New sentencing hearing under way for ex-Ala. gov

Associated Press
FILE - In this file photo taken Nov. 2, 2011, former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman talks with reporters outside the Federal Courthouse in Montgomery, Ala. Siegelman is headed back to federal court Friday, Aug. 3, 2012, for a new sentencing hearing for his conviction on bribery and other charges. Judge Mark Fuller will decide Siegelman’s new sentence in Montgomery and could order him to immediately return to federal prison after more than four years of freedom. (AP Photo/Dave Martin, File)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — A federal judge holding a new sentencing hearing for former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman says there is "no doubt" Siegelman bribed a former hospital executive.

U.S. District Judge Mark Fuller said Friday that Siegelman's sentence would not be longer than the seven years and four months he originally received.

The 66-year-old Siegelman appeared in good spirits as he entered the courthouse. He declined to comment.

He served about nine months before being released pending his appeals. The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to hear his case.

Siegelman and former HealthSouth chief Richard Scrushy were convicted in 2006. Prosecutors say they arranged $500,000 in contributions to Siegelman's campaign for a lottery in exchange for the governor appointing Scrushy to a hospital regulatory board.