Fmr. Phila. inspector pleads guilty to conspiracy

June 9, 2011 3:01:39 PM PDT
A Philadelphia police inspector has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit extortion months after a jury deadlocked on most of the federal charges against him.

Prosecutors say 47-year-old Daniel Castro tried to hire a strong-arm collector to recoup a $26,000 debt. Castro admitted a role in the scheme at trial, but said he was entrapped.

He was facing re-trial after a jury deadlocked on most of the charges against him back in April. The jury convicted him only of lying to the FBI.

The plea agreement means prosecutors will drop other charges.

In a statement Thursday, Castro said:

"I am very grateful to the jury that heard my case. We proved that all of this began with a lie and a man who set out to destroy me with that lie. The truth is that I never sold my office for personal gain. Today that charge and 6 others were dismissed. Prosecutors have removed my entrapment defense. I accept responsibility for my conduct and will work every day to restore my reputation. I have lost a career that I cherished but I now begin the process of rebuilding my life."

Castro could face a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison, but likely will get much less.

Sentencing is set for September.