Cameron County (KFXV) — Trial is moving forward for former U.S. Border Patrol Agent Joel Luna. Jury selection begins in Brownsville on January 17. That’s next Tuesday.
The 31-year-old former agent is charged with “capital murder for retaliation and organized criminal activity” for the death of Honduran immigrant Francisco Palacios Paz – whose decapitated body was found in March of 2015 in the Laguna Madre. Paz was an employee at Luna’s brother’s tire shop. Luna is alleged to have worked with Mexican cartels transporting illegal firearms and ammunition to Mexico, and shipping narcotics into the U.S.
According to authorities, $90,000 in cash and a kilo of cocaine were found in a safe at Luna’s mother-in-law’s house. Joel Luna and Eduardo Luna Rodriguez plead not guilty to capital murder charges, murder and to two other counts of engaging in criminal activity back in February of 2015.