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Powerbroker convicted in Blagojevich case is free

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November 6, 2013 02:19 PM EST | AP


SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Politically connected Illinois businessman William Cellini (suh-LEE'-nee) has been released from federal prison.

A spokesman for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons says the Republican insider snagged in the corruption scandal involving former Gov. Rod Blagojevich was released from the federal lockup in Terre Haute (TARE'-uh HOTE'), Ind., on Oct. 31.

Spokesman Chris Burke says Cellini, who lives in Springfield, must serve home confinement until Dec. 5.

A friend of governors and presidents for decades, Cellini was convicted in 2011 in a failed attempt to shake down Oscar-winning film producer Thomas Rosenberg for a $1.5 million contribution to the Blagojevich campaign.

Blagojevich is serving a 14-year sentence for corruption.

Cellini began his one-year-and-one-day sentence Jan. 22. Burke says he qualified for 47 days of good-conduct credit.