Tara Lenich, the former high-level Brooklyn prosecutor accused of forging wiretap orders to keep tabs on a male cop and a female colleague, pleaded guilty Monday to two federal illegal-eavesdropping charges.
Lenich, 41, a former deputy chief in the Violent Criminal Enterprises Bureau of the Brooklyn district attorney’s office, faces up to 10 years in prison, with 8 to 14 months recommended under federal sentencing guidelines.
Lenich, who was fired last year, allegedly forged signatures of judges on 24 wiretap authorizations on two cellphones in 2015 and 2016; forged warrants for text messages; and used grand jury subpoenas to get information on numbers called by the target phones.
A source last year said Lenich’s conduct involved a “personal entanglement.”
Lenich apologized during her plea before U.S. District Judge William Kuntz in Brooklyn.
“Since the beginning, Tara has wanted to fully accept responsibility for her actions and plead guilty at the first possible opportunity,” one of her attorneys, Mo Fodeman, said afterward in a statement. “We are encouraged knowing that, at sentencing, the Court will consider this case in the context of Tara’s otherwise exemplary professional and personal life.”
No sentencing date has been set.