Former Maui Police Officer Sentenced to Prison for Soliciting Sex in Exchange for Perjured Testimony
A former Maui Police officer was sentenced to 30 months in prison Wednesday, Nov. 3, after pleading guilty to soliciting a sexual relationship in exchange for a perjured testimony.
Thirty-six-year-old Brandon Charles Saffeels, of Maui, pleaded guilty in May to public corruption in the form of honest services wire fraud. According to an indictment filed in the federal court, Saffeels bribed a female motorist for sex in exchange for an official act as a Maui police officer.
“Brandon Saffeels betrayed our expectation that law enforcement officers will not take advantage of their authority for personal benefit,” stated Acting US Attorney for the District of Hawaiʻi Judith A. Philips. “This prosecution demonstrates our determination to hold public officials accountable for criminal abuse of their positions.”
According to court documents and information provided in court, in July 2019, then MPD Officer Saffeels arrested a woman (“Individual A”) for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of an intoxicant, and, after she was released from custody, Saffeels began communicating with Individual A over the phone and through text messages.
Among other things, Saffeels told Individual A that he would help her to beat the state case being brought against her by the Prosecuting Attorney for the County of Maui. Saffeels explained that he would provide perjured testimony at her trial so that the court would throw it out or the jury would find it in her favor.
However, Saffeels told Individual A that she would have to meet in person for him to help her. At one point during the course of their communications, he invited her to come to his house and told her to bring clothes.
“The cornerstone of the public’s trust in law enforcement relies on the expectation that each person who takes the oath to protect and serve the public will do so with integrity,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Steven Merrill. “Today, former Officer Saffeels was sentenced for violating that trust. I’m proud of our team who worked collaboratively after becoming aware of concerns regarding the former officer’s conduct. They exemplify our commitment to ensure all public servants are worthy of the public’s trust and confidence.”