NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A former New Orleans building inspector has been sentenced to 2 1/2 years in federal prison for taking at least $65,000 in bribes.

The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate reports that the sentence was handed down Thursday for 59-year-old Kevin Richardson. U.S. District Judge Susie Morgan said prison time was necessary to show that corruption in New Orleans’ government won’t be tolerated. Richardson left city government in 2015.

His case wasn’t related to the deadly collapse of a hotel construction project in 2019. But his guilty plea to a federal corruption charge came shortly after the collapse and helped heighten public scrutiny of the city’s permits department.