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Most political mortals would have given up by now. Not Michael Albano.

Michael Albano, the former Springfield mayor whose decades-long public career has entangled him in FBI and state police investigations, now wants to get his own badge.

Albano is running to be the new Hampden County sheriff, having joined three others in a bid for the Democratic nomination.

That has set off a buzz in political circles. But Albano, who was never charged with wrongdoing, says the flood of investigations was all about the FBI seeking revenge for grudges going back to 1983.

Indeed, his record is strewn with controversy. Springfield was thrown into receivership six months after he left office, though he maintains he left a balanced budget. A lengthy FBI probe of his administration ended with his chief of staff convicted on tax fraud. His appointee to a quasi-public agency got up to 22 months in federal prison in a no-show job scheme.


A city-administered loan agency — where he appointed much of the board — gave out loans to two people convicted in mob-related gambling crimes, including one who did not repay it and later proclaimed himself a made member of the Genovese crime family.

Albano believes his troubles started with a vote he made as a member of the Parole Board in 1983 to commute the sentence of convicted murderer Peter Limone — who two decades later was found to have been framed by corrupt FBI agents. Albano was subjected him to a brutal (and he says retaliatory) investigation by the FBI and State Police, convinced he was getting paid by the mob. They came up cold.

And then, as FBI agents swarmed over his City Hall administration, Albano testified before Congress on FBI abuses.

Most political mortals would have slunk into away into obscurity by now.

But Albano, now 65, moved on and in 2012 won the Governor’s Council seat representing western Massachusetts, a post he is giving up to run for sheriff.


“There are very few people who can say they stood up to he FBI and prevailed,’’ Albano says. He likes to point out that in the middle of the federal investigation into Springfield City Hall, he won re-election with 60 percent of the vote in 2002 and went on 10 years later to be elected — and re-elected — to the Governor’s Council.

He argues that is a clear sign the public is with him, even ready to put him in charge of Hampden County jail.

“I have had three elections since the investigation, and it has been litigated by the voters,’’ he says.

Frank Phillips can be reached at phillips@globe.com.