San Francisco, California - Ian Furminger, 47, of Pleasant Hill and Edmond Robles, 46, of Danville, both San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) officers, were convicted today by a federal jury of conspiracy to violate civil rights, conspiracy to steal from a federally funded program, and devising a scheme to defraud and obtain money and property through wire fraud. Robles was also convicted of theft from a federally funded program.
The jury found the defendants, who worked in the plain clothes unit of SFPD’s Mission Station, conspired to use their official positions to enrich themselves by stealing money and other valuable items, such as computers, electronic devices, and gift cards that were seized on behalf of the City of San Francisco, and to deprive suspects of due process of law by taking these items without booking them into evidence or including them in their police reports.
The defendants were also convicted of defrauding the City and County of San Francisco by concealing their illegal activities by filing false police reports. Robles was convicted of theft from a federally funded program (the jury was unable to reach a unanimous decision as to Furminger’s participation in this offense). The defendants were acquitted of honest services wire fraud and one count of conspiring to distribute controlled substances. Furminger also was acquitted of extortion. The verdicts followed a nine-day jury trial before the Honorable Charles R. Breyer, United States District Court Judge.
“Constitutional protections extend to each and every person,” said United States Attorney Melinda Haag, “These men victimized those they swore an oath to protect, ruined their own careers, and tarnished the star worn so proudly by other men and women of the San Francisco Police Department. With these convictions, we reaffirm our commitment to prosecuting police officers who choose to violate the civil rights of the people of the Bay Area.”
FBI Special Agent in Charge David J. Johnson said, “Preservation of the rule of law demands that police officers who betray the public trust and violate their oaths be held accountable for their actions. Corruption—with or without a badge—is unacceptable, and today’s verdicts are a reminder that no one is above the law.”
San Francisco Police Department Chief Greg Suhr remarked, “As I said on the day I was sworn in as Chief of Police, and repeated on the day these officers were arrested when asked about his ongoing investigation, ‘There is no place in the San Francisco Police Department and shouldn’t be in any police department for a dishonest cop.’ I meant what I said. I am seeking the immediate termination of these officers and expect that the Police Commission will act expeditiously in making that happen.”
The defendants are currently released on bail pending their sentencing hearings. They have been suspended by SFPD without pay pending further proceedings before the Police Commission. The defendants’ sentencing hearings are scheduled for Feb. 23, 2014, at 10:00 a.m. before Judge Breyer in San Francisco. The maximum statutory penalties for each count of conviction are:
- Wire fraud (Counts 1 and 2), 18 U.S.C. § 1343 – 20 years in prison; $250,000 fine.
- Civil rights conspiracy (Count 5), 18 U.S.C. § 241 – 10 years in prison; $250,000 fine.
- Federal program theft conspiracy (Count 6), 18 U.S.C. §§ 371 and 666(a)(1)(A) – 5 years in prison & $250,000 fine.
- Federal program theft conspiracy (Count 7 – Robles only), 18 U.S.C. § 666(a)(1)(A) – 10 years in prison & $250,000 fine.
Sentence will be imposed by the court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys in the Special Prosecutions and National Security Unit of the United States Attorney’s Office. The prosecution is the result of an investigation by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with assistance from the San Francisco Police Department.