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More Charges in Probe of Blagojevich Fund Raising

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There was another indictment yesterday in the ongoing federal investigation into political fund raising under Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.

Political insider William Cellini was repeatedly implicated in criminal behavior by witnesses at the corruption trial of Tony Rezko this year. Now, federal prosecutors have made it official. They’ve charged Cellini with mail and wire fraud and attempted extortion for his part in a scheme to squeeze a bribe out of a company hoping to do business with the state of Illinois.

Prosecutors say he and co-conspirators Tony Rezko and Stuart Levine told an investment company that they would get a $220 million deal only if they contributed a million and a half to governor Rod Blagojevich’s campaign fund. If convicted, the 73-year-old Cellini faces up to 55 years in prison.

I’m Robert Wildeboer, Chicago Public Radio.

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