DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – A former suburban Detroit police chief has been sentenced to serve at least five years in prison for his role in a corruption case.
Prosecutors say then-Romulus police Chief Michael St. Andre and three of his detectives used drug forfeiture money to pay for prostitutes, alcohol and marijuana and to buy a tanning salon for the chief’s wife, Sandra.
Michael St. Andre was sentenced Friday in Detroit. He pleaded guilty in May to racketeering, embezzlement and misconduct charges.
According to WDIV-TV, St. Andre apologized to the judge and his family during Friday’s sentencing hearing.
State police and the FBI said the scam involved allegations of drug and alcohol violations at a pair of strip clubs, an investigation hidden from the undercover unit’s supervisor. Results of that strip club investigation never made it to the prosecutors, say authorities, and instead of investigating, detectives were soliciting prostitutes for themselves.
The investigation also uncovered evidence that over $49,000 in cash that was seized by the department went missing while under the direct control of St. Andre.
According to a statement from the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, between Jan. 2006 and Sept. 2011, St. Andre and five of his detectives allegedly made or assisted others in repeatedly making misrepresentations on expense reports in an effort to seek improper reimbursement; created fraudulent documents to support improper expenditures of drug forfeiture funds; obstructed justice; and made false statements in police reports.
Three former detectives pleaded no contest to embezzlement charges earlier this month. Sandra St. Andre received a 7- to 20-year sentence in February.
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