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Boston cop admits lying to feds about his loans to a drug dealer; loses job

David Fitzgerald, a 19-year-veteran of the Boston Police Department, admitted in federal court today that he lied to FBI agents when they asked him about loans he'd made to "a known street-level drug dealer and bookmaker," the FBI reports.

As part of a plea agreement, Fitzgerald, 49 and a Milton resident, resigned from BPD and will be put on probation for a year. According to the FBI:

During the course of this relationship, Fitzgerald made cash loans to the individual, which were paid back in weekly installments. On April 27, 2015, Fitzgerald met the individual in Watertown in order to collect a $500 cash installment for one of the outstanding loans. Later that same day, when federal agents who were investigating the matter questioned Fitzgerald, he falsely stated that the purpose of his meeting with the individual was simply social in nature and that he had never loaned money to the individual. Not only were these statements untrue, but they were intended to interfere with an ongoing federal investigation.

He was most recently assigned to District B-2 in Roxbury.

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Comments

If he didn't have a badge, he'd be looking at ten years in federal prison. But sure, just take him off the force; I'm sure that will show him, and I'm similarly sure this was an isolated incident.

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I think that's a bit of a stretch for a low level bookie to get ten years prison time.

And yeah, having him resign and losing his job, benefits and pension is a big deal. Especially given the fact that betting with a bookie is widely accepted, and something people from social level participate in.

I know he's a cop and God forbid a cop gets in trouble and doesn't get put to death, but in all actuality it's a minor crime.

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You think that it's a minor crime when a police officer lies to the FBI?! That's got to be one of the dumbest things that I've ever heard.

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Lying to the FBI is a crime, but I don't think you would get 10 years if you have a clean record. Lending money to a friend is not a crime. Charging interest probably is a crime. It's not something I want BPD officers engaged in doing since I'm sure it can make them biased (he's not going to get the loan repaid if his friend is in jail). I don't think his badge protected him from much in this situation. I think the FBI kind of enjoys exposing cops in non-direct investigations.

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I would be surprised if he lost his benefits and pension. Why do you say he did?

If not, don't worry, we will continue to pay this scumbag.

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He has probably been on leave (paid, unpaid?) for a while and will cash out unused sick and vacation time for sure. Will he get to keep his pension? Cynical me says says yes.

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is the only you i've ever seen presented here

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You know, if every year he had worked, he had put X% of his salary into a pension fund and the city had matched him with Y%, you know, the way private industry has been doing it for the last 25 years or so, and then that pension fund was his to spend when he retired, then we wouldn't be having these stupid "keep his pension vs lose his pension" discussions.

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Mine does anyway.

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About 11% of your paycheck goes to somebody else's pension. Your pension? Someone else will pay that.

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But yes, you would be correct.

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SO the cynic in you would like him to lose his retirement so he can apply for public assistance now that he has no money for his later years?

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For lying to the FBI like Martha Stuart did. That is on top of running a loan sharking business for drug dealers. Yeah, maybe it was just the one. Still a bad decision that he then should not have also lied about. A cop of all people should know better.

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is pretty expensive on tax payers too, i have heard

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Could these gangs and drug dealers be so powerful because cops, politicians, pastors and community leaders are getting money from the gang members? Seems we found 2 people in that situation in the last few months.

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"We" did?

Seems like the cops did.

And no. The BPD is not in league with the gangs of Boston.

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Martha Stewart went to jail for 5 months, not because of insider trading, but because she lied to Federal investigators. She's not the only one, there have been *many* such cases.

The Supremes have upheld the law unambiguously, from a 1998 ruling:

The Supreme Court on Monday ruled that a single false statement to a federal agent, including a simple "no" to an accusation, can be punished as a crime.

The justices refused to make an exception for a person who, when confronted by a tax agent or federal investigator, denies he has done anything wrong.

The law makes it a crime to utter "any false statement" to a federal agent, and "the word 'no' in response to a question assuredly makes a 'statement,' " said Justice Antonin Scalia for the 7-2 majority.

The issue here is that there are two sets of laws, one that applies to the sheeple and the other that (does not) apply to public employees.

The Glob had more detail, that Fitzgerald's brother Paul is a BPD Superintendent and federal intelligence liaison, that the usually hard nose US Attorney Carmen Ortiz declines comment and any questions of loan sharking or involvement in a drug operation will go unanswered.

C'mon. If this isn't a whitewash what is? Notice the Glob story has dropped from their internet front-page, little is said in the media and you'll see no follow-up on the financial settlement (pension) this criminal receives. Oh, and look at the boys showing up in the comment sections to keep the conversation "civil".

So remember, when a park ranger asks you if you masturbate furiously when alone in the shower, make sure to tell the truth! Unless of course you are one of the 14 million or so public employees...

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Along with obstruction of justice and making false statements. She got 5 months in jail for these 4 crimes (conspiracy, 2 counts of lying, and obstruction of justice). She did appeal the other three and took a plea it sounds like.

If you can site other examples of public employees getting lesser sentences than civilians, then you might have something. But you haven't.

Back in the 1980s, there were probably about 5-10 Boston cops doing federal time for this type of stuff a year. Mostly collecting loans for bookies or friends and sometimes running the numbers themselves (in addition to larger crime syndicates involved) But if there is no illegal usury or threat of force to collect the loan or use of the job to influence the collections, the crimes don't amount to any serious federal crime. Add that to the fact that gambling has been decriminalized, you see less federal involvement in the prosecution of these crimes all around.

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That's is what most people believe, but in fact, as this WSJ article concerning the verdict states clearly:

They pointed out that Ms. Stewart wasn't charged criminally with an underlying crime, such as criminal insider trading. Instead, she was charged with lying about the reasons for her sale.

and

Prosecutors also brought a novel charge of securities fraud against Ms. Stewart, accusing her of trying to prop up the stock of her own company, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc., by making false public statements about the reason for her ImClone sale. The judge threw out that charge, the most serious one Ms. Stewart faced, before the jury started deliberating.

The related charges of obstruction of justice and making false statements are all related to lying to a federal investigators.

The example of a public employee getting lesser sentences than civilians is exactly what my comment was; Fitzgerald's kid glove treatment and Martha Stewart's treatment when both lied to investigators. Now you may feel Martha and her home furnishing are a threat to society while simultaneously forgiving a cop for loaning money to a drug dealer fueling our heroin epidemic, but hey to each their own.

Finally, I agree federal involvement in the war on drugs should go the way of prohibition, then so too should lying to federal investigators while politicians, cops and public employees lie with impunity. Sounds like a good idea, equal protection (and persecution) under the law....

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Martha Stewart was the one under investigation for an illegal activity potentially involving her and others, and she was found guilty for lying about that activity (4 counts). Fitzgerald was not under investigation for anything. He lied about something that wasn't even criminal. Bottom line it was one charge compared to Stewart's four.

Different cases, with different results and pleas. Not enough to make the blanket statement that public employees get different treatment by the federal justice system than regular citizens. In fact, you could probably make the opposite arguments if you looked into it.

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but being wrong on the securities fraud conviction of Martha Stuart really hurts your credibility. Further, I was closely involved with IMCL and knew about the CEO who was the actual target of the investigation when first Stuart's broker and then Stuart were caught up in the hunt for accomplices. But unless you can acknowledge your incorrect statements so far, what's the point.

BTW. The sky is blue!

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http://www.cnn.com/2004/LAW/03/05/stewart.main/

Conspiracy comes up all over if you search. Either way there are clearly 3 separate crimes including 2 counts of lying. I am not an insider trading expert so it seems that since she wasn't on the actual board, she couldn't be charged with insider trading. It looks like your right about the fraud, I thought it was appealed and then thrown out. Still, the main point was that she was being investigated, not someone else.

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Didn't billy bugler lie to the Feds about talking to his brother or seeing his brother while whitey was a fugitive?
Or perhaps Billy didn't say anything which is the lawyerly and smart thing to do because he is not in jail for protecting an evil drug dealing child rapist murdering psychopath serial killer thief. But Martha stewart went to jail for pennies. She has got an iron set of ... tits. I mean that as a complement.

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Or they couldn't prove he did (and didn't try). He took the 5th and refused to cooperate with the FBI. Which is legal.

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n/t

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A BPD Deputy Superintendent once said "cops don't lie"

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