Patronage on Trial

Patronage on Trial

Coverage of the federal racketeering trial of former Probation Commissioner John O’Brien.

DeLeo calls out prosecutors, denies jobs for votes claim

DeLeo calls out prosecutors, denies jobs for votes claim

Doesn’t explain why he was handing out Probation jobs

House Speaker Robert DeLeo angrily insisted on Wednesday that the Probation jobs his office steered to candidates favored by fellow lawmakers played no role in his effort to gather enough votes to become Speaker. He said the suggestion by federal prosecutors that the jobs represented a quid pro quo for votes is false. “It’s never(...)

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Murphy: DeLeo told me to spare Probation

Murphy: DeLeo told me to spare Probation

Says he said ‘yes sir,’ but numbers fuzzy

The House’s former top budget official testified on Wednesday that he was ordered by House Speaker Robert DeLeo in 2009 to spare the Probation Department from the type of drastic budget cuts every other agency was facing. Charles Murphy, the former chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, said the economy had just fallen(...)

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Defense lays Probation problems on Mulligan

Defense lays Probation problems on Mulligan

Judge admits he had power but did not curtail patronage hires

Defense attorneys in the federal corruption trial of former Probation commission John J. O’Brien suggested on Tuesday that Robert Mulligan, the retired chief justice for administration and management at the Trial Court, had the power to deal with any hiring problems at the agency and didn’t get the job done. “Were you in a little(...)

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O’Brien judge denies prosecutors more time

O’Brien judge denies prosecutors more time

Young expresses doubt again about strength of case

The judge in the federal corruption trial of former Probation commissioner John O’Brien and two top aides on Monday denied most of prosecutors’ request for additional time to draw jurors a roadmap of the bribery scheme they say ran from One Ashburton Place straight to the State House, with a primary detour through House Speaker(...)

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SJC judges in dark about Probation hiring

SJC judges in dark about Probation hiring

Greaney: ‘People were asleep at the switch’

Robert Mulligan and John O’Brien are squaring off in federal court over hiring practices, much as they squared off when Mulligan was the chief justice of administration and management at the Trial Court and O’Brien was commissioner of the state’s Probation Department. But it’s worth remembering that the workplace battles between the two officials didn’t(...)

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Rep. Petrolati’s wife will testify about qualifications

Rep. Petrolati’s wife will testify about qualifications

Other questions ruled off-limits by Young

US District Court Judge William Young worked out a deal on Wednesday that will allow Kathleen Petrolati, the wife of state Rep. Thomas Petrolati, to testify at the trial of former Probation commissioner John O’Brien and two of his top aides. The deal gives immunity to Petrolati, allowing her to testify about her qualifications for(...)

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Defense: Mulligan played patronage like O’Brien

Defense: Mulligan played patronage like O’Brien

Lawyers go after key prosecution witness

An attorney for former Probation Department commissioner John O’Brien on Wednesday accused Robert Mulligan, the former chief justice of the Massachusetts Trial Court, of practicing political patronage, playing fast and loose with hiring documents, and steering jobs to favored applicants without advertising them publicly. Those are all things that prosecutors in O’Brien’s ongoing federal corruption(...)

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Shaky Ryan insists jobs used to help DeLeo

Shaky Ryan insists jobs used to help DeLeo

Legislative liaison at Probation fuzzy on details

Defense attorneys on Tuesday raised questions about the accuracy of testimony by a top aide to former Probation commissioner John O’Brien, but legislative liaison Edward Ryan stood by his claim that Probation jobs were steered to the office of Rep. Robert DeLeo in 2007 and 2008 to help DeLeo win a fight for the speaker’s(...)

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Witness for the prosecution

Witness for the prosecution

Robert Mulligan has very clear memories of his years in bureaucratic combat with former Probation commissioner John O’Brien

Robert Mulligan leaving the courthouse on Tuesday. Federal prosecutors at the trial of former Probation commissioner John O’Brien finally got their dream witness on the stand. After weeks of trying to extract testimony from lawmakers with faulty memories, reluctant coconspirators with immunity agreements, and judges with limited knowledge of hiring policies, Robert Mulligan took the(...)

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Witness: DeLeo got jobs to help speaker fight

Witness: DeLeo got jobs to help speaker fight

Former Probation lobbyist says O’Brien took sides in the battle to succeed DiMasi

The legislative liaison for former Probation commissioner John O’Brien testified Monday that O’Brien gave then-House Ways and Means Committee chairman Robert DeLeo 10 newly created positions to hand out to colleagues and directed that all recommendations for probation jobs from House members go through DeLeo’s top aide to help the Winthrop Democrat garner support for(...)

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