CHICAGO (CBS) –A former Chicago police detective has been accused of repeatedly framing people for murder, and one of the motives, attorneys say, may center on drug money.
As CBS 2 Investigator Pam Zekman reports, lawyers for the men want the U.S. Attorney to investigate more than 50 murder cases handled by former Chicago police detective Reynaldo Guevara.
Jose Maysonet Jr. and Roberto Almodovar Jr. on Monday joined nine others who have sued for beating and framing them. So far, the cases have been settled for $20 million.
According to one of the attorneys on the case, Guevara fixed Maysonet’s murder cases because he was selling drugs and no longer was paying Guevara money to look the other way.
“This was a systematic and purposeful effort to frame Hispanic men in Humboldt Park community in the 1990s,” said attorney Jennifer Bonjean.
Maysonet and Almodovar served decades in prison before their murder charges were dropped.
“Basically he just took my life away,” Almodovar said.
Bonjean said Maysonet was framed because he stopped selling drugs and paying Guevara $1,000 a week in protection money.
“He was selling narcotics,” Bonjean said. “He said that day, ‘I am not paying; I’m done paying protection money to Guevara.’
“And then 48 hours later, Guevara was assigned to the case and all of a sudden it’s closed. He was the closer.”
Guevara has repeatedly taken the 5th on the witness stand and refused to answer questions while leaving court.
The two new lawsuits also charge five other violent crimes detectives working with Guevara with fabricating evidence and malicious prosecution.