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June 8th, 2010
11:14 AM ET

Opening statements to begin in Blagojevich case

CNN Wire Staff

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/CRIME/06/08/crime.blagojevich.trial/story.blagojevich.gi.jpg caption="Prosecutors cite near-constant conspiracy of extortion and kickbacks." width=300 height=169]

Opening statements in the federal criminal trial of embattled former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich are set to begin Tuesday.

The trial could feature White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and Obama senior adviser Valerie Jarrett. Both have been subpoenaed as witnesses in the case, according to a senior administration official.

Blagojevich, a two-term Democrat, was impeached and removed from office in January 2009 amid accusations that he had attempted to sell the U.S. Senate seat that had been occupied by Obama before he became president.

The ousted governor is accused of telling his former chief of staff, John Harris, that he wanted "a good gig" in exchange for an appointment to Obama's seat, either in Washington or with a lucrative private foundation.

Blagojevich was arrested in December 2008 on federal corruption charges.

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