Posted: July 23rd, 2007 09:34 AM EDT
via NewsEdge Corporation
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla._Three former police officers were sentenced Friday to federal prison for heroin trafficking and conspiracy charges stemming from an undercover FBI investigation into corruption at the department.
The ringleader, 41-year-old former Detective Kevin Companion, was sentenced to 14 years behind bars by U.S. District Judge James Cohn. The judge sentenced ex-officer Stephen Harrison, 46, to nine years in federal prison.
"The conduct exhibited by the defendants is disgraceful," Cohn said. "Not only have you disgraced the police department and yourself, you have disgraced your family."
Former Detective Thomas Simcox, 50, got more than 11 years behind bars in a separate sentencing appearance in Miami before U.S. District Judge Donald Graham, who called the case "disgusting." Prosecutors had recommended a nine-year sentence for Simcox.
All three officers had previously pleaded guilty to the charges.
A sentencing hearing for former police Sgt. Jeffry Courtney, 51, is scheduled for next month. A Hollywood lieutenant, Charles Roberts, is expected to plead guilty next week to charges of lying to the FBI about leaking the undercover sting operation, which ended it prematurely.
The men were charged after FBI agents posed as New York-based mobsters - complete with fake names like "Big Jack" and "Mikey Suits" - who were involved in heroin trafficking, dealing in stolen diamonds and other goods, gambling and other illegal activities. The police officers provided protection in return for thousands of dollars each in payments.