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Former Mass. inmate wants apology for late release

ASSOCIATED PRESS
Former Mass. inmate wants apology for late release

A former inmate spent more than seven months in state prison after he should have been freed despite a new Department of Correction system meant to prevent late releases.

Mark Taylor told The Boston Globe that officials at the Massachusetts Treatment Center in Bridgewater abruptly told him last month to pack his belongings, and he was then dropped off at a Worcester homeless shelter.

Taylor was serving five years for assault.

The state Department of Correction said it overhauled the system used for calculating sentences following a Globe story in 2007 that said at least 14 inmates had been held beyond their release dates.

Department Commissioner Harold Clarke says the new system works and an employee error led to Taylor’s late release.

Taylor says he wants an apology and may sue.

New Bedford factory manager sentenced in immigration case

A manager at a New Bedford leather-goods factory raided in 2007 by immigration agents has been sentenced to two years probation for her role in helping the company hire and conceal illegal immigrants.

Dilia Costa of New Bedford was production manager at Michael Bianco Inc. Costa pleaded guilty in October to one count of harboring and concealing illegal immigrants and one court of hiring unauthorized immigrants. At her sentencing last Thursday, she was ordered to spend the first six months in home confinement.

The factory’s former owner, Francesco Insolia, was sentenced on Jan. 26 to 12 months in prison and ordered to pay a $1 million fine after pleading guilty to charges of knowingly hiring and concealing illegal workers.

Federal authorities arrested 361 workers in the 2007 raid.

Patrick replacing Economic Development secretary

One of Gov. Deval Patrick’s Cabinet members is leaving the administration.

The governor’s office announced last Friday that Housing and Economic Development Secretary Daniel O’Connell is stepping down and will be replaced by an undersecretary, Greg Bialecki. There was no explanation for O’Connell’s departure.

The announcement came on the eve of a West Coast swing the governor made with Bialecki to convince high-tech companies to keep existing operations in Massachusetts and expand in the Bay State.

Bialecki has been in charge of economic development for the state. Before joining the administration, he spent more than 20 years as a real estate, business and environmental lawyer in Boston.

He is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School.

Harvard Law gets $10M gift to endow chair

CAMBRIDGE — Harvard Law School has received an anonymous $10 million gift to endow a chair in honor of constitutional law expert Laurence Tribe.

The gift, one of the largest in the history of the law school, will also be used to support student and faculty research, visiting professorships, lectures and conferences and fellowships in the field of constitutional law.

The chair will be known as the Laurence H. Tribe Professorship of Constitutional Law when Tribe retires. Until then, at Tribe’s request, it will be known as the Thurgood Marshall Professorship of Constitutional Law.

Tribe, who’s been on faculty at the school since 1968, says he is “truly humbled” by the gift.

Law School Dean Elena Kagan says the gift enhances a strength of the school.

(Associated Press)