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Man avoids prison time in extortion case involving ex-mayor

Former Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correia is serving a six-year prison sentence for fraud and extortion.

Former Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correia. AP Photo/Philip Marcelo, File


BOSTON (AP) — A man who pleaded guilty to conspiring with a former Massachusetts mayor to extort a marijuana vendor has been sentenced to three years of probation.

David Hebert was sentenced this week in the case involving former Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correia, who is serving a six-year prison sentence after being convicted of defrauding investors in a smartphone app and extorting money from marijuana companies.

Hebert, 57, of Westport, helped Correia extort a marijuana vendor by demanding that the vendor buy $12,500 worth of fundraising tickets to two of Correia’s campaign fundraisers in exchange for a letter of approval from the city it needed in order to get a license, authorities said. Authorities say Hebert also lied to federal agents about his role in the scheme.

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Hebert apologized to the judge and his family before being sentenced in Boston’s federal court. Hebert cooperated with prosecutors in the case against Correia.

“I cannot emphasize the remorse and embarrassment that I allowed myself to get involved in (this),” Hebert told the judge, according to The Herald News.

Correia, who was seen as a rising political star when first elected mayor in 2015 at age 23, was convicted last year of extortion, fraud, and filing false tax returns. He has maintained his innocence and is appealing his conviction.

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