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Former Sunland Park militia leader gets nearly 2 years in prison for impersonating Border Patrol agent

Jim Benvie, former leader of a border militia group.

ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico -- A former Sunland Park militia leader convicted of impersonating a U.S. Border Patrol agent has been sentenced to almost two years in prison.

Federal prosecutors said 45-year-old James Christopher Benvie received a sentence Thursday of 21 months in prison followed by a year of supervised release. He had faced as much as six years in prison after his conviction in March on two counts of false impersonation.

According to public court records and evidence at his trial, Benvie was a leader and spokesperson for a group of vigilantes known as the Guardian Patriots who established a “camp” at the Mexican border in the Sunland Park area of Dona Ana County.

Many members of the group wore badges, camouflage and other military-style clothing, often covered their faces with masks and carried pistols and assault rifles.

Prosecutors said Benvie misrepresented himself as a Border Patrol agent when stopping immigrants he suspected of crossing into the United States illegally.

According to prosecutors, Benvie and other group members stopped six women and children from El Salvador on Apr. 15, 2019, and four adults and three children two days later without any legitimate law enforcement authority.

They said Benvie interrogated the immigrants both times before turning them over to actual Border Patrol agents.

Jim Parker

Jim Parker is the Director of Digital Content for ABC-7.



  1. Vigilantes, like other criminals, always think they’re doing something right when in fact they’re just a common criminal, like the ones they’re locked up with.

  2. Hope this piece of Nazi filth gets what’s coming to him the very first 24 hours he’s in the unit they send him to. Depending on where they send him, it won’t be nice.

    1. Your real name is Alberto Velarde. Born 1956. Resides at 10700 Vista Del Sol, Apt #225. 79936. Graduated from Bel Air High School. Police record going back to 1988.

    1. Your real name is Alberto Velarde. Born 1956. Resides at 10700 Vista Del Sol, Apt #225. 79936. Graduated from Bel Air High School. Police record going back to 1988.

  3. He didnt suspect them of crossing illegally, he watched them. As far as him interrogating. He doesnt even speak spanish. He made citizen arrests, pretty sure thats not a crime. This all a set up orchestrated by the leftist nm. Governor and her cronies while being backed by the aclu

          1. Hey, i caught twelve last night. I kept expecting you to show up but i guess you really are a chicken shit. Call me disappointed

          1. Everyone here except you know Jeff Allen from the KVIA Disqus days and before that. He is not a punk like you.

    1. I’ m sure the local members of the ACLU are just heartbroken that a piece of human scum doesn’t appreciate their efforts to protect human and Constitutional rights.

    1. That’s all liberals have. No substance. All they can do is call people who don’t agree with their extremism Nazi’s. Been doing it for years. It saves them from having to actually deal with facts.

          1. Wrong again moron. We know what President Trump stands for, what his agenda is, the successes he’s having, where he’s taking America. We got exactly what we voted for, a far better America.

    2. Speaking of that, wasn’t that you the EPPD told to leave a westside park when concerned parents witnessed you approaching young children? What were you doing there?

    3. If I were you, I would start putting out sandwiches and sodas for the illegals crossing that property. Its all getting ready to backfire on your racist ass. The sodas and sandwiches might mitigate what’s coming down the road for you.

      1. So in other words you really are a chickenshit. You arent coming here to do shit. Typical liberal coward but then im not your normal victim. Im an adult

        1. Not coming today. But coming nonetheless. I’ll be watching. Better get those sandwiches ready and start giving mojados rides north. You’re a punk with a big mouth just like all your coward Nazi and white supremacist scum buddies. Filth like you always get what they have coming.

          1. markturner talking shit as usual. See he is a big chicken. A no show. Even failed to meet madmike. All talk no action communist. Take away his baseball bat and he will cry like the other chicken shit antifas.

    1. Actually it’s 16 days. Then 10 to 12 more days to count illegal late mail in ballots then another 20 days as an additional million or so pre-prepared “recently discovered” ballots come in to ensure a Biden win.

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