A Mexican national who turned himself in on Wednesday claims to be the man who murdered U.S. Border Agent Brian Terry, whose death is at the center of the Obama administration’s “Fast and Furious” gun-walking scandal.
Gustavo Cruz-Lozano confessed to killing Terry after he turned himself in for allegedly threatening to kill Hidalgo County, Texas Sheriff Lupe Trevino, ABC News reports.
But before he surrendered himself, Cruz-Lozano said in an exclusive interview with Univision News’ daily news magazine show “Primer Impacto” that he murdered Terry during a firefight on Dec. 14, 2010, while the agent was on patrol near the U.S.-Mexico border in Arizona. Two AK-47 rifles found at the scene were linked to the botched Operation Fast and Furious, in which the U.S. government sought to track firearms sales to violent drug cartels. But it remains unclear whether those weapons were used to kill Terry.
Cruz-Lozano, 41, was not one of the several suspects arrested in the aftermath of Terry’s slaying. But in an interview with Univision News, he insisted he is the one who pulled the trigger on Terry.
“We had a drug shipment and when they took us by surprise, people started surrounding them, and that’s when we ambushed them,” he told “Primer Impacto” correspondent Natalia Cruz. “When they started surrounding them and they had no time to react, I was the one, I was the one that killed him.”
Federal officials had not been able to identify the man who pulled the trigger in the Terry case, though there is no guarantee that Cruz-Lozano is telling the truth. The Federal Bureau of Investigation asked to view his interview with Univision News, which Cruz-Lozano agreed to and was aired on Thursday.
The Terry family’s attorney, Lincoln Colmbs, told Univision News that he was skeptical about the man’s claims because his name has not been mentioned anywhere in the investigation so far. Watch Cruz-Lozano’s interview with Univision below:
During Operation Fast and Furious, nearly 2,000 guns were allowed to walk across the border into Mexico. ATF lost track of about 1,400 of them and the guns ended up in the hands of drug cartel members and roughly 100 were used in an number of killings and crimes, including Terry’s murder.
Cruz-Lozano reportedly told Univision News that he was going to reveal his identity to the FBI because he doesn’t want to be a fugitive anymore and hopes his confession will get him a life sentence instead of the death penalty.
“If it were in front of this man, not only would say that I am sorry but that I am willing to pay for all the crimes I committed,” he said.