Will charged Michael Daragjati be found guilty of arresting black man just based on race?
Settled on 12/09/2012 01:44 by Kentoine Johnson
settled question on option 'Yes'.
FBI agents arrested a New York City police officer this morning and charged him with gross civil rights violations for deliberately falsifying an arrest against a black man and later referring to the incident on a wiretapped call by saying that he had "fried another n----," officials said.
The incident began when Michael Daragjati, an eight-year NYPD veteran, stopped the man in the Stapleton neighborhood of Staten Island on the evening of April 15, the feds say.
Brooklyn federal prosecutors say that Daragjati, 32, frisked the man, but did not find contraband or a weapon on him. But after the man complained about his treatment during the street encounter, Daragjati placed him under arrest without probable cause, prosecutors say.
Daragjati then filed a police report in Richmond County Criminal Court that falsely claimed the man had "flailed his arms and kicked his legs during the arrest," prosecutors say, allowing the officer to charge the man with resisting arrest.
As a consequence of the trumped-up charges, the man was kept in jail for approximately 36 hours, prosecutors say.
On the same day that he filed the false report, investigators secretly intercepted several phone calls that Daragjati made and overheard him use racist epithets on several occasions to refer to black people, officials said.
In one of the calls, Daragjati acknowledged that he could be terminated from the NYPD if the department discovered that he would at times "throw somebody a beating," prosecutors say in court documents.
He also conceded in one of the intercepted calls that he had been "skating it for a long time," officials said.
"The power to arrest - to deprive a citizen of liberty - must be used fairly, responsibly and without bias. Motivated by base racial animus, the defendant allegedly abused this power and responsibility," said Loretta Lynch, the United States Attorney for New York's Eastern District.
In an unrelated incident, prosecutors charged Daragjati with extortion and wire fraud that was connected to his off-duty snowplow business.
Prosecutors say that Daragjati and a group of men confronted a person whom they believed had stolen Daragjati's snow removal equipment, and allegedly punched him and threatened him with a handgun.
The officer was also charged with wire fraud for an alleged scheme to file a false insurance claim on a truck, officials said.
Daragjati will be arraigned later today in Brooklyn federal court.
If convicted of all charges, Daragjati a maximum sentence of more than 60 years in prison and a $850,000 fine, officials said.
"We who enforce the law are not above the law; in fact, we should be held to a higher standard," said Janice K. Fedarcyk, Assistant Director-in-Charge of the FBI's New York City office.
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