By Andy Metzger
STATE HOUSE NEWS SERVICE
STATE HOUSE — House Speaker Robert DeLeo, who engaged in a war of words with federal prosecutors during the 2014 trial of three former probation officials, paid his attorneys $100,000 in campaign funds last year.
DeLeo’s year-end campaign finance report included the payment to Mintz Levin Cohn Ferris Glovsky and Popeo on Nov. 12, the day before the three former probation officials were sentenced by Judge William Young.
Sentencing occurred a day after prosecutors dropped another set of charges that was set to go to a second trial.
Federal prosecutors named DeLeo a co-conspirator in the scheme by former Probation Commissioner John O’Brien and others to shuttle jobs to politically connected individuals. DeLeo said prosecutors were using a “desperate legal strategy” and “persecuting me in the media in an attempt to salvage this case.”
Robert Popeo, the firm’s chairman, represented DeLeo in the matter.
As an alleged co-conspirator DeLeo did not face any charges and was not brought before the court to defend himself.
The three former officials were found guilty by a jury, though an Appeals Court panel ruled that O’Brien and his former deputy Elizabeth Tavares could remain free pending an appeal.
The third defendant, William Burke III, was not sentenced to any prison time.