The U.S. government has denied financial support to the family of a federal agent who was severely wounded in a 2011 ambush by a Mexican drug cartel but at the same time has subsidized housing expenses for the family of a hit-squad member who assisted in the shootout that left another officer dead.
The Immigration and Customs Enforcement special agent who survived the attack, Victor Avila, said the Department of Homeland Security refused to fund hotel, travel, and per diem expenses for his wife and two children during the two-week trial of two men accused in his attempted murder, which began in Washington, D.C., this week. DHS told Avila it did not have a “funding mechanism” to pay for the expenses.
Avila ultimately fronted the costs for his family to accompany him during the trial after raising safety concerns to DHS and Department of Justice officials.
“I couldn’t fathom leaving them in Texas while I’m testifying against a cartel and risk their security while they are back home,” he said. “It’s not so much the defendants I’m worried about, but those loyal cartel members or individuals on the periphery who want to finish me off or harm my family.”
Originally published by the Washington Free Beacon.