Bond set at $450,000 for Blagojevich

July 15, 2011 3:35:00 PM PDT
Former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich is putting his Chicago home up for sale.

That was revealed in court Friday as a federal judge ordered that Blagojevich put up both his North Side house and a condo in Washington D.C. to secure his $450,000 bond.

The former governor is awaiting sentencing on corruption convictions.

Bonds are set, in part, to discourage someone who has been charged or convicted of a crime from leaving town.

The former governor has been ordered to stay within the boundaries of the northern district of Illinois, and the notion of Blagojevich running off seems pretty farfetched. He and his attorneys say he will be in court as he has been all along. But to cover his bond, Blagojevich has to post his home, which he and his wife are now trying to sell. There's paperwork required to make that happen and Blagojevich had not signed it until Friday.

It means that if Blagojevich were - for whatever reason - to not show up in court, he and his wife could lose the DC condo and their home.

The former governor and prosecutor is well aware of the rules and told Judge James Zagel Friday, "I have no intention of violating the order."

Blagojevich has not had much to say publicly since the day of the verdict which, as he said, left him stunned.

"Patti and I are here to comply as we always try to do with all the rules and we signed all the necessary papers to comply with bond requirement, and we got to pick up Amy from school - that might be her calling now," he told reporters.

No questions were taken as the Blagojeviches left for home.

One of their attorneys volunteered to the judge Friday that the house is on the market and ought not be part of the former governor's bond. But the judge said it will remain part of the conditions of bond. The Blagojeviches are still free to go ahead and sell it.

The couple have paid their taxes on time and have been able to make their mortgage payments, according to attorney and friend Sheldon Sorosky who says that selling the house now is an "economic necessity."

"I think they're trying to sell it, so if anybody's watching this on TV and is interested in buying a nice house in Ravenswood, contact the Blagojeviches. How much are they asking? I have no idea," said Sorosky.

When asked in court what equity they have in their two properties, the Blagojeviches said roughly $600,000.

His defense team is busy working on an appeal and will ask that the former governor be allowed to remain free during the appeal. That's what former governor Ryan asked for after his conviction, and his request was turned down. He went to prison not long after being sentenced.

There is no sentencing date set yet for Blagojevich but the belief is it will come sometime this fall, perhaps in October.

Friday was the first time Blagojevich and wife Patti have been back in the federal building since his June 27th conviction on 17 felony counts.

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