“Authorities in Florida have arrested a former sheriff’s deputy after an investigation found he routinely pulled over drivers for minor traffic infractions and then arrested them after planting drugs inside their vehicles, officials said.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement said in a release that agents arrested 26-year-old Zachary Wester on Wednesday morning on felony charges of racketeering, official misconduct, fabricating evidence, possession of a controlled substance and false imprisonment.
The former sheriff’s deputy was also charged with misdemeanor perjury, possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.
The office said the arrest came as a result of an investigation it launched at the request of the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office last year.
“The investigation shows Wester routinely pulled over citizens for alleged minor traffic infractions, planted drugs inside their vehicles and arrested them on fabricated drug charges,” the department said. “Wester circumvented JCSO’s body camera policy and tailored his recordings to conceal his criminal activity.”