Friday, October 30, 2020

De Blasio donor Jeremy Reichberg sentenced to 4 years for bribery scandal

-

A former City Hall fundraiser who was convicted of taking part in a massive bribery scheme in which NYPD officers were given lavish gifts that included a private junket to Las Vegas was sentenced Monday to 48 months in prison.

Jeremy Reichberg, who was convicted in January of four counts, including conspiracy to commit honest services fraud and bribery, had tearfully asked District Judge Gregory Woods for leniency moments earlier.

“I acted as an adolescent, wanting special attention, feeling that I was entitled to get special attention for my friends who were police officers,” Reichberg said in Manhattan federal court, struggling to read through prepared remarks and pausing often to wipe away tears and blow his nose.

His attorney, Susan Necheles, argued that her client committed crimes of “hubris … ego and gluttony,” saying he paid bribes to cops so he could pal around with them and look like a “big shot.”

- Advertisement -

She argued that the bribes didn’t get him any big favors or put the public in danger.

“What he got were things that made him look like a big shot,” she said. “He hung out with them doing fancy things.”

But prosecutors said Reichberg’s bribes weren’t just to spruce up his image — arguing that he and his former pal Jona Rechnitz got police favors in exchange for their lavish gifts, including help with arrests and difficult-to-obtain gun licenses.

“This was not a crime that created an appearance of favoritism,” said Assistant US Attorney Martin Bell. “This was impropriety of the most basic sort. This was favoritism, bought and paid for.”

- Advertisement -

Reichberg also was sentenced for two years of supervised release.

“I believe the offenses were about more than dollars and cents. It’s about corruption of an important public institution,” the judge said.

Reichberg’s prosecution was secured in part with the nine-day testimony of Rechnitz, the “money man” in the bribery scheme who cut a deal with the feds and pleaded guilty to wire fraud conspiracy in 2016 before returning to his native Los Angeles.

Also testifying in Reichberg’s case was Gabriella Curtis, also known as “Gabi Grecko,” the prostitute who provided NYPD cops with mile-high entertainment on a pricey private flight to Las Vegas.

James Grant, a former NYPD commander who was tried alongside Reichberg, was acquitted.

Jurors from the trial have told The Post they had a hard time believing Grecko’s story that she shared a hotel room with Grant in Sin City.

In March, Reichberg’s lawyers alleged that Rechnitz inaccurately testified that Reichberg used police connections to “fix” tickets so recipients could avoid getting points on their licenses or fines, and that he leaned on the head of the state court officers union to get friends who paid him a fee out of jury duty.

Reichberg had maintained he only hired lawyers to help violators with their tickets, and he never helped to get a ticket fixed.

He also said Rechnitz asked him about getting one friend out of jury duty, but that the friend ended up serving on a jury anyway.

In June 2016, The Post exclusively revealed Grecko’s account of wearing a flight attendant uniform during a private plane flight to Vegas during 2013’s Super Bowl XLVII, on which she said she engaged in sex with Grant and others.

In addition to the all-expenses-paid getaway, Grant was accused of taking graft from Reichberg and Rechnitz in the form of a Nintendo game system and an American Girl doll for his daughter, diamond earrings for his wife and hotel accommodations in Italy.

In exchange, prosecutors alleged that Grant provided Reichberg, Rechnitz and their pals with official favors, including NYPD vehicle escorts, help handling private disputes and help getting gun permits.

- Advertisement -

The defense contended that all the exchanges were merely favors one pal would do for another, and that none amounted to an illegal quid pro quo.

MUST READ

Ukraine’s court strips critical power from anti-corruption agency

Ukraine's Constitutional Court has stripped the country’s anti-corruption agency of some of its critical powers. The high court’s ruling published on October 28 declared it...

Former South Korean President Lee Myung-bak sent back to prison for 17 years in corruption case

Former South Korean president Lee Myung-bak was ordered back to prison on Thursday (Oct 29) as the country's Supreme Court upheld a 17-year jail...

Nigerian court declines to issue international arrest warrant for fugitive ex-Petroleum Minister in corruption case

The Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, on Wednesday, refused an application by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for an arrest...

South Korea’s former Vice Justice Minister sentenced to jail for bribery and sexual favors

Former Vice Justice Minister Kim Hak-eui, the figure at the center of one of Korea’s biggest political sex scandals, was placed under pretrial detention...

Beam Suntory Inc. fined $19.6 million in foreign bribery case

Beam Suntory Inc. (Beam), a Chicago-based company that produces and sells distilled beverages, has agreed to pay a criminal monetary penalty of $19,572,885 to...

Subscribe For More

Get our daily notification on the latest financial crimes news around the World

Advertisement
Advertisement

Latest News

This Week

Former Harris County deputy constable pleads guilty to transporting drug money and heroin

A former Harris County deputy constable and her husband pleaded guilty Wednesday to charges of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute heroin, according...

Former DEA spokesman sentenced to 7 years for posing as CIA agent to scam $4 million

A former spokesman for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) was sentenced to 7 years in prison Wednesday for posing as a CIA agent on...

Spanish police arrests operator of Crypto Arbitrage firm Arbistar on fraud charges

The CEO of Arbistar the Spanish investment company, Santiago Fuentes, has been arrested and arraigned on charges of fraud, belonging to a criminal organization...

Macau to sign agreement with World Bank Group over money laundering risk assessment

Secretary for Security Wong Sio Chak was granted powers by the Chief executive to sign a Reimbursable Advisory Services Agreement Concerning Risk Assessment of...
Advertisement

Adblock Detected!

Our website is made possible by displaying online advertisements to our visitors. Please consider supporting us by whitelisting our website.

Enable Notifications    Ok No thanks