Two Miami-Dade police officers were reportedly arrested Thursday by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for alleged criminal involvement in a drug operation.
Officer Rod Flowers, who has been with the Miami-Dade Police Department for less than five years, was picked up by federal agents just before sunrise Thursday while on duty, the Miami Herald reported. Rod Flowers is the son of Raleigh Flowers, police chief of the Bal Harbour Police Department in Florida.
“We can confirm a Miami-Dade police officer was arrested by the DEA,” Miami Police Sgt. Erin Alfonso said, according to the report.
Flowers was involved in protecting shipments of cocaine while he escorted drug shipments throughout the country, CBS Miami reports. (RELATED: Ex-DEA Agent, Wife Plead Guilty To Diverting $9 Million In Drug Proceeds From Undercover Operations)
Officer Keith Edwards was also arrested Thursday. Edwards is reportedly a veteran and father of three.
The pair were members of the area’s “Priority Response Team,” which was created after the 2018 Parkland shooting to respond to major incidents.
Both officers allegedly agreed to act as security for the shipments in a set-up by undercover agents, the Miami Herald reported.
NEW: “Bad Boys 4 Life.” Cops lived Miami lifestyle, but secretly protected cocaine load, feds say.
Oh, and they loved the Bad Boys movie. One even used the name “Mike Lowery” as his Instagram screen name
— David Ovalle (@DavidOvalle305) October 30, 2020
The duo was active on social media together, posting references to the police action-movie based in Miami “Bad Boys,” according to the report. Flowers used the name “Mike Lowrey,” on Instagram, a reference to the character portrayed by Will Smith in the movie. Edwards once posted a picture of the pair dressed as the fake detectives, captioning the photo: “We ride together. We die together. Bad Boys 4 Life.”
Manuel Carlos Hernandez, a Miami money laundering suspect, was also charged for money laundering and allegedly had Flowers on his payroll.
The apprehensions were part of a six-month investigation in which a confidential source reportedly posed as a member of a Mexican drug cartel who arranged international money-laundering deals using drug money with Hernandez. After Hernandez reportedly told the source that he had “law enforcement” connections who could vet any potential business partners, the source asked Hernandez to run a license plate for someone that owed him money. Flowers ran the tag, according to the Miami Herald.
Hernandez also told the source that Flowers and Edwards acted as “security” for his money laundering activities, which led to the source hiring Flowers and Edwards to protect a shipment of cocaine, according to the same report.
Flowers and Edwards were charged with conspiracy to distribute and possess the narcotic.