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Ex-Mass. House Speaker Appeals Corruption Case

 (AP Photo/Steven Senne/File)

(AP Photo/Steven Senne/File)

BOSTON (AP) — An attorney for former Massachusetts House Speaker Salvatore DiMasi has asked a federal appeals court to overturn DiMasi’s corruption conviction.

DiMasi is serving an eight-year sentence after being convicted in 2011 for using his political power to steer state contracts to a software company in exchange for payments of $65,000.

In arguments before the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday, DiMasi’s lawyer said prosecutors should have been required to prove that DiMasi had an agreement with a representative of the company to push for the contracts in return for the payments. The trial judge told the jury prosecutors only had to show that DiMasi understood that the payments were in exchange for him using his position.

A prosecutor told the three-judge panel the trial judge correctly instructed the jury.