Sep 13, 2017, 4:08 PM ET

Federal officers arrested for hazing victims using 'rape table': Officials


Three Customs and Border Protection officers assigned to a specialized screening team at Newark Airport were arrested Wednesday for assaulting fellow officers, allegedly pinning the victims to what was known as a “rape table,” according to court records.

Tito Catota, Parmenio Perez and Michael Papagni are charged with forcibly assaulting, impeding, intimidating, and interfering with two men identified in court documents as “Victim One” and “Victim Two” while the victims were on duty as CBP officers.

The three officers and the alleged victims were part of the same unit that is involved in the identification and interception of passengers attempting to bring contraband into the United States or who might be associated with terrorist activity.

“The defendants, who were members of a unit responsible for identifying dangerous contraband and threats to national security, allegedly subjected their own colleagues to senseless physical abuse, all while on duty at Newark Liberty International Airport,” acting U.S. Attorney William Fitzpatrick said.

According to court records, the officers locked the victims in a secure room in Newark’s Terminal C and pinned them to a conference table that the CBP officers called their “rape table.” No clothing was removed but court records said the victims were subjected to “grinding” and the simulation of a sex act.

“This behavior would be abhorrent in any environment, especially one serving a critical law enforcement function,” Fitzpatrick said.

The Department of Homeland Security is conducting an investigation.

“DHS employees pledge to maintain the highest standards of conduct and the OIG ensures those employees are held accountable when they violate that obligation,” Special Agent in Charge Mark Tasky said.

The three officers appeared in Newark federal court Wednesday and did not enter pleas. They will be released on $100,000 bail. If convicted, they could face eight years in prison for each count.

CBP said it welcomed the indictments.

“We do not tolerate misconduct in our ranks and are committed to a safe workplace environment free of harassment or intimidation,” spokesman Anthony Bucci said. The agency first became aware of the alleged misconduct in January. At the time, 11 Newark employees, including three supervisors, were put on administrative duty and stripped of their access to guns, badges and sensitive information. The three supervisors have since been fired.

It was not immediately clear whether the accused had obtained lawyers.

News - Federal officers arrested for hazing victims using 'rape table': Officials

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  • Mr Wayne

    A prime example of Law Enforcement here in America.

  • Lifeishortgetaladder.

    AT least there wasn't drugs involved..
    Right Bill!

  • DistanceMatters

    You know, apparently those guys behaved like perverted thugs and I'm glad that the victims' accounts are believed. But I can't help to remember the sad fact that ten, twenty women can come forward about a sexual predator and they're still not believed by some people.

  • Verity Pendelton

    Never fly through Newark any longer when I go internationally. Too big, long security lines, lost luggage several times, flights cancelled or delayed. I will pay more to fly through other cities rather than go through Newark. Maybe this is why everything is so messed up there.

  • John Barron

    (Shakes head) Rape tables? Really? Good to see they are working hard while on the clock. Sad.

  • Tegbessou Géléhéso

    Tip of the iceberg, the American people would be shocked it they knew about all the corruption...

  • scola251

    The guy in the White House seems really concerned about the undocumented immigrants who are overwhelmingly decent, law-abiding people.

    We should be worried about the Customs and Border Protection thugs. Can we deport them and replace them with immigrants?

  • abdullah mujahid

    Sg is right
    Seems like they
    got some gay
    Employees if you
    Ask me.
    But at JFK few
    Months ago wasnt
    Some customs
    Employees paid to
    Let certain known
    Drug carrying
    Passengers thru
    The arrivals secured
    Area.the unbribed
    Agents intercepted
    what was going on
    and the currupted
    agents were terminated
    And jailed.

  • Dicazi

    So how many bad guys got in while these guys were "playing"?
    Sounds like all the people assigned there for one shift were involved.

  • Guest

    They will love prison.

  • Trumpu$$yGrab

    Seemed like a great idea at the time?

  • MarkM

    And more stupid antics by our great federal government employees.

  • Ubee

    And government employees wonder why a very large number of the general citizenship has such distaste for federal workers. I believe it is way past time for the various department directors and congress clean up their acts with respect to federal employee behavior. There is not enough done to remove those "bad apples" from the payroll. Public sector employers do not put up with the kind of antics federal employees get away with; They point blank fire people who are stupid enough to try to pull such antics.

  • Murfski

    It's been my experience that in any group of people picked at random, at least three or four will be complete jerks, or even sociopaths. In screening the general population for admission into more select groups, such as the military or law enforcement, many of these misfits can be eliminated. However, the military and law enforcement number in the millions; it is impossible to catch all the misfits, and some of them slip through the screen. Luckily, many of them are as stupid as these three seem to have been, and get caught fairly quickly, before they can do much damage.

    I was in the US Army for twenty years, and I'm the last one to say that we're all paragons of virtue. But it seemed to me that the percentage of useless drones was lower than in the general population. And, when one of my fellow soldiers proved him(or her)self to be unfit, punishment followed swiftly, often with removal from our ranks.

    We all know that no system ruled by human beings will be perfect. The fact that well over 90% of law enforcement officers and military personnel do their jobs competently is rarely mentioned; that's not news. The bad apples are unusual enough to make the news, so that's what we hear and read about.

  • Dean

    What they refer to as a "Rape table"???? They should all be fired just for this.

  • Brooks Payne

    I betcha there are people who could do better at those jobs. This might be a good time to find out.

  • Misty Mac

    People are disgusting. Ugh.

  • Mike Hogan

    Boys will be boys.

  • EastCoastGirl

    There are some SICK people working for our government. I'm sorry but if taxpayers are paying these folks salaries, I'd like for them all to take a psychological test before they're hired. We can't keep employing psychos smh

  • Darrin Gaets

    MISCONDUCT ?!?! They wont tolerate MISCONDUCT???? How about sexual assault?. They should be in JAIL..this isnt's a crime!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Any law enforcement official guilty and convicted should do TWICE the sentence for betraying the public's already limited TRUST

  • Lawrence Wilson

    Hang them by their A'hem for a few hours,maybe that will help to clue them in to acceptable conduct. Then send them on to prison where they can attain further instructions.

  • Tralfaz Gottrockets

    How did they think that this was in OK?

  • unusual

    Don't these people have an actual job to do?

  • BD70

    I guess...why?

  • Donnie The Lion

    Your tax dollars at work!

  • JLS1950

    Such quality in Federal LE! Do they recruit in the psych ward and the sex-offenders unit, or is this all from the middle school gym locker room?

  • ralphpetrillo

    The entire system is broken.

  • Yodigo

    Abusive CBP officers? So, what's new?

  • Jackee

    I am not oddly curious to find out why its called a "rape' table

  • Dicazi

    I'm certain the perps first response will be "it was just a joke".

  • RedSoxPatriotsCelticsBruinsFan

    They were just doing to themselves what they do to airline passengers before boarding a plane.

  • BassPlyr73 Again

    I don't know how much these new recruits make, but if I found out my first day would involve something called a "rape table", I'd be asking for an immediate raise....

  • Prophet With Honor

    It is difficult to get the kind of people we need for these jobs. This is the proof .

  • sg

    what is it with some of these people? its like politicians that send lewd emails. Don't they know that you cant keep these secrets forever?