4 DEA employees encountered man forgotten in cell

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Updated: 7/08 6:05 pm

SAN DIEGO (AP) — A government investigation has found that four U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration employees saw or heard a handcuffed college student while he was held in a San Diego cell for five days without food or water.

The U.S. Justice Department's inspector general's office said Tuesday that the employees told investigators they assumed whoever placed Daniel Chong in the cell would soon return for him and that they found nothing unusual. Investigators faulted three case agents and a supervisor who were responsible for Chong's safety and DEA management for failing to notify the inspector general's office earlier.

The DEA declined to say what consequences the employees faced, if any.

Chong was picked up in a drug sweep in April 2012.

After he was released, Chong was hospitalized for five days for dehydration, kidney failure, cramps and a perforated esophagus. Last year, Chong settled his lawsuit against the federal government for $4.1 million.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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