Blago Jury Confused Over Wire Fraud Language - NBC Chicago
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Blago Jury Confused Over Wire Fraud Language



    Blago Jury Confused Over Wire Fraud Language

    The Blagojevich jury has gone home for the weekend after five days of deliberations. 

    Earlier Thursday they sent a note signaling some confusion about the jury instructions concerning wire fraud, the first 10 counts of the indictment.

    Specifically, they asked for clarification on this:

    "To sustain the charge of wire fraud...the government must prove the following propositions beyond a reasonable doubt:

    First, that the defendant knowingly devised or participated in a scheme to defraud the public of its right to the honest services of Rod Blagojevich or John Harris, by demanding, soliciting, seeking, asking for, or agreeing to accept, a bribe in the manner described in the particular count you are considering;

    Second, that the defendant did so with the intent to defraud;

    Third, that the scheme to defraud involved a materially false and fraudulent pretense, representation, promise, or concealment..."

    In particular, they were confused about that third clause.

    The judge is sending back another note which states:

    "I ask you to take another look at the relevant instruction.  After you have done so, if you think it is necessary, I ask you to state which particular words or phrases in the third proposition you believe need clarification."