Lawsuit: NM Woman Faced Illegal Body Cavity Search 12/19/13
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - A federal lawsuit says U.S. border and customs officials strip-searched a New Mexico woman at the El Paso border crossing, then took her to a hospital for illegal body cavity probes.
The lawsuit filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in El Paso says the unnamed 54-year-old U.S. citizen was searched by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents in December 2012 after being selected for random screening. The lawsuit says she transported in handcuffs to the University Medical Center of El Paso where doctors subjected her to an observed bowel movement, a CT scan and rectal and vaginal exams.
The American Civil Liberties Union says no drugs were found on the woman but was charged $5,000 by the hospital.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman declined to comment.
A hospital spokeswoman said hospital policy requires consent from all patients who receive medical services.