John O’BrienSun staff photos can be ordered by visiting our SmugMug site.
John O'Brien

Sun staff photos can be ordered by visiting our SmugMug site.

BOSTON (AP) -- The trial of former state probation commissioner John O'Brien and two deputies could soon be in the hands of a jury.

Federal prosecutors and lawyers for the defendants are scheduled to make their closing arguments to the panel on Tuesday.

O'Brien, William Burke and Elizabeth Tavares are accused of trying to curry favor with powerful Beacon Hill lawmakers by funneling jobs to politically connected applicants at the expense of more qualified candidates.

Defense attorneys are expected to contend that the government failed to prove its case.

No legislators are charged in the case.

House Speaker Robert DeLeo, who was not called to testify, has issued a series of recent statements denying assertions by prosecutors or witnesses that he traded jobs for votes or ordered the probation department be spared from budget cuts.