BROWNSVILLE, Texas – Federal authorities arrested three detention officers who worked at immigration centers for allegedly selling migrant data to a local attorney for client leads. Authorities have not arrested or named any attorneys in connection with the case.
The arrests took place this week after a federal grand jury charged 42-year-old Benito Barrientez, 30-year-old Damian Ortiz, and 42-year-old Exy Adelaida Gomez with various counts of bribery and conspiracy to commit bribery, court documents revealed. The U.S. Attorney’s Office revealed that federal agents arrested the three suspects on Wednesday.
The suspects worked as detention officers in two separate immigration facilities. Prosecutors allege the trio received money from a local immigration attorney in exchange for lists of detainees. The local attorney would reportedly use the lists as contact leads to offer legal services.
Court documents say the unnamed attorney paid between $200 and $500 per list. The group allegedly furnished numerous rosters starting in January 2019. The documents are listed as law enforcement-sensitive since they include the detainee’s name, date of birth, “A-numbers” or alien identification numbers, country of origin, and detention locations.
Law enforcement sources revealed to Breitbart News that authorities in the Rio Grande Valley are investigating more than one immigration attorney in connection with the case.
The case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Office of Professional Responsibility.
Ildefonso Ortiz is an award-winning journalist with Breitbart Border / Cartel Chronicles. He co-founded the Cartel Chronicles project with Brandon Darby and senior Breitbart management. You can follow him on Twitter and on Facebook. He can be contacted at Iortiz@breitbart.com.
Brandon Darby is the managing director and editor-in-chief of Breitbart Border / Cartel Chronicles. He co-founded the Cartel Chronicles project with Ildefonso Ortiz and senior Breitbart management. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.