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Tag: sentenced

Border Patrol Agent Admits He ‘Intentionally Struck’ Migrant with Truck

Stock photo of a Border Patrol truck, via CBP.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Border Patrol agent who intentionally struck a Guatemalan migrant with his truck in 2017 – and called immigrants “subhuman” – has pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor civil rights charge.

Matthew Bowen, a 39-year-old agent stationed in Nogales, faces up to one year in prison after admitting he intentionally struck the 23-year-old migrant while arresting him for illegally crossing the border.

Bowen also has come under fire after text messages surfaced showing he called immigrants “subhuman” and “mindless murdering savages.”

Bowen, a 10-year veteran of the Border Patrol, was placed on unpaid suspension in June 2018, shortly after he was indicted on assault charges. As part of a plea agree, Bowen will resign.

A video of the incident showed Bowen “accelerating aggressively” and striking Antolin Lopez Aguilar twice with the front of his truck. Bowen then arrested Lopez.

“During my apprehension of (Antonin Lopez Aguilar), I intentionally struck him with an unreasonable amount of force,” Bowen said, according to documents obtained by The Arizona Republic. “My actions when I struck A.L.-A. were not justified and violated his rights protected by the Constitution of the United States.”

Former DEA Agent Sentenced to Year in Prison for Witness Tampering

dea-badgeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A former DEA agent who demanded cash in connection with a drug trafficker was sentenced Tuesday to a year and a day in prison.

Samuel Murad, 62, was hired to help secure the early release of a marijuana trafficker whom the agent helped send to prison in the 1990s, the Tampa Bay Times reports. 

“I have no excuse for my behavior,” Murad said in court. “I’ve hurt my family. I’ve hurt my friends.”

“You’ve also hurt the DEA,” U.S. District Judge Susan Bucklew interjected. “You made law enforcement look bad.”

Other Stories of Interest

Coal King Don Blankenship Sentenced to 1 Year in Prison for Safety Violations

Screen Shot 2016-04-06 at 6.31.39 PM

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Former Massey Energy Chief Executive Officer Don Blankenship, 66, was sentenced Wednesday in federal court in Charleston, W. Va., to one year in prison and fined $250,000 for conspiracy to violate mine health and safety standards in West Virginia where 29 miners were killed in a coal dust explosion six years ago.

In December he became the first CEO in U.S. history to be convicted of a workplace-safety crime, Bloomberg reports. 

“This sentence is a victory for workers and workplace safety,”  Acting U.S. Attorney Carol Casto said in a statement “It lets companies and their executives know that you can’t take chances with the lives of coal miners and get away with it.  Putting the former chief executive officer of a major corporation in prison sends a message that violating mine safety laws is a serious crime and those who break those laws will be held accountable.”

A Justice Department press release stated:

Over the course of the trial, in which jury selection began on Oct. 1, 2015, and the jury returned a guilty verdict on Dec. 3, 2015, the jury heard evidence from 27 witnesses called by the United States.  Many of these witnesses were coal miners who worked at the Upper Big Branch (UBB) mine prior to the 2010 explosion and they testified in detail from their firsthand knowledge of the unsafe working conditions at UBB, violations of U.S. Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) regulations and organized efforts to obstruct and interfere with MSHA inspectors.

The jury heard from Bill Ross, former Manager of Technical Services at Massey, who testified that he warned Blankenship about the company’s practice of rampant violations and told the defendant prior to the UBB explosion that Massey’s standard tactic of ignoring or defrauding MSHA could not be sustained without the possibility of a serious accident that could have fatalities.  The evidence also showed that Blankenship received daily updates on safety violations and helped perpetuate them.

“Putting profits over the safety of workers is reprehensible,” Casto remarked.  “The jury acknowledged that with the guilty verdict and the sentence imposed today recognizes that disregarding safety laws has real consequences.  From the beginning, the objective of this investigation and this prosecution was to not only show that those who violate safety laws will be held responsible, but also to deter these violations in the future to make everyone’s workplace safer.”

Border Patrol Supervisor Sentenced to 21 Months in Prison for Secretly Videotaping Co-Workers

Border PatrolBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Border Patrol supervisor who secretly videotaped his female co-workers in the bathroom was sentenced to 21 months in prison, NBC San Diego reports. 

Armando Gonzalez, 46, admitted to recording seven women in the bathroom at the Chula Vista Border Patrol Station and then lying to cover up his actions.

U.S. District Judge Roger T. Benitez said Gonzalez’s actions were “egregious” and “a violation of trust.”

Assistant U.S. Attorney Alessandra Serano urged the judge to show no mercy.

“When Armando Gonzalez put a video camera down the drain of a women’s restroom, he also put his career, his honor and his freedom down that drain,” said U.S. Attorney Laura Duffy in a statement. “This is a fitting sentence for a man who sullied his badge with such despicable behavior.”

Chief Patrol Agent Richard A. Barlow issued this statement: “The U.S. Border Patrol has cooperated fully with this investigation from the onset and we are satisfied to see the criminal justice system move swiftly to bring this case to a close. Mr. Gonzalez has tarnished the image of every Border Patrol agent who works tirelessly protecting America night and day. Border Patrol agents are held to the highest standards and we remain committed to rooting out unacceptable behavior to ensure that those who commit such acts are held accountable.”

Former New York Senator Sentenced to House Arrest for Lying to FBI

Thomas Libous

Thomas Libous

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A former New York state senator who was convicted of lying to FBI agents was sentenced to six months of house arrest on Tuesday, Reuters reports. 

The once-powerful Republican lawmaker, Thomas Libous, lied to agents about a public corruption investigation.

A judge said Libous, 62, would have been sent to prison if he didn’t have terminal cancer.

Libous was accused of pledging to steer business to a law firm if it hired his son.

Authorities also said his son’s salary was supposed to be financed by a lobbying firm.

Other Stories of Interest

Arizona Rancher Who Assaulted Border Patrol Agent Sentenced to Jail

courtroomBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An Arizona rancher who was convicted of assaulting a Border Patrol agent has been sentenced to eight months in prison, The Associated Press reports. 

Derek Garland, 48, was pulled over in April 2014 after triggering a sensor in an area known for smuggling near the U.S.-Mexico border.

Garland pulled out an unholstered pistol and was acting belligerently, yelling racial slurs and profanity at the agent.

The incident was captured on video.

FBI Agent Who Stole Heroin Seized As Evidence Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison

fbi-badgeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An FBI agent who stole heroin seized as evidence to feed his addiction was sentenced to three years in federal prison Thursday, a much lighter sentence than prosecutors wanted, the Washington Post reports. 

Matthew Lowry’s theft of evidence prompted prosecutors to dismiss drug cases against 28 defendants.

Calling it the most difficult decision in his 32 years on the bench, U.S. District Judge Thomas F. Hogan said he choose a lighter sentence because of Lowry’s addition. The sentencing guidelines had called for seven to nine years in prison.

“What we have here is a successful young agent with a sterling reputation who abused his position and abused his trust,” Hogan said.

He added, however, that because of Lowry’s actions, “major drug dealers were put back on the street to harm our citizens and endanger our children.”

DEA Agent Sentenced to 2 Years for Using Fraudulently Issued Government Credit Cards

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A DEA agent was sentenced to two years in prison Monday after using fraudulently issued government credit cards to steal more than $113,000 from JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Keenya Meshell Banks, 41, of Maryland, was earlier convicted of wire fraud.

Banks was a program manager for the DEA and was responsible for approving and issuing government credit cards to DEA employees, the North Dallas Gazette reports.

Banks admitted submitting fake credit card applications using fictitious DEA employees and then using those cards for her person benefit.

In all, Banks said she obtained at least 32 fraudulent credit cards.