Friday, January 18, 2008



Federal Authorities Allege That Sgt. Alvaro Murillo Stole From Drug 

Dealers Then Sold the Drugs.


A veteran Huntington Park police officer once assigned to a federal 

anti-drug task force was arrested Thursday on charges that he 

conspired with others to distribute large quantities of cocaine and 

marijuana, federal authorities said.


Sgt. Alvaro Murillo, who allegedly was called "The Godfather" by his 

cohorts, is accused of using his job as a police officer to recruit 

informants in the drug world, then use them to help him steal 

narcotics from dealers.


Murillo allegedly arranged for the drugs to be put back on the street 

for his own profit, according to an indictment unsealed in U.S. 

District Court in Los Angeles.


One of Murillo's informants, Alberto Del Real-Gallardo, who 

authorities said was dubbed the "Fat Man," was also arrested Thursday.


In the indictment, prosecutors detailed several instances in which 

Murillo and Real-Gallardo allegedly recruited informants to gather 

intelligence on drug dealers and then ripped them off. They were 

charged with possessing, with intent to distribute, 5 kilograms of 

cocaine and 340 kilos of marijuana.


"Sgt. Murillo abused his position of trust to line his pockets with 

money earned from the sale of illicit drugs," U.S. Atty. Thomas P. 

O'Brien said in a statement. "As a result . . . [he's] facing a 

lengthy stint in federal prison."


Both defendants face potential life sentences if convicted, because 

of the quantities of the drugs involved, but are likely to receive 

lighter punishments.


According to prosecutors, Murillo, 44, of West Covina and 

Real-Gallardo, 40, of Palmdale would press informants for information 

about suspected drug dealers who would make good targets.


Murillo would run the information through a law enforcement database 

to make sure that they were not the subject of a legitimate law 

enforcement investigation. If they were found to be a suitable 

target, the defendants would arrange for a meeting at which they 

would take drugs "by trick, the intervention of defendant Murillo, or 

other means," the indictment said. The informants would be rewarded 

with a cut of the drugs or money from the subsequent sale.


They referred to the rip-offs as "black tactic" operations, "coded 

language signifying they would work the drug trafficker for their own 

benefit rather than as a legitimate law enforcement case," according 

to the indictment. In addition to Murillo and Real-Gallardo, the 

indictment referred to several other "unindicted co-conspirators," 

one of whom went by the moniker "The Columbian."


In one case, after at least one of the informants they had recruited 

was secretly working for the government, they allegedly plotted to 

steal 30 kilos of cocaine from an undercover Drug Enforcement 

Administration agent. The plot failed, but the indictment did not explain why.


In 2005 and 2006, Murillo was assigned to a DEA task force. He was 

suspended from the Huntington Park Police Department in 2006 after 

authorities became suspicious of his activities.


In court Thursday, prosecutors sought to have Murillo held without 

bond and submitted excerpts of secretly recorded telephone calls 

showing that he, among other things, knew that Real-Gallardo had been 

recruited by Mexican drug dealers to kidnap a man who owed them a 

$3-million drug debt but failed to report the plot to authorities.


Murillo also appeared worried that a mistress whom he had lent 

$10,000 would "open her trap about the money" and attract the 

attention of law enforcement, according to excerpts of a conversation.


Murillo was released on $200,000 bond. 

Newshawk: DrugSense Weekly

Pubdate: Fri, 18 Jan 2008

Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)

Copyright: 2008 Los Angeles Times




Author: Scott Glover Los Angeles, Times Staff Writer

Bookmark: (Corruption - United States)

Bookmark: (Policing - United States)

Bookmark: (Marijuana - California)

Bookmark: (Cocaine)


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