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Border Patrol Detains 30 Immigrants Who Entered U.S. Through Tunnel

Tunnel used by Chinese and Mexican immigrants. Photo via CBP.

Tunnel used by Chinese and Mexican immigrants. Photo via CBP.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Border Patrol believe 30 immigrants used an underground tunnel to cross a Southern California border.

Agents arrested the immigrants on Saturday and found an opening in the ground with a ladder and tunnel north of the Otay Mesa border entrance shortly after 1 a.m., CBP wrote in a statement.

Seven Mexicans and 23 Chinese citizens were taken into custody.

No injuries were reported.

“While subterranean tunnels are not a new occurrence along the California-Mexico border, they are more commonly utilized by transnational criminal organizations to smuggle narcotics,” CBP said.

“However, as this case demonstrates, law enforcement has also identified instances where such tunnels were used to facilitate human smuggling.”

Weekend Series on Crime History: Ford Pardons Nixon

Appeals Court: Border Patrol in Ohio Didn’t Target People Who Looked Hispanic

File photo of a Border Patrol agent.

File photo of a Border Patrol agent.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Border Patrol agents in Ohio did not racially discriminate several Hispanic people who were stopped by the Sandusky Bay Station, according to a federal appellate court.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in Cincinnati upheld a lower court’s ruling that the complainants failed to prove people were targeted because they look Hispanic, the Toledo Blade reports

the Farm Labor Organizing Committee and Immigrant Worker Project claimed in a lawsuit that agents targeted Hispanics for stops and detention and uttered racist terms.

The Blade wrote:

o prove that the agency has such a policy, the plaintiffs needed to show that there was a formal policy, that there was a policy of inadequate training or supervision, that decision makers allowed illegal actions, or that it has a custom of “tolerating violations of federal law.”

The plaintiffs didn’t argue that there was a formal policy or inadequate training. But the court also ruled that high-ranking decision makers testified that they do not allow racial profiling. A pair of agents testified that they could use race as a factor, but not the only consideration for a stop.

“Neither of these agents, however, testified that he ratified anyone else’s use of race as a factor in determining whom to approach,” the court wrote.

The court also ruled that four encounters by Hispanic persons with Border Patrol agents were allowable, because other factors were used besides race to initiate the stop. 

Other Stories of Interest

FBI Arrests Chinese National in Connection with Massive OPM Hack

cyberattack-hackers-fbiBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI arrested a Chinese national accused of creating malware used to hack the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), leading to one of the largest data breaches to target the U.S. government.

The breach exposed the personal information of more than 21 million current and former federal government employees.

Reuters reports Yu Pingan, 36, was arrested Monday at Los Angeles International Airport and was in the U.S. to attend a conference.

Yu is accused of providing a rare program, Sakula, to two unnamed men, knowing the pair intended to carry out cyberattacks.

Authorities said Sakula was used in the 2014 and 2015 hacks of the OPM. 

CIA Spies on U.S. Intelligence Agencies Using Secret Tool

cia-lobby-sealBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The CIA is spying on other U.S. intelligence agencies, according to a set of documents published by WikiLeaks.

According to the documents, the CIA is using a tool called “ExpressLane” to gather information from agencies around the world, including the FBI, NSA and Homeland Security.

The program is designed to look like an innocuous software update and is pre-stalled in the systems of agencies that use its biometric system.

The documents don’t reveal what the CIA plans to do with the biometric data.

Iowa Judge Profited from Sending Hundreds of Immigrants to Private Prisons

courtroomBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An Iowa federal judge allegedly conspired to profit from investments in private prisons by sending hundreds of immigrants to jail in one of the largest, more unusual immigration raids in U.S. history.

Judge Linda R. Reade and her husband Michael Figenshaw increased their shares in CoreCivic and CEO Group five days before a planned immigration raid at a meatpacking plant in Pottsville, Ia., in May 2008, Mother Jones reports

Reade presided over the mass trials of 400 undocumented prisoners during a brief nine-day period in trailers and even a dance hall at a fairground in Waterloo.

In similar immigration cases, defendants are usually charged with civic misconduct and then deported. But under Reade’s jurisprudence, the immigrants were charged with a more serious crimes – fraud. About 270 people were sentenced to five months in prison.

The prosecution also was accused of misconduct.

Before the raid, Reade met often with immigration officials about the impending arrests. 

In just five months, the judge and her husband watched their stock values increase from $130,000 to $215,000 before cashing out.

Vermont’s Top FBI Official to Step Down for State Lottery Commission Post

Photo via FBI

Photo via FBI

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Daniel Rachek, who has led Vermont’s FBI office for the past six years, is stepping down to become the executive director of the state’s lottery commission.

The 22-year veteran of the bureau begins the new job Nov. 13, the Vermont Digger reports. 

Rachek supervised 20 employees and led financial investigation with the FBI.

“I’m honored to join Gov. Scott’s team and to maximize the lottery’s contributions to Vermont’s economic future by supporting education funding,” Rachek said in the news release.

The state-run Vermont Lottery Commission oversees the lottery system.

“Danny’s extensive public service and financial experience provides a level of expertise and a professional commitment that will set the standard in the lottery’s future efforts,” Scott said in the announcement.

Border Patrol’s Brownsville Station Gets 25-Year Veteran As New Leader

border-patrol-suv-via-border-patrolBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Jaime Salazar, a 25-year veteran of the Border Patrol, was recently appointed agent in charge of the agency’s Brownsville station.

Salazar joined the Border Patrol as an agent in June 1992 and has worked his way through the ranks, most recently serving as a strategic advisor to the ICE/ERO deputy director in 2017, the Brownsville Herald reports

The Brownsville Border Patrol Station oversees 23 miles of river and 80 square miles of Cameron County.

The Herald wrote:

Salazar became a Border Patrol agent on June 4, 1992 and was assigned to the Chula Vista Station in the San Diego Sector. In 1997, he was promoted to senior patrol agent in Harlingen and subsequently promoted to supervisor in 1998.

In 2002, he was promoted to the PAIC over the Intelligence Unit for the Rio Grande Valley Sector, where in over eight years he transformed the Sector Intelligence Unit. In 2010, Salazar was promoted as the first J2/Intelligence Commander for CBP in Laredo.

In 2013, Salazar became an associate chief in the Law Enforcement Operations Directorate at the United Stated Border Patrol Headquarters in Washington, D.C.

In 2014, he was appointed deputy director for the Department of Homeland Security Human Smuggling Cell, a White House National Security Council Interagency taskforce established to combat international human smuggling efforts. Two years later, he became the acting director for the CBP Counter Network Division charged with integrating operations, intelligence and analysis. He later became a strategic advisor to the ICE/ERO Deputy Director in 2017.