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June 25, 2007

More on upcoming Scrushy and Siegelman sentencings

As detailed in this recent post, a federal district court in Alabama will be sentencing for former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman and former HealthSouth Chairman Richard Scrushy, and the case is filled with intrigue.  This new local news article, entitled "Sentencing hearing for Scrushy, Siegelman could be like a mini-trial, lawyers say," highlights that the sentencing will also be filled with lots of legal issues.  Here are snippets:

Ambitious, intelligent and shrewd,  Richard Scrushy and Don Siegelman rose from humble beginnings to create corporate and political empires. Tuesday, the HealthSouth founder and the former Alabama governor will stand together before a federal judge, facing the possibility of years in prison for convictions on federal bribery, conspiracy and mail fraud charges.

Prosecutors are seeking 30 years in prison for the ex-governor, 61, who was also convicted on an additional obstruction of justice charge, and 25 years for the 54-year-old Scrushy.  Defense lawyers say the sentences would amount to life in prison; they will ask for probation and have set their sights on the federal appellate courts to overturn the convictions.

"These defendants have basically thumbed their nose at the criminal justice system," said lead prosecutor Louis Franklin, the acting U.S. Attorney in the case.  Art Leach, Scrushy's defense lawyer and a former federal prosecutor, said such a sentence would be "unprecedented." "I think it's completely incorrect. I think it's actually absurd," Leach said.

The sentencing hearing, set to begin at 9 a.m. Tuesday at the Montgomery federal courthouse, could stretch the rest of the week. The results could decide the fates of two Alabama natives whose lives, until recently, read like all-American success stories.

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June 25, 2007 at 09:04 AM | Permalink

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