CHICAGO – Former Governor George Ryan filed a motion in court late Tuesday to have part of his conviction dismissed. He is citing the Supreme Court ruling regarding Enron’s Jeffrey Skilling’s case. According to Ryan’s attorneys, under the new ruling, Ryan’s conviction is unlawful. George Ryan was convicted in 2006 of racketeering, conspiracy, tax fraud, and making false statements to the FBI (sound at all familiar?). Not all of these convictions pertain to the honest services laws, so some of the convictions will stay even if he wins this battle. Currently Ryan is serving a 6 and a half year federal prison term in Terre Haute, Indiana.
If Ryan’s attorneys are as good as they think they are, he can very well have these convictions overturned. This makes me very angry because after all the effort and money the state put into that 6 month trial in 2006, it seems like a waste. Being that Ryan is getting up there in age (he is currently 76), I almost feel as though the courts will take pity on him. Doesn’t seem quite fair does it? If his convictions are indeed thrown out, it is also possible that he will be released from prison to return to the life he once had. I can’t help but wonder, will this be yet another slap in the face for Illinois? After last month’s trial of Blagojevich, the jury came out hung on 23 of the 24 counts. Can this get any worse?
This new honest services ruling seems to be a bunch of baloney. Just who exactly gave George Ryan honest services? The men/women who showered him with gifts and donations to his campaign? I can’t see how that is very honest at all. With this ruling, I expect a lot of politicians in both the United States and Illinois to try and get away with as much as possible and not be able to be prosecuted. This ruling of the Supreme Court can only be deemed as ridiculous in my mind. I am going to sit back and watch this all unfold. My guess is, it won’t be pretty and that Ryan’s convictions will be thrown out.
The situation for Illinois is only getting worse with these corrupt politicians. George Ryan filing that motion was just one of the many setbacks I can see coming. Hopefully, his convictions will stick, though I realize it is highly unlikely at this point.