12th police officer guilty in towing extortion scheme
Two more officers awaiting trial, prosecutors said
Rafael Concepcion Feliciano Jr., a 31-year-old officer from Baltimore, pleaded guilty to extortion and conspiracy in a U.S. District Court hearing Thursday, according to a statement from the Maryland U.S. attorney's office.
Feliciano was among a group of officers who took money from brothers Hernan Alexis Moreno, 30, of Rosedale, and Edwin Javier Mejia, 27, of Middle River, in exchange for referring cars at accident scenes to Majestic Auto Repair, the siblings' Rosedale auto shop.
According to court records, Feliciano met the brothers in 2008 through another officer and Feliciano began directing crashed cars to their garage. Feliciano was paid for the cars he sent to their shop and was also paid to falsify police reports that embellished the extent of damage to some cars.
These falsified reports would be used by Moreno and Mejia to increase vehicle insurance claims. The total financial loss suffered by Feliciano's actions is between $120,000 and $200,000, according to the U.S. attorney's office.
Feliciano could be sentenced to as many as 25 years in prison. His sentencing has not yet been scheduled. Two more officers have trials scheduled for mid-February.