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“He took a duty not to sell the power and influence of the office to the highest bidder,” she said of Mr. McDonnell.

The defense, meanwhile, tried to portray Mr. Williams as a man in danger of being brought up on charges associated with stock sales tied to his dietary supplement company, Star Scientific Inc., and who saw an opportunity to hand the federal government a “bigger fish” in Mr. McDonnell.

Mr. Burck likened Mr. Williams to an iPhone, with its newer versions akin to his changing stories being worked out to get a better deal for himself and a better case for the prosecution.

“The government trusts Jonnie Williams. But that doesn’t mean you have to,” he told the jury.

Mr. Williams has been granted immunity from prosecution in exchange for testifying.

Mrs. McDonnell’s lawyer argued that since she is a private citizen, she was incapable of using or attempting to use the governor’s office in any capacity to advance Mr. Williams‘ interests. He also said that as a breast cancer survivor, Mrs. McDonnell has been and remains a health enthusiast who legitimately believed in Mr. Williams and his company, and that she even still holds stock in Star Scientific.

Bob McDonnell is the ultimate target,” Mr. Burck said. “Maureen McDonnell is sitting here today as the collateral damage.”

After opening statements laid out what can be expected to be a weekslong trial, the prosecution got down to questioning their first witnesses Tuesday afternoon.

The queries surrounded a $15,000 check Mr. Williams used to pay expenses associated with the wedding of the McDonnells’ daughter, Cailin McDonnell Young.

The check was more than was still owed to the catering company when it was signed about two weeks before the June 2011 wedding.

Ryan Greer, an employee of the catering company, said he was instructed by the company’s owner not to tell anyone about the check and to issue a refund to Mrs. McDonnell for the difference.

Mrs. Young said she understood the check to be a wedding gift from Mr. Williams to her and her husband, even though she and her husband were trying to pay for as much of the wedding as possible themselves because “we didn’t really want this wedding to get out of control” and become some sort of “political mess.”

She said her mother first told her about the reimbursement check in February 2013, when Mrs. McDonnell also told her she had been questioned by the FBI. She said the governor was “very upset” with his wife and told Mrs. McDonnell it was her daughter’s gift, so the first lady gave it to her.

Mrs. Young wept on the stand after being shown pictures from her wedding, prompting Judge James R. Spencer to call a brief recess.

“Our wedding now has this black cloud over it,” she said. “You can’t look back at it with a happy memory.”

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