Former NC Speaker Being Moved From Pa. To Ga.

Former North Carolina House Speaker Jim Black is being moved from a prison in Pennsylvania to one in Georgia.

The Charlotte Observer said Saturday that more than 150 of Black's friends had written prison officials asking for leniency because of the failing health of the 74-year-old Black and his wife.

Former Mecklenburg commissioner Parks Helms said Black was being transferred to a prison in Jessup, Ga., about 300 miles south of Charlotte. Black had been serving his 63-month sentence in Lewisburg, Pa., after his conviction for accepting illegal payments as speaker.

Helms says Black's wife, Betty, has Lou Gehrig's disease. Attorney Jim Craven of Durham wrote to the U.S. pardon attorney citing Black's "wretched health" and eye problems.

Black is a Democrat from Matthews.

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