Former Opa-locka city manager to appear in federal court on corruption charges

David Chiverton, Gregory Harris face up to 5 years in prison if convicted

By Amanda Batchelor - Senior Digital Editor

OPA-LOCKA, Fla. - Former Opa-locka city manager David Chiverton is expected to appear in federal court Monday to face corruption charges.

Opa-locka Public Works assistant director Gregory Harris, 44, already appeared in court Friday on similar charges.

Chiverton and Harris are both accused of using their positions to extort thousands of dollars in illegal cash payments from businesses and individuals in exchange for "taking official actions to assist and benefit those businesses and individuals in their dealing with the city of Opa-locka," a statement from U.S. Attorney Wifredo Ferrer said.

According to an indictment, Harris committed federal-programs bribery and extortion "under color of official right" between March 2014 and March 2016.

Prosecutors said Chiverton and another public official would direct Harris to take actions, such as restoring water service to businesses, whose owners had paid them bribes.

Harris resigned this week from the Public Works Department, the Miami Herald reported.

Chiverton also submitted his resignation, which was effective Monday.

The FBI probe into city officials came to light in March when federal agents executed a search warrant at the Opa-locka Municipal Complex at 780 Fisherman St.

Gov. Rick Scott has since declared a financial emergency in Opa-locka, and issued an order last month that gives his office control over the city's finances.

If convicted, both men face up to five years in prison, a fine of $250,000 and three years of supervised release.  

 

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