It Didn’t Stay Here: Alleged bribe to NY cop included hooker in Las Vegas

hooker in Las VegasSee update at end of story

t continues to amaze me how questionable stuff that happens in Las Vegas can make big news elsewhere but not cause much of a stir here.

My latest example is a long-running criminal case in New York City currently the subject of a federal-court trial. Among other things, James Grant, a former high-ranking New York Police Department officer, is accused of taking bribes that included a room at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas during a Super Bowl weekend and the services of a hooker who flew in with him on a private jet to, ah, watch the game with him.

This scandal has been playing itself out in the New York media for more than two years, with headlines like “Ex-Hooker Testifies About Vegas Debauchery at NYPD Bribery Case.” That came during the ongoing criminal trial, in which a verdict hasn’t been reached. But you wouldn’t know about the case from the Las Vegas media. A search of the online Las Vegas Review-Journal archives shows no coverage at all. In 2016 the Las Vegas Sun website ran an Associated Press story about the arrest of Grant that mentioned (1) the hooker, (2) Super Bowl weekend, (3) the private jet and (4) a fancy hotel room while editing out (5) this took place in Las Vegas.

Still, the caper is good enough to make Grant and co-defendant Jeremy Reichberg, accused of bribing him, candidates for my list, It Didn’t Stay Here. This is a roster of folks in trouble elsewhere for something that happened in Las Vegas. Still New To Las Vegas, I call this my continuing rebuttal to “What Happens Here, Stays Here,” the famous (or infamous) marketing pitch of the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Bureau. Previous nominees, which includes some big names, can be found elsewhere on this page.

This account is based largely on the massive coverage this case has received in the New York City media. It certainly isn’t based on anything I’ve read locally.

Reichberg and crony Jona Rechnitz, who pleaded guilty and testified for the prosecution, were businessmen in Brooklyn willing to pay bribes to cops to seem like big guys and get favors, like ticket-fixing and permission to carry a gun. Grant was a rising star in the New York Police Department who eventually became a deputy inspector. Grant and Reichberg has pleaded not guilty, and the lawyer for Grant, at least, has denied his client received any sexual bribes.

In late 2012, according to court testimony, Reichberg met a New York hooker named Gabriella Curtis, who also known as Gabi Grecko. A month later, Reichberg organized a junket to Las Vegas on a private plane during the SuperBowl weekend in 2013 that carried Curtis–dressed as a scantily-clad flight attendant–Reichberg, Grant and three other men. The plane trip cost $59,000, Rechnitz testified.

Wearing what The New York Post described as a “skintight, pink-and-red, Chanel-style skirt suit,” Curtis, 29, testified during the trial that she provided sexual services to Grant on the plane and in the MGM Grand room that they shared. She said she also was intimate with Reichberg and Rechnitz.

Curtis actually testified in some detail about those services. But since this is a family blog, you’ll have to do your own Internet search to find out.

When the party returned to New York after what Curtis called “a long weekend.” she testified Grant drove her home and gave her $1,500. Curtis complained about the small sum given all the work she did,  saying that Grant replied, “If our team had done better we would have been able to give you more.” Curtis has told reporters the weekend prompted her to leave prostitution and become a rap singer under the stage name GLittA FoxX. She is now married to a wealthy Australian businessman 47 years her senior.

I am not making this up.

The six weeks of testimony has implicated all sorts of folks, including other ex-cops not charged. Both Reichberg and Rechnitz were political donors to New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, who successfully fought efforts by the defense to make him testify at the trial. DeBlasio hasn’t been charged with anything. But The Post–no friend of de Blasio–has been having great sport detailing the many fawning emails between Hizzonor and Rechnitz.

There should be a verdict in the trial soon. It will be interesting to see if the Las Vegas media finally take note of what happened here.

UPDATE on January 2, 2019: After a seven-week trial, the jury today acquitted Grant of all corruption charges, including those pertaining to the junket to Las Vegas with the hooker. Reichberg, his co-defendant, was convicted bribery and conspiracy charges involving other officers, but not Grant. Jurors told The New York Times that Grant and Reichberg were long-time friends and that prosecutors couldn’t show Grant provided official favors in exchange for the gifts.

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