Border agency’s former watchdog says officials stymied his efforts

August 18, 2014

U.S. Border Patrol agents detain a suspected smuggler after he allegedly transported undocumented immigrants who crossed the Rio Grande from Mexico into the United States. (John Moore/Getty Images)

The former head of internal affairs for U.S. Customs and Border Protection made scathing remarks about the agency in his first public comments since being removed from his former position in June, saying he was demoted for trying to expose a culture of cover-ups and corruption.

James Tomsheck, who now works for CBP in another capacity, told the Center for Investigative Reporting that at least a quarter of all fatalities at the hands of CBP agents since 2010 were “highly suspect” and that officials have distorted the facts to hide missteps.

CBP removed Tomsheck from his watchdog role in June, saying the agency needed more aggressive reviews of excessive-force claims. But the former internal affairs chief said officials had been hindering his efforts to uncover wrongdoing.

For more about the interview, read the full report that appeared in The Washington Post.

Josh Hicks covers the federal government and anchors the Federal Eye blog. He reported for newspapers in the Detroit and Seattle suburbs before joining the Post as a contributor to Glenn Kessler’s Fact Checker blog in 2011.
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