How about a fresh slice of tragic irony for this humdrum Wednesday afternoon?
We've just learned of one U.S. Border Patrol agent who, let's just say, isn't quite as anti-immigrant as those in Weekly cover story “The Feds Bury Border Patrol Abuses of Immigrants, But What's Been Unearthed Reveals a Culture of Cruelty.”
Early yesterday morning in San Diego — while 26-year-old Marcos Gerardo Manzano Jr. was down protecting the San Ysidro-Tijuana line like a good little Border Patrol agent —
FBI and local police were busting in his front door and feasting their eyes upon the host of undocumented Mexican immigrants Manzano had been harboring in his home on the 3600 block of Shooting Star Drive.
Among the refugees? Manzano's own father, 46-year-old Marcos Gerardo Manzano Sr., already deported twice for getting caught with marijuana. But it appears he took off before the men in uniform could make the bust. Still, the court complaint says feds knew he was there because Manzano Sr. had been spotted coming and going from Manzano Jr.'s home.
“It looked like a movie. It was a big scene,” said Daniel Lazo to NBC San Diego. “Seems impossible. They were everywhere.”
Manzano Jr., who has been part of the BP team for four years now, was arrested later that night at his San Ysidro post. But wait — there's more. And this time, it's that other thing a Border Patrol agent really, really can't have in his possession:
Prosecutors said 61 grams of methamphetamine was found inside the suspect's home along with packaging material indicating a drug dealing operation.
Also, investigators found a hidden room under the patio, which is where [26-year-old suspected undocumented immigrant Jose Alfredo Garrido-Morena] was found hiding.
During the raid, agents detained a second man and three women for questioning, and then released them. A year-old boy also was present during the search, according to the FBI. The relationship of those people to the defendants was unclear.
Believe it or not, this kind of thing isn't all that rare among U.S. officials in the highly corruptible position of deciding who and what comes over the border. There's even a special FBI sector for it: the Border Corruption Task Force.
However, it usually deals with BP agents who have more of a monetary interest in smuggling stuff over the border — the father-son Manzano scheme is a new beast entirely.