Former President of Massachusetts State Police Union and Former Lobbyist Sentenced to Prison for RICO, Fraud, Obstruction and Tax Charges
BOSTON – A former Boston Police officer pleaded guilty today in connection with an ongoing investigation of overtime fraud at the Boston Police Department’s (BPD) evidence warehouse.
Thomas Nee, 64, of Quincy, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit theft concerning programs receiving federal funds and one count of embezzlement from an agency receiving federal funds. U.S. District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns scheduled sentencing for May 17, 2022. Nee was charged on Oct. 4, 2021.
From at least February 2015 through February 2018, Nee submitted false and fraudulent overtime slips for overtime hours that he did not work at the evidence warehouse. The “purge” overtime, was a 4 – 8 p.m. weekday shift intended to dispose of old, unneeded evidence. “Kiosk” overtime involved driving to each police district in Boston one Saturday a month to collect old prescription drugs to be burned.
For the “purge” shift, Nee claimed to have worked from 4 – 8 p.m., but he and, allegedly, other members of the unit, routinely left at 6 p.m., or earlier. For the “kiosk” shift, Nee submitted overtime slips claiming to have worked eight-and-one-half hours, when in fact he and, allegedly, other members of the unit, only worked three-to-four hours of those shifts. As a result, between February 2015 and February 2018, Nee personally collected approximately $16,642 for overtime hours he did not work.
To date, 15 Boston Police officers have been charged in connection with committing overtime fraud at the Boston Police Department’s evidence warehouse. Nee is the ninth officer to plead guilty.
From 2015 through 2019, BPD received annual benefits from the U.S. Department of Transportation and U.S. Department of Justice in excess of $10,000, which were funded pursuant to numerous federal grants.
The charge of embezzlement from an agency receiving federal funds provides for a sentence of up to 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss. The charge of conspiracy provides for a sentence of up to five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Acting United States Attorney Nathaniel R. Mendell; Russell W. Cunningham, Special Agent in Charge of the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General, Washington Field Office; and Joseph R. Bonavolonta, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Division made the announcement today. Assistance was provided by the Boston Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Grady, Deputy Chief of Mendell’s Major Crimes Unit, is prosecuting the case.