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Press Release

Miami Dade Police Department Detective Charged with Civil Rights Offenses for Stealing Property from Motorists and Obstructing Justice

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Florida

Today, the Justice Department announced that a grand jury in the Southern District of Florida charged Miami Dade Police Department (MDPD) Detective William Kostopoulos, 47, with using his law enforcement authority to violate motorists’ civil rights.

The indictment charges Kostopoulos with making traffic stops of three motorists in order to steal their money and property, in violation of the motorists’ rights under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution to be free from unreasonable seizures of their property.  The indictment also charges Kostopoulos with making misleading statements in order to prevent the communication of information about his alleged crimes to federal law enforcement officers.

This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), with assistance from the Homestead, Florida, Police Department.  The matter is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Tonya Long of the Southern District of Florida, Special Litigation Counsel Gerard Hogan and Trial Attorney Samantha Trepel of the Civil Rights Division.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence of guilt.  The defendant is presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida at Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at or on

Updated February 4, 2016

Civil Rights