Thursday, July 19, 2007

Its Not Prosecutorial Overreach…Its Governmental Stupidity

Have you ever heard of Jose Compean or Ignacio Ramos? Ramos and Compean, who are currently serving 11 and 12-year prison sentences, were guarding the Mexican border near El Paso, TX on February 17, 2005 when they intercepted a van carrying 743 pounds of marijuana and attempted to stop the illegal drug-smuggler from crossing the border. Although they successfully prevented the man from crossing into the U.S., they were convicted for allegedly shooting one bullet into the buttocks of the drug-smuggler and for failing to report the discharge of their firearms—acts which call only for an administrative reprimand! After presiding over a Senate hearing earlier this week, Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein has decided to ask President Bush to commute the sentences of Ramos and Compean. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif. who will chair a similar hearing in the House July 31st said that he believed the session helped revive flagging interest in the case as Ramos and Compean have spent over 180 days in prison while awaiting their appeals. Representative Rohrabacher would prefer a pardon, but said he is pleased that Feinstein is taking action. The congressman also said that he finds it ironic a "liberal Democrat" would do more than some "squishy Republican senators," and that he was gratified and overwhelmed with admiration for Sen. Feinstein. Rohrabacher asserted that the hearing "made clear this case is, on the face of it, rotten." "I think it has a lot to do with an attitude in this administration that refuses to admit any mistakes and protects its own clique but nobody else," he said. Many supporters of Ramos and Compean have argued that if the president could pardon or commute the sentence of former White House aide "Scooter" Libby, he should show mercy to border agents who were prosecuted while a drug smuggler went free. The president commuted Libby's 30-month prison sentence earlier this month.

Congressman Rohrabacher will examine the alleged involvement of the Mexican government in the decision to prosecute theses agents and others, including Texas Deputy Sheriff Gilmer Hernandez. US Attorney for the Western District of Texas Johnny Sutton, the idiot who decided to prosecute Compean and Ramos, also prosecuted Hernandez, who was convicted of violating the civil rights of two illegal aliens injured from shell fragments that struck them as the officer shot at the tires of a van in which they escaped from a routine traffic stop. The van driver had tried to run over Hernandez. Rohrabacher confirmed that Mr. Sutton, who was appointed to his current position by President Bush in 2001, has refused to testify at the July 31 hearing of the Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights, and Oversight of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and that he also has refused to provide information concerning a special visa, or transit pass, given to Aldrete Davila in an immunity deal, allowing him to travel back and forth across the border in order to testify against Ramos and Ignacio. It appears that the pass was used in an alleged second attempt by Aldrete Davila to smuggle marijuana into the U.S., eight months after the February 2005 incident at the center of the Ramos-Compean case. When confronted with the fact that the information about the alleged second smuggling attempt was kept from the jury, Mr. Sutton argued that the judge in the case made the decision. Real ballsy Mr. Sutton. Perhaps you should be charged with aiding and abetting a felon in the smuggling of illegal drugs into the United States. Don’t worry though Mr. Sutton, because if you were indicted, charged and convicted, I am sure that the President would commute your sentence immediately and that you would not have to spend 180 days in a prison surrounded by the very people you put there. I don’t know how you sleep at night.

Don’t bother logging a complaint at the White House because Bush is an idiot and the administration doesn‘t care. Call your Senators’ and Congressmen’s’ offices and let them know that you expect them to support a presidential pardon for these agents! Call them Today! Capitol Switchboard: (202)-224-3121

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