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Former Corrections Department Official Sentenced In Bribery Scheme

Neptune man will spend 46 months in prison

A former high-ranking official with the state Department of Corrections was sentenced Thursday to nearly four years in prison on extortion and bribery charges, authorities said.

Lydell B. Sherrer, 53, of Neptune, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Joel A. Pisano, sitting in Trenton, to 46 months in prison, three years of supervised release and was ordered to pay $22,500 in restitution for soliciting bribes from corrections department employees in exchange for keeping their jobs, the release says.

The sentence stems from a 12-count extortion and bribery indictment charging Sherrer – a one-time assistant commissioner of the Division of Programs and Community Services – with soliciting money from five separate employees or former corrections employees between February 2010 and October 2010 in exchange for his official action and assistance, the release says.

A cooperating witness – identified only as “Individual One” – received a layoff notice from the corrections department in April, 2010. Sherrer said he could secure the employee’s employment with the department or its contractors in exchange for $10,000, the release says.

Sherrer admitted that on May 17, 2010, he accepted $5,000 in cash from Individual One as an installment payment. Sherrer said he also received $69,000 in bribes between 2006 and 2008 from five corrections employees and three others, the release says.

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