Home San Juan Press Releases 2014 Private Security Guard Sentenced for Providing Armed Security for Drug Transaction

Private Security Guard Sentenced for Providing Armed Security for Drug Transaction

U.S. Department of Justice May 12, 2014
  • Office of Public Affairs (202) 514-2007/TDD (202) 514-1888

WASHINGTON—A former private security guard was sentenced in the District of Puerto Rico today for his role in providing armed security for a drug transaction.

Acting Assistant Attorney General David A. O’Neil of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Rosa E. Rodriguez-Velez of the District of Puerto Rico, and Special Agent in Charge Carlos Cases of the FBI’s San Juan Field Office made the announcement.

Ricardo Amaro-Santiago, 41, of Guaynabo, Puerto Rico, was sentenced to serve 15 years in prison by U.S. District Judge Gustavo A. Gelpi.

Amaro-Santiago was charged in an indictment unsealed on October 6, 2010, along with 89 law enforcement officers in Puerto Rico and 44 other individuals, as part of the FBI undercover operation known as Guard Shack.

According to the indictment and information presented in court, in May 2010, Amaro-Santiago provided security for what he believed was an illegal drug deal but which in fact was part of the undercover FBI operation. Amaro-Santiago was employed as a private security guard but posed as a Puerto Rico police officer during the transaction. Amaro-Santiago was brought into the scheme by a co-defendant who was a police officer in Puerto Rico. In return for the security he provided, Amaro-Santiago received a cash payment of $1,000, which the court today ordered that he forfeit as part of his sentence.

The case was investigated by the FBI and was prosecuted by Trial Attorneys Marquest J. Meeks and Tracee Plowell of the Public Integrity Section in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Puerto Rico.