Former Philadelphia L&I Official Charged With Fraud
By Tony Hanson
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A former inspector in Philadelphia’s Department of Licenses and Inspections has been indicted on federal charges that he used his position to help himself as part owner of a beer distributorship.
Dominic Verdi is charged with extortion, conspiracy, and honest-services fraud.
Verdi, a former deputy commissioner of L&I, allegedly used his position to unlawfully assist bars and nightclub owners who purchased beer from Chappy’s Beer, Butts, and Bets.
“In some instances they were told directly that they would be given notice of upcoming raids by the Nuisance Task Force,” says federal prosecutor David Axelrod.
And when a fight at the Oasis Gentlemen’s Club, on South Delaware Avenue, resulted in a death in 2009, Verdi allegedly promised to intervene by going to the club himself to try to help the club stay open.
The grand jury alleges that bars and clubs assisted by Verdi bought over $1 million in beer from Chappy’s.
Verdi’s attorney says Verdi will plead not guilty and he denies all the charges.