Miami-Dade County

A fake Uber driver held women hostage, but then his groceries got him arrested, cops say

Police say Farris Kaloti posed as an Uber driver and held women against their will. He was arrested Dec. 7, 2017, after being spotted at a Pinecrest Whole Foods Market.
Police say Farris Kaloti posed as an Uber driver and held women against their will. He was arrested Dec. 7, 2017, after being spotted at a Pinecrest Whole Foods Market.

A Miami man who police say posed as an Uber driver to pick up young women and hold them against their will was arrested Thursday after being spotted at a local Whole Foods Market.

Farris Kaloti, 28, was arrested at around 2:45 p.m. after a Pinecrest detective and a supermarket patron recognized him as a frequent customer at the Pinecrest Whole Foods, 11701 S. Dixie Hwy.

Kaloti is accused of offering rides to female students at the University of South Carolina, taking them to places other than their desired destinations and refusing to let them out of the vehicle.

It’s unclear when and how Kaloti got to Miami, but after being spotted at a Pinecrest Whole Foods Wednesday, police immediately set up surveillance in the area.

Kaloti— who is wanted by police in South Carolina — was followed to an area near his former home outside of Pinecrest on Southwest 170th Street and 93rd Avenue.

He was arrested during a traffic stop near U.S. 1 and Southwest 136th Street, police say, noting that he had two open Miami-Dade County arrest warrants, one for assault and the other for domestic violence.

“The reason that police acted immediately is because they wanted to protect the public in case he did something similar in this area,” Pinecrest spokeswoman Michelle Hammontree told the Miami Herald. “Kaloti is not known to have committed a crime in Pinecrest. If anyone has further information about Kaloti, please call police.”

Law enforcement officials have yet to release the arrest report, Hammontree said. Kaloti is being held at Miami-Dade’s Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center, jail records show.

Monique O. Madan: 305-376-2108, @MoniqueOMadan

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