NEW YORK (AP) — A former high-ranking Drug Enforcement Administration agent was sentenced to one year of probation for concealing his double-life as a manager of a New Jersey strip club where prosecutors say there was evidence of prostitution.
David Polos wept and asked for forgiveness from his family and former DEA colleagues when he appeared in federal court in Manhattan on Wednesday. Among his misdeeds was having an affair with a Brazilian dancer who was in the country illegally.
"I stand before you today a man disgraced, an outcast in my own profession," Polos said before hearing his punishment. "The only thing I can do is apologize."
Polos, 52, had faced up to six months in jail for his conviction at a trial last year on charges he lied on national security forms that asked about outside employment that might put him "in proximity to crime" and at risk for getting blackmailed. On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Paul G. Gardephe called Polos' behavior "truly shocking" for a decorated agent who rose to sensitive supervisory positions at the DEA during at 23-year career there.
"All sentencings are sad and some are sadder than others, and this falls into that category," the judge said.
Under Polos' management, Twins Plus Go-Go Lounge in South Hackensack offered entertainment by scantily clad and sometimes topless dancers — most of them workers from Brazil or Russia — and private rooms for lap dances, according to a criminal complaint. On video recovered during a search of Twins Go-Go Lounge, including from inside the private rooms, "there appear to be multiple instances of sexual contact between dancers and patrons, with money exchanged afterward," it said.
Defense papers portrayed Polos as a hero officer who in 1997 saved the lives of two fellow agents by shooting and killing an armed drug trafficker in an undercover operation gone awry at a McDonald's parking lot in Manhattan. As a supervisor of a special DEA strike force, he also contributed to the investigation resulting in the arrest of drug kingpin Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, according to the papers.
Polos was allowed to retire last year before he was charged and is collecting a pension.
A telecommunications specialist for the DEA, Glen Glover, also was convicted for his involvement in the club and is scheduled for sentencing Friday.