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Hoboken disbands police SWAT unit in wake of racy photos

HOBOKEN, N.J. (AP) — The police departmentís SWAT team has been disbanded just days after officials learned of racy photos showing the unitís commander and other officers cavorting with waitresses from a Hooters restaurant in Alabama.

Bill Bergin, a former deputy chief with the Hoboken Fire Department who was named the cityís civilian public safety director on Thursday, made the announcement shortly after he was sworn in on Friday.

ďThe unit itself has been disbanded permanently,Ē Bergin said. He said the SWAT team members would remain on the force and continue their normal police duties.

Bergin also ordered the SWAT teamís commander, Lt. Angelo Andriani, to return from vacation and assigned him to desk duty.

Andriani is named in a federal discrimination lawsuit brought by five Latino officers, who claim he is a racist who coerced four of them to work on his house when they should have been on duty. Andriani has denied the allegations.

The photos were taken last year on a return trip from Louisiana, where the Hoboken officers helped with the Hurricane Katrina relief effort.

They show the waitresses holding shotguns and other weapons belonging to officers under Andrianiís command. Some of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit were among the officers.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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