MANHATTAN, N.Y. — James Grant — the former top cop from Staten Island on trial on bribery charges — carefully stretches his long, white rosary beads on the dark brown defense table, making sure the silver cross is perfectly straight.A few inches right of the beads rests a Jewish holy book belonging to his friend and co-defendant Jeremy Reichberg.The longtime buddies may have different Gods, but they’re praying for the same thing — that the jury doesn’t buy Jona Rechnitz’s sordid story.The wealthy real estate developer — who previously admitted he made large donations to Mayor Bill de Blasio and other politicians — detailed how he and Reichberg bought special favors from Grant and other high-ranking NYPD officials during his testimony Tuesday in Manhattan federal court.Rechnitz, 35, the government’s star witness after taking a plea deal, claims he bought into the alleged bribery scheme because he wanted to be a “big-shot” like Reichberg, a prominent Brooklyn businessman.“He was very powerful,” said Rechnitz, a Los Angeles resident. “He had access to high-ranking officers directly…It was good for my image to be a big-shot… at the time that was everything to me.”Grant, a former deputy inspector, was one of those top cops… Read full this story
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