Ex-Virginia governor opposes prosecutors' bid to limit character witnesses in corruption trial



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RICHMOND, Virginia — Virginia's former governor has urged a federal judge to allow him to call up to 10 character witnesses in his corruption trial.

Prosecutors want to limit Bob McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, to three character witnesses apiece.

The McDonnells are charged in a 14-count indictment with accepting more than $165,000 in gifts and loans from businessman Jonnie Williams in exchange for promoting his products. Their trial is set for July 28.

In court papers filed Tuesday, the former governor's lawyers say the case boils down to "a credibility contest" between McDonnell and Williams, who is expected to testify for the prosecution. They argue that as many as 10 witnesses are needed to provide a complete picture of McDonnell's character.

Prosecutors have argued that any more than three would be unnecessarily repetitive.

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