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Highland Park police officers hit with drug charges

Individuals caught in possession of drugs are not the only ones that can face drug charges. Authorities often target anyone who facilitates the delivery and use of illegal substances.

Four police officers in Highland Park, Mi., were recently tied to drug-trafficking conspiracy charges. Two of the individuals, who range in age from 29 to 55, were officers for the Highland Park police department, while the other two were considered auxiliary officers. All but one of the men are residents of Highland Park. In addition to their alleged participation in drug trafficking, federal authorities claim that the officers also accepted bribes.

The officers appeared on the radar of federal authorities when two of the officers allegedly beat up a civilian. In addition to stealing the man's valuables, they told him that they would accept a bribe in return for getting him off the hook in a criminal case.

The man that the officers supposedly beat became an informant for the FBI, which caught the officers accepting $10,000. After, the officers skipped the man's arraignment, which allowed for his criminal case to be thrown out.

The officers were then set up by authorities to see if they would participate in drug trafficking if paid to do so. The informant paid the officers $1,500 to deliver two kilograms of what they believed was cocaine from Troy, Mi., to Taylor. The officers did, and then recruited the other two officers to help them traffic an even higher amount of fake cocaine.

The four officers face charges of conspiring to distribute cocaine, among other drug and bribery charges. The police chief for Highland Park said the officers' conduct does not reflect the values of fellow officers on staff.

The officers now must weigh their options in criminal court. With overwhelming evidence weighing against them, they could consider pleading guilty to lesser charges to avoid a maximum prison sentence.

Source: CBS Detroit, "4 Highland Park Cops Charged With Accepting Bribes, Drug Offenses," Jan. 25, 2013

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