Indicted Police Inspector Will Seek City Pension

Daniel Castro, the Philadelphia Police Department inspector indicted Nov. 5 on federal charges for allegedly hiring a "collector" to use strong-arm tactics to recoup $90,000 lost in a real estate deal, told the city yesterday that he wants to retire and collect his pension.  Castro, who pleaded not guilty in an arraignment last week, has 25 years, seven months and 22 days of service in the department as of today. He also has an appointment in early December to complete his retirement paperwork with the city's Board of Pensions and Retirement.

Mayor Nutter today took a wait-and-see approach to Castro, who is paid $97,015 per year by the Police Department.  "We'll see what happens as it works its way through the system but I believe you cannot legally stop someone from retiring," Nutter said. "They have a right to walk in and file their papers."

That doesn't mean Castro will get to keep his pension, Nutter added.  "If there is a conviction, the law provides, given the nature of the criminal activity and…you did it as part of your job, the pension can be taken away," Nutter said. "So that story is far from over. You have seen pensions taken away from public officials who were convicted of wrong-doing."

That doesn't always work.  The city revoked the pension of former City Councilman Rick Mariano, who was recently released from federal prison after serving six years for a corruption conviction.  The city is appealing a ruling by a Common Pleas Court judge in June that Mariano's contributions to his pension were improperly confiscated.