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IG: Lawrence police car swap violated the law

April 11, 2012
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LAWRENCE, Mass.—The state Inspector General says the Lawrence Police Department broke the law and cost the city more than $30,000 when it swapped 13 vehicles seized in drug busts for four cars in a deal with a used car salesman connected to Mayor William Lantigua.

Inspector General Gregory Sullivan said in a letter Tuesday that the 2010 transaction was in violation of state procurement and controlled substance laws and federal civil forfeiture law. The city should have sold the cars using competitive sealed bids or public auction.

The Eagle-Tribune (http://bit.ly/Iy8FTi) reports that Sullivan makes several recommendations, including clearer procedures and better oversight.

The vehicles swapped had a value of more than $61,000, while the vehicles police got in return were valued at $30,000.

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Information from: Eagle Tribune, http://www.eagletribune.com

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