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Expelled lawmaker goes to court

Wed, 26 Sep 2012 04:22:17 CDT
By: IPR's Robert Wildeboer


     Attorneys for former Illinois Representative Derrick Smith will be in court today attacking the credibility of prosecutors and their main witness.   Prosecutors say Smith took a bribe in exchange for writing a letter helping a daycare that was seeking a 50 thousand dollar state grant. Prosecutors have a confidential informant who recorded conversations with Smith including a conversation in which the informant counted out and then handed the politician a 7 thousand dollar bribe. But Smith's attorney Vic Henderson says the judge should throw out those recordings because prosecutors understated the informant's criminal history in court papers:

   

"If you build a case on a shaky foundation, then at least in our experience, the case is bound to fall apart."

Prosecutors say the misstatements were made after the recordings and should therefore have no impact on the powerful evidence. And they say they immediately notified the judge when their informant's full criminal history was discovered. Despite his legal troubles Smith is still running in the fall election.


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