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May 10, 11

NEWS / Former Border Patrol Agent Sentenced for Accepting Bribes

PHOENIX—Former United States Border Patrol Agent Yamilkar Fierros, of Tucson, has been sentenced to 20 months in prison for accepting bribes. United States District Judge Michael M. Anello handed down the sentence on Thursday, May, 5, in Phoenix.

Fierros pleaded guilty on August 12, 2010 for accepting a $3,000 payment in return for providing a purported drug trafficker with a list of 109 Border Patrol sensor locations in the Sonoita, Arizona area. Fierros had also been indicted for accepting a $1,000 payment in return for providing a purported drug trafficker with a law enforcement sensitive map of the San Rafael Valley, which reflected proprietary information used by the Border Patrol to counter drug traffickers. He was also indicted for accepting a $1,500 payment for providing a purported drug trafficker with a list of 65 new sensor locations in the Sonotia area, and for agreeing to assist in the safe passage of a narcotics load from Patagonia to Tucson.

“For the price of a few thousand dollars, this officer threw away his career, his honor, and his freedom,” said U.S. Attorney Dennis K. Burke. “It is a true shame that he violated his oath to serve and protect the public. This office, and our law enforcement partners, will not hesitate to investigate and prosecute public corruption at any level.”

Added Phoenix Division FBI Acting Special Agent in Charge Robert C. Rudge Jr., “Whenever a law enforcement officer violates his oath of duty by breaking the law, it erodes the public’s trust. The FBI, our law enforcement partners, and the United States Attorney’s Office are committed to investigating and prosecuting those who choose to taint their badge by accepting bribes and providing critical information to drug traffickers. The FBI remains steadfast in its efforts to combat public corruption at all levels.”

“As guardians of our nation’s borders, we cannot afford a weak link,” said Randy Hill, Border Patrol Chief Patrol Agent, Tucson Sector. “We are accountable to the nation and to one another. A single corrupt act represents a potential threat to national security. Corruption is rare and will be fought aggressively in conjunction with our investigative and judicial partners. I am pleased to see justice successfully served through the steadfast efforts of the U.S. Attorney’s Office. The commitment and integrity of the men and women of the Border Patrol remain resolute as they work to keep our nation’s borders secure.”

Fierros was also ordered to make restitution of the $5,500 that he received in connection with these offenses during the three-year term of supervised release, which will begin when he is released from prison.

The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Tucson, Arizona, and the prosecution was handled by Eric Markovich, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona, Tucson.

RELEASE NUMBER: 2011-084(Fierros)




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