NYPD Cop Arrested for Running Elaborate Prostitution Ring


Nick Divito | Courthouse News Service

BROOKLYN (CN) – A former New York City police officer was arrested on charges of running an interstate prostitution ring after his daily shifts.

Eduardo Cornejo, an 11-year veteran with the department, was fired on Jan. 29, the day a federal complaint against him was filed under seal. U.S. District Judge Marilyn Go unsealed the complaint Tuesday after Cornejo’s arrest.

Authorities say that the 33-year-old ran an elaborate interstate prostitution ring on Staten Island, the Bronx and New Jersey since at least April 2015.

The FBI mounted its investigation after getting an anonymous tip that Cornejo was using his personal car to sell the young women’s sexual services after work.

U.S. District Judge Ann Donnelly OK’d the bugging of his phone in January. The same day U.S. Magistrate Judge Cheryl Pollak gave officers permission to install a tracking device on his car.

That’s how authorities say they were able to track him as he drove women to and from various motels throughout the area and waited in the parking lot, on one occasion waiting with his engine running for 45 minutes.

Authorities say Cornejo even rented an apartment on Staten Island to pimp out his girls.

In one bugged conversation, Cornejo can be heard asking one of the women, “who is going to fuck you today,” the 17-page complaint states, signed by Special Agent Rocky Van Warden.

The wiretapped conversations also find Cornejo discussing how to divide loot he gets from his hookers, and discussing how not to stand outside the motel door with a “bunch of girls,” the complaint says.

Cornejo ran his business by placing ads featuring pictures of faceless Latina women on Backpage.com, a known online advertising site offering escort services, Van Warden said.

U.S. Attorney Robert Capers said in a statement that Cornejo “betrayed the trust of the residents of the city he swore to protect.”

“Rather than seeking to eradicate crime from the streets of the city, the defendant promoted prostitution and profited from his exploitation of women,” Capers added.

The FBI also took its digs at the disgraced officer. “Cornejo not only abused the public trust given to him as an NYPD officer, but he showed no human decency when he facilitated the exploitation of women for profit,” FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Diego Rodriguez said in a statement.

“Police officers, like all public servants, are held to a higher standard, and should not violate the very same laws they are supposed to enforce.”

Cornejo faces up to 10 years if convicted.

He remains in custody.

Published by Courthouse News Service.