Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
AAA  Jul. 14, 2014 10:23 AM ET
Defendants in probation trial seek acquittal
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(AP) — Former state Probation Commissioner John O'Brien and two deputies are asking a federal judge to find them not guilty or declare a mistrial before the case heads to a jury.

In motions for acquittal filed Monday, O'Brien, William Burke and Elizabeth Tavares argue that federal prosecutors failed to prove any of the charges brought against the ex-officials.

The three are charged with trying to curry favor with powerful Beacon Hill lawmakers by funneling jobs to politically connected applicants at the expense of more qualified candidates.

Testimony in the trial ended last week and closing arguments are scheduled for Tuesday.

O'Brien's lawyers contend in their motion that the evidence is insufficient to allow the jury to find him guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

No state legislators have been charged.

Associated Press
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