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MCKEESPORT, Pa. — A newly-elected city councilman in western Pennsylvania has been barred from taking office because of a drug conviction from 23 years ago.

McKeesport Councilman-elect Corey Sanders pleaded no contest to two felony drug counts in 1993. He was prevented from being sworn in with colleagues on Monday night.

Allegheny County Assistant District Attorney Kevin Francis McCarthy said in a letter to McKeesport Mayor Michael Cherepko that Sanders will need a full pardon from Gov. Tom Wolf to be able to hold public office.

Community members say Sanders has turned his life around and mentored young men to stay out of trouble.

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