Former Miami Beach compliance officer sentenced

Published On: Nov 20 2012 01:24:16 PM EST
Updated On: Nov 20 2012 04:27:57 PM EST

MIAMI -

The former lead code compliance officer for the City of Miami Beach was sentenced to more than four years in prison Tuesday on a charge of conspiracy to commit extortion.

Jose L. Alberto was sentenced to 51 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release. He must also forfeit $16,600.

According to court documents, Alberto pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit extortion in August. He and seven others were arrested in April as part of a sweeping corruption probe.

Prosecutors said the suspects demanded thousands of dollars in bribes from an unidentified Miami Beach nightclub owner in return for looking the other way on safety and fire code violations.

U.S. Attorney Wifredo Ferrer said the incident began in June 2011, when Alberto solicited a cash payoff from the nightclub owner, who then contact the FBI. Ferrer said investigators installed an undercover agent as the club's manager, and over the next seven months, he paid cash bribes totaling more than $25,000 to the seven Miami Beach workers.

One other person was previously sentenced as part of the probe.

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