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Complaints Paint Disquieting Portrait of Border Patrol Misconduct

Border Patrol agents reads the Miranda rights to a Mexican national arrested for transporting drugs.Drivers routinely complain about misconduct at Border Patrol checkpoints near the Mexican border, according to newly released information, the New York Times reports. 

Among the complaints are verbal abuse, racial profiling and improper use of guns.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona has accumulated 6,000 pages of complaints, statistics and other records related to alleged misconduct.

The New York Times reported:

Collectively, the documents, detailing encounters between motorists and border agents from January 2011 to August 2014, portray an agency whose fractured oversight system has enabled at least some agents working along the southern border to stretch the limits of law and professional courtesy while rarely facing meaningful consequences.

Among the 142 complaints obtained by the A.C.L.U., only one seems to have resulted in disciplinary action: An agent received a one-day suspension for unjustifiably stopping a vehicle, apparently driven by the son of a retired Border Patrol agent.

James Lyall, an A.C.L.U. lawyer dedicated to the border, said the records not only confirmed the types of stories his office regularly heard from border residents, but also suggested that Customs and Border Protection had underreported the number of civil rights complaints it had received.


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