RGV Border Patrol agent accused of helping to smuggle cocaine

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U.S. Border Patrol Agent Oberlin Cortez Peña Jr., 22, of La Joya. Pena was arrested for DWI in March by the Alamo police department, according to jail records. (Photo courtesy of the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office.)

MCALLEN, Texas (KVEO)—A Rio Grande Valley Border Patrol agent was arrested on accusations that he helped smuggle cocaine through the Falfurrias checkpoint.

According to officials, Oberlin Cortez Pena Jr., 22, from La Joya was taken into custody on Friday in connection with the drug smuggling.

Authorities said Pena accepted $1,000 in exchange for helping a vehicle with at least 11 pounds of cocaine.

Officials said Pena “utilized his knowledge” as a Border Patrol agent “in acting as a scout and providing information about the inspection lanes and which one to utilize.”

According to the criminal complaint, Pena gave precise instructions on hiding the drugs and tactics to use to distract the K-9 unit at the checkpoint.

If convicted of the charges, Pena faces a minimum of 10 years up to life in federal prison as well as a possible $10 million maximum fine.

Pena was arrested for DWI in March by the Alamo police department, according to jail records.

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