Three top officers in the New York City Police Department and one Brooklyn businessman were arrested on Monday morning as part of a widening federal corruption probe into New York's power brokers.
Deputy Chief Michael Harrington and Deputy Inspector James Grant allegedly took extravagant gifts — including pricey dinners, tickets to the Super Bowl, and a vacation in the company of a sex worker — in exchange for providing official services. Sergeant David Villanueva, who is linked to the department's gun licensing division, was the third officer arrested.
Jeremy Reichberg, a Brooklyn businessman and prominent fundraiser for New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, was also taken into custody. Reichberg is known for having close ties with the upper ranks of the NYPD. In April, he got police helicopters to fly over his cruise boat as it floated down the Hudson River, just to impress a crowd of around 100 guests onboard.
Earlier this month, federal agents arrested Norman Seabrook, the president of New York City's powerful correctional officer's union, on corruption charges. Seabrook allegedly funnelled $20 million in union pension money to a hedge fund in return for lavish vacations and generous kickbacks.
Several other NYPD officers have either retired or been placed on desk work since the corruption probe began earlier this year.
Michael Malici, a Brooklyn community affairs officer, was fired after the NYPD claimed he was refusing to cooperate in the investigation. Inspector Michael Ameri shot and killed himself on Long Island after he was questioned over allegations that he provided unauthorized police escorts for members of the Orthodox Jewish community in exchange for gifts.
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