MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Miami Police have arrested one of their own – an officer accused of running a Ponzi scheme.
Tuesday afternoon, the Department of Justice issued a statement saying Officer Dermis Hernandez, 41, of Homestead was arrested by the FBI before boarding a flight to Costa Rica.
“We who wear the Miami Police badge have a duty to honor that sacred vow. It is with great sadness then that I report to you today that Officer Dermis Hernandez has failed to uphold his oath,” said Miami Police Chief Jorge Colina said during a press conference Tuesday afternoon.
Hernandez has been with the Miami Police Department for 12 years. Colina says he’s disgraced by the officer’s actions.
“The Miami Police Department condemns Officer Hernandez’s disgraceful behavior and is moving swiftly to terminate his employment,” said Colina.
Hernandez reportedly lied to investors, telling them he was able to offer a low risk investment with guaranteed returns through high-interest loans his company made to property owners in Costa Rica.
He allegedly told investors that the supposed property would be used as collateral for the loan and would be forfeited if the loan was not paid.
In truth, the complaint says, Hernandez and his co-conspirators used most of the money to pay back other investors.
On Monday, the FBI arrested Hernandez at Fort Lauderale-Hollywood International Airport as he was boarding his flight.
He is now facing a charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.
Chief Colina says Hernandez has been suspended in the past for speeding and a traffic accident. He also says there doesn’t appear to be any other officers involved in his case.
“I want to thank both the FBI Miami field office and the U.S. Attorneys Office for their assistance at holding officer Hernandez accountable for his actions,” said Chief Colina.