ramos and compean

The Ramos/Compean case

Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean are two Border Patrol agents that many believe were unjustly convicted by U.S. Attorney and George W Bush associate Johnny Sutton of shooting an illegal alien drug smuggler. The case is very complicated; most of those who support them are on the rightwing, pro-borders side. Most of their opponents are those who also support illegal immigration, putting Bush and "liberals" on the same side once again.

Last modified Dec 23, 2008
Discussed in (click each link for the full post):

Sad: U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton resigns; future plans unclear (Ramos & Compean) - 04/10/09

Johnny Sutton - the U.S. Attorney in Texas appointed by his friend George W Bush - will be resigning effective April 19 (link).

Mexican government lobbied to prevent Ramos, Compean from being released - 01/22/09

On yesterday's Lou Dobbs show, Casey Wian said this about the Ramos and Compean commutation:

Mexico's Deputy Secretary of Foreign Relations Carlos Rico (ph) said, quote, "this is a message of impunity, it's difficult to understand." He also acknowledged that Mexican officials had lobbied hard to prevent the former Border Patrol agent's release.

UPDATE: There's much more on this in the 1/22 transcript. Various congressmen think there was extensive involvement by the Mexican government in the case; hopefully an investigation into contacts between that government and the Bush administration will be launched.

Bush commutes sentences for Ramos/Compean (not a pardon) - 01/19/09

George W Bush has commuted the sentences of Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean, who were convicted of having shot a later-convicted drug smuggler in 2005. Note that he did not pardon them, so felony convictions will remain on their records.

Bush pardons man convicted of conspiracy to harbor and transport illegal aliens, but not Ramos and Compean - 12/23/08

President George W Bush today pardoned nineteen people and the full list is here: usdoj.gov/opa/pr/2008/December/08-crm-1148.html

Two people not on the list are Border Patrol agents Ramos and Compean; pardoning them would send the wrong message: that our borders have meaning.

However, showing exactly where his loyalties lie, one of those pardoned was convicted of conspiracy to harbor and transport illegal aliens:

Ramos/Compean convictions upheld; to Supreme Court? - 07/28/08

From this:
The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals today affirmed the major counts against former Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean, reversing only a minor obstruction of justice count.

Ramos and Compean are serving 11- and 12-year prison sentences, respectively, after a jury convicted them of violating federal gun laws and covering up the shooting of a drug smuggler as he fled back to Mexico after driving across the border with 743 pounds of marijuana in February 2005.

Felipe Calderon explicitly wants Mexican consuls to meddle in U.S. immigration debate (non-profits) - 12/07/07

The only thing shocking about this is that he'd openly admit it:
[Today, Mexican president Felipe Calderon] asked his diplomatic representatives in the U.S. to participate in the public debate on immigration by appearing at public events, talking more to the media and working with nonprofit groups to promote Mexican immigrants' role in supporting the U.S. economy.

"The key is to neutralize this strategy of confrontation and discrimination that forms part of U.S. society's mistaken perception, and be able to newly focus arguments on the complimentary aspects of our economies," he said [to the consuls].
Several non-profit groups have direct or indirect links to the Mexican government, such as the ACLU, SPLC, AFSC, and MALDEF via membership in a group headed by Peter Schey, someone with a long list of links to that government. He also heads the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law, which has been an occasional quote source for the MSM.

Another group is the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, whose president serves on an advisory council to the Mexican president. That group helped organize some of last year's illegal immigration marches, and is in turn linked not just to Rod Blagojevich but also to the Blue America PAC (run by some bloggers).

Another frequent quote source, the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, has a direct albeit somewhat minor link to the Mexican government.

New Haven's Junta for Progressive Action is/was collaborating with that government and sued to block immigration raids. Kica Matos, their former president, now works for that city and pushed through their efforts to give ID cards to illegal aliens. And, she's married to Henry Fernandez of the Center for American Progress.

Needless to say, there are many others.

In fact, it's difficult to find a non-profit involved in immigration matters that doesn't have some sort of a link, whether direct or first or second-level indirect. When nonprofit groups are involved in immigration matters in the future, it will be even more difficult to tell whether they're speaking for the Mexican government or not, and it will be even more important to attempt to call them on any links they have. In some cases their public funding should be eliminated, and if it applies they should be requested to register under the DOJ's Foreign Agents Registration Act.

Also:
Calderon's instructions came two days after he accused U.S. presidential candidates of "swaggering, macho and anti-Mexican" posturing. He also warned the U.S. Congress not to impose conditions on a $1.4 billion anti-drug aid package.
Related:
Mexican diplomats meddling in our internal politics
"Mexico's Defense of Illegal Immigrants"
American Jewish Committee collaborates with Mexican government to support illegal immigration
Mexican consul meddling in Irving Texas (Matricula Consular cards to prevent arrests)
New York Times alludes to Mexican meddling via consulates (Little Rock)
Ramos/Compean trial transcripts; meddling Mexican consuls initiated case?
Nancy Pelosi didn't meet the meddling Mexican congressmen?
Dianne Solis, Alfredo Corchado, Dallas Morning News downplay Mexican meddling
More meddling by Mexican consuls
"Bush Bill Would Aid Mexico's Meddling in U.S."
"Mexico is meddling in US military"

Ramos/Compean drug smuggler arrested (for 2005 case) - 11/15/07

From this:
Osvaldo Aldrete Davila, the drug smuggler who was shot in the buttocks by El Paso Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean in 2005, was arrested on drug charges at the Zaragoza Bridge this morning, officials with the U.S.

Sens. Feinstein, Cornyn criticize Border Patrol agents prosection (Ramos/Compean) - 07/17/07

Neither Feinstein (AgJobs) nor Cornyn (curious NAU-related legislation) are on the pro-borders side, so I'm not about to give them a medal for this, but:

Texas Republican Sen. John Cornyn, California Democratic Sen.

Live coverage, GOP presidential debate, June 5, 2007 - 06/05/07

11: I'm going to go practice my track-standing. Back later...

10: Three minutes with Larry King commence now...

9: Hunter mentioned pardoning Ramos-Compean, and even bringing back the Reagan Democrats.

8: John McCain warns that having 12 million illegal aliens - 2 million of them being criminals - is dangerous. His solution is his bill, which would give them a wave-of-the-wand legalization, with the government having only 24 hours to deny an application.

7: Ron Paul is pointing out that massive illegal immigration is subsidized...

Fmr CBP Chief Robert Bonner criticizes Ramos/Compean sentences - 05/09/07

From this:
The former commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, who helped organize the agency in 2003 as a part of the Department of Homeland Security, says the lengthy prison sentences handed two U.S. Border Patrol agents for shooting a fleeing drug-smuggling suspect were excessive.

Robert S. Bonner, a former federal judge and veteran prosecutor who also headed the U.S.

Border Patrol agents: "no confidence" in Chief David Aguilar - 04/23/07

From this:
The leaders of the U.S. Border Patrol's rank-and-file agents have unanimously voted a no-confidence resolution against Chief David V. Aguilar, citing, among other things, his willingness to believe the "perjured allegations" of criminal aliens over his own agents.

The resolution won endorsement from all 100 top leaders of the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC), which represents all 11,000 of the U.S.

Goal: tie U.S. Attorneys firings to immigration (Dems hoist on own petard) - 04/16/07

I can't do everything, and I've completely failed to try to tie in the firings of several U.S. Attorneys to immigration matters. For instance, here's Phyllis Schlafly tying the firings into the Ramos/Compean case, suggesting the Bush should fire U.S.

Ramos/Compean: Congress to investigate Mexican involvement - 03/13/07

From this:
Democrats have approved a congressional hearing to explore Mexico's possible influence on the prosecution of Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean.

The request by Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif. a

"Man agents shot ran drugs into U.S. after he was given immunity, DEA report says" - 02/27/07

From this:
The Mexican national shot by two Border Patrol agents in a drug-related incident in February 2005 brought a second van load of drugs into the U.S. while he waited to testify against the agents, according to Drug Enforcement Administration reports obtained by the Daily Bulletin.

Osbaldo Aldrete-Davila - who was given immunity by U.S.

Ramos/Compean: Darryl Fears, "angry conservatives", and possible distortion - 02/17/07

Darryl Fears of the Washington Post offers "Support Swells for Agents Who Shot Drug Smuggler: Conservatives Lead Movement to Free Ex-Border Patrolmen". His report seems to contain errors.

First, it starts like this:

Early this week, the Bush administration urged angry conservatives to remain calm over the convictions of two former Border Patrol agents who shot an unarmed Mexican drug smuggler, but petitions for their release continued to flood the White House.

Later on, he reveals that Sen. Dianne Feinstein "promised to look into the matter", and the American Federation of Government Employees will "speak with one voice" against the convictions. I don't know about the AFGE, but most people wouldn't put Feinstein in the "angry conservative" camp.

Also:

After the shooting, the agents collected all shell casings at the scene, threw them away and did not mention the shooting to superiors, a violation of Border Patrol procedures that call for an oral report after a weapon is discharged, according to the report and court records.

As far as I know, supervisors were on the scene or knew about the incident, which seems to indicate that the requirements for an "oral report" had been met. Also, I recall that the complaint from U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton was that a written report hadn't been made, but only supervisors - and thus not Ramos or Compean - can make such reports.

And:

Investigators granted immunity to Aldrete-Davila to lure him back across the border. The story he told was corroborated by other officers at the scene, the report said.

Those statements may contradict the facts of the matter; OAD might have been presented to the U.S. by the Mexican consulate. Note also that a few of the agents on the scene have since been fired.

Then, Fears refers to Rep. Ted Poe (Tex.), Rep. Phil Gingrey (Ga.) and Rep. Walter B. Jones (N.C.) as "[a]ngry congressional Republicans". Were they scowling as well?

I'm hardly an expert on the case, but parts of Fears' report are misleading at best. Please contact the WaPo's ombudsman and suggest they do more research: projects.washingtonpost.com/staff/email/deborah+howell/

Ramos/Compean: smuggler's credibility questioned; second load while under court protection - 02/16/07

From this:
Osbaldo Aldrete-Davila, the Mexican drug smuggler given immunity to return to the United States and testify against two Border Patrol agents, was involved in smuggling a second load of marijuana into the United States after he was given court protection, records have confirmed...
I'd certainly be interested in knowing whether any documents they gave him were used in that smuggling run, but unfortunately that isn't covered in the article.

Ramos/Compean trial transcripts; meddling Mexican consuls initiated case? - 02/13/07

A series of PDF files containing the transcripts of the trial of Border Patrol agents Ramos and Compean is here:

usdoj.gov/usao/txw/press_releases/Compean-Ramos/index.html

An MSM report with very little information gleaned from them is here, and a thread that may in the future have some more information is here.

Ramos/Compean Part 2: Gilmer Hernandez - 02/12/07

From this:

A Texas deputy sheriff [Guillermo F. Hernandez, "Gilmer"] who fired shots at a fleeing vehicle after the driver tried to run him down faces 10 years in prison for injuring one of the passengers, a Mexican national being smuggled illegally into the United States... The deputy's boss, Sheriff Donald G.

Ramos/Compean: evidence in van; injuries worse than reported; other agents fired; Feinstein - 02/10/07

U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton - who prosecuted the Border Patrol agents Ramos and Compean - said that there was no evidence that could be used to identify the drug smuggler the agents supposedly shot as the driver of the van involved. However, it appears that he left his cell phone behind in the van, and Sutton apparently didn't try to use that against him.

Ramos/Compean: who's on the Bush administration's side? - 02/08/07

I have a feeling that it won't be too very long before even more truth comes out about the case of the two Border Patrol agents (Ramos/Compean) who strongly appear to have been railroaded by their own government. So, let's take a look at the short, select list of some of those who've supported the Bush administration's side of things:

Ramos/Compean <s>trial transcripts</s> OIG Report of Investigation - 02/07/07

Available in this PDF.

UPDATE: Smitty is indeed correct: those aren't the transcripts, but the very heavily - and most likely mostly unnecessarily - redacted Report of Investigation of the DHS Office of Inspector General which was obtained under a FOIA request.

Ramos/Compean: "Government admits lying about jailed border agents" - 02/07/07

It's not looking too good for that small number of people who've taken the Bush adminstration's side in this matter:
A Department of Homeland Security official admitted today the agency misled Congress when it contended it possessed investigative reports proving Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean confessed guilt and declared they "wanted to shoot some Mexicans" prior to the incident that led to their imprisonment.

...Under questioning by [Rep.

Ramos/Compean: prison beating; supervisors knew of incident; written report not allowed - 02/06/07

The saga of the two Border Patrol agents who strongly appear to have been railroaded by the Bush administration continues with the news that BP Agent Ramos has been beaten in prison by five Hispanics after they recognized him from either an episode of America's Most Wanted or the Lou Dobbs show.

And:

A Department of Homeland Security internal memo discloses seven Border Patrol agents and two supervisors were at the scene of

NBPC responds to Johnny Sutton Ramos/Compean claims - 01/27/07

Johnny Sutton is the U.S. Attorney to the Western District of Texas and he led the prosecution of Border Patrol agents Ramos and Compean. He's also the author of a "Myths vs. Facts" article (PDF) giving his side of the case. Now, the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC) has a response to his article, available from this page.

Hidden details of Ramos/Compean case; sealed evidence - 01/23/07

This site occasionally tries to have an introductory paragraph for new readers. Other sites do things differently. So, there might be interesting background here about the case of the two Border Patrol agents (Ramos and Compean) who appear to have been railroaded by their own government, but I didn't bother to read it through to see exactly what that was. Nevertheless, it would seem to be required reading for those who want to support the government's view of events.

UPDATE: T.J.

Did Johnny Sutton prosecute Ramos/Compean under the right law? - 01/22/07

Holy moley:
Rep. Walter B. Jones (R-N.C.) has on record a letter written to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales on Oct.11, 2006, charging that Border Patrol Agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean were charged under a statue that did not apply to the facts of the case. As previously reported by WND, the interview I conducted on Friday, Jan.

Bush to call Ramos and Compean families - 01/20/07

From this:
President Bush is expected to reach out to the families of two Texas Border Patrol agents convicted of shooting a Mexican drug smuggler.

White House staff contacted former agent Ignacio Ramos' family early Friday, assuring them the president would call them soon, said Monica Ramos, the agent's wife...

Congressional Pardon for Railroaded Border Patrol Agents - 01/18/07

Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) has introduced the Congressional Pardon for Border Patrol Agents Ramos and Compean Act, which would try to seek a pardon for those BP agents who appear to have been railroaded by their own government.

Tony Snow: immigration laws weren't enforced "seriously" - 01/17/07

Les Kinsolving asked Tony Snow this question:

"With regard to your statement, 'border guards must obey the law, too,' [a Ramos/Compean reference] question, now how have so many millions of illegal aliens been able to enter our country if the president and his predecessor were seriously enforcing border and immigration laws?"

I invite everyone to put on their Bill Clinton Circuitousosity Caps[TM] and carefully parse Snow's respon

Ramos/Compean: how the Democrats could make Bush look very bad - 01/16/07

Ramos and Compean are the two Border Patrol agents who appear to have been railroaded by their own government and who were sentenced to more than ten years in prison. Despite several efforts by Congressmen and other groups, Bush refused to grant them a pardon. Pending any last-minute action by a judge or even Bush, they'll begin serving their sentences tomorrow.

The reader is encouraged to contact the White House at 202-456-1111 or 202-456-1414 and let your thoughts be known.

Congressmen still fighting Ramos/Compean conviction - 01/11/07

From this Lou Dobbs transcript:
CASEY WIAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Texas congressman Ted Poe led a group of lawmakers demanding the Justice Department not oppose a request that former Border Patrol agents Jose Compean and Ignacio Ramos remain out of prison while their convictions for shooting an illegal alien Mexican drug smuggler are appealed.

Bush pardons drug dealers, doesn't pardon railroaded BP agents - 12/30/06

President Bush recently issued his year-end pardons, and those receiving good news included (via this and this):
-Marie Georgette Ginette Briere of Gatineau, Quebec, possession of cocaine with intent to distribute.

-George Thomas Harley of Albuquerque, N.M, aiding and abetting the distribution of cocaine.

-Eric William

George Bush's Christmas gift for railroaded Border Patrol agents - 12/23/06

Ramos and Compean are two Border Patrol agents who appear to have been railroaded by our own government, perhaps to send a message to other BP agents that they shouldn't really enforce the law or perhaps to send a message to Mexico that president Bush isn't really serious about enforcing the law. Both have been sentenced to over 10 years in prison.

Alberto Gonzales unaware of letter about Ramos/Compean case; give him a call - 12/01/06

This site reprints an action alert from FAIR:
During the last year, Border Patrol Agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean were criminally prosecuted, convicted, and sentenced to serve years in prison for doing their job - protecting America from drug and illegal alien smugglers at our southern border.

Ramos/Compean: smear? CBP head won't criticize prosecution - 10/29/06

The latest on the case of Border Patrol agents Ramos and Compean - who appear to have been railroaded by our government - includes the Commissioner of Customs and Border Protection, Ralph Basham, refusing to "criticize [their] prosecution" (link). Regarding the letter that twelve House members sent asking for an investigation, Tony Snow says:
"Let's wait and see what the hearing produces...

Tony Snow asked about Ramos/Compean case, dodges question - 10/24/06

On Monday, Les Kinsolving asked Whitehouse spokesman Tony Snow about the case of the two Border Patrol agents who appear to have been railroaded by our own government. He specifically asked whether Bush would give them a pardon. Here's Snow's response:

"That's an unanswerable question, Les. The president is the person who is responsible for pardons.

Ramos/Compean case: sentenced to 10+ years, no mistrial - 10/19/06

The two Border Patrol agents who appear to have been railroaded by our own government have been sentenced to 10+ years each.

Send an email about Ramos/Compean Border Patrol case - 08/29/06

As discussed previously, Ramos and Compean are two Border Patrol agents who appear to have been railroaded by our own federal government. You can read the details on the matter and send an email to George Bush, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, and DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff here. Other actions discussed at the previous link.

Justice for the Border Patrol (Compean/Ramos) - 08/25/06

A new site from FAIR has a petition you can sign supporting the two Border Patrol agents who appear to have been railroaded: Justice for the Border Patrol.

It contains this interesting quote from Sen. Dianne Feinstein:

"It appears that the facts do not add up or justify the length of the sentences for these agents, let alone their conviction on multiple counts. Border agents often have a difficult and dangerous job in guarding our nation's borders.

"Legal defense fund started for convicted Border Patrol agents" - 08/22/06

From this:
The union representing U.S. Border Patrol agents has set up a legal defense fund for two agents convicted earlier this year of wounding a suspected drug smuggler and then trying to cover up the shooting.

The National Border Patrol Council, the union that represents nearly all Border Patrol agents, launched the fund this week to help former agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Alonso Compean pay for an appeal and provide some money for their families.

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