Border Patrol Chief Addresses, Clarifies Past Allegations

Local News

Border Patrol Chief Manuel Padilla Jr. is speaking out after a Wisconsin senator asked the Department of Homeland Security to investigate ties between the chief and a drug trafficker.

The drug trafficker Senator Ron Johnson is referring to is in fact Chief Padilla’s brother Miguel Angel Padilla Heredia. Heredia illegally entered the United States in 2013 near Nogales, AZ. Chief Padilla was chief of the Tucson Sector. He says the issue was already extensively investigated.

Chief Padilla says, “Of course there was no wrongdoing found on my part. We as public servants, especially in leadership positions, are held accountable for our actions so there’s no hard feelings, if you will, into the questioning. But I do want to set the record straight, that this has been extensively investigated.”

The chief says his brother’s actions saddened him, but that it was an individual choice.

Chief Padilla, “I’m glad to have this opportunity just to make sure that this does not distract from our core values and from what I believe in, and from what we are doing here in the community.”

The chief added that his brother is the only one of five who was born outside of the United States and that he’s currently living in Mexico.

According to the senator’s letter, Miguel Angel Padilla Heredia has a long criminal record that includes robbery, drug trafficking and aggravated felony.

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