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The decision marked one of the few significant rulings that have been in Ryan’s favor since he was convicted of taking kickbacks for steering state business to insiders, among other corruption schemes. When told of the court’s decision, the 78-year-old former governor sounded pleased, said Jim Thompson, one of Ryan’s attorneys.

“He was very gratified … I could hear it, hear it in his voice,” Mr. Thompson, himself a former Illinois governor, told the Associated Press. “This is his first legal victory since proceedings against him started more than six years ago.”

The high court took issue with how Chicago’s 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reached its decision to reject his appeal, but it stopped well short of overturning Ryan’s convictions. Any new trial, if it happened, would focus solely on several fraud convictions, Mr. Thompson said.

It will take time for the legal issues to play out, said another Ryan attorney, Albert Alschuler.

“We hope that, ultimately, this Supreme Court action means a new trial,” he said. “It certainly won’t be happen tomorrow.”

Ryan, who has denied wrongdoing, is serving the tail end of a 6 1/2-year sentence in a federal prison in Terre Haute, Ind., on multiple convictions, which in addition to fraud included conspiracy, tax fraud and making false statements to the FBI. His successor as governor, Democrat Rod R. Blagojevich, also in prison for corruption; he began serving a 14-year sentence in March.

STATE

U.S., Philippines hold high-level security talks

The U.S. says it will help build the Philippines’ sea patrol capability but will not take sides in that nation’s standoff with China at a disputed shoal in the South China Sea.

The top diplomats and defense officials of the treaty allies held their first joint meeting Monday and discussed the three-week standoff at the Scarborough Shoal.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton reaffirmed U.S. commitment to its mutual defense treaty with the Philippines, and to freedom of navigation and regional security. She reiterated support for a diplomatic resolution to territorial disputes.

A joint statement said they would cooperate on building the Philippines’ maritime security capabilities. The U.S. will transfer a second ship to the poorly equipped Philippines navy this year.

WISCONSIN

Governor raises $13M in effort to fight recall

MADISON — Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s campaign said he raised more than $13 million from mid-January through last week as he fights a recall effort.

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