Man charged in death of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry

Brian Terry -Bortac

Brian-TerryLionel Portillo-Meza, who is charged with the first degree murder of United States Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, was extradited to the United States from Mexico earlier this moth.

Agent Terry was fatally shot on Dec. 14, 2010, when he and other Border Patrol agents encountered Portillo-Meza and four others in a rural area north of Nogales, Arizona.

Portillo-Meza was arraigned in federal district court in Tucson, Arizona, last week. He entered a not-guilty plea and was detained without bond. The indictment charges Portillo-Meza and others with first degree murder, second degree murder, conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery, attempted interference with commerce by robbery, use and carrying a firearm during a crime of violence and assault on a federal officer.

In addition to the murder of Agent Brian Terry, the indictment alleges that the defendants assaulted Border Patrol Agents William Castano, Gabriel Fragoza, and Timothy Keller, who were with Agent Terry during the firefight.

In July 2012, in order to seek the public’s assistance, Department of Justice officials announced a reward of up to $1 million for information leading to the arrest of four fugitives: Jesus Rosario Favela-Astorga, Ivan Soto-Barraza, Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes, and Portillo-Meza. Portillo-Meza was captured in Mexico in September 2012. Soto-Barraza was captured in Mexico in September 2013.

A fifth defendant, Manuel Osorio-Arellanes, pleaded guilty to first degree murder and was sentenced to 30 years in prison in February 2014. A sixth defendant, Rito Osorio-Arellanes, who was in custody at the time of Agent Terry’s murder, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to interfere with commerce by robbery and was sentenced to eight years in prison in January 2013.

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