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Fort Lauderdale Police Officer Charged with Wire Fraud

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida; John V. Gillies, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office; and Franklin Adderley, Chief of Police, Fort Lauderdale Police Department, announced the filing of a criminal information charging defendant David Michael McElligott, 47, of Warner Robins, GA and currently stationed at Robins Air Force Base, GA, with one count of wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §1343. If convicted, the defendant faces a statutory maximum of 20 years in prison.

The information alleges that McElligott, a Fort Lauderdale police officer since 1991, has been on extended military leave, serving in the U.S. Air Force since 2001. Since September 2003, he allegedly submitted falsified Military Leave and Earnings Statements and military orders to the Fort Lauderdale Police Department and the City of Fort Lauderdale. According to the information, the defendant submitted the falsified Leave and Earnings Statements to increase the supplemental pay he received from the City of Fort Lauderdale pursuant to the City’s Supplemental Pay Policy. The information further alleges that the defendant submitted the falsified military orders so that he could falsely assert his entitlement to extend his rights under federal law to return to his job as a police officer. According to the Information, McElligott transmitted the falsified documents via facsimile and/or e-mail to an employee in the payroll department of the Fort Lauderdale Police Department.

This investigation began as a result of information discovered by the Fort Lauderdale Police Department during an internal review. The Fort Lauderdale Police Department immediately contacted the FBI Public Corruption Task Force, and continued to assist in the investigation that resulted in today’s charges.

Mr. Ferrer commended the investigative efforts of the FBI’s Broward County Public Corruption Task Force and the Fort Lauderdale Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Richard P. Murad.

An information is only an accusation and a defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

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