December 7, 2011 by staff
Blagojevich Sentencing, With years behind bars at stake, disgraced former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich admitted his crimes Wednesday and said he was sorry, telling a federal judge that he has made “terrible mistakes.”
While he apologized, Blagojevich still said he did not know he was breaking the law. He told Judge James Zagel that he thought what he was doing was “permissible,” but that he was mistaken, and he “never set out to break the law.”
Blagojevich said he acknowledges his crimes and is “unbelievably sorry.” He says he’s made “terrible mistakes.”
“My life is ruined, at least now. … My political career is over, I can’t be a lawyer anymore, we can’t afford the home we live in, we’re trying to sell it,” he said.
“I realize that the things I thought were permissible, the jury has made abundantly clear were not,” he said, adding, “Because of all that I have jeopardized my ability to protect my children.”
His comments came on the climactic second day of his sentencing hearing. Shortly after he speaks, Zagel is expected to announce just how long the 54-year-old will spend in prison for 18 corruption counts that include trying to auction off President Barack Obama’s old Senate seat.
Prosecutors also made their arguments Wednesday why they think Blagojevich should be imprisoned for up to 20 years, saying he was “incredibly manipulative” and knew full well that he was breaking the law when he tried to sell President Barack Obama’s old U.S. Senate seat and shake down people and a children’s hospital for money.
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