BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts independent Timothy Cahill filed a lawsuit Thursday against former operatives who recently defected from his campaign, saying they conspired to get his running mate Paul Loscocco to quit the ticket, and were working with national Republicans to pass along confidential information that would undermine his candidacy for governor.

Cahill said in a statement the actions were aimed at benefiting his GOP rival, Charles Baker, who has been running even with the Democratic incumbent, Gov. Deval Patrick.

In one e-mail described in the lawsuit, former Cahill strategist John Weaver wrote: "Paul will be given/offered a lifeline (for defecting). Up to him to take it or not."

UPDATE: The one-time campaign manager for Cahill says his ex-boss is suing him to prevent disclosure of e-mails showing improper advertising by the gubernatorial candidate. Adam Meldrum said the lawsuit Cahill filed Thursday was designed to prevent Meldrum "from taking whistleblower status." He said he was poised to give the attorney general evidence that Cahill — who currently serves as state treasurer — improperly coordinated with his campaign to release taxpayer-funded TV ads touting how well the Lottery is run.