When federal employees make national headlines, it is often for their engagement in nefarious activities.
Such was the case on Wednesday, when arrests of federal law-enforcement personnel came to light.
The FBI arrested two officials at the Drug Enforcement Administration—one of whom no longer works at DEA—for allegedly failing to disclose their employment at an “adult-entertainment establishment.” David Polos, who supervised the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Strike Force, and Glen Glover, an information-technology specialist, lied on their background checks when they did not admit they worked at and had ownership interests in a strip club in northern New Jersey, according to allegations in a complaint unsealed in a Manhattan federal court Wednesday.
Especially troubling, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of New York said, Polos and Glover did not disclose that the work put them in “proximity to crime” that created a “risk of employee blackmail.” The pair was arrested in Manhattan on Monday.
Preet Bharara, U.S. attorney in Manhattan, said Polos and Glover held “important and sensitive law-enforcement jobs within the DEA.”
“They also had other secret jobs, which they concealed from DEA in order to maintain their national security clearance, betraying the oaths they had taken and creating needless risk for the agency they worked for,” Bharara said.
Polos and Glover both “worked regular shifts” at the strip club prior to and following their background checks, and they were involved in hiring, firing, and paying bartenders, dancers, and bouncers. Most of the dancers were undocumented immigrants not lawfully in the United States, who “at times engaged in sexual acts with club patrons and staff,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Polos, 51, retired from federal service, while Glover, 45, was placed on paid administrative leave, according to a DEA spokeswoman. A recent report from the Merit Systems Protection Board specifies that a federal agency can fire an employee suspected of committing a crime. The spokeswoman declined to comment further on Glover’s future, noting it is an ongoing personnel matter.
They are each charged with one count of making false statements, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.
Also on Wednesday, The Intercept reported the head of the Homeland Security Department’s Interagency Security Committee was charged in November with allegedly assaulting a 15-year-old girl. Austin Smith remains in his position at DHS, a department spokesman said.
Through a Freedom of Information Act request, The Intercept found in a police report that Smith made sexual advances on his girlfriend’s sister after becoming intoxicated at Thanksgiving.
Last week, Smith pleaded “not guilty with agreement, statement of facts,” and received probation, though he remains on the DHS rolls.
“The Department of Homeland Security takes very seriously any allegation of wrongdoing by its employees and when founded will take the appropriate disciplinary action,” S.Y. Lee, a DHS spokesman, told Government Executive. Lee added, however, he could not comment on specific personnel matters.