CHICAGO, Nov. 29 (UPI) -- Lawyers for former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich asked a federal judge to consider what they say is new evidence about a key government witness.
The defense team suggested the information came to light during the sentencing hearing of Blagojevich fundraiser Antoin Rezko, who drew a 10 1/2-year prison sentence last week for extortion, the Chicago Tribune reported Monday.
Defense lawyers said they question whether former Blagojevich aide John Wyma cooperated in exchange for promise by the government not to pursue an investigation into him, the Chicago Sun-Times said. Wyma's lawyer denied the claim.
"There was never any understanding he would not be investigated," attorney Zach Fardon said. "He cooperated truthfully with no pre-conditions."
Wyma did receive immunity from the government when he was subpoenaed to appear before a grand jury, the Tribune said.
U.S. District Judge James Zagel scheduled a hearing for Friday. Blagojevich is scheduled to be sentenced Dec. 6.
Separately, Zagel denied a defense request to play portions or include transcripts of 180 secretly recorded calls during the sentencing hearing. The defense argued portions of the recorded sessions would show a lack of "ill intent" by Blagojevich, the Sun-Times said.
"The filing of this particular motion at this late date is simply wrongful," U.S. District Judge James Zagel wrote. "What this motion requests is my blind approval of the use of whatever excerpts it decides are relevant to 'lack of ill intent' and admissible under the loosened standards of hearsay at sentencing. That request is denied."