MAYS LANDING — An Atlantic City Public Works supervisor was convicted Tuesday of selling heroin in the city building he was supposed to be overseeing.
Akbar Malik Salaam, 57, of Egg Harbor Township, was found guilty of official misconduct and 29 other counts for selling heroin from the All Wars Memorial building and his city-issued vehicle in 2009.
He was taken into custody after the conviction.
Salaam faces 10 years in prison for heroin distribution and five years for official misconduct when he is sentenced June 29 before Superior Court Judge Max Baker.
A confidential informant under witness protection testified during Salaam’s trial that he agreed to buy drugs from Salaam as part of an investigation after he was arrested in 2008 for selling cocaine to an undercover officer twice. The informant pleaded guilty April 27, 2009, according to information presented in court.
Three days later, the man made his first buy for investigators, paying $1,250 for five bricks of heroin, or 250 bags. Over several buys, the informant used $4,250 to buy nearly 17 bricks of heroin.
“Today, a jury concluded what the state has alleged all along, that Salaam abused his position and betrayed the public’s trust by selling poison from a public building of which he was in charge,” Atlantic County Prosecutor Ted Housel said in a release. “We will aggressively pursue government employees who abuse their position for their own benefit. The people of Atlantic City deserve better.”
Last year, Salaam was additionally charged with possession of a controlled dangerous substance and contempt of court after he was found back inside the All Wars building with three bags of heroin. He was barred from the building as a result of the previous charges.
Salaam’s criminal history dates to at least 1984, when he sold nearly a half-gram of heroin to an undercover officer. A Press of Atlantic City story at that time said the prosecutor mentioned at least two previous drug-related convictions.
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