State sets Health Connector rate increases assuming feds will keep paying mandated subsidies

The State House News Service reports on an announcement today by the Massachusetts Health Connector to limit increases for "silver" plans to 10.5% for next year, rather than the 26% that would be required should the president just halt subsidies called for in the health-care law he has failed repeatedly to get repealed in Congress. "Copper" subscribers will see an average increase of nearly 14%, the Health Connector says, adding it is continuing to try to figure out what to do if the subsidies are held up.

East Boston MS-13 leader gets 10 years in federal prison

Santos "Flaco" Portillo Andrade, the leader of the MS-13 East Boston Loco Salvatrucha "clique," was sentenced today to ten years in federal prison on racketeering, drug distribution and assault and battery charges, the US Attorney's office reports.

After his sentence is completed, Portillo Andrade, 33, a Salvadoran national living in Revere, will face deportation hearings.

According to the US Attorney's office, Portillo Andrade admitted to attacking a man he thought was a member of a rival gang in Malden in 2008. He also admitted to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin and 500 grams or more of cocaine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.

Portillo Andrade, who had agreed to plead guilty in June, was one of several dozen alleged MS-13 members rounded up in a sweep by federal and local authorities last year. He's the latest in a series of members who have agreed to plead guilty rather than face trial.

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