Connecticut ex-governor sentencing postponed

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HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A federal judge has agreed to postpone the sentencing of former Connecticut Gov. John G. Rowland until January.

Rowland was convicted last week of seven counts related to his attempts to hide work on two Republican congressional campaigns through phony business deals.

The defense asked to move the sentencing from Dec. 12 after prosecutors indicated they would not object if Rowland wanted to wait until after the holidays. U.S. District Judge Janet Bond Arterton set a new date of Jan. 7.

Rowland, once a rising star in the Republican Party, served 10 months in prison a decade ago for taking illegal gifts while in office and now as a repeat offender faces the possibility of a much stiffer sentence. The convictions carry a total possible sentence of 56 years in prison, though Rowland likely would not face that much time under federal guidelines.

The government's case centered around a contract between Rowland and a nursing home chain owned by the husband of 2012 5th District congressional candidate Lisa Wilson-Foley. Rowland's attorneys argued he volunteered for the campaign while receiving $35,000 to consult for her husband's company, but prosecutors said the money was an illegal payment for campaign services.

Prosecutors showed Rowland had tried to strike a similar deal with another candidate, Mark Greenberg, during the 2010 election cycle.

Defense attorney Reid Weingarten filed a standard motion Wednesday asking the judge to overturn the jury's verdict. Arterton did not immediately rule on that motion.

Rowland was convicted of conspiracy and two counts each of falsifying records in a federal investigation, causing false statements to be made to the Federal Election Commission and causing illegal campaign contributions.

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