Updated at 5 p.m.
Nine current and former members of the Boston Police Department were arrested Wednesday on allegations they committed overtime fraud while serving in the BPD.
The nine officers, seven male and two female, all of whom worked in the BPD’s Evidence Management Unit, are each accused of one count of conspiracy to commit theft of federal funds, and one count of embezzlement of taxpayer dollars.
The officers appeared in federal court Wednesday afternoon for an initial appearance before a federal magistrate judge. Six of the nine defendants pleaded not guilty, and three more had their arraignments postponed until they had a chance to review the charging indictment.
According to a grand jury indictment released Wednesday, the nine officers had routinely submitted false pay overtime slips claiming overtime pay for hours they did not work, totaling some $200,000 in fraudulent claims since 2016.
The indictment alleges that supervisors were aware of the scheme and participated along with subordinates.
“These officers are charged with stealing taxpayer money, year after year, through fraud,” said Andrew Lelling in a statement released Wednesday morning. “Beyond the theft of funds, this kind of official misconduct also erodes trust in public institutions, at a time when that trust is most needed.”
Judge Marianne Bowler has granted federal prosecutors' request to allow the defendants to be released on their own recognizance under various conditions, including surrendering their passports.
In a statement, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh called the allegations “an affront to the thousands of police officers who do their jobs every day with honesty, integrity, and bravery.”
“I am outraged and, quite frankly, outright disgusted at the utter breach of trust by these nine individuals at the Boston Police Department,” Walsh continued.
Both Walsh and Lelling commended federal and local law enforcement officials for the arrests, including Boston Police Commissioner William Gross who, both said, helped bring the accusations to light.
The nine officers are scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday afternoon.