SACRAMENTO, Calif. -

Federal judges have selected a former state appellate judge to determine which state prison inmates will go free if the administration of Gov. Jerry Brown fails to meet mandated population deadlines.

The three-judge panel said Wednesday that Los Angeles attorney Elwood Lui will serve as the state's compliance officer. He was an appellate judge from 1981 to 1987.

Lui will serve without pay but be reimbursed for expenses.

Earlier this year, the federal judges gave California until February 2016 to reduce the prison population by about 4,500 inmates, to a total of 112,000. The state also must meet interim population goals in June and in February 2015.

If the state fails to meet the targets, Lui will release inmates based on their potential risk to public safety and other factors.