Hearing delayed in case about threat to fed official

A judge granted a request to delay a detention hearing for a former U.S. Border Patrol agent accused of threatening a federal agent during a court hearing earlier this month.

Daniel Polanco stood before U.S. Magistrate Juan F. Alanis on Tuesday afternoon for a detention hearing related to a recently filed federal charge accusing the former Border Patrol agent of gesturing and threatening a U.S. Department of Homeland Security Investigations agent earlier his month.

Polanco’s attorney, Marco De Luna, asked the court to allow Polanco to have his detention hearing in Houston, where he faces the possibility of having his current release in a drug conspiracy case revoked due to the current charge he faces.

According to an Oct. 7 filing, Polanco allegedly threatened a U.S. Department of Homeland Security Investigations agent at the conclusion of a scheduled court hearing related to Polanco’s July conviction in a drug trafficking case.

Polanco, of Edinburg, was in Houston on Oct. 3 for a hearing related to his recent conviction in a drug trafficking case in July.

The 37-year-old ex-Border Patrol agent was in Houston to argue for a motion for a new trial that the court subsequently denied.

After the hearing, Polanco was headed toward the exit when he turned to an HSI agent, who had been present during the jury trial in July, and made comments that the agent took as a threat.

The complaint read that Polanco walked toward the special agent, “who was sitting in the last row of the courtroom closest to the exit,” following U.S. District Judge Keith P. Ellision concluding the hearing.

“When (Polanco) was feet away from (the special agent), he stopped, pointed at (the agent) and said: ‘This is gonna come back to you m———–. You’ll see,’” the complaint further read. “(Polanco’s) tone was angry and menacing. (Polanco) then opened the exit door and walked out of the courtroom.”

The HSI agent, according to the complaint, felt “alarmed, concerned, and threatened,” by Polanco’s statement and gesture.

Polanco and several others were convicted this summer in connection with an investigation into corrupt law enforcement.

At the time of his indictment in May 2016, Polanco had been an agent for nine years.

Operation Blue Shame was also recently responsible for putting former La Joya Police Chief Geovani Hernandez behind bars. Hernandez was recently sentenced to a 240-month prison sentence.

Polanco, who the jury found guilty of three charges, conspiracy to possess and distribute cocaine, possession and distribution of cocaine, and giving a false statement, is scheduled for sentencing Dec. 11, records show.

The court remanded Polanco, who is currently in custody, into the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service, who will subsequently transport him to Houston for his detention hearing next week.