HOUSTON - Two Houston police officers have found themselves on the other side of the law.
Officers Emerson Canizales, 26, and Michael Miceli, 26, have been charged with conspiracy to violate the Hobbs Act and conspiracy to possess a controlled substance.
Canizales and Miceli were arrested when they reported for duty on Sunday.
According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, the two officers accepted $1,000 to protect the possession and distribution of five kilograms of cocaine from Oct. 3 to Dec. 26.
"We have been working cooperatively with federal authorities on this investigation and are proud that our internal proactive measures have proven effective in addressing these types of allegations," Houston Police Chief Charles McClelland said. "We will never tolerate criminal misconduct from any of our employees. Both officers have been relieved of duty pending the outcome of the Internal Affairs investigation. The allegations against these officers are not reflective of the hard working men and women at HPD. Since this is still very much an ongoing investigation, there will be no further statements until its conclusion."
Both men were released from jail Monday and declined to comment.
Canizales and Miceli graduated from the same academy class in September 2010.
If convicted of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, they would each face 10 years to life in prison and possible fine of up to $10 million. If convicted of violating the Hobbs Act, they could each receive up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.
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