Police impersonators target taxi with tourists
MIAMI (WSVN) -- Two men allegedly posed as police officers and robbed two Swedish tourists while they sat in a taxi cab near the Miami International Airport, Tuesday afternoon.
Miami Police Sgt. Freddie Cruz said, "These tourists were here on their honeymoon, and they were en route back to the airport."
"They were showing off their badge." Manuel Seminario, the cab driver, said.
According to police reports, around 5:15 p.m., a taxi transporting the two passengers had stopped behind a silver Toyota. Seminario then honked his horn to urge the Toyota to make a right-hand turn. Two men then exited the Toyota and approached the cab driver.
Cruz said, "At that moment, these two criminals get out of the vehicle, identify themselves as police officers, make the taxi driver and these Swedish tourists get out of the vehicle."
The phony officers patted down all the victims and searched their luggage. They claimed they were looking for drugs. The crooks then ordered the victims to get back into the vehicle while they fled northbound on Northwest 37th Avenue, near 14th Street, with all of the victims' belongings.
They were ripped off of their bags, jewelry, wallet, cash and camera. "Their only memories of their honeymoon here in South Florida," noted Cruz.
Police said, just 10 minutes earlier, the same men attempted the same act on a female victim at the Orion Gas Station, located at 1055 N.W. 27th Ave., however, they fled when the victim called 911.
The cab driver's uncle, Francisco Arambiulo, said his nephew thought they were real police officers who were just undercover. He said, "Manuel was so scared he didn't work for two days."
The two suspects are described as white Hispanic males in their 20s. The first suspect is said to be 5 feet 10 inches tall, weighing 240 pounds, unshaven, black hair, has a scar on his left forearm and has gold top and bottom teeth. He was last seen wearing a red shirt, black and red shorts.
The second suspect is said to be 5 feet 10 inches tall, 190 pounds and was last seen wearing black jeans and a white shirt.
The suspects were driving a gray, older model Toyota with dark tinted windows.
If you have any information on this robbery, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a reward.
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