See Kerik Now: From Top Cop to Inmate No. 210-717

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By Jennifer Millman
|  Wednesday, Oct 21, 2009  |  Updated 4:52 PM EDT
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Bernard Kerik is a long way from home.

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He was New York City's top cop. He published a best-selling memoir and was nominated to be the country's head of Homeland Security. But look at him now. 

Bernard Kerik, a national 9/11 hero, is just inmate No. 210-717.

He got his designated number at the Westchester County jail after becoming the first New York City Police Department commissioner to end up behind bars when a judge revoked his bail for attempting to influence the jury pool in his upcoming corruption trial.

Kerik hasn't spoken to the media, but his attorneys have vowed a rapid appeal to get him out after Judge Stephen Robinson rejected their request for a 48-hour stay of imprisonment.

An infuriated Robinson jailed Kerik after prosecutors said the former top cop violated a court order not to disclose confidential information about the case to anyone outside his legal team.

Kerik, 54, removed his tie and belt then shook his lawyers hands before being escorted away by the marshals.

The issue that sparked the judge's at times angry discourse was the discovery that a New Jersey man, Anthony Modafferi, had allegedly given confidential information about the case to the Washington Times. The judge also found that Modafferi, who was working as a trustee for Kerik's legal defense fund, was blogging about the case and writing articles that violated the court's order.

The judge did not buy Kerik's claim that Modafferi had been officially hired as a defense lawyer and thus would have access to confidential information.

In Tuesday's three and a half hour hearing, Robinson repeatedly excoriated Kerik, calling him "arrogant" and his explanations "absurd" "ridiculous" "a sham" and "nonsense."

Kerik had been free on a $500,000 bond and slated to stand trial next week on charges of accepting apartment renovations from a mob-connected contractor in exchange for recommending the company for city contracts, reports the Daily News.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Perry Carbone told the court yesterday that Kerik loyalists were posting warped information online designed to "taint the jury pool."

"I am revoking Mr. Kerik's bail. My fear however, is that he has a toxic combination of self-minded focus and arrogance," Robinson said. "And I fear this combination leads him to believe his ends justify the means."

Michael Bachner, part of Kerik's legal team, said his client didn't do anything on purpose to "circumvent an order of the court."

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