Cleared Narcotics Officers Sue City Officials for Defamation

Five former members of a Philadelphia narcotics squad acquitted earlier this year on federal corruption charges have sued the district attorney, the mayor and the police commissioner.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports a lawyer for officers Thomas Liciardello, Brian Reynolds, Michael Spicer, Perry Betts and John Speiser filed a defamation complaint Friday. The officers are joined in the suit by a former supervisor.

They allege that District Attorney Seth Williams, Mayor Michael Nutter and Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey unfairly maligned the officers and made accusations that led to their firings and arrests.

They were acquitted in May after a month of testimony that they stole more than $400,000 from drug suspects.

Representatives for the defendants declined to comment.

A sixth acquitted officer has not joined in the lawsuit.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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