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December 12, 2012

Jury deadlocked in ex-state treasurer Cahill's corruption trial; judge declares mistrial

BOSTON — Former Massachusetts treasurer Tim Cahill walked out of the courtroom a free man today, as the jury in his corruption trial could not reach a verdict.

Jurors said they were deadlocked, and Judge Christine Roach declared a mistrial.

Cahill and former chief of staff Scott Campbell were charged with violating state ethics laws by scheming to use $1.5 million in taxpayer-funded lottery advertisements to boost Cahill’s sinking 2010 gubernatorial campaign.

Campbell was acquitted yesterday but the jury continued deliberating this morning on charges against Cahill. Today was the seventh day of deliberations in the case.

Cahill smiled broadly after the announcement was made.

Cahill, who oversaw the Lottery as treasurer, was charged with conspiracy to use his official position to gain an unwarranted privilege and conspiracy to commit procurement fraud. He faces a maximum of five years in prison.

During the month-long trial, prosecutors portrayed him as a shrewd politician who approved an ad blitz touting the benefits of the lottery to run during the month before the election because he hoped it would boost his independent campaign for governor, which by that point was faltering badly. Cahill was also running separate campaign ads touting his leadership of the lottery.

No word yet on whether Attorney General Martha Coakley will attempt to re-try the former treasurer.

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