FBI Informant Says Agency Put Her Life In Danger

An informant for the FBI told 10News the agency double-crossed her and put her life in danger after she helped them in a risky operation.

"Andrea" was a highly placed member of the notorious Mexican Mafia. She said she was responsible for one of the most successful operations against the highly organized gang. She said much of the operation was recorded on videotape.

In the Discovery Channel's documentary "Inside the FBI," the operation Andrea took part in was called "one of the largest Mexican Mafia takedowns in FBI history." The documentary focused on a raid carried out in San Diego last February that featured major law enforcement action. The producers of the documentary had unusual access to much of the operation known as "Keys to the City."

The raid was considered a success, with 40 members of the Mexican Mafia arrested. Their bosses, who are in prison, were also named in federal indictments. For authorities, it was described as a major victory over a dangerous gang with a very long reach. Authorities said the Mexican Mafia controls many segments inside local jails, state and federal prisons and the Hispanic street gangs in San Diego.

At the press conference following the operation, FBI Special Agent in Charge Keith Slotter described the Mexican Mafia and said, "Many of the made members of the Mexican Mafia are behind bars. However, they do have the ability to run their operations from prisons and have been successful in doing that."

Authorities said the top bosses or godfathers of the mob, called "Carnal" or "Tio" used Andrea to carry instructions between the prisons and the outside world. Andrea said she arranged drug and arms deals, ordered gang hits and collected the Mexican Mafia's taxes on gang members -- at the same time, feeding the information to the FBI.

For the operation, the FBI moved her east to get her out of San Diego. They relocated Andrea twice and began the process to move her into the Witness Protection Program.

In the Discovery Channel's documentary, Andrea's handlers were full of praise, but she said some serious mistakes were made when the documentary aired.

While she would eventually have to testify in open court against the mafia members, Andrea said the FBI and documentary producers endangered her life by revealing too much. Andrea claimed the documentary repeatedly showed her two cars and her home.

After the documentary aired, she e-mailed 10News about what she described as "problems with the FBI and their broken promises."

"I knew if I wasn't really dead, I was dead now," said Andrea.

Soon after the e-mail, Andrea was arrested by police in the Southern city she was hiding out in. Her mug shot and identity -- which had been changed -- was posted on the jail's Web site. She was charged with obstruction of justice.

The warrant for her arrest stated, "Through FBI San Diego and copies of e-mails … the defendant … did communicate with the news media." By talking to 10News, authorities claimed she jeopardized their investigation.

Andrea spent 60 days in jail before a judge dismissed the charges.

"My life is a nightmare. They ruined my life. I don't have anything," she said.

The Discovery Channel declined to comment on 10News' story.

The FBI issued a brief statement Monday, insinuating they have arrested Andrea in connection to an unrelated case. She is being held in seclusion at a local jail.

Read the FBI's statement here.