Sheriff’s Deputies Arrested Due To Inmate Abuse & Misconduct (VIDEO)

Los Angeles County Sheriff

More than a dozen current and former Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies were arrested by the FBI or were expected to surrender to investigators as part of a two-year-long probe into alleged inmate abuse and misconduct inside county jails.

Los Angeles Sheriff’s deputies beat jail inmates and visitors without justification, unjustly detained people and conspired to obstruct a federal investigation into misconduct at the jail, according to indictments unsealed Monday.

18 current or former deputies were arrested Monday by the FBI in a mass show of force, The Los Angeles Times reports. The most damning indictment states that a ser­geant en­cour­aged depu­ties to use ex­cess­ive force and make un­law­ful ar­rests of vis­it­ors.

Visitors to the jails, uncharged and unsuspected of any crime, were reportedly abused and harassed over the past few years, according to the indictments.

Even an Austrian consulate official was improperly arrested and searched, according to the indictment.

That incident occurred in 2011 when the official and her husband were visiting an inmate who was an Austrian national accused of a crime.