Border Patrol union funds stolen: report

Border Patrol union funds stolen: report
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The FBI is investigating the embezzlement of about $500,000 from the El Paso Border Patrol Union, ProPublica reported Monday.

The Union’s national president, Brandon Judd, reportedly told the El Paso sector’s agents in November the amount that was missing after over a year of speculation from agents that a long-running embezzlement operation was occurring. 

According to an audio recording obtained by ProPublica, Judd told the agents that forensic auditors hired by the union had discovered “$352,389.31 that was misappropriated. They also found that there was another $150,035.65 that was not properly paid to the IRS in tax money. Somebody pocketed it, just up and walked away.” 

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Judd added that “there will be indictments.”

Neither the FBI nor the Department of Labor immediately responded to an inquiry from The Hill. Neither entity confirmed the investigation to ProPublica, though Judd did. 

Though it’s officially unclear who they are targeting as suspects, former head of the local union chapter, Robert Russell, and his sister, Dawn Munoz, have come under scrutiny since agents were made aware of the investigation. According to ProPublica, Munoz was hired as an accountant for the union, despite not being a Certified Public Accountant and having a history of financial crimes.

The local union’s current president is preparing to file a civil lawsuit against Munoz’s company, Tax Solutions & Accounting.The Union’s former treasurer, Cesar Lujan, resigned after the union informed the FBI about the missing funds. 

“It’s a slap in the face,” one anonymous agent and union member told ProPublica. “This place is notorious for having people in leadership positions who don’t have any leadership skills — and that’s both in management and the union.”