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Ex-Illinois Gov. Ryan Loses Jail-Release Appeal

CHICAGO (CN) - Former Illinois Gov. George Ryan cannot be released on bail to be with his wife who is fighting terminal lung cancer, the 7th Circuit ruled, denying Ryan's latest emergency motion.

Ryan sought relief from the Chicago-based appellate after the district court denied his request just before Christmas.

Prison authorities allowed Ryan to visit his wife, Lura Lynn, for two hours last Wednesday, which prosecutors claimed undercut his argument for release.

A three-judge appellate panel declined to grant bail on Monday, finding that his chance of success on appeal is not sufficiently high.

"Appellant's attorneys have suggested the possibility that he might be released during the days so that he can be with his wife," the unsigned order states "This possibility might be a humane way to address the personal aspect of his motion."

Lynn's doctors have reportedly estimated that she has only weeks to live. Ryan is 76-years-old and has served three of his 6 1/2-year sentence.

He was convicted in 2006 of racketeering, mail fraud, tax violations and making false statements to the FBI.

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