A federal jury in Miami found the Drug Enforcement Administration discriminated against Sandalio Gonzalez, the former second-in-command of the DEA's South Florida field office, by retaliating against him with a transfer to another job in Texas in 2001.
For Gonzalez -- who stirred controversy in 2000 when he blew the whistle on a Miami drug bust in which 10 kilos of cocaine went missing -- the court triumph was sweet vindication. He had stood up for not only himself, but also other Hispanic and black DEA agents in the Miami field office over issues of discrimination, his lawyers said.
But wait…that name sounds familiar. Isn't Sandalio Gonzalez the same DEA agent who was forced into early retirement after exposing DOJ culpability in the "House of Death" murders in Mexico? Apparently yes.
So as I understand it, Gonzalez first blew the whistle in Miami when his colleagues stole 10 kilos of cocaine and tried to cover it up. He was then involuntarily transferred to Texas, where he blew the whistle when his colleagues allowed a government informant to commit multiple gruesome murders in Mexico. Having had about enough of him, the DEA again retaliated, forcing Gonzalez into early retirement.
So either Sandalio Gonzalez just loves whistle-blowing, or he was the only person at DEA who much cares when government officials steal drugs and sanction murders on foreign soil. His treatment sends a message to current DEA staffers that exposing gratuitous misconduct will not be appreciated. Especially if you do it twice.
In our opinion, the DEA's activities range from foolish to immoral even when conducted in good faith. So when you mix in gross misconduct and retaliation against whistleblowers, you know you've got a mess on your hands. It's a shame that the mainstream media isn't more interested in this, because the novelty has worn off for us. We already know DEA is a rogue agency.
It's Congress that should be talking about this, not us. They're the ones who should be upset that DEA management tacitly endorses misconduct by discouraging its exposure. They're the ones who are charged with ensuring that tax-payer funded programs aren't wasteful and incompetent. If Congress believes in what DEA is supposed to be doing, it's time to demand accountability. If not, it's time to admit we've created a monster…and stop feeding it.