A New Jersey Transit staffer has been sentenced to three years in prison for accepting money from vendors in return for helping them get work with the agency.

Federal prosecutors say 56-year-old William Talerico must also pay $54,600 in restitution under the sentence imposed Tuesday. The Beachwood resident had pleaded guilty last year to affecting commerce by extortion.

From at least January 2006 to April 2012, Talerico was a supervisor of stations for NJ Transit, responsible for overseeing maintenance and custodial functions at some facilities.

During that time, he agreed to accept and took cash from numerous vendors. In exchange, Talerico used his authority and influence to help the vendors get work.

Talerico also was an intermediary through which corrupt payments were given to an NJ Transit supervisor. He got more than $70,000 for himself and the supervisor,

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