Lawyer plans to leave Blagojevich defense team

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CHICAGO (AP) — Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich (blah-GOY’-uh-vich) may be losing a lawyer.

Veteran defense attorney Allan Ackerman filed papers in federal court asking permission to withdraw, citing “philosophical differences” among the lawyers.

He didn’t spell out what the differences were, but said that as a result, he is “no longer able to stridently participate in the defense of the accused.”

A voicemail left for Ackerman Friday at his law firm was not immediately returned. But Blagojevich attorney Sheldon Sorosky said the departure was “all very friendly.”

Blagojevich has pleaded not guilty to charges that he was scheming to sell or trade President Barack Obama’s former U.S. Senate seat.