Seven Baltimore police officers were arrested by federal agents last week on racketeering charges.
The officers are accused of conducting illegal stops, stealing money and drugs from suspects, swearing false affidavits, submitting false incident reports and participating in overtime fraud. One of the officers was also charged in a separate drug conspiracy indictment, involving a heroin distribution ring.
The charges are the latest blow to Baltimore’s already scandal-mired police force.
“This is not about aggressive policing, it is about a criminal conspiracy,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein in a press release announcing the busts. “Prosecuting criminals who work in police agencies is essential both to protect victims and to support the many honorable officers whose reputations they unfairly tarnish.”
FBI Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson added that “this investigation has dismantled a group of police officers who were besmirching the good name of the Baltimore City Police Department.”
In the separate indictment, Detective Mamdo Gondo is said to have collaborated with the local “Shropshire DTO” (drug trafficking organization).
According to the press release: “In addition to selling heroin, Gondo provided sensitive law enforcement information to other conspirators in order to help the DTO and protect his co-conspirators.”
For example, Gondo helped ringleader Antonio Shropshire get rid of a GPS tracking device that had been placed on his vehicle by DEA agents,and kept him informed on law enforcement operations in order to protect his crew from being arrested.