Two fire-fighters and a policeman were suspended without pay Friday - and will be fired - for being part of a Labor Day parade float that featured a satire of a black man dragged to death in Texas, the mayor said.

Mayor Rudolph Giuliani said the men were suspended for demonstrating a total lack of understanding to their oath of office.But he conceded that although the float - featuring nine white men wearing blackface and Afro-style and dreadlock wigs - was offensive, the men may not have broken any criminal laws.

However, prosecutors were investigating to see if any civil rights laws were violated.