PHOENIX – LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – Lincoln Perry, 52, former Chief of Police for the White Mountain Apache Tribal Police Department, and Tim Goode, 54, a former criminal investigator with White Mountain Apache Tribal Police Department, pleaded guilty late yesterday to conspiracy to falsify records with the intent to influence a federal investigation before U.S. District Court Judge Neil V. Wake. Both defendants are residents of the White Mountain Apache Indian Reservation. Perry and Goode backdated informant receipts in order to make them appear as if they had been prepared at the time of undercover operations and payments to confidential informant between 2001 and 2006.
U.S. Attorney Daniel G. Knauss stated that “public corruption involving police officers in a small community has a devastating impact on that community’s trust in law enforcement. This case highlights our commitment to rooting out public corruption in Arizona.”
FBI Assistant Special Agent in Charge Armando Fernandez stated, “Public corruption in law enforcement endangers the safety of our neighborhoods at the source from which they should be protected. Such investigations require the cooperative efforts exhibited among our agencies today in order to deal with crimes committed by public officials.”
“The U.S. Postal Inspection Service will continue to protect the mail from being misused to further criminal activity,” stated Pete Zegarac, Inspector in Charge of the Phoenix Division. “Public servants are held to a higher standard and must not erode the public’s trust.”
In February 2006, the FBI learned that the White Mountain Apache Tribal Police Department’s Investigations Unit maintained a bank account to make undercover purchases and pay informants. In April 2006, the bank that maintained the Investigations Unit’s bank account received a federal Grand Jury subpoena requesting financial records relating to that account. The FBI reviewed the bank account records for two months and uncovered multiple withdrawals from various casinos in Las Vegas, Nevada and in Scottsdale, Camp Verde, San Carlos, and Pinetop, Ariz.
As a result of this information, a second Grand Jury subpoena was issued to the White Mountain Apache Tribal Police Department seeking all records pertaining to the Investigations Unit’s bank account from January 2001 through April 2006. From January 1, 2001 through August 15, 2006, Perry
and Goode were the only known signatories on the bank account. From April to October 2006 Perry and Goode conspired to knowingly falsify records and documents with the intent to influence the FBI and BIA investigations.
Sentencing is set for January 7, 2008 at 2:30 p.m. A conviction for conspiracy to falsify records with the intent to influence a federal investigation carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison, a $250,000 fine or both. In determining an actual sentence, Judge Wake will consult the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide appropriate sentencing ranges. The judge, however, is not bound by those guidelines in determining a sentence.
The investigation preceding the indictment was conducted by the FBI, Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Postal Inspection Service. The prosecution is being handled by Frederick A. Battista and Gary M. Restaino, Assistant U.S. Attorneys, District of Arizona, Phoenix.
CASE NUMBER: CR-06-959-PCT-NVW
RELEASE NUMBER: 2007-218(Perry&Goode)