Prosecutors: Downtown L.A. federal prison guard lied about sex with inmate he gave cellphone to take nude photos

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The Metropolitan Detention Center in Los Angeles is seen on July 14, 2019. (David McNew / Getty Images)

The Metropolitan Detention Center in Los Angeles is seen on July 14, 2019. (David McNew / Getty Images)

A guard at the federal jail in downtown Los Angeles was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of lying to investigators about having sex with an inmate, prosecutors said.

A federal grand jury indictment charges Abel Concho, of East Los Angeles, with one count of making false statements, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a statement.

During interviews with investigators, Concho allegedly made a series of false statements, including that he “never” had sexual contact with the inmate who was under his care at the Metropolitan Detention Center from June 2010 to February 2011, the statement said.

During that time, investigators were probing allegations that Concho had sexual contact with multiple inmates at the federal prison, which houses a total of 635 male and female inmates.

During an interview with investigators, Concho made several false statements, including that he had sexual intercourse and engaged in oral sex with the victim just “once (or) twice” that he could recall, the indictment alleges.

Concho is also accused of smuggling a cellphone into the facility to the victim to take nude photographs for him.

If convicted of the charge in the indictment, Concho, 53, would face a statutory maximum penalty of five years in federal prison.

He was scheduled to make an initial court appearance Tuesday afternoon. It wasn’t immediately known if he has an attorney who could speak on his behalf.

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