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06/19/2014

FEATURE: HSI special agents commended for work in murder investigation

HSI special agents commended for work in murder investigation
HSI special agents commended for work in murder investigation

June 20 was an awful day. In a robbery gone awry, a Drug Enforcement Administration special agent was stabbed to death in a taxi in Bogota, Colombia.

The FBI, with assistance from several other federal agencies, launched an investigation into the circumstances surrounding his death, and two U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents provided significant assistance in the investigation. HSI Special Agents Manny Martinez and Gio Perez interviewed the alleged suspects and were able to obtain full confessions.

A life was lost, but justice prevailed. The six Colombian nationals were indicted last July in Virginia federal court for the 2013 murder and attempted kidnapping of Special Agent James "Terry" Watson.

Nearly a year later, Martinez and Perez received certificates of recognition, personally signed by FBI Director James B. Comey, for their assistance with the investigation.

"While we can't bring back our law enforcement partner, we can ensure the murderers who took his life face the judicial consequences for their actions," said Luis Sierra, HSI attaché for Colombia and Venezuela. "I commend the HSI special agents for the role they played in the investigation into Special Agent Watson's death."