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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — — The former city manager of Opa-Locka was sentenced to jail time Monday morning but will be able to spend the holidays at home.
David Chiverton was sentenced to 36 months in prison for a federal corruption charge but will start his sentence in 90 days.
Chiverton plead guilty in September to one count of conspiracy to accept improper gifts or payments.
He resigned from his position in July when he and former Opa-locka Assistant Public Works Director Gregory Harris were charged for their participation in a two-year long bribery and extortion scheme.
According to authorities, Chiverton and Harris used their official positions within the city to solicit, demand and obtain thousands of dollars in bribes from businesses and individuals in exchange for some sort of official action.
In exchange for the illegal payments, investigators said a public official would direct Chiverton, Harris and other City of Opa-locka employees to do various tasks like issuing occupational licenses; waiving, removing, and setting code enforcement matters and liens; initiating, restoring and continuing water service; and assisting with zoning issues.
Harris also allegedly was directed by Chiverton and another public officials to take actions like restoring water service to businesses that had paid them illegal bribes.
The FBI has also been investigating Opa-locka’s mayor over allegations of corruption. Several other top officials are under investigation as well.
CBS4 News was the first to air the only television interview with FBI’s inside man in Opa-locka, Frank Zambrana, who says he wore a wire and recorded a number of city officials shaking him down for bribes.
As for the city, it’s under a state of financial emergency – declared by Florida Gov. Rick Scott. This means the state is overseeing everything for the city of Opa-locka. City officials say Opa-locka is facing a $1.4 million shortfall plus millions more in previous debts.