Broward County Teacher Boris Bastidas Arrested by FBI for Enticing 15-year-old Student For Sex

by | Mar 14, 2024 | Firm News, Schools & Universities

Boris Bastidas Horowitz Law

Boris Bastdias, a Catholic high school teacher in Hollywood, Florida, has been apprehended by the FBI Miami Child Exploitation Task Force. The allegations point to a shocking abuse of trust, where a teacher is accused of manipulating a 15-year-old female student into a sexual relationship.

The Arrest

According to media reports, on March 14, 2024, Boris Fernando Bastidas, a 35-year-old teacher at Chaminade-Madonna College Preparatory, found himself in handcuffs, arrested by the FBI on charges of coercion and enticement of a minor.  A federal judge ordered Bastidas to remain in pre-trial detention following his arrest on charges of coercion and enticement of a minor to engage in criminal sexual activity and traveling in interstate or foreign commerce for the purpose of engaging in any illicit sexual conduct with another person.

A Disturbing Allegation

Chaminade-Madonna College Preparatory, a well-regarded Catholic high school in Hollywood, Florida, became the epicenter of a scandal. Bastidas, the chair of the social studies department and the  “Educator of the Year” in 2023, now faces accusations of enticing a 15-year-old female student into a sexual relationship. This revelation casts a long shadow over the school’s reputation and brings to light unsettling questions about student safety and oversight in educational institutions.

Unraveling the Facts

According to the criminal complaint, the sexual contact between Bastidas and the student unfolded in unsettling ways. From emails exchanged that progressed from professional to personal to meetings that escalated in intimacy, the narrative is both tragic and cautionary. Revelations of their encounters in parking lots and, most disturbingly, a hotel room in New York during a school-affiliated trip sketch out a narrative of exploitation under the guise of mentorship.

The Investigation’s Findings

• Communications: A series of emails recovered by the school’s IT department illuminated the progression of the relationship, moving quickly from mentorship to something disturbingly personal.
• Encounters: Meetings that initially seemed innocent took on a sinister tone with admissions of physical intimacy and plans for future liaisons.
• Consequences: The culmination of these interactions led to sexual acts, as confirmed by the student, marking a profound abuse of power and trust.

In a 15-page report by the FBI, it detailed the affair that Bastidas allegedly had with the student. The FBI stated that on February 12, 2024, they received a phone complaint regarding a statutory rape of a 15-year-old female by a woman who identified herself as the victim’s mother. Authorities received written consent to search the device of the victim, who said she spoke with Bastidas through the school’s email account, and their conversations later moved to personal accounts to include Google emails, Google chats, and text messages.

“I’m never gonna judge you the way you thought I would. You’re one of the best students I’ve had, so I can’t judge you, but you’re not just a student at this point.” According to the complaint, Bastidas texted the victim on or around Aug. 3.

Victim’s reply: “I know that now. Ever since I’ve gotten to know you, I’ve known that. You’re the best teacher I’ve had but do you also rlly think you’re just my teacher at this point? Cuz you haven’t been just my teacher for a while now, you been so much more and have meant so much more,” the victim responded through text message,” the complaint stated.

On Sept. 23, 2023, authorities said Bastidas had the following conversation through text message with the victim:

“I’ll always love you. I need you. I wanna love you,” he wrote. Bastidas went on to say, ” I want you to touch your body. I want my body on yours, I want to f— you.”

“I’ll always love you too, I need you so much, and I want your love, I wanna give you my love,” the victim responded.

The complaint states that on Oct. 25, 2023, Bastidas sent the victim an email describing how he felt about her.

Prior to school starting last August, the victim and Bastidas discussed meeting up to discuss their feelings towards each other, she told detectives. The victim told authorities that they met at a Dunkin’ Donuts in Monarch Lakes, where they had their first kiss, the report stated. The victim admitted that she took photos of herself and would send them to Bastidas, authorities said. The complaint also alleges that Bastidas had the victim perform oral sex on him on multiple occasions, including in the parking lot of the victim’s job in Miramar.

The victim told the FBI that Bastidas had sexual intercourse multiple times with her during the school’s Model United Nations field trip to New York, where he was her chaperone, the complaint stated. The victim also stated that Bastidas would often give her gifts that included jewelry, T-shirts, and a keychain, which were photographed by the FBI.  According to public records, Mr. Bastidas’ wife filed for divorce from him in Broward County on April 12, 2024, shortly after his arrest.

Implications and Reflections

The case of Boris Bastidas is a stark reminder of the vulnerabilities inherent in the teacher-student dynamic. It raises critical questions about how educators can build rapport with students without crossing ethical boundaries. Moreover, it underscores the importance of vigilance and accountability mechanisms within educational institutions to prevent such breaches of trust.

The School’s Response

Chaminade-Madonna acted by terminating Bastidas’ employment, reflecting the gravity with which they viewed the accusations. This move, while necessary, also opens a dialogue about proactive measures schools can and should take to safeguard against similar incidents.

Legal and Ethical Considerations

This case traverses the delicate lines between legal ramifications and ethical obligations. The charges against Bastidas highlight a potential criminal act and betray an ethical failing, underscoring the need for a moral compass to guide the educator-student relationship.

A Community’s Trust Shaken

When a teacher is accused of such profound breaches of trust, not just the individuals directly involved suffer. The ripple effects touch parents, students, and educators, shaking the very foundations of trust and safety presumed to exist in educational settings.

A Call for Vigilance and Integrity

The arrest of Boris Bastidas serves as a somber reminder of the responsibilities borne by those in positions of trust and influence over young minds. It underscores the imperative for educational institutions to foster an environment of safety, respect, and ethical conduct. As a community, vigilance in protecting the vulnerable and ensuring such tragedies are neither repeated nor forgotten is paramount. Let this case be a catalyst for change, prompting us all to reaffirm our commitment to integrity and the sanctity of the teacher-student relationship.

Schools are educational institutions in which children should be able to learn and develop skills in a nurturing environment. It is expected that they are safe from violence, bullying, harassment, and sexual abuse. Teachers and coaches are entrusted to facilitate learning and support the educational needs of their students. Someone who sexually violates young children has no place working in the school system. Any school where such a crime is committed should take responsibility if they fail to screen potential teachers and protect their students properly.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse in schools and other educational settings. If you or a loved one was sexually abused, raped, or sexually molested by a principal, teacher, or another school employee, contact our law firm at 888-283-9922 or e-mail sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz, at [email protected] for a free consultation.