The FBI arrested Miami Springs Police Sgt. Andres Quintanilla, a 16-year veteran of the force, on Tuesday on a federal corruption charge.
Quintanilla, 33, was charged Tuesday with “attempting to affect commerce by extortion under color of official right,’’ according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida.
According to the federal complaint, a confidential FBI source said he told Quintanilla in September 2014 that he was a drug trafficker. Instead of arresting the source, Quintanilla “offered to help the [informant’s] drug trafficking business,’’ the complaint alleges.
Quintanilla allegedly provided the location of an undercover police narcotics office, gave the source the names of three Miami-Dade police officers and ran the name of a purported drug dealer in a law enforcement database when asked to do so by the source, the complaint says.
By December 2014, Quintanilla had agreed to act as an escort during a purported 10 kilogram cocaine deal, the complaint states. Quintanilla also chose a safe location in Miami Springs where the source could exchange 10 kilograms of cocaine for $250,000, the complaint says.
After the purported deal took place, Quintanilla then followed the source — while in uniform and driving his MSPD marked vehicle — to an express package service center, where Quintanilla believed the source would ship the $250,000 of drug proceeds to New York, the complaint says.
In exchange for his assistance, Quintanilla accepted $3,500 in bribe payments from the source.
“As a result of the charges filed against Quintanilla, he has now been relieved of duty without pay pending the results of the criminal case in the U.S. federal court,” said Miami Springs Police Chief Armando Guzman, in a press release issued Tuesday night.
Quintanilla earned $117,772.20 in salary and benefits last year, according to 2014 city payroll records. If convicted, Quintanilla, who started with the Springs police department as a public service aide in 1999 when he was 17, faces up to 20 years in federal prison.
Quintanilla is founder and director of 911 Realty Group in Coral Gables. He earned a master’s degree in criminal justice from Florida International University, according to his LinkedIn account.