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AG Martha Coakley appoints head of casino law enforcement

Attorney General Martha Coakley has appointed Patrick Hanley, an assistant attorney general, to oversee a new division of her office that will enforce casino gambling laws, Coakley said in a statement.

“Patrick has extensive experience investigating and prosecuting intricate criminal enterprises, and has displayed the leadership qualities needed to oversee this division,” Coakley said. “Our new Gaming Enforcement Division will serve to maintain public safety, prevent fraud, and ensure integrity in the gaming industry, and Patrick will lead those efforts well.”

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The state’s casino industry is still in its early phases, but eventually the state will host as many as three resort casinos and one slot parlor. The state gambling commission is accepting applications for casino development rights, and will eventually award casino licenses through a competitive bidding process.

Hanley, a Boston resident, is a graduate of Northeastern University School of Law and Brandeis University. He previously served as senior counsel in the Enterprise and Major Crimes Division at the attorney general’s office, where he has worked since 2008. Hanley conducted long-term investigations, prosecutions and trials, typically involving wiretaps and other covert surveillance, Coakley said.

The new division will enforce civil and criminal casino laws throughout the state and will also provide legal representation to the gambling commission.

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