Former prison guard admits fondling women at immigration facility

By Calvin Palmer

A former prison guard at an immigration facility admitted in court today that he sneaked into rooms where women were sleeping and ordered them to undress so that he could fondle them.

Robert Luis Loya, 43, was only charged with attacking three women, aged between 21 and 37,  from El Salvador, although he admitted to attacking others.

The attacks occurred in the spring of 2008 at the Port Isabel Detention Center operated by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. ICE uses the facility to hold citizens of other countries here without documentation.

After prosecutor Ruben Perez detailed the charges, Loya told U.S. District Judge Gray Miller: “That’s right.”

Loya, an employee of Asset Protection & Security Services, sneaked into the infirmary isolation cells in the early hours of the morning, telling the women he was checking on them for a doctor. He did not turn on the light and told them his flashlight did not work.

He ordered the women to remove their clothes and fondled them.

In a written confession Loya admitted to touching four women, noting that though he ordered them to remove their panties, he never touched their genital area.

Judge Miller told him  that he could be sentenced to up to nine years in prison and fined more than $250,000.

[Based on a report by The Houston Chronicle.]

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