NewsRadio 920 WHJJ and the Associated Press

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A Cranston man with a criminal record has filed a federal lawsuit alleging that age discrimination cost him a job at the Central Falls Fire Department.

Richard Hartley Jr. says in the lawsuit that he was well qualified for the job of firefighter and emergency medical technician when he applied as a 44-year-old in February 2012.

But the Providence Journal reports Hartley has a criminal record that includes 19 arrests dating back to 1986 and served time for crimes including robbery and racketeering.

Hartley says he was told he was passed over because the department's pension fund receives more contributions and investment earnings from younger hires.

He also says the city has hired three firefighters with criminal records despite a policy that says those convicted of crimes are not eligible.