3 detention center workers accused of selling detainee names

A federal grand jury has indicted three employees of South Texas detention centers, accusing them of selling immigration detainee rosters to a local lawyer.

The five-count indictment handed up Wednesday in Brownsville charged 42-year-old Benito Barrientez of Lyford, 30-year-old Damian Ortiz of Weslaco and 42-year-old Exy Adelaida Gomez of Los Fresnos with bribery and conspiracy to commit bribery.

Barrientez was a classification clerk at Willacy County Regional Detention Center in Raymondville, where Ortiz was a senior program director. Gomez was a corrections officer at the El Valle Detention Center, also in Raymondville.

The lists contain the names, birth dates, country of origin and other information about the detainees. The indictment alleges the unnamed lawyer would use the lists to solicit clients.

Court records do not list attorneys for the three.

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