Veteran NYPD officer accused of lying about cases that led to unlawful arrests

File Photo / AP

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the indictment of NYPD detective Joseph Franco, 46, for entering false testimony during court proceedings and making false statements in court documents on multiple occasions while he was assigned to Narcotics Borough Manhattan South, resulting in three unlawful arrests. The defendant is charged in a New York State Supreme Court indictment with 16 counts, including Perjury in the First Degree, Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the First Degree, and Official Misconduct.

“As alleged in the indictment, this detective lied to judges, prosecutors, and his own colleagues in the NYPD about crimes that never happened, and three New Yorkers wrongfully lost their liberty as a result,” said District Attorney Vance. “My Office will continue to bring the full weight of the law against uniformed officers who lie and undermine the public trust in law enforcement on which we rely to keep New York safe.”

According to court documents and statements made on the record in court, FRANCO was employed as an NYPD detective assigned to Narcotics Borough Manhattan South. Between February 21, 2017 and May 3, 2018, FRANCO entered false testimony in court proceedings on three separate occasions and made false statements in forms, reports, complaints and other documents, leading to the unlawful arrest of three individuals on drug-related charges. As a result of the defendant’s conduct, all three individuals pleaded guilty and two of the individuals began serving state prison sentences before the matter was referred to the Manhattan D.A.’s Public Corruption Unit for investigation. D.A. Vance moved to vacate the three wrongful convictions at the outset of the Office’s investigation.

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