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Two PA Cops Rob Investigator Posing as Drug Dealer

Two PA Cops Rob Investigator Posing as Drug Dealer

Philadelphia Police officers Christopher Luciano, left, and Sean Alivera, right, have been charged with robbing a an undercover investigator posing as a drug dealer. [Department Photos]

Philadelphia Inquirer via YellowBrix

October 06, 2010

PHILADELPHIA – It started two weeks ago with an informant’s tip, developed during a state drug investigation: A couple of Philadelphia cops had become too cozy with a dealer.

Although the officers patrolled a section of North Philadelphia brimming with temptation, no one at the time suspected them of being dirty, authorities said.

But once investigators began looking into the activities of Officer Sean Alivera and his partner, Christopher Luciano, they quickly realized they had a problem.

The two appeared to be stealing drugs from couriers and giving them to a dealer to sell.

Two weeks after receiving the initial tip from the Bureau of Narcotics Investigations, a sting operation was swiftly arranged, with a young and “extremely brave” Philadelphia police officer posing as a courier.

Monday evening, investigators watched as Alivera and Luciano – on duty and in full uniform – stopped the undercover officer, arrested him, and robbed him of 20 pounds of marijuana and $3,000 in cash, authorities said.

The crime was captured on video surveillance, said District Attorney Seth Williams.

Alivera, 31, and Luciano, 23, were arrested shortly after 7 p.m. Monday at the 25th District headquarters, where they were assigned. They were charged with robbery, kidnapping, conspiracy, and other crimes.

“Police corruption will not be tolerated,” Williams said Tuesday at a news conference announcing the arrests. “We are committed to rooting out bad cops, and we will prosecute them for the disgraceful thugs and scum that they are.”

Both defendants were being held Tuesday on $1 million bail. Court records did not indicate if either had an attorney.

Both will be fired, and no one will wear their badge numbers again, Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey said.

Their scheme, as described by authorities, is nearly identical to another revealed in July, when three officers were accused of stealing heroin and selling the drugs to a dealer for $6,000.

In that case, federal authorities tracked the officers for months as they hatched their plan, with the aid of wiretaps and an undercover Drug Enforcement Administration agent. The indictment, which also charged three dealers and the wife of one officer, contained a thick narrative of events.

By contrast, the arrests of Alivera and Luciano moved so quickly from tip to sting that many details remained cloudy Tuesday.

Authorities described the officers’ drug-dealing partner as an unnamed individual who was supposed to redistribute the stolen marijuana. Williams and Ramsey declined to say what happened to the pilfered marijuana, valued at $24,000.

How the officers came to be associated with the dealer also was unclear. Investigators said they were unsure if Alivera and Luciano had robbed other drug couriers or if other officers could have been involved.

Prosecutors did say that the $3,000 taken from the undercover officer was “found in the defendants’ possession.”

“With this effort to root out corruption, things could get worse before they get better,” Ramsey said.

He said there was no connection between Alivera and Luciano and the three officers arrested in the heroin-stealing case.

One of those officers, Robert Snyder, also worked in the 25th District, but he was in a different squad and was not assigned to the street.

The other two officers in the heroin case, Mark Williams and James Venziale, worked in the adjacent 39th District.

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  • 20140214_120713-1_max50


    over 3 years ago


    I took pride in taking my Oath. And will never tarnish it. GOD BLESS us all that Honor our Oath.

  • Img_1155_max50


    almost 4 years ago



  • Car6_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    sad to see more people disgracing the uniform...

  • Vpsomourningband_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    More scumbags in uniform. These men/women are not and never were true LEOs.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 4 years ago


  • P3_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    hope those two can stand tall in court and explaine to thier chief, brothers and sister why they felt they could tarnish there badges and dept name like that

  • Copy_of_marine_photo_edited_edited_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    Guys you gotta remember it's not just about the department, these guys, dishonored those they swore an oath to, they swore to serve the community and America with honor. When police go bad, it seems we always begin and end with the dishonor only to police. Don't cut off the ones we swore to serve outside of the department, the reason police exist. You've gotta think beyond just police when good guys go bad.

    These to brainiacs have dishonored themselves, their families and friends, the department, all police officers everywhere, the community and our nation.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 4 years ago


    IDIOTS !!!

  • Btjustice_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    makes me sick !

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 4 years ago


    First of all these slugs are not officers. They are thiefs behind a badge. To desecrate the symbolism, the honor, the price, the institution, the sacrifice, of the one wearing the badge is in my opinion the most despictable act one can do. Throw these dumb-----under the jail.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 4 years ago


    It's a shame that the majority of the department works hard around the clock to save the city while the actions of a few can set back years of good hard work.

  • Thinker_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    Glad they were caught and now hope they receive the maximum allowed for their crimes. Crap like this hurts every time as it disgraces all the good officers and agents who wear their badge and enforce the law the proper way...

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    almost 4 years ago


  • P1030380_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    Wow what a shame .

  • Joe3wolfcarm_max50


    almost 4 years ago


    I can't stand seeing police corruption like this crap anymore. Hates crimes, conspriacy, and sex crimes seem to be a growing problem involving police officers lately.

    Hopefully, this story will convey the messsage that the cost did not outweigh the benefit of poilice burality and police misconduct!

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