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Boston and Beyond

June 10, 2014

Pols ran job requests through speaker's office

(Continued)

Former Rep. Steven Walsh, a Lynn Democrat who resigned earlier this year for a community hospital association post, testified yesterday that he recommended two of the people prosecutors claim were fraudulently hired.

Costello said that he first got to know O’Brien when he was chairman of the Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee and the two sat on a youth offender task force “set up, I think, by the feds.”

The Newburyport representative, who was elected in 2002, said that before his election he worked as chief of staff to Somerset Democrat Sen. Joan Menard and while working there he had made a call to the probation office about someone seeking a job. As a practicing lawyer, Costello said he often hears appeals from “blue shirts,” who handle security at courthouse entrances, who want to be appointed court officers who work in the courtrooms.

“I would get hit walking into the court,” said Costello, who said that he has received “hundreds” of job requests and has tried to make recommendations for people after asking about their qualifications.

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