Exclusive: Kerik's “Lying” Email To The White House

NBCNew York.com has obtained the email disgraced former police commissioner Bernard Kerik sent to the Bush White House while trying to become Homeland Security Secretary.

Kerik has already pleaded guilty and admitted he lied in this email sent on December 5, 2004. The former NYPD top cop also admits he accepted more than $200,000 in free renovations he received on his then Riverdale apartment from a company accused of having mob ties.

That company, Interstate Industrial, was run in part by Frank DiTommaso, who is referred to as "FD" in Kerik's email to the White House.

Kerik lied when he wrote he had refused to accept renovation work from DiTommaso because "FD is doing business with the City."   

Kerik gave the White House a time-line stating he paid tens of thousands of dollars himself for the renovation work.  "Kerik pays the architect about $1200 and the contractor about $30,000 around over 8 months. Kerik spends other money on a fence outside and window work." But investigators have said that was just a fraction of the cost of the work that was actually done.

Read the full email here (last three pages)

Prosecutors said Kerik was broke at the time and he took the free work in exchange for helping the DiTommaso's lobby and try to secure contracts with the city.

Kerik pleaded guilty in federal court in White Plains in November.  Under the plea deal, he faces more than two years in prison in connection with the corruption related counts.

Kerik's email comes to light after U.S. District Court Judge Stephen Robinson honored  NBCNewYork's request to make public records that had been sealed in the case prior to the guilty plea.

Prosecutors said the email is direct proof that Kerik made false statements when he failed to disclose the corrupt payments he received.

In a previously sealed memo, prosecutors said they plan to call Kerik's former defense lawyers as witnesses against him.  Investigators said Kerik knowingly gave false information to attorneys Ken Breen and Joseph Tacopina who then passed on that false information to Bronx prosecutors.

"Attorneys for the defendant conveyed, at the defendant's behest, a false defense to the local prosecutors in the Bronx and New York City Department of Investigation investigators," federal prosecutors wrote in their September 14, 2009 memo. And prosecutors pointed out that Kerik may "choose to attack Mr. Tacopina's credibility" as part of their defense strategy. 

In the hundreds of pages of documents, prosecutors and defense attorneys detailed how they planned to handle a vast array of evidence -- from arguing about Interstate's alleged mob ties to even admitting possible testimony from one of Kerik's reputed lovers.

The memo outlines what investigators planned to show a jury if Kerik had moved forward with a trial. And prosecutors even asked the judge not to allow Kerik to present information about his role during the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

"They have absolutely no relevance to the charges in this case," government attorneys argued.  "A reputation for courage has nothing to do with the matters of dishonesty and greed at issue in this case."  Prosecutors suggested Kerik would try to play on the emotions of 9/11 in order to try to get a "get-out-of-jail free card."

Kerik remains under house arrest with an ankle bracelet pending his sentencing now set for February. 

(Jonathan Dienst is WNBC's Chief Investigative Reporter) 

Jonathan Dienst WNBC

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