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Four Month Prison Term for BOP Compliance Monitor in Miami Who Sexually Abused Prisoner on His Case Load

by Jo Ellen Nott

On April 14, 2023, U.S. District Judge Robert N. Scola sentenced a federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) site supervisor in Miami to four months in prison followed by a year of supervised release, after accepting his guilty plea to one count of abusive sexual contact against a federal prisoner on house arrest, whose case he was assigned.

Benito Montes de Oca Cruz, 60, worked as a compliance monitor for Riverside House, a private facility operated under contract from BOP to provide custodial, supervisory and disciplinary control of federal prisoners on home confinement.

During a supervision visit on December 28, 2020, Montes de Oca Cruz engaged in sexual contact “with and by the victim.” More specifically he touched the prisoner’s breasts, genitals, and buttocks, made her get naked, then got on top of her. Montes de Oca Cruz finished the home visit by ordering the prisoner to masturbate him.

The prisoner had little choice but to submit to her monitor when he demanded sexual favors. But revenge is a dish best served cold, as French author Eugène Sue wrote in the 1800s. Montes de Oca Cruz most likely did not suspect his victim retained evidence of the sordid encounter. When she reported the incident to BOP, she was able to give investigators a semen sample as well as two short videos.

The results of DNA testing revealed the semen “was 16 octillion times more likely if [Montes de Oca Cruz] is a contributor than if an unknown, unrelated person is a contributor.”

His sentence of four months was more lenient than the maximum two years in prison Judge Scola could have ordered. It was also one month shorter than his victim’s time on house arrest. The unnamed woman was serving the last five months of a 51-month prison sentence on home confinement, according to prosecutors.

Montes de Oca Cruz’ case was investigated by the Department of Justice’s Office of the Inspector General and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Edward N. Stamm. See: United States v. Montes de Oca Cruz, USDC (S.D.Fla.), Case No. 1:22-cr-20459.

Additional sources: Miami Herald, WPLG