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Siegelman, Scrushy Ask Court for Leniency

By Associated Press

Montgomery, AL – Former Governor Don Siegelman and ex-HealthSouth boss Richard Scrushy have made personal pleas for mercy in arguing that prison terms recommended by prosecutors in their corruption case would be ''life sentences.''

Defense filings made public Wednesday say the government's recommended sentences of 30 years for Siegelman and 25 years for Scrushy would be devastating to their families.

Scrushy's filing talks about his nine children who still live at home.

Siegelman's filing talks about his lifetime of government service going back to volunteer work and including his years as secretary of state, attorney general, lieutenant governor and governor.

Siegelman, who is 61, and the 54-year-old Scrushy were convicted in June 2006 on charges of bribery, conspiracy and mail fraud. Siegelman was accused of appointing Scrushy to a hospital regulatory board in exchange for Scrushy arranging 500-thousand dollars in donations to Siegelman's 1999 campaign for a lottery.

Siegelman and Scrushy plan to appeal their convictions to an Atlanta-based appeals court after they are sentenced.

In their filing, prosecutors said the proposed sentences are warranted because the actions of Siegelman and Scrushy may have caused a loss of public confidence in government.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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