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The Massachusetts public defender’s office is battling its own boss in efforts to remain in downtown Boston office space. The issue: location, location, location. The state agency needs to be closer to courts where its lawyers represent poor defendants, while state officials holding the purse strings are looking for cheaper rents that may force the Committee for Public Counsel Services to leave the downtown area. CPCS has been in downtown Boston for the past 40 years. The CPCS lawyers who handle the agency’s trial work would be negatively affected by being located far from the courts they serve, said William J. Leahy, chief counsel of CPCS. Lawyers would spend more time traveling from office to courts and support staff would face the same problems when trying to get them documents in a timely manner, he said.

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