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San Diego boarder control agents sued after Mexican man's death

The US government faces a wrongful death lawsuit after a confrontation with federal agents patrolling the US-Mexican border near San Diego resulted in the death of a Mexican citizen.

According to the lawsuit filed by the family of the deceased man, as many as 25 border crossing agents violently beat the victim, ignoring his cries for help. One of the agents also allegedly shot the man multiple times with a stun gun. The wrongful death claim against the federal government asserts that the agents' actions crossed the line into excessive force.

The prosecution claims to have collected cell-phone recordings from a witness in which the victim's cries of fear and pain are evident.

Before the incident, the victim lived near San Diego for over two decades with his partner and his five children. After receiving a traffic ticket he was deported to Mexico but attempted to return. On this return trip the victim was arrested by the agents, who were supposedly escorting him back to Tijuana when the fatal incident occurred.

The official record from the San Diego coroner declared the man's death a homicide, listing a heart attack as the main cause of death. The victim's family believes that his heart attack was induced by the abusive and aggressive actions of the border crossing agents.

The civil rights division of the federal Justice Department has not yet declared whether or not it will press criminal charges against the San Diego agents involved in the death. So far, the US Customs and Border Protection agency has not released an official comment regarding either the incident or the imminent wrongful death lawsuit.

Source: Fox News, "Family of Dead Mexican Migrant Sues US Government." 16 March 2011

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