors for campaign money.

The Illinois Democrat appeared in federal court in Chicago on Wednesday to answer a revised batch of charges. After Blagojevich's plea, U.S. District Judge James Zagel set a March 17 status hearing in the case.

The new indictment doesn't contain any new allegations of misconduct.It's an attempt by prosecutors to ensure that a legal challenge now before the U.S. Supreme Court doesn't delay Blagojevich's trial. That dispute involves a federal law that allows charges of denying taxpayers the right to "honest services." The charge appeared in the previous indictment against Blagojevich.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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