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posted: 3/9/2012 7:16 PM

Judge unseals Bianchi prosecution file

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  • Louis Bianchi

      Louis Bianchi

 
 

A McHenry County judge Friday unsealed a file containing a documents used to prosecute State's Attorney Louis Bianchi.

The Crystal Lake Republican was acquitted in March 2011 of felony charges that he used county resources to further his re-election campaign. He was acquitted again in August 2011 on misconduct allegations that he improperly used his influence to lessen criminal penalties or drop charges against his distant relatives and those politically connected to him.

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Terry Ekl, attorney for Bianchi, moved last spring to get the file unsealed. Judge Gordon Graham decided to unseal it after Thomas McQueen, a special prosecutor brought in to handle both cases against Bianchi, withdrew his objection.

"There was never a legal, valid legal reason to keep the file sealed," said Ekl, who hopes the file "shines a light" into what went on in the investigation against his client.

McQueen could not be reached for comment.

Bianchi has filed a $15 million federal lawsuit against McQueen, fellow Special Prosecutor Henry Tonigan and others for malicious prosecution in the two trials, which were both stopped halfway through due to lack of evidence.

McHenry County officials also are appealing Graham's order to pay the special prosecutors and a forensic firm more than $600,000 for working on the cases.

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