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Rutherford man admits trying to pay $10,000 to have drug, weapons charges dropped

Photo Credit: Cliffview Pilot File Photo

YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: A Rutherford man arrested for drug and weapons possession during a police checkpoint admitted today that he tried paying $10,000 to have the charges dropped.

Mahmud Hammad, 36, admitted that he met last July and August with a person who turned out to be an undercover FBI agent who claimed to “have access to authorities at the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office,” U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman said.

The agent recorded Hammad paying $1,500 as “good faith” money toward a $10,000 reward to have the criminal case dismissed, Fishman said.

Hammad was snagged on drug and weapons possession charges a year ago May, during a Woodland Park Police “Click It or Ticket” checkpoint aimed at catching people not wearing their seatbelts.

While asking for credentials, an officer smelled marijuana inside Hammad’s 2008 Infiniti SUV, police said at the time.

They said they found some pot, along with a can of pepper spray marked “For Law Enforcement Only,” two hypodermic needles, and bottles of bottles of steroids and Oxycodone.

Scheduling in the payoff case is set for Oct. 7 in U.S. District Court in Newark.

Fishman credited the FBI with making the case, which is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Barbara Llanes of his Special Prosecutions Division in Newark.

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