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Siegelman attorney questions treatment

MONTGOMERY (AP) — Former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman has been assigned to a prison in Texarkana, Texas, but was flown in shackles to Michigan and New York, with bologna sandwiches to eat, before being placed in a small cell in Oklahoma City, one of his lawyers said Friday.

Siegelman's chief attorney, Vince Kilborn, questioned his client's treatment and said the defense has been mostly unable to talk to him while preparing legal pleadings seeking his release on bond by the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

"It's impossible to represent somebody on an emergency motion like this without being able to talk to him," Kilborn said.

Kilborn said Siegelman has been assigned to a minimum-security federal prison in Texarkana, Texas, which is about a 520-mile drive from Siegelman's home in Birmingham. Kilborn said the former governor is expected to be taken there next week from Oklahoma City, where he is being held in a small cell at a federal prison transfer station on the edge of the Oklahoma City airport.

Federal prison officials could not immediately be reached Friday evening to comment on Siegelman's transfer.

Siegelman and former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy were convicted of bribery and other charges last year in a government corruption case. Siegelman was sentenced to more than seven years in prison and Scrushy to almost seven years on June 28. They spent almost two weeks sharing a cell at the federal penitentiary in Atlanta before Siegelman was transferred this week.

Scrushy is still being held in Atlanta, but according to a court filing has been designated to be transferred to a minimum-security prison in Beaumont, Texas, a 580 -mile drive from Birmingham.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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