NYPD detective charged with hacking fellow officers’ email accounts

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MANHATTAN (PIX11) – NYPD detective Edwin Vargas left Federal Court saying nothing about the charges against him. Law enforcement sources tell PIX11News while the motive is still unclear it appears Vargas may have been hacking to try and gather information on his ex-girlfriend.

“I don’t think the government allegations are that he did this for any financial motive,” said  Defense Attorney James Moschella.

Federal prosecutors said the Bronxville resident and 20-year veteran of the NYPD hired an email hacking service to obtain login credentials such as the password and username for certain email accounts. In all, they allege he purchased at least 43 personal email accounts and one cellular phone belonging to at least 30 people including 21 affiliated with the NYPD.

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His defense attorney said Vargas was shocked when the FBI arrested him around 7a.m. Tuesday morning.

“He’s someone who has dedicated his adult life to keeping the streets of NYC safe,” said Moschella.

The government also alleges this Bronx detective illegally obtained information about two officers from a federal database that he had access to.

As for the e-mail hacking services,

Authorities allege he paid about four thousand dollars.

“We ask that the public really withhold judgement until all the facts are known,” said Moschella.

The defense said its still not clear why they allege he did this.