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Darryl "God" Whiting, a notorious former leader of a Roxbury drug gang who is serving a life sentence for dealing narcotics, will appear in federal court in Boston in February for a hearing on his request for a reduced sentence.

Whiting, 60, incarcerated in Kentucky, will be brought to US District Court in Boston for a hearing on Feb. 11 at 2:30 p.m. before Chief US District Judge Patti B. Saris, according to a legal filing Wednesday.

He was convicted in the same courthouse in 1991 for leading a drug enterprise that prosecutors said operated out of the Orchard Park housing development and grossed millions. He became the first defendant in Massachusetts to receive a life term for selling drugs.

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But in 2014, he filed a motion for a reduced prison term, based on new guidelines for drug offenses that the US Sentencing Commission had adopted. The reduction he is seeking would make him eligible for release in 2017.

Federal prosecutors initially backed his request but then abruptly withdrew their support in May. The withdrawl came after they learned that Whiting had published a novel behind bars in which a fictional character by the same name who is jailed for the same crimes is released from custody and takes revenge on witnesses who testified against him. In the novel, one of the witnesses is buried alive.

His lawyer has called the novel "a far cry from constituting evidence of a malicious intent or a revengeful plan."

The flamboyant Whiting was known for his stylish dress and efforts to portray himself as a role model for young people before his downfall.

He ran several businesses in Roxbury, as well as a social club that authorities said he used to recruit neighborhood youths for his drug enterprise, which numbered more than 100 people at its height.

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During a court appearance in the case that led to his conviction, a defiant Whiting told reporters, "Call this the second trial of Jesus Christ!''

He was also initially charged with murdering another drug dealer, but that count was later dropped.


Travis Andersen can be reached at travis.andersen@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.