For Immediate Release
Hialeah Police Department Officer Sentenced to Five Years on Corruption, Access Device, and Identity Fraud Charges
Raul Castellon, 38, of the Hialeah Police Department, and Neilin Gonzalez Diaz, 32, of Hialeah, were sentenced today in Miami, Florida, by U.S. District Court Judge Federico A. Moreno of the Southern District of Florida, to 60 months and 81 months in prison, respectively, with an order for forfeiture and restitution in the amount of $64,500 to follow. Castellon and Gonzalez Diaz previously pled guilty to corruption, access device fraud, and identity theft charges.
Benjamin G. Greenberg, Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and George L. Piro, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Peter Forcelli, Special Agent in Charge, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Miami Field Division, made the announcement.
According to court documents, from on or about June 1, 2016, and continuing through on or about October 19, 2016, Castellon used his position as a law enforcement officer to access a confidential database and take screen shots from the database, which contained personal identifying information of other persons. Castellon sent over 25 screen shots depicting the personal identifying information of unsuspecting victims to Gonzalez Diaz in exchange for gifts. Gonzalez Diaz used the confidential information received from Castellon to assume the identities of the victims and fraudulently obtain merchandise from retail stores throughout Florida.
As a result of this matter, the Hialeah Police Department terminated Castellon’s employment as an officer.
Mr. Greenberg commended the investigative efforts of the FBI, including the Miami Area Corruption Task Force, ATF, Miami-Dade Police Department, and Hialeah Police Department. This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Cervantes.