Blagojevich defense to grill star gov't witness -

Blagojevich defense to grill star gov't witness

CHICAGO (AP) -- An attorney for Rod Blagojevich hopes to unnerve the prosecution's first major witness in the corruption retrial of the ousted Illinois governor.

Defense lawyer Aaron Goldstein is set to begin the cross-examination of John Harris on Monday.

Blagojevich's former chief of staff testified for three days last week. He described how he and Blagojevich talked about exchanging an appointment to President Barack Obama's vacated U.S. Senate seat for campaign cash or a top job for Blagojevich.

Harris was arrested the same day as Blagojevich in 2008 and agreed to testify for a reduced sentence. The defense is likely to press Harris about whether that agreement gives him a reason to lie or to embellish his testimony. Goldstein is also likely to say Blagojevich was just talking.

Blagojevich denies all wrongdoing.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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