United States

U.S. Customs Officer Charged with Smuggling Immigrants

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer has been charged with smuggling four Mexican nationals into the United States.

In a criminal complaint unsealed Tuesday, prosecutors charged 53-year-old Lawrence Madrid with smuggling immigrants into the United States on two separate occasions at the Bridge of the Americas in El Paso.

Homeland Security investigators accused Madrid of allowing three Mexican nationals to pass the station he was manning without proper documents on Aug. 10, 2010.

Then, in September 2011, Madrid is alleged to have allowed another Mexican national to pass his permit window and subsequent inspection lanes after the man wrote his name on a piece of paper.

The complaint says payments were made to an intermediary named by his initials.

Madrid is a supervisory officer for the El Paso area.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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