Officer in Charge of the Bella Vista Police Station, 44 year old PC Bernard Villanueva, was arrested and charged for extortion.
On Friday January 2, a 28 year old woman reported to Independence police that the police officer in Bella Vista insisted that she pay him $200 for the release of her husband.
The Independence police officers photocopied four twenty-dollars notes and two fifty-dollars notes and then sent in someone to make the payment to PC Villanueva on behalf of the woman. Bernard Villanueva took the marked notes and immediately released the woman’s husband.
Independence police then moved in and retrieved the marked monies from Bernard Villanueva and formally arrested and charged him for extortion.