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Mayoral aides extortion trial scheduled to get underway

BOSTON (AP) – Two of Boston Mayor Marty Walsh’s top aides are scheduled to go to trial this week on charges that they bullied music festival organizers into hiring union workers if they wanted city permits.

City tourism chief Kenneth Brissette and director of intergovernmental relations Timothy Sullivan face trial on extortion charges Monday in U.S. District Court.

Prosecutors say they told organizers of the 2014 Boston Calling music festival that if they didn’t hire union workers, others would picket. Both men have denied the charges.

A district court judge in March 2018 dismissed the case, but a federal appeals court reversed that ruling, saying the lower court judge misinterpreted the law when he ruled that federal prosecutors would be required to prove the defendants personally benefited from the hiring of union workers.

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