DA Vance: Police Officer Indicted For Helping Transport Cocaine For $4,000


June 25, 2018

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the indictment of JOHNNY DIAZ, 48, a New York City police officer assigned to the NYPD’s 34th Precinct’s Anti-Crime Unit, for helping to transport a kilogram of cocaine in exchange for $4,000. The defendant is charged in a New York State Supreme Court indictment with Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the First Degree, a class A-1 felony. [1]

“Law enforcement does its best work when we have the confidence and collaboration of the communities we serve,” said District Attorney Vance. “As alleged in this case, this Officer was willing to traffic dangerous narcotics in the city he is sworn to protect for a few thousand dollars, and to steal evidence from his own precinct for a bottle of scotch. These alleged acts threaten the credibility of the entire law enforcement community, and with it, the safety of our great city.”

According to the indictment and statements made on the record in court, on May 23, 2018, DIAZ arrested an individual he believed to be a drug dealer who was, in fact, an undercover NYPD officer. The undercover officer was investigating allegations that DIAZ had accepted money from arrestees to help get their criminal cases dismissed. DIAZ seized one-half kilogram of cocaine and $18,000 cash from the undercover officer, but only logged the receipt of $17,000 in cash.

Soon after the arrest, DIAZ began socializing with the undercover officer, gave him his cellphone number, and instructed the undercover officer to use the encrypted messaging service WhatsApp to contact him. During the investigation, DIAZ accepted a bottle of Johnny Walker Blue Label scotch from the undercover officer as thank-you gift for removing the undercover officer’s cell phone from 34th Precinct’s evidence room. DIAZ further agreed to help get the undercover officer’s case dismissed in exchange for approximately $20,000 in cash, $7,500 of which he accepted as a down payment.

On June 15, 2018, DIAZ accepted $4,000 to help the undercover officer transport cocaine from the Bronx to the corner of West 125th Street and Broadway in Harlem. DIAZ instructed the undercover officer to drive slowly, to avoid talking on the phone, and to tell any police officers who might stop him to talk to DIAZ, who was following behind the transport vehicle.

After successfully transporting the drugs, while driving with the undercover officer to a nightclub in Northern Manhattan, DIAZ was recorded saying, “I CAN DO LIFE FOR THIS…. I SHOULD KNOW BETTER. I’M A COP.”

The indictment is the result of an ongoing, joint investigation led by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office and NYPD’s Internal Affairs Bureau.

Assistant D.A.s Emily Farber and Julio Cuevas, Jr., Deputy Chief of the Public Corruption Unit, are handling the case under the supervision of Assistant D.A. Luke Rettler, Chief of the Public Corruption Unit, and Executive Assistant D.A. Michael Sachs, Chief of the Investigation Division. Senior Rackets Investigators Christo Christonikos and Leonid Rashkovsky assisted with the investigation, as did Investigative Analysts Michael Renner and Jaycee Parker.

District Attorney Vance thanked the NYPD Internal Affairs Bureau for its assistance with the investigation.

[1] The charge contained in the indictment is merely an allegation, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. All factual recitations are derived from documents filed in court and statements made on the record in court.

Defendant Information:

JOHNNY DIAZ, D.O.B. 11/27/1969
Yonkers, NY

Charged:

  • Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the First Degree, a class A-1 felony, 1 count