Border Patrol Entering Stores And Interrogating People Who Speak Spanish (Updated)


In New England, undercover Federal agents are following people into stores and interrogating them simply because they are speaking a foreign language.

Last month, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit claiming that the U.S. Border Patrol is sending undercover agents into stores to interrogate and arrest suspected illegal immigrants because they were speaking Spanish. 

Exhibit C of the complaint gives a detailed account of how two Border Patrol agents, James Loomis and Brendan Burns, followed a few alleged illegal immigrants from Vermont into a thrift shop in West Lebanon, New Hampshire.

On March 20th, 2019, agents Loomis and Burns were in an unmarked service vehicle in plain clothes with no badges or weapons visible when they followed Carlos Avila-Lucas and his friends into a thrift shop and interrogated them.

“Loomis asked Avila, how are you today? Avila responded in broken English, Good, thank you. Loomis then responded to the subject saying, They have some good stuff in here don’t they? Avila appeared confused as if he didn’t quite understand what Loomis had said.”

DHS claims that Avila, “appeared uninterested with conversing with Loomis so the conversation ended.” And that should have been the end of it right?

But it wasn’t.

According to Exhibit C, Loomis moved over to another part of the store and began to question the second subject (later identified as Batz-Tzul) whom he had seen exit the Chevrolet Suburban.

“Loomis observed Batz pick up a small speaker and asked Batz, Hey sir, is that a speaker?  Batz replied in very broken English, Yes, this speaks. As he motioned his hand to imply a mouth talking. Loomis then asked Batz, I’m looking for a microwave, do you know where they keep those? Batz looked confused and stated, No speak English. Loomis then asked Batz, You don’t. speak English, what. language do you speak? Batz replied, Spanish.  Loomis then asked Batz, Where are you from? Batz replied, Guatemala.”

In the Exhibit, DHS referred to these interrogations as “consensual encounters”,

“At approximately 1330 hours, James Loomis informed me that he had engaged in a consensual encounter with two (2) adult males (later identified as Avila-Lucas, Florentin ****, Batz-Tzul, Miguel Antonio ****.”

How are these “consensual encounters” with law enforcement?  How would anyone know that they are really Federal Agents masquerading as everyday people asking questions?

Is this what it means to be a part of law enforcement today?  Hiding one’s identity hoping to get someone to admit that they are here illegally?

Updated 10/9

Border Patrol agents use facial recognition to identify bus passengers

According to an article in The Press Herald, Border Patrol agents are using facial recognition to identify bus passengers.

Border patrol agents stopped travelers to ask about their citizenship at the Brunswick transportation station in Maine last week, a move which American Civil Liberties Union officials say “erodes basic Fourth Amendment rights.”

“Agents used a mobile biometric device, which uses fingerprints, facial recognition and voice recognition to identify a passenger. Emma Bond, a staff attorney for the ACLU of Maine, said in an email that the checks, which she called bus raids, erode basic Fourth Amendment rights to be free from unreasonable searches.”

Border Patrol follows people into stores for speaking Spanish

According to the New York Times, Border Patrol agents have been following people into stores for speaking Spanish since at least 2018.

“Ana Suda does not recall what they discussed while they browsed the store, but she knows they conversed in Spanish.”

That was all it took for a Border Patrol agent also in the store to interject. “He looked at us and said, Where are you guys born? ” Ms. Suda said. (To find out about Suda’s lawsuit click here.)

As recently as four days ago, WGME 13 in Bangor, Maine revealed that Border Patrol agents followed a family into a store because they looked Central-American.

The family “appeared to be of Central-American origin,” a Border Patrol agent wrote in federal court records, and the agents “overheard several people speaking Spanish” inside the store. Then, the agents approached the people and asked where they were from.

Undercover federal agents following people into stores based solely on speaking a foreign language turns America into a quasi-police state.

If DHS is allowed to use the Patriot Act to target people for speaking a foreign language, what’s to stop them from taking it a step further?

What’s to stop Federal agents from targeting activists and anti-government protesters or anyone else the government wants to make an example of?

How long before Border Patrol agents start targeting journalists and accuse them of being propaganda writers?  Oh right, that is already happening.

3 thoughts on “Border Patrol Entering Stores And Interrogating People Who Speak Spanish (Updated)

  1. What f-king store can one walk into today that you don’t hear Spanish, Mandarin Chinese, Arabic, or a plethora of other foreign languages being spoken?
    This is an unlawful corporate monarchal occupation to be sure, but we are also experiencing an invasion. Since the 1960s it is no longer required that lawful immigrants speak our f-king language, let alone assimilate into our culture. And as far as the unlawful infiltrations of American nationals, who do have rights in this country, this has been going on for 70 f-king years.
    This is not the Republic ratified by the people, but if it were, these f-king foreigners that have zero rights inside our borders would be considered enemy infiltrators and it would be the government’s responsibility to seek them out and remove them.
    I don’t want to hear this whiny bullshit about some Guatemalan being harassed for speaking a foreign language in my country. The son of a bitch probably also has food stamps, HUD, free healthcare, a welfare check, and an American blue collar job. These foreigners need to get the f-k out of this country and this f-king corporate occupation needs to get the f-k out of this country.
    The Bill of Rights is the supreme law of this land and if enforced, all of these complaints become non-issues.
    If I slip through the window of your house, I do not get granted the same right to be there as you do.
    You stick up for this f-king invasion or the unlawful corporate occupying monarchy in any way, you are a traitor. And don’t forget, every one of the sons of bitches that enters our country at the corporation’s leave is taking what belongs to an American national without the due process of the law in the common law that only American nationals are entitled to. If that don’t suit you, throw up your commie f-king colors and take the field.
    F-king pathetic double speak article….. Making lots of mammon?

    1. Wait ’til they hear me speak Japanese…ahh soo desu nee….konichi wa?

      When they hear Bushmen speak with clicks. let me know… 🙂

      But since I could not get a couple of school counseling jobs since my Spanish wasn’t good enough, I hear you, Henry! (My other comments were facetious).

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