Fla. police chief 'friendly' with Ponzi suspect

AP News
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Posted: Dec 16, 2009 4:21 PM

The Fort Lauderdale police chief says he developed a "friendly relationship" with a South Florida lawyer charged by federal authorities with operating a $1 billion Ponzi scheme and was surprised to learn about the allegations.

Chief Franklin Adderley issued a written statement Wednesday responding to allegations by local media about his relationship with disbarred attorney Scott Rothstein.

He said as police chief, he associates and has relationships with a diverse group of people, and it was through those contacts that he developed a friendly relationship with Rothstein.

Adderley said if he had known or suspected that Rothstein was participating in illegal activity, "I would have initiated an investigation and certainly would not have associated with him."