Judge overrules latest charge by Blago attorneys

Ousted Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich arrives at his home after pleading not guilty in federal court in Chicago, Tuesday, April 14, 2009. (Paul Beaty)

July 21, 2010 8:36:40 AM PDT
Former governor Rod Blagojevich's attorneys charged in court Thursday that a judge erred in dismissing hundreds of potential jurors without consulting either side.

The hearing was in the federal courtroom of U.S. District Judge James Zagel. He will preside in Blagojevich's corruption trial, which begins next Thursday.

Judge Zagel overruled the criticism, saying he dismissed the potential jurors for hardship reasons, such as their not being able to miss work.

Blagojevich has pleaded not guilty to charges that he schemed to sell an appointment to President Obama's former U.S. Senate seat.