Judge in lawsuit: Border Patrol shooting was excessive force

TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) - A federal judge said in a ruling on a lawsuit that a former U.S. Border Patrol agent who shot and wounded a Mexican man intentionally used excessive force and wasn't justified in opening fire.

Gunfire hit Jesus Castro-Romo of Nogales, Sonora, in the stomach Nov. 16, 2010, after he was caught crossing illegally into the Arizona desert. Former agent Abel Canales didn't face criminal charges.

Judge James A. Soto awarded Castro-Romo nearly $500,000 in damages Feb. 5 and said in his ruling that Canales lacked credibility.

In an unrelated case, Canales pleaded guilty to taking a bribe and allowing a truckload of drugs and contraband to pass through a checkpoint near Tucson.

The Border Patrol has been accused of using excessive force in the past few years, especially involving rock-throwers.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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