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Court asks for ruling on Scrushy's release

MONTGOMERY (AP) — A federal appeals court has asked U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller to decide if former HealthSouth CEO Richard Scrushy should be released from prison while his conviction is being appealed.

The 11th U.S. Court of Appeals, in a ruling dated Monday, has asked Fuller to rule on a motion by Scrushy asking that he be released on bond, while his conviction is being reviewed by the appellate judges.

Fuller presided over the trial last year of Scrushy and former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman, who were convicted of bribery and other charges. Scrushy and Siegelman were both taken into custody at the end of a sentencing hearing in June. Fuller denied a motion at the time from Scrushy attorney Art Leach that his client be released on bond pending appeal.

When Siegelman attorney Susan James asked, "Can we be heard on the issue?" Fuller ended the hearing.

The 11th Circuit last month asked Fuller to rule on Siegelman's request for an appeal bond. Fuller denied the request in a four-page ruling in which he said Siegelman had not shown that he has a substantial chance of winning his case on appeal.

Siegelman's request to be released on appeal bond is back before the 11th Circuit.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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