Jury to hear closing arguments in Connecticut Gov. John Rowland corruption trial

A jury is scheduled to hear closing arguments in the federal trial of former Connecticut Gov. John G. Rowland, who is accused of conspiring to be paid for work on two political campaigns while disguising those payments in business deals.

Rowland, who served 10 months in federal prison a decade ago for taking illegal gifts while in office, faces several years in prison if convicted. He faces seven counts, including obstruction of justice, conspiracy to violate election law, and falsifying records in a federal investigation. Closing arguments are Thursday morning.

Prosecutors say Rowland was paid $35,000 to work on the 2012 political campaign of 5th District Republican Lisa Wilson Foley, but conspired to hide those payments through a consulting contract with a nursing home chain owned by her husband.

They say he tried to strike a similar deal in 2010 with another candidate, Mark Greenberg, who rejected the arrangement to pay Rowland through his animal-rescue business.

Rowland's lawyers claimed he volunteered as a consultant for Wilson while being paid $35,000 to provide advice to Brian Foley's company, Apple Health Care Inc., on government and labor issues.

They say he never worked for Greenburg and no crime was committed.

The Foleys each pleaded guilty in the spring to a misdemeanor, and Brian Foley became the government's star witness.

He testified that while there was never a spoken agreement, he paid Rowland for the campaign work and the work at Apple was only cursory.

Greenberg also testified against Rowland.

But much of the evidence came from email correspondence, such as one he wrote to Foley.

"Had a brief chat with Lisa. I get it. Let's you and I meet," Rowland wrote.

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politicsconnecticut politicspoliticscorruptionNew Haven
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