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Justice News

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

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Former NYPD Anti-Terrorism Officer Sentenced To Four Years In Prison For Narcotics, Fraud, Identity Theft, And Counterfeit Currency Offenses

Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today that REYNALDO LOPEZ, a former New York City Police Department (“NYPD”) officer, was sentenced to four years in prison in connection with narcotics, credit card fraud, identity theft, and counterfeiting offenses.  LOPEZ previously pled guilty to the charges on February 16, 2018, in Manhattan federal court before United States District Judge Edgardo Ramos, who also imposed LOPEZ’s sentence.

U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said:  “Reynaldo Lopez betrayed and abused the trust placed in him by the NYPD and the people of New York.  He swore to protect the public from criminal activity, only to turn around and participate in significant crimes of his own, including not only credit card and identity fraud, but also agreeing to distribute multiple kilograms of heroin.  His sentence today is a reminder that this Office and its law enforcement partners will continue to fight this kind of corruption, and that no one is above the law.”

In sentencing LOPEZ, Judge Ramos said: “[LOPEZ] is an individual that we as a society trusted to enforce our laws, trusted him enough to give him a weapon, trusted him enough to go out into the streets and protect our communities, our children, our businesses, etc.  He is an individual with excellent resources who absolutely did not have to do what he did, absolutely did not have to engage in these crimes.”

According to the allegations in the Information to which LOPEZ pled guilty, a criminal complaint filed against LOPEZ, and other filings made in the case, and statements made during the plea and other proceedings in the case:

During the time periods charged, LOPEZ was an NYPD police officer assigned to the Anti-Terrorism Unit of the Transit Bureau.

On November 29, 2017, LOPEZ attempted to traffic approximately three kilograms of heroin from a location in New Jersey to the Bronx, New York.  LOPEZ agreed to transport and protect what he believed were three kilograms of heroin to a drug dealer located in the Bronx under LOPEZ’s protection as an NYPD police officer.  During the attempted transaction, LOPEZ described having previously engaged in narcotics trafficking and stated that “with me it’s guaranteed, they know for sure, they just send me out, do your thing, get an address, meet the person, do your thing, and I’m gone.”  LOPEZ was arrested when he attempted to make the delivery.

In addition, from May 2017 through November 2017, LOPEZ engaged in a scheme to create and utilize fraudulent credit cards, including by using stolen identity information.  He was part of a counterfeit credit card operation whose participants used stolen or otherwise illicitly obtained personal identifying information to create fraudulent credit cards, and then used those cards to purchase merchandise for themselves.  As part of his role in these crimes, LOPEZ also possessed and used a device that applies electronic data to blank physical credit cards.

Also from May 2017 through November 2017, LOPEZ possessed and used counterfeit United States currency.  In multiple recorded conversations, LOPEZ discussed his possession of counterfeit money and provided a sample to an undercover NYPD officer, stating that he previously had successfully used the counterfeit currency.

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In addition to the prison term, LOPEZ, 27, of Brooklyn, New York, was sentenced to three years of supervised release.

Mr. Berman praised the outstanding investigative work of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the NYPD Internal Affairs Bureau.

This case is being handled by the Office’s Public Corruption Unit.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Alex Rossmiller is in charge of the prosecution.

Drug Trafficking
Financial Fraud
Public Corruption
Press Release Number: 
Updated September 19, 2018