River Cities

Miami Springs sergeant pleads guilty in federal corruption case

Miami Springs Police Sgt. Andres Quintanilla in September 2014.
Miami Springs Police Sgt. Andres Quintanilla in September 2014. Miami Herald File

Miami Springs Police Sgt. Andres Quintanilla pleaded guilty Monday to one count of “attempting to affect commerce by extortion under color of law,” according to a plea agreement filed with the U.S. District Court in Miami.

Quintanilla, 33, was arrested in May by the FBI on a federal corruption charge.

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 alleged.

Quintanilla 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 said.

By December 2014, Quintanilla had agreed to act as an escort during a purported 10 kilogram cocaine deal. Quintanilla also chose a safe location in Miami Springs where the source could exchange 10 kilograms of cocaine for $250,000, according to the complaint.

After the purported deal took place, Quintanilla then followed the source — while in uniform and driving his Miami Springs marked police 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 said.

In exchange for his assistance, Quintanilla accepted $3,500 in bribe payments from the source, it said.

Quintanilla must forfeit $3,500 “from proceeds traceable to the commission of the offense,” as well as a $100 special assessment fee, Monday’s plea agreement states.

According to the agreement, Quintanilla has waived all rights to an appeal. His attorney, André Rouviere of Coral Gables, declined to comment on the case.

Chief U.S. District Judge K. Michael Moore will sentence Quintanilla on July 24.

The court may impose “a statutory maximum term of imprisonment of up to 20 years, followed by a term of supervised release of up to three years, and may impose a fine of $250,000,” the plea agreement states.

Quintanilla, who started with the Springs police department as a public service aide in 1999 at age 17, earned $117,772.20 in salary and benefits last year, according to 2014 city payroll records.

He 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.

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