We are weeks away from learning if Illinois’ ex-governor Rod Blagojevich will get out of prison sooner than he thought. His resentencing is scheduled for August 9th.
This week, his brother and former co-defendant Robert Blagojevich is in Chicago and intends to be in court for the resentencing.
This will be Robert’s first time back to the federal building since a jury delivered his verdict in 2010.
At 60, Robert is a free man and grateful for that title after he spent more than a year fighting extortion and bribery charges in one of the toughest courthouses in the land.
Robert hasn’t spoken to his brother in over four years. The relationship between them right now is nonexistent.
Still, the ex-governor’s big brother feels it’s his duty to be there when his brother stands before a judge again.
When he attends the resentencing, he says he’s going back to the building that represents to him a broken system filled with overreaching prosecutors with one thing on their minds.
“It wasn’t about justice,” he says. “It was about winning and of course, getting my brother. And they didn’t care who got in the way of getting to him. They thought I would be a way of getting to him.”
Back in 2010, the feds ended up dropping charges against Robert after a hung jury determined the Blagojevich brothers would have to go before a judge and jury for a second time. Prosecutors decided to focus their case and took only his baby brother, the better known Blagojevich in Chicago, to trial in 2011 where the ex-governor was convicted and sentenced to 14 years.
Even though now the two men have a frigid relationship at best, Robert not only wants to see his brother Rod’s sentence reduced, he wants to be there in person when the decision is handed down. Both brothers will be in the same room for the first time in years.
“I’m his only direct relative and really, (I want) to honor my parents. There is no question that they would want and expect me to be there.”