Judge postpones the sentencing of John G. Rowland

John G. Rowland and his wife, Patty, during his trial.

Mark Pazniokas / ctmirror.org

John G. Rowland and his wife, Patty, during his trial.

The inauguration of Gov. Dannel P. Malloy will not have to share time on the evening news Wednesday with the sentencing in U.S. District Court of a predecessor, John G. Rowland.

Senior U.S. District Judge Janet B. Arterton has indefinitely postponed Rowland’s sentencing, which most recently was scheduled for 10 a.m. Wednesday, hours before Malloy is to take the oath of office in Hartford.

Rowland’s lawyer asked Arterton on Friday to delay the sentencing and convene a hearing on what the defense says was a potential violation by the prosecution of its obligation to disclose evidence.

A spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office said Monday afternoon that the sentencing will not go forward Wednesday. No order by the judge was immediately available in the court’s online filing system.

Meanwhile, the Rowland defense team has expanded as it looks toward an appeal, hiring Andrew Fish, a partner in Locke Lord in New York. Fish was the deputy chief of the appeals unit in the U.S. attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York.

Reid H. Weingarten, who leads Rowland’s defense, asked the judge in a letter Friday to delay the sentencing and convene a hearing to explore if the government failed to disclose all evidence.

Rowland was convicted of conspiring with a congressional candidate, Lisa Wilson-Foley, and her husband, Brian Foley, to hide that Foley was paying Rowland through his health-care company, Apple Rehab, for political advice to the campaign.

The defense says that Rowland did legitimate consulting work for Apple Rehab while he helped the Wilson-Foley campaign as a volunteer. Foley and Wilson-Foley pleaded guilty to conspiring with Rowland.

Wilson-Foley, in seeking leniency at sentencing, said in a filing to the court that she initially thought that Rowland’s payments from Apple were legitimate.

“Ms. Wilson-Foley’s representations, if accurate, are highly favorable to Mr. Rowland,” Weingarten wrote.

Rowland did not testify at trial, but his defense tried to establish that Rowland was hired for legitimate work and he did not view himself as entering into a conspiracy when he was hired in late 2011.

Foley is scheduled to be sentenced Friday. Wilson-Foley is to be sentenced Jan. 13. Both pleaded to a misdemeanor with a maximum sentence of one year in prison.

Rowland, who resigned in 2004 and served 10 months in prison after pleading guilty to corruption charges, faces a sentence of between 30 months and 37 months in prison, according to the the U.S. Probation Office’s calculations under sentencing guidelines.

 

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