Crossing the line: Corruption at the border

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Fidel Villarreal

Age: 39
Occupation: Border Patrol
Gender: Male
Years of service: 6-10 years
Duty station: San Diego, CA
Case date: 10-18-2008
Crime: Bribery/conspiracy/human smuggling
Sentence: Sentencing scheduled for March 29, 2013
Brothers Fidel Villarreal, 39, and Raul Villarreal, 40, both former Border Patrol agents, were extradited to the United States in March 2009 after they were arrested on a provisional arrest warrant in Tijuana, Mexico, in October 2008. They were wanted on federal charges for conspiracy to bring in illegal immigrants for financial gain, multiple counts of bringing in illegal immigrants for financial gain, conspiracy to launder money, conspiracy to tamper with a witness, witness tampering and criminal forfeiture. The Villarreal brothers also were charged with receiving bribes by public officials. According to the indictment, the defendants were accused of running a smuggling organization to bring illegal immigrants into the United States from Mexico for money. The brothers were allegedly bribed to not perform their duties. A federal trial jury in August 2012 convicted the Villarreal brothers on several counts of conspiracy, bribery and human smuggling. Sentencing is scheduled for March 29, 2013.
News reports

2 former Border Patrol agents convicted of human smuggling (Los Angeles Times, Aug. 11, 2012)

New details emerge as ex-Border Patrol brothers fight corruption charges (Huffington Post, May 31, 2012)

Former Border Agents arrested (New York Times, Oct. 20, 2008)

Documents

Villarreal Brothers Extradition Press Release (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, March 13, 2009)

Villarreal Brother Extradition 1 (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, Nov. 17, 2008)

Villarreal Brothers Extradition 2 (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, Nov. 17, 2008)

Villarreal Brothers Extradition 3 (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, Nov. 17, 2008)

Villarreal Brothers Extradition 4 (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, Nov. 17, 2008)

Villarreal Brothers 7 (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, Nov. 17, 2008)

Villarreal Brothers Extradition 5 (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, Nov. 17, 2008)

Villarreal Brothers Extradition 6 (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, Nov. 17, 2008)

Villarreal Brothers Extradition (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, Nov. 17, 2008)

Villarreal Brothers Indictment (U.S. District Court, Southern District of California, April 24, 2008)