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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 27, 2018

Superseding Indictment Charges Former Biscayne Park Police Chief and Former Officers with Conspiring to Violate Three Victims’ Civil Rights by Intentionally Making False Arrests

U.S. Attorney Benjamin G. Greenberg for the Southern District of Florida, Katherine Fernandez Rundle, Miami-Dade State Attorney, Robert F. Lasky, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office, and Troy Walker, Special Agent in Charge, Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), today announced the return of a superseding indictment against former Biscayne Park Police Chief Raimundo Atesiano and former Officers Charlie Dayoub and Raul Fernandez for their roles in conspiring to falsely arrest individuals identified as “C.D.,” “E.B.,” and “T.D.,” a 16-year old juvenile.  

Atesiano, Dayoub, and Fernandez were charged with conspiracy to violate civil rights under color of law, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 241(Count 1); and deprivation of T.D.’s civil rights, under color of law, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 242 (Count 2).  Atesiano was also charged with deprivation of E.B.’s civil rights, under color of law, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 242 (Count 3).  If convicted, Dayoub and Fernandez each face a maximum statutory sentence of 11 years in prison while Atesiano faces a maximum of 12 years.  Guillermo Ravelo, another former Biscayne Park Officer, is named in the indictment but not as a defendant.  Yesterday, Ravelo pleaded guilty to the same conspiracy charge in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 241, as well as a separate, unrelated Civil Rights violation.

The indictment alleges that Atesiano, as the Biscyane Park Police Chief, caused and encouraged officers to knowingly arrest individuals without a legitimate basis in order to maintain a fictitious 100 percent clearance rate of reported burglaries. Atesiano directed Ravelo to arrest C.D. on January 23, 2013 and E.B. on February 26, 2014, in order to falsely charge both with unsolved burglaries despite knowing there was no evidence and no lawful basis to support such charges. The indictment further alleges that Atesiano directed Dayoub and Fernandez to arrest T.D. on June 13, 2013, in order to falsely charge him with unsolved burglaries despite knowing there was no evidence and no lawful basis to support such charges. Following Atesiano’s instruction, Ravelo, Dayoub, and Fernandez completed multiple arrest affidavits that included false narratives about evidence purporting to support the charges. On July 9, 2013, at a meeting of the City Council for The Village of Biscayne Park, Atesiano announced that his department had a 100 percent clearance rate for burglaries.

An indictment merely contains allegations and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. 

Mr. Greenberg commends the investigative efforts of the FBI, the FBI Miami Area Corruption Task Force and FDLE in this matter.  Mr. Greenberg thanked the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office for its assistance.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Harry Wallace, Trial Attorney D.W. Tunnage of the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice, and Assistant State Attorney Trent Reichling. 

Related court documents and information can be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

 

Updated July 27, 2018