A South Philadelphia man has been charged with trying to bribe a Philadelphia police officer several times to cover up a prostitution operation.
Ignatius D'Anna, 57, was arrested today following a joint investigation between police and the District Attorney's Office.
Prosecutors provided the following timeline of events:
On Nov. 19, 2011, D'Anna was arrested for promoting prostitution on South Bank Street. While being processed at the 6th District, D'Anna began chatting with Office Joseph Ferrero and offered to pay Ferrero to in exchange for protection from police and to prevent further arrests. Ferrero immediately notified his supervisors.
On Oct. 12, 2012, police received a complaint about possible prostitution on South 8th Street near Pine Street. While outside the scene, D'Anna confronted Ferrero and asked to talk to him away from his partner. D'Anna again offered to pay Ferrero for protection from police. He gave Ferrero his cell phone number and asked him to call him if he was interested. The officer again notified his supervisors, who contacted the D.A.'s office, prompting the joint investigation.
On Nov. 1, 2012, Ferrero was instructed to call D'Anna to arrange a meeting. D'Anna and the officer met, during which time D'Anna offered to pay the officer $500 every two weeks in exchange for protection for his business. The offer included: Ferrero not appearing in court or altering his testimony regarding the November 2011 arrest; not arresting D'Anna for his ongoing prostitution activity; and providing warning and information about other law enforcement officers or agencies targeting D'Anna for investigation or arrest, thus enabling him to hide or destroy evidence of his business. The two arranged to meet the following day at the same place for payment.
The following day Ferrero and D'Anna met again and D'Anna handed the officer five $100 bills inside a Parking Authority violation envelope. They arranged to meet again in two weeks.
On Nov. 15, 2012, Ferrero and D'Anna met again, at which time D'Anna gave Ferrero five $100 bills inside another Parking Authority violation envelope.
D'Anna, of Snyder Avenue near 20th, is charged with five counts of bribery. It is unknown whether D'Anna has hired an attorney.
The D.A.'s office applauded Ferrero, an 18-year veteran, for his integrity and hard work in helping authorities arrest D'Anna.