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Former Ill. Gov. George Ryan Released From Prison

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Former Ill. Gov. George Ryan was convicted of racketeering, conspiracy, tax fraud and making false statements to the FBI.

Updated 11:33 a.m. to show that Ryan left the halfway house.

Attorney Jim Thompson says Ryan was released from the halfway house a short time after arriving there. Thompson, also a former Illinois governor, traveled with Ryan to his home in Kankakee, where he will remain in home confinement.

Speaking from Ryan's living room, Thompson said Ryan was beaming and surrounded by his smiling grandchildren.

Original story:

Former Illinois Gov. George Ryan has been released from federal prison in Indiana - but is not yet totally free.

The 78-year-old Republican spent more than five years behind bars on corruption charges related to his time as Secretary of State.  He reported to a halfway house in Chicago early this morning, and is required to find a job.

Jim Thompson, another former governor and one of Ryan's attorneys, says Ryan is in "decent spirits," and talked about how good it was to be out of prison. Thompson accompanied Ryan on the drive from Terra Haute, Ind. to Chicago.

Ryan lost several court battles seeking to overturn his conviction. He was allowed out briefly in 2011 to be at his wife Lura Lynn's side when she died of lung cancer.

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