Dianne Wilkerson, a former state senator from Boston once seen as a rising political star, will plead guilty Thursday in her federal corruption case, averting a high-profile trial that was scheduled to start later this month, her lawyer said.
"There will be a plea tomorrow,'' defense attorney Max D. Stern of Boston said. "I cannot tell you anything else."
Stern declined to say what charges Wilkerson will plead guilty to when she appears before US District Court Judge Douglas Woodlock in Boston at 2 p.m.
Her trial was scheduled to start June 21. About a week ago, Stern said he expected the trial to go forward.
Christina DiIorio-Sterling, a spokeswoman for US Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz, said today that prosecutors had no comment.
Both the prosecution and defense filed a notice today seeking the change of plea hearing.
Wilkerson, 54, faced 32 charges for allegedly taking bribes totaling $23,500 to secure a liquor license for a nightclub and legislation to pave the way for a commercial development in Roxbury. The charges included theft of honest services, mail and wire fraud, and conspiring to extort cash under color of official right.
The Roxbury Democrat, who has been free on bail since her arrest, resigned in November 2008 shortly after she was indicted in a bribery investigation that rocked the State House and Boston City Hall.
Authorities alleged that Wilkerson accepted $23,500 from Roxbury businessman, Ron Wilburn, who was an FBI informant, and an undercover FBI agent. The evidence released by authorities included a surveillance photograph of Wilkerson allegedly stuffing cash into her bra.
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