Judge to consider early release for ex-Massachusetts leader

BOSTON (AP) — A federal judge is set to hold a hearing on a request to release former Massachusetts House Speaker Salvatore DiMasi early from prison as he struggles with health problems.

DiMasi has served nearly five years of an eight-year prison sentence for corruption.

The U.S. Bureau of Prisons and federal prosecutors recommended DiMasi be released early. DiMasi has battled cancer twice in prison.

U.S. District Judge Mark Wolf will hold a hearing Tuesday.

In a written order, Wolf said several key details were missing from the recommendation, including specifics on DiMasi’s current medical condition. Wolf says the request could potentially raise questions of preferential treatment for the 71-year-old Boston Democrat because of his previous political stature.

DiMasi was convicted of steering state contracts to a software firm in exchange for $65,000.

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