Aide: Alabama's ex-gov Siegelman to be released from prison

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A longtime aide says former Alabama Gov. Don Siegelman is to be released from prison this week, nearing the end of a 6 and 1/2 sentence for bribery and obstruction of justice.

Friend and former aide Chip Hill says the ex-governor was told he'll be released to house arrest Wednesday. The 70-year-old Democrat is in a federal prison in Louisiana.

Siegelman was convicted of selling an appointment to a state health board in exchange for donations to his 1999 lottery campaign. Siegelman's supporters unsuccessfully sought a presidential pardon for the former governor.

Hill said Monday that the former governor's friends and family are "very excited about his release and very much look forward to seeing him."

Justin Long, a federal Bureau of Prisons spokesman, said he couldn't confirm Hill's account.