Border Inspector Admits Aiding Illegal Migrants

From Times Staff Reports

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer admitted Monday to helping smuggle hundreds of illegal immigrants through his vehicle lane at the Otay Mesa port of entry.

As part of a plea agreement with federal prosecutors, Michael Gilliland, 44, pleaded guilty to five counts of conspiracy, bribery and immigrant smuggling; he faces five to 15 years in prison.

The veteran inspector received $70,000 to $120,000 from two human smuggling groups for waving through migrant-laden cars without inspection, prosecutors said.