Los Angeles News
Burbank cop accused in extortion plot against girlfriend's husband
A Burbank police officer is accused of lying to the FBI in an investigation into an extortion scheme involving the officer, his girlfriend and her estranged husband.
Gayle Bassett and her alleged boyfriend, Burbank Police Officer Anthony Valento appeared in federal court Wednesday.
Both surrendered after warrants were issued for allegedly making false statements to the FBI about extorting Bassett's husband and the nature of their relationship.
According to the probable cause statement, Valento and Bassett began a romantic relationship and are living together at her residence. Valento is married with several children. Bassett is also married with children.
Bassett's husband, Jeremy Bassett, is in the middle of a criminal case for alleged domestic abuse against Gayle.
According to court documents, Valento was the responding officer to several calls of restraining-order violations, and lied about taking reports from Bassett at the police station.
Then he and Bassett allegedly tried to extort Jeremy Bassett for between $100,000 and $200,000 as part of the divorce settlement in exchange for dropping the criminal charges against him.
Valento also allegedly falsified statements about being on the clock with the Burbank Police Department when he was actually at Bassett's Burbank apartment.
The documents say Valento and Bassett lied about having a financial relationship: Valento paid for Bassett's breast implants, co-signed her car lease and financially supports her and her children.
Bassett's husband agreed to record phone conversations talking about the alleged extortion, according to court documents.
Gayle Bassett was held on $20,000 bond. Valento was released on $25,000 bond to stay at his father's house. Valento has been on paid administrative lead from the Burbank Police Dept. since July.
arrest, court case, los angeles news, rudabeh shahbazi
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