- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 11, 2011

CHICAGO (AP) — A federal judge in Chicago has denied ousted Illinois Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich’s request for a mistrial in the impeached politician’s corruption retrial.

Defense lawyer Lauren Kaeseberg sought the mistrial Wednesday, saying the defense hasn’t been allowed to conduct any “meaningful cross-examinations.”

Ms. Kaeseberg said defense attorneys are being “cut off at the knees” by prosecutors’ objections.

During one cross-examination Monday, prosecutors objected to the defense’s questions more than 150 times, most of which were sustained by Judge James Zagel.

Judge Zagel denied the mistrial motion, saying the grounds were too general.

After the brief discussion, prosecutors called the state’s former international trade director, Rajinder Bedi.

Blagojevich faces 20 charges, including that he tried to sell or trade President Obama’s vacated U.S. Senate seat. He has denied any wrongdoing.

Jurors in Blagojevich’s first trial deadlocked on all but one count — lying to the FBI.



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