A federal judge in south Texas handed down an 18-month prison sentence to a Cuban national who posed as a U.S. Border Patrol agent. The Cuban man attempted to scam a confidential informant into giving him $7,000 in exchange for permanent resident status documents.
U.S. District Court Judge Randy Crane said he needed to protect the community from Euginio Augustin Munoz-Canellas, a 55-year-old Cuban national with Legal Permanent Resident status in the U.S., because of his criminal history of theft and fraud. However, the judge only sentenced the man to 18 months in prison, according to a statement from the Department of Justices’ Southern District of Texas. The maximum penalty for the crime of impersonating a federal agent or officer (18 U.S. Code § 912) is three years in prison.
Court records obtained by Breitbart Texas revealed that Munoz-Canellas introduced himself to a confidential informant (CI), claiming to be an illegal alien. The Cuban man identified himself to the CI as a U.S. Border Patrol agent. He told the CI he could obtain Legal Permanent Resident (LPR) documents for him in exchange for $7,000.
During a set-up call in advance of the meeting, Munoz-Canellas told the CI he would need a copy of his Mexican visa and two passport photos, claiming those documents were what he needed to obtain the LPR documents.
The CI gave the suspect a down payment of $2,800 and the requested documents. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement special agents from the Office of Professional Responsibility arrested Munoz-Canellas as he left the meeting.
The statement from the DOJ revealed that Munoz-Canellas solicited bribes from multiple people seeking legal status in the U.S.
Officials stated they expect ICE Enforcement Removal officer to deport Munoz-Canellas to Cuba upon the completion of his sentence in a federal prison.