SAN DIEGO – Border Patrol agents were duped into providing armed security for a cartel wedding, and people are furious.
A U.S. citizen banned from Mexico, who wed his Mexican fiancée during a special event at the border last month, was reportedly revealed as a convicted drug smuggler, leaving border patrol agents livid over providing “armed security for a cartel wedding.”
The San Diego Union Tribune reported Brian Houston was cleared to marry Evelia Reyes during the “Door of Hope” event last month. The wedding was apparently approved after he passed a federal background check. He requested the ceremony because he claimed he could not cross into Tijuana, which is true; yet the reason why has left people embarrassed.
Hence, it has been revealed that the groom is barred from Mexico because he is a convicted drug smuggler. Moreover, he is currently awaiting his sentencing in San Diego federal court after he was caught smuggling 43 pounds of heroin, 47 pounds of methamphetamine and 43 pounds of cocaine back in February, according to the Union-Tribune.
“The agents are upset, feel like they were taken advantage of, feel like they were duped,” Joshua Wilson, vice president of the National Border Patrol Council Local 1613, told the newspaper. “Turns out we provided armed security for a cartel wedding.”
Border Patrol opened gate separating US and Mexico for a wedding and now agents are furious to discover groom was convicted drug smuggler. https://t.co/irsQRSmBdo
— AP West Region (@APWestRegion) December 22, 2017
It was the first-ever wedding ceremony at the event that opens a steel border gate for an hour every year, allowing people who cannot cross the border to meet for about three minutes each. “It’s a statement that love has no borders,” the convicted drug smuggler told the Union-Tribune last month during the wedding.
The participants of the event were reportedly screened before the ceremony. Houston’s conviction, however, did not appear during the federal background check.
Groom in high-profile border wedding was a convicted drug smuggler — something the Border Patrol was unaware of when he was allowed to wedhttps://t.co/1BpeP81Erw
— KTLA (@KTLA) December 22, 2017
The “Door of Hope” event is currently under scrutiny following the mishap with Houston.
The group organizing the event, Border Angels, said they do not vet the applicants themselves, only provides the Border Patrol with questionnaires filled out by candidates. Background checks are the responsibility of the Border Patrol, the group’s director Enrique Morones told the Union-Tribune.
A Border Patrol official said Houston was screened through an internal vetting process based on information provided by the group organizing the event. The review did not show any criminal activity.
Morones said he was stunned after finding out Houston was actually a drug smuggler, adding that he will meet with Border Patrol officials to discuss the case and future events. “That goes against everything Border Angels stands for,” he said.
Cops have a saying that “no good deed goes unpunished.” You can place this incident in that category. It also contributes to their skeptical outlook.