BOSTON (AP) — A taxpayers' watchdog group is criticizing the retirement deal of the former chief justice of the Boston Municipal Court.

Records show that Charles Johnson took a paid three-month leave in January and then appeared in court only a handful of times in the three months after that. During that time, he qualified for two raises that boosted his annual salary to nearly $160,000 and his pension by nearly $20,000 a year.

The Boston Globe (http://bit.ly/1Eyw27y ) reports the 65-year-old Johnson qualified for an annual pension of $119,781 a year.

The state comptroller says he also received $40,200 for unused sick and vacation time.

Court officials defended Johnson's retirement pay.

But Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation President Michael Widmer says it "illustrates the all-too-common problem of stretching the system for personal gain at taxpayers' expense."

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Information from: The Boston Globe, http://www.bostonglobe.com