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Tony Rezko Sentenced to 10-1/2 Years

By Chuck Sudo in News on Nov 22, 2011 7:00PM

Former adviser to Rod Blagojevich Antonin "Tony" Rezko, who has already been in prison for 44 months, will have to stew in jail a little while longer. Rezko was sentenced to 10-1/2 years in prison this morning by U.S. District Court Judge Amy St. Eve.

Rezko, you'll remember, was convicted in 2008 on 16 of 24 counts of corruption, aiding and abetting bribery and money laundering. Rezko shook down firms seeking state business or contracts for millions of dollars while he was Blagojevich's adviser and fundraiser.

Rezko volunteered to enter prison shortly after he was convicted and volunteered to be a witness for the prosecution in Blagojevich's corruption trials, but was never called to the stand by prosecutors. Rezko's sentencing has been routinely delayed since he entered prison.

In handing down her sentence, St. Eve said she was aghast that Rezko, among other crimes, would put teachers' pensions at risk by dealing with a scheming for a bribe. Assistant U.S. Attorney Chris Niewoehner, who pushed for a stiff sentence, said Rezko's crimes were "about as bad as it can get in a political corruption case."

Rezko will get credit for time served. His relatives were emotional after the verdict.