Reporting Ted Scouten
FORT LAUDERDALE (CBS4) – Two brand new Cameros sit outside BSO headquarters; the latest additions in the Broward Sheriff’s Office crime fighting arsenal. Both cars will be used to go after aggressive, speeding drivers.
Making it even better, they were both free, compliments of a bank busted for laundering drug money.
“These bad guys were bankers and it was one of the biggest banks around,” said Broward Sheriff Al Lamberti. “They were turning a blind eye on money laundering. And when I say a blind eye, I really mean it, hundreds of billions, billions with a “B” were funneled thru Mexico without the required federal controls.”
In 2010, Wachovia Bank agreed to pay $160 million in penalties and fines for laundering the money. The Broward County Money Laundering Task Force helped the IRS in the case. Investigators poured through more than nine million documents.
“Anybody ever seen a check for three million dollars before?” asked Sheriff Lamberti as he presented the check.
For it’s part, the task force got nearly $3 million, which it will share with 14 agencies that helped out. The money is already going to good use, especially during these times of shrinking budgets.
“Our money’s going to be used for our resource officers in our schools,” said Deerfield Beach Mayor Peggy Noland. Oakland Park and Cooper City plan to do the same thing.
Pembroke Pines plans to use the money for its police training facility and equipment for the detective bureau.
While handing out $140,000 to 14 different cities and police agencies, Sheriff Lamberit said, “The best part of this job is when you can take money from bad guys and give it to good guys and that’s what we’re doing here today.”