HOUSTON (CN) – A former Houston cop convicted of escorting 7 kilos of cocaine through the city in his police cruiser for a $2,000 bribe was sentenced to more than 15 years in federal prison, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
Leslie Aikens, 46, a 19-year veteran of the Houston Police Department, was convicted of official corruption by a federal jury in November 3011, prosecutors said in a statement.
“During trial, the majority of testimony came from the FBI agent who explained that during the course of the undercover operation, Aikens escorted a load of 7 kilograms of cocaine. The following day, he received the $2,000 bribe payment for his services. The jury also viewed a video as well as audiotapes which detailed the transaction,” prosecutors said.
The jury convicted Aikens of aiding and abetting possession of a controlled substance, and extortion under color of official right, prosecutors said.
Aikens, who has been jailed since the conviction, was also fined $5,000.
An informant tipped the FBI and Texas Rangers that Aikens was working with drug traffickers, according to the Houston Chronicle.
Law enforcement set up the sting and secretly recorded Aikens agreeing to escort the cocaine-carrying vehicle, and then doing so, the Chronicle reported.
“Aikens was led to believe the drugs were coming to Houston from the U.S.-Mexico border and needed to get into the city without being stopped by law enforcement,” the newspaper reported.
Aikens was arrested a few days later when he reported for work, according to the Chronicle.
Aikens’ attorney, Robert A. Jones, said his client thought he was escorting a load of beer, and didn’t know drugs were involved, the Chronicle reported.