LAREDO, Texas – A 41-year-old Laredo resident has been sent to prison for his role in a conspiracy to smuggle goods into the United States, announced U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.

Simon Medina III pleaded guilty March 8.

Today, U.S. District Judge Marina Garcia Marmolejo ordered Medina to serve 24 months in federal prison to be immediately followed by three years of supervised release. In handing down the sentence, the court noted Medina was in a position of power and was law enforcement and, as such, more aware of his actions. She highlighted the facts surrounding the severity of the actions and the danger in which he put the community.

Medina was a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer. He admitted that between May 25 and Aug. 6, 2020, he allowed several individuals to enter the United States with contraband in their vehicles on approximately 20 occasions. Although not assigned to the entry lanes at the Laredo Port of Entry, Medina would open a lane and allow his co-conspirators to pass through without inspecting their cargo. Medina also accepted gratuities from his partners.

Medina was permitted to remain on bond and voluntarily surrender to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility to be determined in the near future.

CBP – Office of Professional Responsibility conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney José Angel Moreno prosecuted the case.

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