Ousted Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich, who once tried to sell President Obama’s vacated Senate seat, was sentenced to 14 years in prison on Wednesday (Dec. 7) — one of the stiffest penalties ever imposed for corruption in the state, according to MSNBC.
In a final plea for mercy, Blagojevich offered an apology. This after years of insisting he was innocent of all charges.
“I’m here convicted of crimes,” Blagojevich said, “and I am accepting of it, I acknowledge it and I of course am unbelievably sorry for it.”
Judge James Zagel gave the one-time governor credit for taking responsibility for his actions, but stopped short of leniency.
“Whatever good things you did for people as governor, and you did some, I am more concerned with the occasions when you wanted to use your powers when you wanted to do things that were only good for yourself,” said Zagel.
Blagojevich’s Republican predecessor, George Ryan, is also currently serving a six-and-a-half year sentence for corruption. While waiting for his case to make its way through the courts, Blagojevich made several reality TV appearances, including a stint on Donald Trump’s “Celebrity Apprentice.”