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Rezko's Defense Rests Without Calling Witness

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Rezko's Defense Rests Without Calling Witness

CHICAGO -- Defense attorneys rested their case Monday without calling a witness in political fundraiser Antoin "Tony" Rezko's marathon fraud trial.

"We do not believe the government has met their burden in proving the charges against Mr. Rezko," chief defense counsel Joseph J. Duffy told reporters. Closing arguments are set to begin May 12.

The trial, which started March 3, has been closely watched because Rezko, a Chicago real estate developer and fast-food entrepreneur, has raised money for Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.).

But the Democratic presidential candidate was rarely mentioned in testimony, and no one has said the evidence suggested any wrongdoing on his part.

Rezko, 52, is charged with scheming with lawyer Stuart P. Levine to split a $1.5 million bribe from a contractor seeking to build a hospital.

Iraqi Sues Over Alleged Torture

LOS ANGELES -- An Iraqi man sued two U.S. military contractors, alleging that he was tortured while being held at the Abu Ghraib prison for more than 10 months. Emad al-Janabi's federal lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles, alleges that, beginning in September 2003, employees of CACI International and L-3 Communications Holdings punched him, slammed him into walls, hung him from a bed frame, and kept him naked and handcuffed in his cell. Phone messages left for Arlington-based CACI and New York-based L-3, formerly Titan Corp., were not immediately returned.

Texas County Agrees to Fence

McALLEN, Tex. -- The federal government and Hidalgo County, on the Mexico border, have reached an agreement to build a combination of levees and border fence. The federal government will pay about $65.7 million of the $113.9 million project along 22 miles of the Rio Grande; it aims to address both national security concerns and local flood-control needs.

Ohio Governor Wants AG to Quit

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland and other Democrats called for the state's attorney general to resign, saying a scandal has compromised Marc Dann's ability to do the job. Dann promised to remain in office after admitting Friday to having had an extramarital affair with a subordinate.

-- From News Services

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