2nd Bianchi prosecutor wants off the case

 
 
Updated 6/28/2011 5:54 PM

Both special prosecutors in the misconduct case against McHenry County State's Attorney Louis Bianchi are trying to get removed from the case.

Special Prosecutor Thomas McQueen filed a motion this week asking to be removed from the case. In court documents, McQueen argues that the threat of a lawsuit from Bianchi makes it impossible for McQueen to "exercise independent professional judgment and render candid advice" in the case, which is a rule of conduct for attorneys.

 

A hearing is set for Friday morning in Rockford.

In April, Henry Tonigan, the lead special prosecutor, asked a judge to be removed from the case to care for his ailing, elderly father.

But before the judge could rule, the McHenry County Board filed an appeal to the legal fees being charged by Tonigan and McQueen. The judge did not rule, deferring to the appellate court to rule on the case first.

No date has been set for the Second Appellate Court to render its decision.

Bianchi and his secretary were indicted in fall 2010 on charges they conspired to use county resources to further his re-election campaign.

Both Bianchi and Joyce Synek were exonerated in March when Judge Joseph McGraw found both not guilty and stopped the trial midway through due to lack of evidence.

Bianchi and two of his investigators were indicted in February on misconduct charges, but McGraw threw out charges against Ron Salgado, who is Bianchi's chief investigator. A move to dismiss misconduct charges against investigator Michael McCleary will be considered next month.

The latest batch of misconduct charges against Bianchi accuses him of improperly reducing sentences and throwing out charges for his political supporters and relatives.