Ryan's lawyers, led by another former governor--James Thompson--filed an appeal based on the Supreme Court's ruling last year on the "honest services" laws. The laws, as applied to public officials holds that a public official stands in a fiduciary relationship with the public. Honest services fraud is committed by breaching those fiduciary duties in the course of that relationship. The laws relate to theft, accepting a bribe, or concealing a financial conflict of interest. In 2010 the court narrowed the fraud to bribery and kickback schemes.
Appealing Ryan's conviction was a long shot at best, and it is the last in a series of extraordinary efforts to keep Ryan out of jail. The legal wrangling commenced as soon as he was convicted in 2006.
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