Officer Oscar Sandino faces federal civil rights charges for allegedly forcing women -- two of whom were drug suspects -- to perform sex acts in exchange for leniency, officials said.
Investigators said Sandino forced at least three women to perform sex acts during drug cases he was working out of the Queens North Narcotics bureau from 2006 through 2008.
In one case in February 2008, the FBI said Sandino arrested a woman and her boyfriend on drug charges. During the court-authorized search of the home, Sandino allegedly ordered the woman to strip naked. Later, at the 110th police precinct stationhouse, prosecutors said Sandino followed the woman into a restroom and forced her to perform "oral sex."
Court papers filed by prosecutors state on Feb. 16, 2008, Officer Sandino threatenend the woman would 'go to jail and lose custody of her children but would prevent those things from happening if she had sex with him.'
In weeks ahead, the officer then sent text messages and called the woman hoping to meet with her again, officials said. The woman, who NBC is not identifying given the nature of the charges, filed a civil lawsuit in federal court in Manhattan.
In her complaint, she alleges that Sandino continued to harrass her. When she asked why he was doing this, he allegedly said,"If I would see you in the street, I would f----ing eat you alive."
Prosecutors said there is a similar allegation dating to 2006 during the arrest of a different drug suspect. The alleged victim in that case was the cousin of the drug dealer. The officer allegedly threatened stiffer charges and a longer prison term unless a sex act was performed by the cousin inside the apartment.
"The citizens of New York expect and deserve honest police officers," said FBI New York Director George Venizelos. "Threats and coercion against anyone, whether a criminal subject or not, cannot and should not be tolerated."
In 2009 while on modified duty as the previous allegations were being investigated, Sandino allegedly ordered a female suspect to lift her shirt and he engaged in "lewd sexual behavior," officials said. Sandino was working desk duty at Brooklyn's 'Central Booking' at the time.
"This prosecution affirms our commitment to vigorously protect the constitutional right of individuals to be free of sexual misconduct by officers whose duty it is to uphold the law," said U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch.
NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly commended the Internal Affairs Bureau for its work in helping uncover the alleged wrongdoing. He said those who "dishonor themselves and the department" should be brought to justice.
If convicted, Sandino could face up to three years in prison. His attorney, Peter Brill, could not be immediately reached. Sandino is expected to appear in federal court later Tuesday.
In a seaprate civil lawsuit, court records show a man is suing officer Sandino for allegedly strip searching him inside a bodega back in Dec. 2007. David Henry alleges in his federal lawsuit that several police officers, including Sandino, made him drop his pants and searched his buttocks for drugs. No drugs were found and Henry said he was only carrying a Koran when police stopped him in what he calls an illegal strip search.