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Former police officer guilty of interfering with federal drug investigation

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Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) officials announced today that Rafael Cordero, 53, a 23-year veteran of the Philadelphia Police force, was found guilty by a federal jury of interfering with the federal drug investigation of the Christian Serrano/Edwin Medina Drug Trafficking Organizations ("DTOs").
According to DEA officials Cordero provided his half-brother, David Garcia a member of the Serrano/Medina DTOs with information about a surveillance camera that was put up by the DEA at a garage used by the Serrano/Medina DTOs to monitor activities at the garage, located at 538 East Indiana St. in Philadelphia.

The FBI and DEA executed search warrants at several locations associated with the DTOs drug operation and activities. Garcia informed Cordero about the searches, after which Cordero went to the search location on East Indiana St. and began looking into the windows of the garage. Since Cordero had no official reason to be there, law enforcement confronted him and brought him inside the location. Upon being questioned Cordero misrepresented his reasons for being there and offered to assist with the search. At no time did he provide law enforcement with his name.

When Cordero left the search area, he promptly placed the call to David Garcia and shared how law enforcement officers conducted the search and what areas they focused on during their search. David Garcia went to the garage where he found and removed a DVD tape, that law enforcement had inadvertently failed to seize, which he viewed to see if Cordero was recorded at the time of the search, which he was.

When questioned by federal agents, Cordero denied giving information to Garcia regarding the surveillance camera or informed them that Garcia had possession of the video tape. He denied knowing of anyone associated with the Indiana Street garage, having spoken to David Garcia about the search at the garage, and denied passing on information regarding cooperating witnesses to Garcia, all of which were false statements.

Cordero faces a maximum possible sentence of 20 years imprisonment. A sentencing date has not yet been set.

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