Former top-level N.J. Department of Corrections official admits extorting money from employee

    Federal prosecutors say a former high-ranking New Jersey Department of Corrections official has pleaded guilty to extortion.

    Lydell B. Sherrer faces up to 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine when he’s sentenced in June.

    When he was arrested in October 2010, the 52-year-old Neptune resident was accused of offering job assistance to five department employees in exchange for cash bribes.
    In entering his plea on Tuesday, Sherrer acknowledged that he solicited and received $69,000 in bribes between 2006 and 2008 from those five individuals and three other people.

    Sherrer had worked for the DOC for 29 years. At the time of his arrest, he was a deputy commissioner overseeing the department’s Division of Programs and Community Services.

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