Bill could allow AG to sue Blagojevich over book profits

Chris Rizo Apr. 3, 2009, 5:12pm

Rob Blagojevich (D)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (Legal Newsline)-If convicted, disgraced former Illinois Gov. Rob Blagojevich could be unable to make money off his newly-inked book deal if state lawmakers have their way.

Legislation handily approved Friday by the state House would allow the state attorney general to sue convicted state officials for money they make by selling their story for books, movies or in broadcast deals.

The proposal, which now moves to the state Senate, appears to be aimed at Blagojevich, 52, who was ousted from office and subsequently indicted for, among other things, trying to sell the U.S. Senate seat vacated by President Barack Obama for personal and political favors.

A 75-page, 19-count federal indictment released Thursday charges Blagojevich with 16 felony charges, including racketeering, wire fraud, extortion conspiracy and lying to federal agents.

The former Democratic governor has denied any wrongdoing. His tell-all book due to be released in the fall.

Under the legislation, outlined in House Bill 4078, officials can profit from their stories so long as they were not convicted or have already completed their sentence.

The bill, which cleared the House 112-2, was introduced by state Rep. Jack Franks, D-Woodstock, chairman of the House State Government Administration Committee.

Also in the wake of the Blagojevich scandal, Illinois Gov. pat Quinn, a Democrat, signed into law a shakeup of the state pension system Friday.

The legislation, Senate Bill 364, provides for the ouster of state pension board members appointed by Blagojevich. The leader of the state teachers' pension system is also affected by the new law, officials said.

From Legal Newsline: Reach staff reporter Chris Rizo at

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