NOVEMBER 09, 2007
The disgraced New York police commissioner that Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani recommended to head the Department of Homeland Security has been federally charged with corruption.
At Giuliani’s request, Bernard Kerik was nominated by President George W. Bush to be secretary of Homeland Security a few years ago and Kerik proudly stood next to the commander-in-chief at a White House press conference before abruptly withdrawing. At the time he attributed his sudden withdraw to tax issues involving a former nanny.
Federal authorities, however, had been investigating him for fraud and corruption during his tenure as the city’s top cop. Kerik was accused of allowing mob-connected builders to renovate his apartment while they were seeking city contracts. In all, he accepted $165,000 in renovations from the mob-connected construction company that sought his help winning city deals.
In fact, White House aides at the time investigating the future cabinet member, immediately learned about Kerik’s close friendship to a businessman linked to organized crime, his questionable financial deals, an ethics violation, allegations of mismanagement and a top deputy prosecuted for corruption
This week Kerik was indicted with mail, wire and tax fraud, making false statements on a bank application, making false statements for a U.S. government position and theft of honest services which applies when a government employee has abused his position to defraud the public. Kerik actually pleaded guilty in state court to a charge of accepting an illegal gift but the plea spared him jail time.
Persistent allegations of corruption on the part of his police commissioner and good friend didn’t stop Giuliani, who was New York mayor while Kerik headed the department, from promoting him to head the nation’s Department of Homeland Security.
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