Federal Correctional Institution, La Tuna

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Federal Correctional Institution, La Tuna
Location Anthony, El Paso County, Texas
Coordinates Coordinates: 31°58′56″N 106°35′26″W / 31.98222°N 106.59056°W / 31.98222; -106.59056
Status Operational
Security class Low-security (with minimum-security prison camp)
Population 1,060 (320 in prison camp)
Managed by Federal Bureau of Prisons

The Federal Correctional Institution, La Tuna (FCI La Tuna) is a low-security United States federal prison for male inmates in Anthony, Texas. It is operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons, a division of the United States Department of Justice. A satellite prison camp, located 30 miles from the facility, houses minimum-security inmates.

FCI La Tuna is located on the Texas-New Mexico border, 12 miles north of El Paso, Texas.[1]

Letters from La Tuna[edit]

From May to September 2013, the El Paso Times published a series of letters written by Bob Jones, a longtime El Paso businessman serving a 10-year sentence on corruption and fraud convictions at FCI La Tuna. Known as "Letters from La Tuna," Jones wrote the letters to his family to "warn you and all of our loved ones and friends away from any misdeeds or illegal behavior" and give readers insight into the harsh consequences of breaking the law. In the first article, Jones described being detained in a private prison in Otero, New Mexico after he was sentenced on February 17, 2011 and contracting E. coli bacteria from undercooked food and becoming ill with dysentery. Still sick, he was transferred to FCI La Tuna in May 2011:

I was loaded with nine other men into a van and taken to La Tuna Federal Correctional Institution, throwing up all the way. Once I was checked in, I was taken by wheelchair to my new home -- and a different type of hell in Unit 6 (handicapped unit) at La Tuna. The things that saved my life were my "cellies" (my cell mates, the other five men in the six-man cell that I was assigned to live in, a 10-by-10-foot room). These men fed me and wheeled me to the bathroom, food service (sometimes) and to the medical office.

Jones subsequently suffered kidney failure and was sent to a local hospital twice, each stay lasting about 30 days before he was sent back to FCI La Tuna. Jones wrote that while in the hospital, he was chained to the bed and was watched by guards 24 hours a day. However, Jones noted that the conditions at FCI La Tuna were better in comparison to the private prison he came from: "La Tuna is far more what I expected of prison -- food, guards, management bureaucracy" and added "the inmates [at FCI La Tuna] are mostly men who are in prison for far too long a term for their crimes."[2]

Notable inmates (current and former)[edit]

Inmate Name Register Number Status Details
Nakoula Basseley Nakoula 56329-112 Released in September 2013; served a 1-year sentence. Produced the anti-Islamic video Innocence of Muslims in 2012, which sparked violent protests in the Middle East; arrested for violating the terms of his probation from a 2010 check fraud conviction.[3][4]
Nicholas Bickle 22885-298 Serving a 17-year sentence; scheduled for release in 2027. Former Navy SEAL; convicted in 2011 of federal weapons charges for smuggling automatic weapons into the United States from Iraq and Afghanistan and conspiring to sell them on the black market.[5][6]
Robert Gomez 24210-112 Serving a 21-year sentence; scheduled for release in 2022. Convicted in 2003 of orchestrating the Miracle cars scam, in which over 4,000 people bought 7,000 cars that did not exist, losing $21 million; accomplice James Nichols was sentenced to 24 years; the story was featured on the CNBC show American Greed.[7][8]
Kevin McAuliffe 46322-048 Serving a 3-year sentence; released on December 17, 2014. Catholic priest; pleaded guilty to mail fraud in 2011 for stealing $650,000 from his parish, St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Las Vegas, Nevada, over an eight-year period to support his gambling habit.[9][10]
Anthony Curcio 38974-086 Released in April 2013; served a 6-year sentence. Former college football player and real estate investor, convicted in 2009 for masterminding one of the most elaborate armored car heists in history.[11][12]
Peter F. Paul 78802-012 Serving a 10-year sentence; scheduled for release in December 2014. Former attorney and entrepreneur who was convicted for conspiracy and drug dealing, and later for securities fraud in connection with his business dealings with Spider-Man co-creator Stan Lee.[13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "BOP: FCI La Tuna". Federal Bureau of Prisons. 
  2. ^ Jones, Bob (2011). "Bob Jones writes about his first 180 days in prison". El Paso Times. Retrieved 5 October 2013. 
  3. ^ Barnes, Brooks (November 7, 2012). "Man Behind Anti-Islam Video Gets Prison Term". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 March 2013. 
  4. ^ Associated Press. "California man behind anti-Islam film jailed for probation violation". Fox News. Retrieved 16 March 2013. 
  5. ^ Keyes, Charley. "Navy SEAL accused of smuggling illegal weapons from Iraq, Afghanistan". CNN. Retrieved 16 March 2013. 
  6. ^ Associated Press. "U.S. Jury Finds Navy Commando Guilty in Weapons Smuggling Case". Fox News. Retrieved 16 March 2013. 
  7. ^ John Phillips (October 30, 2000). "The Miracle Cars - Feature". Car and Driver. Retrieved June 29, 2012. 
  8. ^ "American Greed: Driven By Greed". CNBC. Retrieved 16 March 2013. 
  9. ^ Associated Press (January 15, 2012). "Priest with gambling habit facing prison in Las Vegas". USA Today. Retrieved 16 March 2013. 
  10. ^ "Catholic Priest Sentenced to Over Three Years in Prison for Stealing $650,000 from Church". Federal Bureau of Investigation. Retrieved 16 March 2013. 
  11. ^ Doughery, Phil. "D.B. Tuber". History Link. 
  12. ^ Stangeland, Brooke. "Reporter's Notebook: On the Trail of a Bank Robber". ABC news. 
  13. ^ Politico.com July 22, 2009, "After 4 years, Clintons' accuser sentenced to 10"

External links[edit]