New York Police Implicated In Thousands of Recorded Conversations With Crooked Gun Dealer

215px-NypdpatchAlex (Shaya) Lichtenstein has burned various corrupt NYPD cops after he secretly recorded their illegal dealings.  The only thing greater than Lichtenstein’s insatiable greed was his obsessive recording of conversations.  Prosecutors told a court this week that Lichtenstein secretly recorded some 70,000 conversations.  Lichtenstein has pleaded guilty to bribery of police.  Lichtenstein was a member of the Orthodox Jewish Patrol that would roam Jewish neighborhoods.   His deep religious beliefs however did not seem to stop him bribing officials and committing criminal acts.

nypdLichtenstein would save the recordings to an email account — detailing his corrupt dealings with NYPD officers to obtain pistol licenses.  In addition, the prosecutors seized the phones of Jeremy Reichberg, a Brooklyn businessman who kept images and notes of alleged bribes that included tickers for Super Bowl, Brazil and China.

In one case, Lichtenstein pleaded guilty to offering a cop $6,000 in exchange for an expedited gun permit.  Lichtenstein’s $6,000 bribe would result in $18,000 payments that he would demand from his customers seeking gun permits.  His “clients” often had records that made it difficult or impossible to obtain permits.

Again Lichtenstein’s leadership role among Orthodox citizens on its neighborhood patrol did not prevent him from bragging about bribing police officers.  He reportedly obtained 150 permits, which would yield as much as a million dollars in profit.

He could get 10 years and deserves every minute of it.  However, the question is the fate of these officers who, if guilty, justify the toughest possible sentencing.

28 thoughts on “New York Police Implicated In Thousands of Recorded Conversations With Crooked Gun Dealer

  1. Sounds like the script from The Pope of Greenwich Village. If the police took bribes, as an retired officer I’m sorry to say they have to take what comes next. Hope Mr. Dictenstein gets the officers as cell mates.

    • I hope that not only do they get what’s coming, but that those who turned a blind eye to it do too.

      The point about quickly removing a rotten apple from the barrel is that if it’s not done, the rot rapidly spreads and infects ALL the apples.

      The same applies to corrupt behaviour.

      Police will only start to rebuild trust in this area when they take action to call out and eject anyone within the organisation who’s engaging in the activity rather than closing ranks when the issue comes up. The best cure for corruption is very bright sunlight at all stages.

  2. This case represents an enormous wasted opportunity and demonstrates that it is not the individuals that are corrupt so much as the system itself and the leaders that control it that are at the heart of the corruption. If the system had any integrity, honesty, and decency–which it does not, as I’ve stated–they would have recognized that Alex (Shaya) Lichtenstein was a goldmine and should have been treated him as such to identify and capture more and more corrupt individuals leading to the very TOP of the New York City Government, which is at the HEART of the corruption.

    Lichtenstein should have been granted immunity and used to pursue higher and higher corrupt elements within the system until he got to the very top of the corruption, bringing them all down. Lichtenstein was obviously very talented at snagging corrupt individuals and he kept excellent records as well.

    Of course, by nailing Lichtenstein at the earliest opportunity, the system protected the REAL corrupt operators at the very TOP of the New York City Governmental hierarcy–and that was the very point of nailing him so quickly.

    So, before “celebrating” the capture of a few tiny little fishes, you should recognize that the BIG FISH–as they always do–got away scott free. The corrupt leaders of the corrupt system remain in power, intact, and untouchable.

    And that is the REAL news behind this story.

  3. Please take away the pensions from any NYPD officers and officials involved in this bribery scheme. That’s a just punishment for these scoundrels.

  4. One website- Failed Messiah, long complained about this man. Failed Messiah, a website about failings and double standards in the Orthodox Jewish Community which was hosted by a member of the Orthodox Community, is now silent. Bought out and shut down when it became too damaging it is missed, I guess everyone has their price and the owner got his.

    • Over the years I’ve read about corruption, welfare fraud, tax evasion and other crimes committed by ostensively respectable members of the Orthodox Jewish community. In many ways they seem quite similar to some fundamentalist Mormons and fundamentalist Muslims, who believe that the laws of the secular government do not apply to them, and that it is okay to rip off those who are not members of their faith. They are quite willing to accept the benefits provided by the civil society, but claim their religious dictates do not require them to comply with the laws of heretic, infidels, gentiles, or whatever name they choose to demean and separate themselves from their neighbors.

  5. And as far as the implicated cops are concerned, they knew they were dealing with a weasel; did they really think he wasn’t going to flip on them when it became expedient? I would have hoped that NYPD cops had more brains and/or common sense than that…

    • Shades of Serpico. NYC after a brief moment of being accepted as part of the nation (9/11) and then blowing that regains it’s role as the major armpit of the nation. Chicago and San Francisco splitting the other armpit award and Washington DC of course retains National Ass Hole honors. Not for the administraton just because it’s Wasington, DC. If pplitics was included they would sweep all the the above mentioned and leave nothing for the others.

      The Oscars main trophies went to the script writers and a bunch of watchamacallits ‘reciters?’ A quick glance showed it had little to do entertainment HOWEVER

      Universities are now putting their Football and Basketball etc. teams in Drama and Acting Major studies areas with busijness minors. Coaching is now a minor to a business major.

  6. Well, if any of these officers are convicted put them in prison. Simple enough

    On the other hand if NY became a “shall issue” state this intrigue will end.

  7. Prosecutors told a court this week that Lichtenstein secretly recorded some 70,000 conversations.

    Prosecutors are indubitably pulling the court’s leg.

  8. Curious Questions…Has anyone been able to trace any incidents of abuse (assaults, robberies, etc) with any of the persons granted the permits whom have questionable backgrounds. Even one shooting or robbery should then include much harsher penalties. I ask this because we’ve all seen cases where the prosecutor will go after police through the eyes of the media, but hide these small elements within the files in order to ensure the local departments of DA/police cooperation etc.

  9. “His “clients” often had records that made it difficult or impossible to obtain permits.”
    In New York City that means they did not have friends or connections in City Hall.

  10. I will always connect “Lichtenstein” with “A Knight’s Tale.”

    That aside, this is a double betrayal of trust, both the police and a trusted religious figure. To have done so to arm criminals is absolutely appalling. This conduct casts a blight on the reputation of officers everywhere and erodes public trust.

    May shining the light of public scrutiny disinfect that department.

    So sorry to hear this happened.

    • Paul L. is correct. This is NYC we’re talking about. If you’re not connected, the city will deny you a firearm permit for any trivial reason under the sun. This does not mean these people had criminal records. They’ll deny you a permit if you’ve ever been fired from a job under circumstances they decide indicates a lack of good judgement or good moral character. And since the city will look for reasons to deny the permit, that means if you’ve ever been fired from a job. I know people in NYC who were denied because they had room mates. The city claimed that meant the applicant didn’t have the means to properly store a firearm.

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