Ex-state lawmaker charged with corruption

Last updated: March 31. 2014 11:12PM - 4633 Views
By - elewis@civitasmedia.com

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SCRANTON — The U.S. Attorney’s Office has agreed to the release of former state Sen. Raphael Musto from a medical facility in North Carolina to be examined by his family physicians for Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

If U.S. District Court Judge A. Richard Caputo permits Musto’s release, federal prosecutors want update reports and medical diagnoses and decisions regarding further treatment.

Two weeks ago, Musto’s attorneys announced in court records that the former state senator, whose public corruption trial is on hold, was diagnosed with Stage IV lymph cell cancer and might have only two months to live.

Musto in January was ordered by Caputo to the custody of the state attorney general and was placed in a federal medical center — FMC-Butner in North Carolina — after Caputo declared him mentally incompetent to stand trial at the current time.

It was during Musto’s treatment in North Carolina that he was diagnosed with cancer.

Musto’s attorneys are seeking his release to return to his home in Pittston Township, where he can be evaluated by family physicians to determine if he can undergo chemotherapy.

In court records filed Monday, federal prosecutors did not object to Musto’s release but are seeking medical reports and decisions for treatment if Musto is released.

A hearing on Musto’s request to be released is scheduled on Friday. It was not immediately known Monday afternoon if Caputo will grant Musto’s release now that federal prosecutors did not object.

A federal grand jury in November 2010 indicted Musto, 84, on allegations he accepted cash, gifts and services as part of a scheme designed to secure his continued support of various construction projects.

Musto, a Democrat, had been Luzerne County’s senior elected leader in Harrisburg, where he served 28 years as a state senator and eight years in the House of Representatives.

He also had served the unexpired term of U.S. Rep. Dan Flood in the 11th Congressional District but left Washington in January 1981 after losing the general election to Jim Nelligan.

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