Juan Sanchez, former leader of Southwest Key Programs, resigned earlier this year after it was publicly disclosed that he earned nearly $1.5 million in 2016 in compensation for detaining migrant children and teens for the U.S. government.
Southwest Key Programs is a Texas-based nonprofit. But the $1.5 million was not the end of the story.
New tax records obtained by The Washington Post indicate he earned more than double that — $3.6 million — in total compensation in 2017.
In an interview with The Post last year, Sanchez said that the 2016 pay bump was “a retirement contribution” and that he had allegedly worked for low wages for years. In 2017, Sanchez received more than $1 million in cash payments — nearly $784,000 in base salary and $238,500 in bonus pay, according to records filed with the Internal Revenue Service and obtained by The Post.
The biggest portion of the enormous amount that he received was through a life insurance and retirement policy. According to Joella Brooks, the interim chief executive of Southwest Key, Sanchez forfeited hundreds of thousands of dollars when he resigned.
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Doesn’t look like that’s hurt his wallet much.
Sanchez resigned on April 1 because of outrage over his inflated salary and business dealings. Southwest Key is one of the main contractors that house unaccompanied migrant youth.
According to The Washington Post, they are currently housing approximately 4,500 minors in Texas, California and Arizona, detaining more than one-third of the 12,500 minors in Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) custody.
Southwest Key has an annual contract of approximately $460 million a year to shelter children, and federal records show the nonprofit has collected more than $1.1 billion since 2014, The Post reports.
While Sanchez and the so-called nonprofit were making billions of dollars off of detaining migrant children, the government has faced a budgeting crisis and extreme financial strain. In May, HHS suspended English classes, soccer and legal aid for children until Congress approved a $4.6 billion supplemental funding package that included money for migrant care.