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Lawmakers targeted in probation inquiry

US attorney looking at Democrats who may have gained from Probation Dept. hiring

Federal prosecutors investigating the scandal-plagued Probation Department are focusing on Democratic legislators who may have benefited from the agency’s allegedly rigged hiring system, including House Speaker Robert A. DeLeo, one of the most influential politicians in helping people get jobs under former commissioner John J. O’Brien.

Prosecutors have subpoenaed several lawmakers to testify before a secret grand jury considering criminal charges in recent weeks, including Representative John Rogers, the Norwood lawmaker DeLeo defeated to become House speaker in 2009. Rogers’s supporters have long suspected that O’Brien helped DeLeo win by giving jobs to people close to legislators backing DeLeo, a charge both men deny.

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