Monday, April 30, 2007
What they consider hate mail at Immigrant Solidarity
Feel free to email email@example.com and let him know you support him!
4/30: Hate E-Mail of the Date
Follow the title link at your own risk - make sure you have a bucket nearby...
Calendar of Events for May Day
In addition to major actions in NYC, Chicago, Phoenix and Los Angels, more than 100 other cities and towns are organizing activities on May 1, International Day of the Working Class. We list below some of these events. For more information go to:
May 1 - 12 noon Rally at Armory Park 220 S. 5th Ave
8:00am - Gather SouthGate 3300 S. 6th Ave
9:00am - March to Downtown Tucson
Tucson May 1st Coalition
520-770-1373 • firstname.lastname@example.org
May 1 - 12 noon - March from Olympic & Broadway
National May 1st Movement for Worker & Immigrant Rights
c/o United Teachers Los Angeles
May 1- 10am Rally and March
Rally at Fruitvale Plaza and March to the Federal Building
Contact, Claudia Reyes,
510 261 3398 • email@example.com
May 1 - 12-1pm – Rally, Dolores Park, Mission District and Grand March for Unconditional Amnesty to the Civic Center
Movement for an Unconditional Amnesty
415-287-0749 • AmnistiaSF@gmail.com
May 1 – 12 noon March and Rally
II Gran Boicot Americano por una Amnistia
Four simultaneous marches will depart from: 1) Iglesia Santa Maria; 2) Cesar Chavez Park; 3) Iglesia Cristo Rey; and 4) Parque El Dorado. These marches will join at corner of Alisal St. and Sanborn Rd. and march together to the rally site (Constitution Blvd. Soccer Complex, Constitution and Laurel Dr.)
San Diego & Tijuana Mexico
Rally/March, May 1st, Tuesday, 5 pm
Las Brisas Shopping Center, Blvd. Diaz Ordaz
Justice in the Maquiladoras!
Healthy and safe labor conditions
Full rights to U.S. immigrant workers!
Meeting and Discussion
Struggles and experience of Tijuana maquiladora workers
Saturday April 28, 11 am
Where: Cittac’s office, Dolores 32, Fraccionamiento Dimenstein
Both Events Sponsored by: Workers Information Center, Cittac: phone 011-52-664-622-4269
San Diego Maquiladora Network, firstname.lastname@example.org
March/Rally May 1st, 3 pm
Corner of Park and A
Near City College and McDonalds
End to the Raids and deportations of immigrants!
No new Bracero program disguised as Guest-Worker program!
Legalization for everybody!
Si Se Puede Coalition
619-309-7435 • email@example.com
May 1- 10:00 am - Lincoln Park
Pass Fair and Humane Immigration Reform this Year! Stop the Raids NOW! ¡Pase Reforma Migratoria Justa y Digna este Alto! ¡Paren las Redadas AHORA!
Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition (CIRC)
www.coloradoimmigrant.org • firstname.lastname@example.org • 303-893-3500
May 1 – 12 noon at the Green
“Because we will take the streets again and we will get our rights back and because no human is illegal.”
Unidad Latina en Accion
unidad-latinaenaccion.blogspot.com • email@example.com •203-606-3484
Palm Beach area
May 1 – 9am March and Rally
Contact Sonia Barajas, 561-306-0709
May 1 - 10:00am – Plantón/Rally – Union Park (Ashland Ave. and Washington St.)
12:00 PM – Marcha/March – Randolph St., Desplaines St., Jackson Blvd., Columbus Dr.
2:00 PM – Plantón/Rally – Grant Park
¡Legalizacion Y Derechos Plenos Para Todos! Legalization And Full Rights!
March 10th Movement
Info@movimiento10demarzo.org • 877-762-7242
Student & Worker Walk-Out
May 1 – 12 noon protest
Feeder Marches gathering at 12 noon and will leave at 1pm:
South Side: Benito Juarez High School (Cermak and Ashland)
North Side: Adalberto UMC On Division St. (near California)
“Moratorium on Raids and Deportations Now! Legalization Now! Stop the War and Bring The Troops Home Now!”
El Zocalo Urbano Representing High Schools, Colleges and Universities of Chicago, the youth of Pueblo Sin Fronteras and the Children of La Familia Latina Unida.
Contact, Anita: 773-552-0555 Jesus:773-820-2016
May 1 - 4:00 pm - Boston Common
Boston May Day Coalition
www.bostonmayday.org • firstname.lastname@example.org • 617-290-5614
May 1- 2:00 pm - March from Everett City Hall
3:00 pm - March from Chelsea City Hall
4:00 pm - Rally in Central Square, East Boston
Stop The Raids & Deportations, Yes To Family Reunification, Just & Immediate Immigration Reform
www.chelseacollab.org • email@example.com • 617-889-6080
Endorsed by (partial list): Chelsea Human Services -Collaborative, Jobs with Justice, Proyecto Hondureno, Centro Presente, Alternatives for Community & Environment, UFCW Local 1445, Frente Farabundo Marti para la Liberacion Nacional, Proyecto Voz AFSC, Chinese Progressive Association...
May 1 - Time/Place - TBD
Latinos Unidos/United de Michigan (LUUM), www.luum.org
Rosendo Delgado - 313-887-1849
Ignacio Meneses - 313-587-9285
Elena Herrada - 313-974-0501
May 1 - 4:00 pm - March - Lake St. & Nicollet St.
MN Immigrant Rights Action Coalition (MIRAC)
www.MNImmigrantRights.net • 651-389-9174
May 1 - 7:00 pm - US Federal Courthouse, 333 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
United Coalition for Immigrant Rights
May 1 - 11:00 am - Warinanco Park, Mass Meeting
NJ May 1 Coalition
www.njmay1.org • firstname.lastname@example.org • 973-736-0522
New York City
May 1 - 4:00 pm - Rally & March
Union Square Park, 14 St. & Broadway
Marching to Federal Plaza/ Foley Square
(Site of the African Burial Ground)
Money for human needs, not for war • Living wage and work for all!
Health care, housing & education now • Protect all workers’ rights to organize and strike
Legalization for all immigrants now • End I.C.E. deportations/raids and police murders
Shut down detention centers and end unjust imprisonments
NYC May 1 Coalition
www.may1info • 646-291-2778
May 1 – 12 noon “No Human Is Illegal” rally
Bernie Milton (Main) Pavilion, The Commons
Tompkins County Workers Center
TCWRC@yahoo.com • 607-269-0409,
May Day International Workers’ Day – 3pm
Vigil and March for Immigrants’ Rights, location to be announced.
“All united for respect and dignity for the working class!”
Pittsburgh Friends of Immigrants
May 1 - 12 noon - Rally/March - Capitol to Brittingham Park
Union de Trabajadores Inmigrantes/Immigrant Workers Union
www.uniondetrabajadores.org • email@example.com • 608-345-9544 or 608-446-3656
May 1 - 12:00 pm - Voces de la Frontera, 1027 S. 5th St.
Un Dia Sin Latin@s/A Day Without Latin@s
Estatal Marcha por Derechos Civiles y Boicot/Statewide Civil Rights March & Boycott
Voces de la Frontera
Wisconsin Legalization Coalition
www.vocesdelafrontera.net • firstname.lastname@example.org • 414.643.1620
May Day March for Justice
May 1 – 5pm, Gather at Santa Cecilia Catholic Church,1809 W. Davis St.
Contact: Alberto Ruiz • email@example.com • 214-941-8300
May 1 – 6pm
People for Peace and Justicer
www.peopleforpeaceandjustice.org • Erik Toren, firstname.lastname@example.org
May 1 – 2pm Rally and March
Malcom X Park
Stop the raids and deportations!
Legalization for all immigrants!
Contact Sonia Umauzor, email@example.com • 202-420-7001
Fast to Make D.C. A Sanctuary City
Fast begins April 28 at park at the intersection of Lamont St NW and Mount Pleasant St NW. Participants will then join the May Day Rally at Malcolm X Park.
D.C. Committee For Immigrant Rights, The Metro D.C. Interfaith Sanctuary Network, Mexicanos Sin Fronteras And The Latino Media Collective
Sunday, April 29, 2007
Minuteman National Rally Spokesman Raymond Herrera appeared on Spanish language Channel 22 TV News Saturday night and declared that the Minutemen and ICE have been in talks and that both ICE and the Border Patrol will be at the rallies planned by illegal aliens throughout the country - and in particular LA - on May 1, 2007.
I was notified by a reader that the following occurred on the show.
Herrera was interviewed opposite a Los Angeles organizer of the May 1 Protest, a grand motherly- looking woman, Gloria Saucedo, representing Hermandad Mexicana
An Annotated Recap:
The segment opened with Newscaster Jacqueline Llamas asking Herrera: Will the Minutemen be present and peaceful at the May 1 demonstration?
Minuteman Herrera: The Minutemen are always peaceful - they are just moms and dads. People of peace, people of god.
Herrera At Johnny Carson Park, Burbank
Newscaster Llamas: Asked Hermandad Mexicana Organizer Gloria Saucedo to talk about the Los Angeles May 1 Protest
Hermandad Mexicana: Gloria Saucedo - very grand motherly - invited everyone to attend the downtown L.A. May 1 event. She said it will be the community coming together. To send a loud voice in support of the undocumented. She cautioned students to attend after school, then stated the time and location of the protest. She was very kindly in her presentation. Sweet.
Minuteman Herrera: When Saucedo finished, Herrera looked directly into the camera and said: ICE has met with the Minutemen. ICE and the Border Patrol will be stationed among the crowd at the L.A. May 1 protest. Anyone without papers will be subject to apprehension. They will also be photographing the crowd and their license plates. All undocumenteds would be well advised to stay home from this May 1 protest; they risk apprehension should they attend.
Hermandad Mexicana: Gloria Saucedo, suddenly, was not so kindly in her approach, in fact, she started yelling: THOSE ARE BIG LIES! HE IS A BIG FAT LIAR! Do not be afraid - have no fear - there will be no Agents there. Her face was very angry as she yelled into the camera.
Minuteman Herrera: No I am not lying - ICE and the Border Patrol will be there. YOU are lying - he said to Saucedo - you are lying to the people. This protest should take place in Mexico - you should take your flags and your noise and go to Mexico to hold your protest. Protest Mexico! Revolution in Mexico!
The interview ended with the newscaster saying good night - Herrera also said good night - BUT Gloria Saucedo was still yelling: LIES - LIES.
Be sure to visit minutemanproject.com
Rape victim encounters attacker
Panel advances bill closing loophole that aids illegals
By Alan Gathright, Rocky Mountain News
April 26, 2007
A teenage rape victim in Adams County believed she would be safe after her attacker, an illegal immigrant, agreed to "voluntary" deportation from the United States.
"A few weeks later, this girl is walking down the street and comes face to face with her rapist," Rep. Amy Stephens, R-Monument, told the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. "You want to talk about trauma? You want to talk about just the awful feelings this produced in this young woman?"
Stephens urged the committee to close a loophole that gives career criminals facing stiff prison time a "get-out-of-jail-free card" that U.S. citizens can't obtain.
Offenders routinely admit they're illegal immigrants and demand deportation. Their attorneys later get state criminal charges dismissed by telling a judge the defendant has been "deported against their will," as one law enforcement official put it. They even get their bond money back.
As the Adams County case shows, deportation is operated on a kind of "honors system," which crooks violate to stay in the country, Stephens said. "This is an issue of getting justice for victims," said Stephens, sponsor of House Bill 1040 that aims to slam shut that loophole.
The committee agreed, voting unanimously to advance the bill.
It bars dismissing criminal charges when illegal immigrants are released to federal immigration authorities. Instead, a judge must issue an arrest warrant, so if a deported offender is caught re-entering the country, he'll be re-arrested on the prior charge. The bill also allows for the defendants to be prosecuted for the state crime and serve prison time here.
[ok is it just me or is this idiotic that there even has to be a BILL for this?????]
To pay for increased jail time for some of the estimated 16,000 illegal immigrants arrested annually in the state for crimes besides unlawful entry, the bill requires that bonds posted by deported offenders will be seized by the state.
gathrighta@RockyMountainNews.com or 303-954-5486
Illegal immigrants say local law enforcement doesn't care if they're here legally or not
How Deblain Gomez Gomez, Juan Gomez Burgos and Vincente Santiago Flores got to Newport News Jail is a different story. But the endings are all the same. Jail officials say once the men are done with the American criminal process, immigration agents are scheduled to take them for possible deportation. Inside this maximum security facility the inmates have NOT been able to hear the outcry over illegal immigrants accused of crimes. Gomez says he has only been arrested once and before it happened, he did not worry about police. Through a translator, he says, "No, no, no because there are millions of immigrants here and we're all illegals."
Gomez is locked up on assault and malicious wounding charges. The two men to his left -- Juan Gomez Burgos and Vincente Santiago Flores -- are both charged with robbery. The men say before they got in trouble, officers did not bother them. But even after breaking the law, Burgos says local police never asked if he was allowed to be in the United States. In Spanish, he says, "In South Carolina they caught me with cocaine and mota." Mota is marijuana, he says. Was he surprised that he was not deported? "Si -- yeah."
Burgos says that was in 2003. Just this past February, Newport News police arrested Flores, he says, for being drunk in public and he too never heard them ask about his immigration status. He said through a translator, "No, nothing they only held me for about 8 or 10 hours then they let me go because I was too drunk, I could not even walk. When they let me go I was fine. Just signed papers that I have to come to court the 13th of March."
After the arrest of this illegal immigrant in March, many in Hampton Roads have come to learn Burgos and Flores' experience is not unusual -- local police often do not ask about immigration status if the person under arrest is facing a misdemeanor or lesser charges. Alfredo Ramos had been arrested for several misdemeanors but only until police accused him of manslaughter for the drunk driving deaths of these girls in Virginia Beach did local officers notify immigration enforcement about Ramos. What do these men think? ¶"Well I don't know that's up to the justice, with him he was drinking and driving. Yes, yes it's a crime he commited with his vehicle," says Flores.
The deaths of 16 year old Tessa Tranchant -- on the left -- and 17 year old Alison Kunhardt brought such intense outrage, Virginia Beach's police chief explained in a news conference April 5th why his officers did not alert immigration when they first came across Ramos on a charge of public intoxication -- a low level crime. Chief Jake Jacocks said Immigration and Customs Enforcement -- known as ICE -- is both understaffed and underfunded-- "... and typically does not respond to calls from local police who have undocumented alients in custody unless the charges are major felonies or otherwise high profile. In fact, ICE has told us there is nothing they can do unless the individual is arrested for a felony and we shouldn't bother calling them otherwise."
ICE agents would not speak on camera. But ICE reps do say Jacocks' statements are not true and agents can detain a person no matter how serious the crime. Furthermore, other Hampton Roads communities -- like Norfolk -- do allow officers to question people about their citizenship during any type of arrest. Norfolk Public Information Officer Chris Amos says,"Whether it's a felony, a rapist or a robber, or a misdemeanor, we'll notify immigration-- " if they suspect the person is illegally in the country. He adds after that, it's up to ICE to enforce immigration laws.
But policies may change. Virginia Beach police are reviewing theirs. Jails are also making assessments. The Newport News Jail which houses these illegal immigrants now keeps track of how many illegal immigrants it has, when jail officers call ICE, and how often ICE says it will pick up an inmate. Lieutenant Colonel Eileen Sprinkle is the Operations Bureau Chief at the Newport News Jail and says, "The situation in Virginia Beach has brought a lot of things to light and that has brought us to now we maybe need to keep track of what we're doing here and maybe pay a little closer attention it just hasn't been an issue to this point."
ummm.. ya think???
'There is division within the movement, but we don't like to make that public'
(but WE DO!)
Posted: April 29, 2007
1:00 a.m. Eastern
© 2007 WorldNetDaily.com
The coalition that put 100,000 marchers onto Phoenix, Ariz., streets for last year's march demanding legalization for undocumented aliens is expecting to turn out only 5,000 to 10,000 participants when they descend on the state Capitol on May Day - thanks to internal feuding.
While publicly blaming recent immigration raids across the country for creating fear and apprehension among illegals and making them reluctant to join the march for a second year, the coalition organizing the event has "disintegrated into a feud over power, money and control," reported the Arizona Republic.
The dozens of labor unions, church and religious groups and Hispanic groups that marched under the banner of the We Are America/Somos America coalition are not cooperating this year because of differences over tactics, leadership and fundraising methods.
"There is division within the movement, but we don't like to make that public," said Hector Yturralde, president of We Are America.
Some, like Center for Community Change's Germonique Jones, see the focus on national marches and rallies as distractions.
"People are so focused on the public displays, like marches and rallies, they are missing the other ways people are involved," Jones said.
While the different groups are virtually unanimous in their desire for Congress to create a path to citizenship for the millions of illegal aliens in the U.S., the path to that goal has become contentious following last year's success.
A bill, introduced in the House in March, would provide legalization, but only after illegals returned to their home country first. This "touch back" provision is opposed by the We Are America coalition, while others see it as a pragmatic compromise to get a bill passed in Congress.
Elias Bermudez, president of Immigrants Without Borders, has made few friends by arguing that citizenship is the wrong goal and that most immigrants simply want to work.
"There are some people who, for political reasons, want to create a new citizenry, but 80 percent of people who come here only come because they want to work," said Bermudez.
Alfredo Gutierrez, a former Democratic state senator and radio talk-show host, opposes both the bill and Bermudez, charging the latter with profiteering off the march by selling sponsorships to businesses in exchange for advertising space.
"They are commercializing it," said Gutierrez, who is refusing to participate this year. "Elias is selling the march. He's making a business out of it."
The Phoenix experience is being repeated elsewhere.
In Sarasota, Fla., some immigrant-rights advocates are telling supporters not to march.
"When you come out to the streets, you jeopardize the safety of people and their children," German Calderon, owner and editor of a monthly Spanish-language publication, told the Sarasota Herald. "There are some subversive groups out there who do not have good intentions."
Luz Corcuera, chairwoman of the Latino Community Network of Manatee County, advises skipping the marches and focusing, instead, on immigration legislation currently before Congress.
"The task should not be to be out on the streets. The task should be to put pressure on lawmakers who have this immigration project before them on the table," Corcuera said. "I am opposed to having people out in the open and putting them at risk."
For Rusty Childress, founder of the anti-illegal-immigration group United for a Sovereign America, the waning enthusiasm for a large march is evidence that increased enforcement of immigration laws is working.
"This attrition through enforcement does seem to be having an impact," Childress told the Arizona Republic. "The message is getting out that if you enforce the law, people will self-deport."
Our one on one interview with Gary Brugman from the Hold Their Feet to the Fire event
Gary is a great guy - very soft-spoken and polite - a man any family can be proud to have raised. It is quite obvious to this blogger that the criminal in his case was not Gary Brugman but Johnny Sutton and our Justice Department. When will SOMEONE in power do something about these rogue government employees??? Johnny Sutton, Alberto Gonzales, Debra Kanof - investigate them all because THEY should be in prison not Ramos, Compean or Hernandez.
To read this story is heartbreaking. It is obvious we have traitors in our Justice Department who are conspiring with the Mexican government to punish the very people who have been hired to protect us. God save us from our government.
The original of this story can be found on American Freedom Riders at this link
by Gary Brugman 2-20-07
On January 14, 2001 I was assigned to the M-23 area of Eagle Pass, Texas. We were shorthanded on personnel at the time, so my partner Deomar Ramirez and I responded to the sensor activity a few miles south of our assigned area. On that particular evening Agent Enrique Vasquez was assigned to the scope truck. He was in the Rosetta Farms pecan orchard when at approximately 1900 hours he observed a group of 10-12 aliens walking through the orchard. As he approached the group, they began to run. My partner and I had arrived into the area and I got a visual on them.  I jumped out of the patrol vehicle and began chasing them on foot as my partner drove around and tried to cut off access to the river. I chased them through the orchard for about 15 minutes, approximately one and a half miles, continuously yelling for them to stop (in the Spanish language). At one point I began to lose ground on them due to all of my equipment weighing me down. Agent Remberto Perez and Trainee Agent Marcelino Alegria rolled up on me in a vehicle and asked me which way they went. I pointed into the orchard and they drove in that direction. I saw that they had come across a concrete lateral (ditch), and Trainee Alegria got out and ran after the group himself. He caught up to the group quickly since he had a fresh pair of legs. Trainee Alegria was trying to get them to sit down and it seemed that he didn't have control of the situation. Some were sitting as directed, but they were gathered around Trainee Alegria in a semicircle manner. In other words, there were aliens in front of him, to his left and behind him. As I jogged up to the scene, I saw that two aliens behind him were not complying with his task direction to sit on the ground. They were in fact squatting on one knee, looking at his back and making lunging movements. At this time, I didn't know if they were getting ready to run, or attack the Trainee Agent. I ran up to the aliens and with the bottom of my foot I pushed the first alien to the ground (later identified as Miguel Angel Jimenez-Saldana) and told him to sit down as I said "SIENTENSE". I then turned to a second alien and pushed him to the ground too. Agent Hector Aponte was the agent assigned to drive the Transport van that night. He picked up the illegals and transported them back to the station for processing.
Six weeks later, on February 22, 2001 at approximately 0500 hours, myself and several other Agents responded to sensor activity and a report of 10-46 (Narcotics) traffic that had just come across the river. Agent Niño was operating the infrared cameras and guided us into the area. Agent Niño had advised us that on the infrared cameras, he had observed approximately six to eight subjects come across Leonards Pecan Orchard carrying what appeared to be bundles (Narcotics). My partner Agent Serrano-Piche and I, along with several other units quietly moved into the area and attemped to apprehend the smugglers. Once we made our presence made, they scatterded in several different directions. We apprehended about four, when the camera operator notified me that he has spotted two subjects hunkered down in the brush not too far away. I had my night vision goggles and with the help Agent Niño on the camera, I was guided towards the subjects through the darkness and mist. Eventually, I saw the subjects and proceeded to walk towards them slowly. Once they figured out that I could see them, they took off running towards the river. I gave chase and continously yelled for them to stop (again in Spanish). There was a fence between them and the river, and since I was really close they turned and ran parallel to the fence towards to West. I was still very close to them when they came to another barb wire fence about fifty yards down the first fenceline. The first subject leaped in between the barb wire strands in a 'Superman' fashion. The second subject hit the strands head on and flopped over the fence. I had on body armor and with so much momentum going, I too flopped over the fence. All three of us were on the ground on the other side of this fence, when the first subject got up and ran off. The second was getting up when I grabbed his legs before he could get away. We were both wrestling while trying to stand up at the same time. All of a sudden, I somehow got flipped and ended up on my back with the subject, a dope smuggler, sitting on top of me. We had each other by the neck and collar, and he had my right hand pinned to the ground. I remember thinking to myself "Oh my God, I'm losing!!!" I twisted my right hand free and hit him on the side of his face knocking him off of me. He ended up on my left side and his right arm was underneath my body. I told him to stop fighting. I could then feel him grabbing my handcuffs with the arm that was underneath me. I then punched him in the face three times until he said to me "Okay officer, stop hitting me". I stopped and told him "Then stop fighting!!!" I layed on top of him until Agent Enrique Vasquez arrived and helped me handcuff the subject. I notified all of my Supervisors at the scene of the altercation that had occured. All of the subjects were transported to the Eagle Pass Border Patrol station for processing. Pictures were immediately taken of all of Rodriguez-Silvas' injuries, and documentation was made. My Supervisors told me not to write a memo, just document it on the I-213, which I did. He was turned over to DEA, prosecuted, convicted on four felony charges and sentenced to fifty-seven months in a Federal Prison. His name was Miguel Angel Rodriguez-Silva.
On March 15, 2001 Watch Commander Jimmie Hellekson called me into his office and I was relieved of my service weapon. When I asked why, he said that all he knew was that I was under investigation. From that point on I was in limbo, without an explanation of any kind. The only possible reason I could think of was that it was in respect to the narcotics smuggler, Miguel Angel Rodrigeuez-Silva. For the next 14 months I replayed the night of February 22, 2001 over and over and could not figure out what I had done wrong. It was May 14, 2002 that I got a letter from AUSA Bill Baumann notifying me that I was the target of an investigation and he was inviting me to my Grand Jury. The invitation stated that I may be charged with violating the civil rights of a Miguel Angel Jimenez-Saldaña on Jan 14, 2001. I thought to myself "Jimenez-Saldaña?, Who is that?" It took me four whole days of looking through records and paperwork to figure out who I was working with, where I was working and what had happened, until I realized that it was the illegal that I had pushed on the ground. Now, nothing made sense to me. This man had no injury. I never laid a hand on him. My attorney, Ronald H. Tonkin, advised me to decline the invitation, which I did. On August 21, 2002 I was indicted, I surrendered to the U.S. Marshals in Del Rio, Texas, and was released on my own recognizance. In Sepetember, I appeared for arraignment in Del Rio, and Judge William Wayne Justice said he believed this case could be better tried in San Antonio, Texas. I agreed.
On October 28, 2002 I was brought to trial in Austin, Texas; a venue that I had not agreed to. Jury Selection began that morning. The prosecution had a seperate list of special questions for the jurors in order to hand pick a jury. Selection was complete by that afternoon and trial began. The first thing that AUSA Bill Baumann did under the direction of Johnny Sutton, along with DOJ Trial Attorney Brent Alan Gray, was ask that the incident involving the narcotics smuggler Rodriguez-Silva on February 22nd be introduced as evidence. I objected due to the fact that he was a convicted drug smuggler, who I myself had arrested and was the primary reason he was already serving time in the first place. Plus, the incident happened six weeks after the indicted offense. Most of all, it had absolutely nothing to do with what I was being charged with and no allegations had ever been made that I had, in any way, violated any Border Patrol policy when I apprehended him. However, Judge Justice allowed the evidence to be presented despite my objections. On the prosecutions table sat AUSA Bill Baumann, Brent Alan Gray, OIG Agent Gary Moore, and the Mexican Consulate along with an associate that was working the computer and slide projector. Jimenez-Saldaña was called to the stand. Jimenez told his version of the story as Baumann asked questions. Bill Baumann took the incident and changed my words to benefit the Government. When I pushed Jimenez and the other subject on the ground, I told them to sit and then I asked "Why are you running?" It is a standard question that every Law Enforcement Officer has asked a subject that has ran from them. I always asked that question because it's been my experience that many times they will tell you the truth..."I've been deported", "I have drugs on me", "I have warrants". It's a standard law enforcement question. Baumann continously and intentionally misquoted me as saying Do you like to run? So you like to run, huh?" Words I never said. But, he kept on repeating in front of the jury dozens of times. When I was testifying, I told him what I had actually said, then he mocked me by saying "Why did you ask them that? Were you concerned about their health? Did you want to take them for a jog? Put them on an excercise program, maybe?"
A critical factor at trial was that Jimenez could not identify me as the one who had allegedly kicked him. My Attorney asked me to stand up, then asked Jimenez if I was the one that had assaulted him. He looked at me and said "I don't know, I never saw his face." Agent Alegria testified that I had pushed someone with my foot, but did not know if Jimenez was the one I pushed. Alegria also testified that I had punched three subjects. However, Jimenez testified that he was never punched by me but that I punched someone else. Agent Perez who was 80-100 yards away testified that he had seen me kick one of the aliens, but that he never saw me punch anyone. That's three different testimonies as to what happened that night. I testified that I did push Jimenez with my foot, but I never laid hands on anyone...which is why I used my foot in the first place.
Jimenez was asked if anyone had made him any promises, or offered him anything in exchange for testimony, he said no. However in a TV interview for Univision TV show "Aqui y Ahora" (a Spanish TV show) that aired on about June 3, 2003, he claimed that he was coming to the U.S. to earn money for his daughter's chemotherapy. This information was withheld by the prosecution during my trial. At the end of the interview, the anchorwoman said that his daughter had received the chemotherapy she needed. Who paid for that chemotherapy, I don't know. But it would have been a major issue during trial.
The prosecution then called the convicted drug smuggler, Rodriguez-Silva to the stand to testify against me. The same Rodriguez-Silva who I had captured on Feb. 22, 2001 and who fought me to avoid capture. The same man who had since been convicted of smuggling drugs and sentenced to over 5 years in prison. Since he was still an actual inmate and in custody, he was followed into the courtroom by a Deputy U.S. Marshal who sat right behind him on the witness stand during his entire testimony. Through the length of his testimony, the prosecution projected a picture that was taken of him immediately after his arrest that showed his bloody nose and some grass on his face. It also showed other injuries such as scratches from when he went over the barb wire fence, and strap marks on his shoulders from carrying the bundles of dope which weighed over 80 puonds each. But of course, these injuries were also attributed to me by the prosecution. Rodriguez told the truth until it got to the point of apprehension, he testified that while he was running away I was yelling "Stop you F***ing Son of a bitch or I'll shoot you!" I never said those words. The only thing I yelled was "Parense!" (meaning, "stop!" in the Spanish language). He testified that he had twisted his foot and that was why I was able to "easily" apprehend him. He also claimed that I took a pair of gloves out of my pocket, put them on and then proceeded to punch him in the face. My former Supervisor William O. Willigham, now the Border Organized Crime Coordinator (BOCC), testified that for years he tried to get me to take my gloves off. You see, I would ride my motorcycle to work and wear my gloves. Since everything was so gross at the station, I would keep them on. SBPA Willingham was always telling me he didn't like me wearing them inside the building. He testified that he doubted very much that I was not wearing my gloves. But Baumann had to make me out to be this brutal person who was out for blood. It is simply unrealistic that a person who is fighting to get away after being busted with 800 + pounds of marijuana would sit there and allow me to put on a pair of gloves so that I can punch him in the face.
During my cross examination, Baumann immediately began ridiculing me and my character. He began by asking me if I had been hired as a "special" hire, since I'm a disabled veteran. I told him no. He then asked if they (the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center) had bent the rules for me so that I can make it through the academy, and I said no. I graduated 18th out of a class of 51 and it wasn't because they bent the rules. He continuously misled the jury by making false statements and changing my words. He did this so many times that all I can say to you right now is to read my trial transcript and see for yourself. I had five supervisors testify on my behalf, and all of them swore that what I did was within the Use of Force Policy. Yet he made them out to be liars as well. On several occasions Baumann brought up bogus incidents that never happened in front of the Jury. On one occassion, he claimed that I had punched a 14 year old boy on the nose while he was merely sitting in the processing room. Yet the only evidence he had was a slip of paper from the OIG hotline, stating that the call was made from Mexico anonymously, and the only actual piece of information on it was my name. Nothing else. I had a Motion in Limine which did not allow this information to be considered by the jury, but regardless, AUSA Baumann had already presented it before them. This happened several times throughout the trial and I was falsely made out to look like a rogue agent to the jury and I had no way of disputing these accusations.
At one point, I felt my heart sink and a feeling of despair come over me. During one of the 20 minute recesses of my trial, Brent Alan Gray and I were in the restroom at the same time. I asked him why he was doing this to me and he said that "It's not a matter of IF you're going to prison, it's a matter of how long you're going to prison for. I have a $50,000,000 budget to make sure you're going." When I heard those words, I was terrified to no end.
During sentencing, AUSA Bill Baumann stated that even though my case was a minor assault, I still needed to be punished to the fullest extent of the law. On a Univision interview, Johnny Sutton stated, himself, that he was making an example out of me. In the Official Dept of Justice Press release, Sutton bad mouthed me by saying that what I did was inexcuseable and thanked the Mexican Consulate for all his help in locating the illegal alien Miguel Angel Jimenez-Saldaña, and bringing him back to testify. After Jimenez-Saldaña was apprehended in Eagle Pass, he was incarcerated for approximately eight weeks, pending deportation. Jimenez-Saldaña was indeed deported back to Mexico. It was Johnny Sutton who called on Jorge Espejel, the Mexican Consolate in Eagle Pass, Texas to help him locate and bring Jimenez-Saldaña back into the United States. He offered him imumunity and health care for his family in exchange for his testimony against me. Like I said before, this information was withheld during trial. Jimenez-Saldaña even testified that he did not want to testify against me, but was pressured by both the Mexican and U.S. Governments to do so.
Bill Bauman made the first closing argument to the Jury. He was allowed 20 minutes to make his argument. Then my lawyer made his arguement for 40 minutes. Once he was finished, I was shocked to see Brent Alan Gray take his podium and place it in front of the Jury stand, and begin to make a counter to my attorney's closing argument. He stood there and lied to the Jury by saying that it was amazing how Agent Alegria's story and Jimenez-Saldaña's story were identical, and since their stories matched, that meant that I must be a liar. However, anyone who reads the trial testimony can see that they had completely different stories. As a matter of documented fact, Jimenez-Saldañas testimony and mine were almost identical. During deliberation, the Jury requested the trial transcript of Alegria's testimony, but the request was denied by Judge Justice. He said they would have to base their decision on what they can remember from the previous four days of trial. Ironically, the only time that the prosecution spoke about my indicted offense was on day one.
I remained out on appeal from October 2002 until April 2004. In between that time (2003) I moved to San Antonio, Texas and rented my home in Eagle Pass. I got a job working at a car dealership as a salesman. That summer I decided to attend college, and I qualified for educational benefits from the Dept of Veterans Affairs (VA), under the Veterans Vocational Rehabilitaion Program. I was two weeks away from the end of my second semester when on the morning of April 7, 2003 a team of U.S. Marshals came kicking at my door at 0520 hours. They practically took it off the hinges! I opened the door and they came in, pushed my then 72 year old mother on the bed and took me away. It would be 24 months later before I would come back to my home again.
I was placed at the local contract prison in San Antonio called "GEO" Inc. (Formerly known as Wackenhut). I spent almost four months in a 5 foot by 10 foot cell, 23 hours a day. Roaches and abuse from the guards were normal. From there I was handcuffed, chained at the waist and leg ironed then taken aboard Con Air and landed at the Federal transfer center in Oklahoma City for over three weeks. After that I was taken on Con Air again. This time we landed in Tampa, Florida where we were all bused to the Federal Correctional Complex located in Coleman, Florida. As a matter of fact, the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) sent me to five different prisons, incuding the U.S. Penetentiary in Atlanta, Georgia, and ultimately I was sent to Yazoo City, Mississippi. It was during the move to FCI Yazoo City that all of my legal papers, trial transcripts and research mysteriously disappeared. I was told that it would follow me along with my property, but when I arrived at my final designated facility, it was not there. My personal property was there waiting for me, but my legal property was not. To this day I haven't been able to get an answer as to where it is.
Having served the Government for many years I experienced many things that scared me. However, being a federal agent in prison is sheer terror. At each of the prisons, I was placed on the compound with the general population. The inmates in these prisons are a different breed. They have ways of finding out who you are and knowing all of the details about your case by the time you arrive. I was threatened constantly to the point that I would stuff my magazines around my waistline underneath my shirt, just in case I got stabbed. It was at FCI Yazoo City Mississppi that I actually made a vest out of newspaper and tape in order to protect myself. Another thing that became a way of life for me inside FCI Yazoo City, is that you needed to take showers in pairs for safety. You would find somone you could trust, and they would shave their face and brush their teeth etc. while you were showering. The gang members from New Orleans were notorious for assaults in the shower. Every morning I would wake up and ask myself if I was really there. I still have a very hard time accepting what happened. It's extremely hard to find a time and place to cry when you're a grown man in prison.
On March 21, 2006 my incarceration was over. Today, I'm just trying to piece my life back together. As strange as it may sound to some, I would jump at the chance to have my job back at the Border Patrol. I was a good agent and I am still a loyal American. No amount of lies from Johnny Sutton and the United States Attorneys office will ever change that.
The recent exposure of the facts of the Compean and Ramos case, and that of Deputy Hernandez, has torn me apart. I know how it feels and it is terrifying. God bless these agents and this deputy. May He be with them and their families every moment of the day.
This is all true to the best of my knowledge. Thank you
Gary M. Brugman
Former Border Patrol Agent
HOLD THEIR FEET TO THE FIRE
By Frosty Wooldridge
This week, in Washington, DC, 35 national radio hosts, led by Roger
Hedgecock, descended on our nation’s capital to expose the illegal alien
amnesty being promoted by George Bush.
Known by various names, the Kennedy-McCain Amnesty Bill, it allows 20
million illegal aliens immediate amnesty along with a pathway to
citizenship. This amnesty does not differentiate drug dealers,
terrorists, child molesters, alcoholics or anti-American immigrants. It
requires no minimum standards as to education, loyalty to the United
States or intentions. Exactly like the 1986 amnesty, it solves nothing.
Ironically, it encourages further massive immigration without securing
On Sunday, D.A. King of Atlanta, Georgia kicked off the event by hosting
www.TheDustinInmanSociety.org anti-illegal alien rally. Top speakers
from all over the United States presented their views within yelling
distance of the White House in Lafayette Park. The crowd carried banners
and waved Old Glory.
Policemen on horseback separated counter-demonstrators from the King
rally. Of special note, those same demonstrators yelled out names such
as ‘racists’ at King’s audience. Their name-calling fell on the ears of
a rainbow of Americans of every race, creed and color.
Roger Hedgecock, Terry Anderson, Jason Mrocheck, Colonel Al Rodriguez,
Lupe Moreno, T.J. Bonner, William Gheen, KC McAlpin, Peter Gadiel, Roy
Beck, Joyce Kaufman, Rick Oltman and others spoke on every aspect of
America’s greatest dilemma since the Civil War.
Hedgecock provided sobering news as to the impacts of an amnesty. Few
Americans realize the impact of adding 70 million immigrants in 30 years.
Anderson, a gifted and fiery speaker, talked about all Americans
becoming victimized in their schools, medical systems, crime and drugs by
illegal immigration, and Gadiel talked about the dangers of another
terrorist attack that took the life of his son.
Each speaker covered a wide array of America’s rampant illegal alien
While the King crowd cheered, the counter-demonstrators hurled insults,
blasted air horns and advocated for anarchy in favor of illegal aliens.
As each speaker presented added viewpoints, a story unfolded before the
audience. “We’re importing massive poverty,” Roy Beck said. “We don’t
know who we’re allowing into our country or their intentions,” said Peter
Gadiel. “We make our own people lose jobs,” said Lupe Moreno. “Our way
of life and legal systems suffer from this invasion,” William Gheen said.
“Our borders remain open to terrorists, “T.J. Bonner said. “Name one
advantage to adding 100 million people to the United States by 2040?”
asked Frosty Wooldridge. “Every American becomes a victim of this
invasion,” Terry Anderson said. “We’re victims in our schools, at our
hospitals, at tax time as we pay for their food stamps, schooling,
medical costs, drunken driving that kills our loved ones. What more does
it take to wake our leaders up?”
While the speakers recited facts, the counter demonstrators hurled
emotions. In the end, we all face a ‘Human Katrina’ of gargantuan
proportions. Emotions won’t solve it; realistic choices will!
America cannot continue adding unending immigrants without consequences.
Wikipedia helps us as we allow the magnitude and depth of the personal
impacts to sink in here;
In the context of human societies, overpopulation occurs when the
population density is so great as to actually cause an impaired quality
of life, serious environmental degradation, and/or long-term shortages of
essential goods and services. This is the definition used by popular
dictionaries such Merriam-Webster.
Overpopulation is not merely an imbalance between the number of
individuals compared to the resources needed for survival, or a ratio of
population over resources, or a function of the number or density of
individuals, compared to the resources (i.e. food production) they need
It is rather a situation of shortage of resources and elbow-room that
must be caused by population, and not by other factors. This is because
such an imbalance may be caused by any number of other factors such as
bad governance, war, corruption or endemic poverty.
Each human-crowding factor creates an agitation, a gnawing and bothersome
affect that is difficult to describe— until you venture to a pristine
natural area, and begin to breathe deeply.
Are we squeezing together to make room for the unfortunates of the world
who have overpopulated themselves into a squeeze-play of their own
choosing? At what point does immigration from an impoverished world end?
Never in the history of the United States have American citizens faced
such an ominous situation. The Romans ignored their immigration
invasion, which cost them their civilization.
D.A. King wrapped up the event with a call to action during the “Hold
Their Feet to the Fire” week in Washington, Dc.
Thank you Nicole Gaouette for reporting the truth and yes we are FIRED UP AND CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE!!! This is just the beginning!
Talk-radio crowd pumps up the volume on immigration
Hosts and listeners gather in the capital to voice their views on a crackdown and lobby lawmakers for change.
By Nicole Gaouette, Times Staff Writer
April 28, 2007
WASHINGTON — John and Ken, the Los Angeles-area radio talk-show hosts, were on the air. They discussed claims by the Homeland Security secretary that more guards had been stationed along the Mexico border. "Outright blatant lies!" John said. They trashed the Border Patrol chief. "A cardboard bureaucrat," he added.
>From the back of a crowded hotel conference room here, where the pair was broadcasting on KFI-AM, one listener couldn't contain himself. "You betcha!" he roared, and the sympathetic audience erupted in laughter.
For four days this week, John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou joined more than 30 other radio hosts from across the country, broadcasting live from Washington to demand immigration laws that secure the border, punish employers who hire illegal immigrants, and deny citizenship to immigrants who sneaked into the country.
They brought with them a chorus of more than 600 listeners, who lobbied lawmakers and provided a refrain of cheers and groans during the daily 5 a.m.-to-midnight broadcast marathon.
Though immigration-crackdown advocates on talk radio can often be brash and alarmist, these listeners appeared calmer and gentler.
It's not clear how much of an impact these listener-lobbyists will have on the debate in Washington. But as Congress prepares to again take up immigration, in May, there is no mistaking their determination.
"We will make Congress listen and hear," said Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, a group that helped organize the event, the second of its kind.
Those who made the lobbying trip spanned old to young. They wore their patriotism on their sleeves, in the form of American flag clothing and pins. Many were military veterans. Most, but not all, were white — and they bristled at charges of racism. They said the accusation was meant to silence them.
"Brown, black, white, they're all here," said Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-Colo.), a firebrand critic of illegal immigration.
This crowd loves Tancredo. Largely Republican, the listeners have contempt for Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) but save special fury for President Bush — who, like Kennedy, wants to offer a path to legal status for people in the country illegally. "Amnesty," they disdainfully brand it. They draw a straight line between Bush and the only beneficiary they see: corporations that get cheap, replaceable labor.
Passionate, committed and largely middle class, they see themselves as a silent majority given a voice through radio.
Retired doctor Ralph Hylinski made the trip from Alamo, Calif., motivated partly by concern about what he sees as the country's cultural fragmentation and the need for English as a common language.
Carol Angus, owner of an asphalt paving company in Ramona, Calif., said it was hard for her firm to compete against those who hire illegal immigrants. She visited lawmakers with Ray Boettinger of Escondido, who is angry about the border's effect on national security and "the fact that the federal government is not trying to do anything about it."
For these listeners and others, the trip transformed airwaves into community, physically linking them with others who share their anger and unease about immigration.
"This has been a great place to test ideas, share ideas, lobby our congressmen and make connections," Hylinski said. "We didn't know who was in the fight with us, and this gives us a chance to meet them."
Hylinski reeled off examples of the negative effect that he said illegal immigration had had on California, starting with "unlimited population expansion, overwhelmed schools and medical facilities." He fended off an interruption — "I'm not done yet!" — and went on to list overcrowded jails, drug trafficking, damage to private property and destruction of the environment along the border.
His solution: "All we have to do is enforce the laws on the books, but Bush doesn't want that. If he wanted to, the borders could be shut tomorrow."
Michael Crowe of Alexandria, Va., laid out a more immediate ambition. He suggested that an airwave onslaught could slow legislation on immigrants' status until preoccupation with the 2008 presidential races made it impossible to proceed. "As long as we can hold them off, the better our chances of victory," said the self-described immigration reform activist.
The event was organized to make lawmakers feel the heat. Listeners were divided into lobbying teams, each of which visited 10 to 12 lawmakers. They carried worksheets that suggested questions ("Ask if they support jobs for Mexican truckers in favor of U.S. truckers") and left space for a report of each visit. Those reports documented each lawmaker's position on securing the borders, "amnesty," a presidential pardon for two Border Patrol agents convicted of shooting an unarmed Mexican drug smuggler, and "any other interesting comments."
When the listener-lobbyists returned to their base near the Capitol, they could enter the warren of low-ceilinged conference rooms and go on-air to discuss their Hill encounters.
Higher-profile hosts like John and Ken got larger spaces or their own rooms. In other rooms, several hosts shared space separated by plastic dividers. Tables were laden with electrical equipment that sprouted thick tangles of wires. Slender rods rose from the confusion and blossomed into fat red, blue or yellow foam microphones. Late in the afternoon a constant hum of velvety baritones and staccato altos was occasionally punctuated by the less practiced delivery of a guest.
At one table, Adam McManus of San Antonio-based KSLR-AM, sat under a banner that read "Talk Radio With Guts." Curled intently over his microphone, he told his listeners that it was "so critical that you don't stew in your own juices" and reeled off phone numbers of the state's senators.
Beside him, Neil Valentine, host of a national show broadcast from Nashville greeted a guest from Texas who expressed surprise Tennessee had "a problem" with illegal immigrants.
"They're everywhere, man," Valentine told him. "We've all got a problem."
Saturday, April 28, 2007
Well ok you can't really call them NOW because right now it's Saturday night..but get those phones ringing off the hook starting Monday. Roy Beck of NumbersUSA couldn't make it easier for you. Take just 30 minutes to make some calls and make your opinion known to these traitors who wish to give away citizenship to illegal aliens!!!
Independents: Call your members of Congress to stop White House / Kennedy amnesty
This new Phone Call Request has been posted in your Action Buffet based on your answers to the Interest Survey.
You can find this Phone Call Request by proceeding to
Update on the Bush/Kennedy amnesty effort:
Here are the basics of where things stand (posted April 25):
1. You will remember when we broke the story to you about the White House amnesty plan in March. It included some good stuff like the end of Chain Migration and the Lottery a nd also had perhaps 90% of the enforcement measures we want. But it also included another 400,000 a year increase in permanent immigration and full legalization of nearly all the 12-20 million illegal aliens. The destructiveness in the plan far outweighed the benefits.
2. Monday, the Hill was rife with rumors that Sen. Kyl (R-AZ) had come to an agreement with Sen. Kennedy on the "principles" of the comprehensive compromise. Since nobody believes Kennedy would ever agree to anything that didn't let illegal aliens stay permanently, that was terrible news. Kyl has tended to hold the line against any full-scale amnesty in the past. If he agreed to any kind of long-term legalization, that would bring along a lot of Republican Senators with him, according to conventional wisdom. We could not get any answers from his office. Because the rumors were primarily fanned by the White House, it is possible that the Kyl agreement with Kennedy didn't really happen. Many House Re publicans lately have complained that the White House has been pushing inaccurate information to create a sense of momentum behind its amnesty efforts.
3. Today, the news media is saying what we have been hearing for a week: that the White House has agreed to drop a whole bunch of the good stuff in its plan in order to get along better with Kennedy.
4. But Kennedy and his open-border-advocate allies are balking, saying that the tougher parts that remain are still too much for them. They are demanding that the White House compromise farther toward Kennedy.
5. The White House is apparently balking -- not because Kennedy's demands for giant new flows of foreign labor are outrageous but mainly because the White House is insisting on a guest worker program. Kennedy and his union allies admirably at least insist on more protections for American workers so that the guest workers will be less likely to drive down their wages.
6. The White House's outlaw business friends (the ones who have broken immigration laws for years) are saying they will oppose the amnesty if it has too many worker protections in it. That is making it difficult for Bush to move any farther toward Kennedy.
7. Background of all of this is that most of the Republican Senators whom the White House is wooing to help him pass an amnesty are being hit daily by constituents demanding promises not to support any type of amnesty. It is so very important that the fax and phone calls do not stop.
There is no room for letting up on your House Representative and your two Senators.
We are convinced that your incredible outpouring of faxes and phone calls the last month is the only reason the Kennedy/Bush amnesty has not already passed the Senate.
Don't let up now!
Militia raid targets weapons Explosives, ammo found; 6 men arrested
Friday, April 27, 2007
CAROL ROBINSON, KENT FAULK and VAL WALTON
News staff writers
Simultaneous raids carried out in four Alabama counties Thursday turned up truckloads of explosives and weapons, including 130 grenades, an improvised rocket launcher and 2,500 rounds of ammunition belonging to the small, but mightily armed, Alabama Free Militia.
Six alleged members of the Free Militia also were arrested by federal authorities and are being held without bond.
Investigators said the DeKalb County-based group had not made any specific threats or devised any plots, but was targeted for swift dismantling because of its heavy firepower. The militia, which called itself the Naval Militia at one point, had enough armament to outfit a small army.
"We classify these groups as violent and anti-government," said Jim Cavanaugh, who supervises the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives operations in portions of the South. "They stockpile things and live off a fear, a paranoia they're going to need weapons and explosives because some event is going to happen when they will need them."
"Any time you have a self-appointed colonel or a self-appointed major and they've got weapons and explosives, it is a recipe for tragedy," Cavanaugh said.
The ATF investigation, launched about seven weeks ago, climaxed Thursday with more than 150 federal, state and local law enforcement officers carrying out raids in DeKalb, Marshall, Etowah and Jefferson counties beginning about 6 a.m.
The massive operation forced the closing of Collinsville High School on U.S. 11 because of traffic concerns. In Trussville, authorities rented a U-Haul truck to cart away the load of explosives and weapons from a house.
Agents encountered booby traps at one site. They found trip wires and two hand grenades rigged as booby traps at the Collinsville camper home of 46-year-old Raymond Dillard, who holds titles of both militia major and fugitive from justice on an unrelated federal case in Mobile.
"We were prepared," Cavanaugh said. "We suspect booby traps with these types of groups."
Arrested and detained in federal custody were Dillard, also known as Jeff Osborne, 46, of Collinsville; Adam Lynn Cunningham, 41, of Collinsville; Bonnell Hughes, 57, of Crossville; Randall Garrett Cole, 22, of Gadsden; James Ray McElroy, 20, of Collinsville; and Michael Wayne Bobo, 30, of Trussville.
All but Bobo are charged with conspiracy to make a firearm, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Bobo is charged with being a drug user in possession of a firearm, which carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The six men appeared Thursday afternoon in Birmingham's federal courthouse before U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert Armstrong Jr. The men were being held Thursday night in the Shelby County jail.
According to the criminal complaint, ATF and the Alabama State Fire Marshal's Office used a confidential informant to infiltrate the militia, using video and audio recordings to document their grenade-making exploits. The informant met Dillard at a DeKalb County flea market called "Trade Day" in the late fall and Dillard told him about the Free Militia.
The informant was eventually accepted into the organization and given the title "sergeant major." In the following weeks, the informant provided agents details of the group's activities.
In one instance, the complaint described how Dillard grabbed one of four grenades from a coffee table, quickly put a fuse and shotgun-type primer inside and said, "That's how easy it is. This one's ready to go."
Guns and ammo:
All six men were taken into custody without incident.
"We took them by surprise," said DeKalb County Sheriff Jimmy Harris.
Authorities wouldn't pinpoint a leader, but said Dillard called himself the major. In addition to the booby traps, authorities recovered a long gun and a pistol from his home.
Recovered from Cunningham's Collinsville home were stolen commercial fireworks, improvised hand grenades, fuse assemblies and a half-dozen guns. At Hughes' Crossville home, agents found 100 improvised hand grenades, 70 improvised hand grenades fired from the 37 mm rocket launch, a submachine gun and two silencers.
An SKS rifle was found at McElroy's home.
In Jefferson County, authorities said they had to rent a truck to handle the bomb-making material from Bobo's home, as well as 2,500 rounds of ammunition and 12 guns.
Bobo was living with his adoptive parents in the Lancshire Brentwood neighborhood in Trussville, a fairly new subdivision near the Cahaba Project with tree-lined streets and brick homes that cost upward of $600,000. He worked for his family's pest control company.
His red pickup truck, usually parked at the house, displays bumper stickers such as "Welcome to the South, Now Go Home," "The Second Amendment: `You do not know you need it until they come to take it away' - Thomas Jefferson" and "Work Harder, Millions on Welfare Depend on You."
In general, militias and patriot movements are anti-government and given to conspiracy theories and paranoia, said Mark Potok, director of the Intelligence Project for the Southern Poverty Law Center. The organization keeps track of hate groups and their activities throughout the country. They also are known for stockpiling illegal weapons and even manufacturing them, he said.
The militia movement in Alabama and the rest of the country hit a peak in the mid-1990s, as the groups rallied after the bloody 1993 siege at the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas, and the 1992 shoot-out in Ruby Ridge, Idaho, between former Green Beret Randy Weaver and federal agents. The number of militia or "patriot" groups in the United States dwindled from a high of almost 900 in the mid-1990s to fewer than 200 by 2005.
A combination of factors, including the Sept. 11 attacks, caused many groups to draw back from the extreme acts of Olympic Park bomber Eric Robert Rudolph or Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma City bomber.
"It became less popular for someone to rail against America," Cavanaugh said. "It's not so sexy for them to be around, and therefore they don't get a lot of public attention."
Cavanaugh said militia groups still pop up from time to time, and authorities' goal is to intercept them before the threat becomes a tragedy.
"Whatever their paranoia was, whatever their reasons were, we think we've taken their weapons, the majority of them, certainly," Cavanaugh said. "The good news is hopefully today Alabama is free of the Alabama Free Militia."
News staff writers Anita Debro and Lisa Osburn contributed to this report. firstname.lastname@example.org
Labels: Alabama militia raid ATF
Call in number starting at 8pm EDT is (718) 508-9767
Show will probably be for two hours, ending at 10pm EDT
Friday, April 27, 2007
Former Rep. from AZ JD Hayworth began as a talk show host for afternoon drive time (4-7 p.m.) in Phoenix yesterday on KFYI. He was on Roger Hedgecock's Show yesterday. JD said that IF we have to go on another Hold Their Feet to the Fire trip next year, he will go as a citizen activist and knock on the doors of his former colleagues. From the conversation with Roger, I gather that JD has had a TV and/or radio show in the past.
Congressman Nunes has signed HR 563 to pardon the Border Agents
and his name now appears there as a co-sponsor for HR 563. We are so grateful to the lobbyists who helped make this happen and we are happy as bloggers to have helped bring down the pressure on Congressman Nunes for being so dismissive to the family of Ignacio Ramos.
Here's a photo from the meeting the next day with Congressman Nunes's staffer, Andrew House where he announced to Ignacio Ramos, SR., Gloria Olsen, Nacho's cousin, Rita and Jim Bonilla (YDSFM), Chris Burgard (producer of "Borders"), Mariann Davies and Diana Sanchez (YDSFM) that the Congressman indeed would co-sponsor HR 563 the Congressional Pardon for the Border Patrol Agents. This was Tuesday afternoon (4/24/07). (Photo Courtesy of Mariann Davies of YDSFM)
Photo depicts Rita Bonilla, Chris Burgard (in background) and Andrew House, from Rep. Nunes (R-CA) office:
As usual, Lou Dobbs hits the nail on the head. Lou Dobbs did send Lisa Sylvester to our event and she got a lot of one on one interviews and footage of the event. I was sad that I didn't see Glenn Beck participating, being a radio show host.. I feel his presence would have really been a plus.. and how about Rush Limbaugh? Does he not support stopping illegal immigration? If so, why did he not participate? I salute all the radio show hosts who participated in our Hold the Feet to the Fire event and hope that the next one is even bigger and better. However, my biggest dream is not to NEED events like this because our government actually makes decisions that BENEFIT Americans for a change.
Lou Dobbs for President!
Editor's note: Lou Dobbs' commentary appears weekly on CNN.com.
NEW YORK (CNN) -- The Bush administration and the leadership of the Democratic Party are preparing to take another legislative leap at imposing a massive illegal alien amnesty on American citizens.
And the mainstream media are complicit in advancing this thinly veiled blanket amnesty. Instead of asking and answering important questions about why our immigration laws aren't being enforced and why we're permitting pervasive document fraud, the national media seem hell-bent on trying to obfuscate the issue, shamelessly playing with language, equating legal immigration with illegal immigration while obviously trying to preserve the illusion of objectivity.
Too often, the language of the national media describes illegal immigration as "migration" and illegal aliens as "undocumented immigrants," even though many of them have lots of documents, most of which are fraudulent or stolen. Some media outlets have taken to calling illegal aliens "entrants." Whether such language is meant to engender sympathy or to intentionally blur the distinction between legal and illegal, the mainstream media are taking sides in this debate.
The Arizona Republic, for example, used "undocumented immigrant" more than 80 times in 36 separate stories in the past month alone; the term appeared as many as 12 times in one article on "migration," according to our Lexis-Nexis search. At the same time, "illegal alien" appeared a total of only nine times during that span, with seven of the references coming from readers' opinions, one from a quotation and one from an editorial.
The mainstream media report as if America would no longer be a welcoming nation if we stopped illegal immigration. Nothing could be further from the truth. Why do the national media conveniently and routinely neglect to report that the United States brings in more lawful immigrants than the countries of the rest of the world combined? Each year, we accept 2 million immigrants legally. We give a million legal immigrants permanent residency every year. We bestow citizenship on 700,000 people a year and provide almost half a million work-related visas a year.
Illegal immigration, in fact, has the potential to change the course of American history: Demographers at the Brookings Institution and the Population Reference Bureau paint a troubling picture of the future of our democracy. As more illegal aliens cross our borders and settle in large states like California, Texas and Florida, congressional seats will be redistributed to these bigger states following each decennial Census. States with low levels of immigration will ultimately lose seats as a result. Unfortunately for American citizens, this seismic shift in political representation will be decided by noncitizens that cannot vote.
Congress will soon take up so-called comprehensive immigration reform, and a bipartisan House bill would probably admit 400,000 guest workers a year. And since any plan calling for eventual legalization would include family members who live outside the United States, the legislation would open our borders to tens of millions of people. The Heritage Foundation's Robert Rector estimated that the 2006 version of the McCain-Kennedy bill would have added an additional 66 million immigrants over the next 20 years. The bill may change, but that estimate has yet to be refuted.
There's no question this type of mass immigration would have a calamitous effect on working citizens and their families. Professor Carol Swain, professor of law and political science at Vanderbilt University and author of "Debating Immigration," would like to see more people speak up for the sectors of society most affected by illegal immigration.
"How many African-American leaders have you seen come out and address the impact that high levels of illegal immigration [are] having in the communities when it comes to jobs, when it comes to education, when it comes to health care?" she asked. "And often, these low-skilled, low-wage workers compete in the same sectors for jobs."
Let's have a vigorous open debate on illegal immigration in this country, and let's begin with the facts. Estimates of illegal aliens in this country range from 12 million to 20 million people. Why doesn't our government know how many there are?
Shouldn't this Congress and this president at least recognize that the industries in which illegal aliens are employed in the greatest percentages also are suffering the largest wage declines? And shouldn't there be an economic impact statement researched and delivered to this Congress, this president and the rest of us before any legislation granting amnesty is even considered?
Shouldn't we first bring the facts of illegal immigration out of the shadows?
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the writer.
Thursday, April 26, 2007
Hold Their Feet to the Fire Wrapup
Well I am home now since I only have to drive about three hours to get home. Many of the attendees traveled from the West Coast to attend this event and that is an expensive and time consuming endeavor. That is just how dedicated all of the participants were at Hold the Feet to the Fire.
Dana Rohrabacher said it Tuesday night at the fund-raiser for Ramos and Compean - he said (and I paraphrase) "YOU are the patriots just like in 1775, when a group of patriots banded together to take back their country and route the British from this great country!" I would say at least 95% of the event participants, not including FAIR staff or radio host staff, paid for their own travel and lodging and took time from work to attend. You could not ask for more dedication to a cause. They were not giving away free Mercedes at this event. They were not raffling anything. The people who attended simply had a chance to participate in a historical event that is poised to change the course of this country for the BETTER by having 37 radio show hosts collaborate on a SINGLE topic - illegal immigration - because they have had ENOUGH just like us!
It was wonderful to meet the other bloggers and work with William Gheen from Alipac and all the FAIR staff. I was thrilled to meet and work side by side with Frosty Wooldridge - who is a tireless and very talented patriot in this endeavor. I always find his writing to be right on the mark, very eloquent and straight from the heart.
Roy Beck was also very much involved with this event and graciously gave interviews to many many people. He is sort of the "old guard" of this movement, having sounded the alarm over 10 years ago. He said he feels sometimes that even though he has made his living trying to educate people about this issue, he feels very afraid that his life mission might be for nothing. Roy Beck and NumbersUSA have invaluable data that help all patriots in the fight and I urge you to support them so they can continue to provide this VALUABLE data to us. NumbersUSA will not charge you to fax to your representatives - it is strictly voluntary donations and no this is not a commercial for NumbersUSA but after meeting Roy Beck in person and hearing him in person several times, I can tell you he is totally dedicated to stopping illegal immigration and he has no hidden agenda.
I was very impressed with how this event came together and how absolutely electrifying it was to be on the second floor of the Phoenix Park Hotel this week watching all the Radio Row activity. There were radio hosts around every nook and cranny up there and another amazing thing to see was how the technical staff were able to setup a portable radio station in only a 12 by 6 area.
As a blogger, it was actually hard to WRITE because there were so many exciting people to interview coming by that we would drop our keyboards and jump up with the video cameras to capture what we could. We would barely get any notice that perhaps Duncan Hunter would be stopping by or the Ramos family was available for video interviews. I looked up one time to be thrilled to see one of my Ramos and Compean heroes in front of me.. Walter Adams. This man knows how to give a speech and I will always remember his resounding phrase on Lou Dobbs from a Ramos and Compean press conference were he said "The INDIFFERENCE of this ADMINISTRATION to the Ramos and Compean case is SHAMEFUL!". I truly think he has been or could be a Southern Baptist preacher shouting "Praise the Lord!"
I can assure you that in the next few days you will see TONS of new video and photos from the bloggers on Blogger's Row - which turned out to be a mobile Blogger's Row of sorts.. but we flowed with it and made do.
All the bloggers agreed that we are much more in our element in our own homes using our own kick-ass computers to do video and photo editing. Mobile blogging is quite a different animal and generally the equipment you will be using will do its best to thwart your efforts according to Murphy's Law. In fact, it was quite appropriate for Murphy to make so many visits to Blogger's Row since the Phoenix Park Hotel had a distinctively Irish appeal - such as the Dubliner Pub.
It was truly a privilege to meet the members of the Ramos family, Patty Compean, wife of Jose Compean and Ashley Hernandez, wife of Gilmer Hernandez. These family members have traveled constantly to help energize efforts to free Ramos, Compean and Hernandez from prison. I am sure none of them would have dreamed that they would be called upon to do this kind of public speaking and traveling before 2005, when the lives of these families changed drastically.
Attending the event also was Gary Brugman, who was the very FIRST Border Patrol agent to be prosecuted by Johnny Sutton for doing his job. Gary served 24 of his 27 month sentence, he lost his fiance, his job, his house, his son.. and he can no longer vote or own a firearm... because of doing his job. I did not see many of the 37 radio hosts interviewing him which is a shame because his story is worth telling. Bloggers on Blogger's Row got a very good interview with him and that video will be up very soon.
While searching for some info to link to for Compean and Ramos I came up THIS interesting link which essentially says that Congressman Dreier was " was shocked by the verdict in the Ramos/Compean case". Hmm well that's funny because I don't see Congressman Dreier's name on HR 563 which is the House Resolution for granting Compean and Ramos a Presidential Pardon. I didn't even need to look that info up because some of our Lobbyists during Hold Their Feet to the Fire said they felt that Dreier was not interested in true illegal immigration reform such as securing the border and workplace enforcement. What a surprise to see a politician talking out of two sides of his mouth - he is "shocked" by the verdict in the Compean and Ramos case but does not lend his support to the House Resolution that could set them free???? I bet they hate it when we point out these little inconsistencies...
Some more pictures
Bloggers up in the Alipac Suite atop the Phoenix Park Hotel
left to right - Jake Jacobsen (Freedom Folks), Ruth Miller (Stop The Invasion), Dan Amato (Digger's Realm) and Tony Dolz (Dolz.com)
Monica Ramos (wife of Ignacio Ramos), Frank Jorge (avimm.com), Joe Loya (Monica's father)
Chelene Nightingale from Save Our State and Ruth from Stop The Invasion blog
Digger getting the gory details from Raymond Herrera about the visit with Congressman Nunes that left the Ramos family in tears
Show is one hour in length - podcast link is available on the page
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
4:30PM 4/25/2007 EST
CONTACT: Agentramos.com, Rita Bonilla, Dan Amato,
The family members of Border Patrol agents Ramos and Compean, and bloggers, participating for the first time in “Hold Their Feet to The Fire” have scored a legislative success.
On Monday April 23rd, three members of the agent’s families, visited the office of Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA). The family members were mistreated by Nunes’ staff member, Andrew House to the point of tears. When they returned to the Phoenix Park Hotel, which is the home of Radio and Bloggers Row and “Hold Their Feet to The Fire”, blogger Dan Amato interviewed them about their encounter and quickly posted to the web.
Bloggers and online activists from across the country immediately distributed this information and the phone lines in Nunes’ office rang off the hook, as angry Americans rebuked the actions of his staff. This led to Congressman Nunes scheduling a meeting to apologize.
“When we heard that they wanted a new meeting, I contacted their office and they were very receptive and they rolled out the red carpet for us”, said Rita Bonilla of the organization “You Don’t Speak For Me”
When we arrived for the new meeting, Nunes’ staff member, Andrew House apologized four times and informed us that Congressman Nunes would sign HR 563, which provides a congressional pardon to free agents Ramos and Compean. This makes Congressman Nunes the first member of the Hispanic Caucus to sign this bill. Mr. House then stated that Congressman Nunes would probably speak with other members of the Hispanic Caucus about signing this bill.
Blogger Dan Amato quickly interviewed Raymond Herrera, Ramos’ Aunt Gloria Olson and Ramos’ father Ignacio and had the report on the web within thirty minutes, at which point bloggers across the country picked up the story, which resulted in many angry calls to Nunes’ office.
“I was thrilled upon hearing about the signing of the bill, and I was glad to have helped” said Dan Amato of DiggersRealm.com
“This is the ‘New Media’ in action”, said William Gheen of Americans for Legal Immigration PAC. “The rapid and massive feedback to Nunes office is an example of what the fusion of the internet and talk radio can do”.Monica Ramos who was not present at either meeting was thrilled that Congressman Nunes will sign the bill and truly appreciative of the support she has received.
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
Robert Duvall stops by to show support for Ramos, Compean and Hernandez
Speaking with a fundraiser attendee - in the background is Carmen Morales of You Don't Speak for Me
with Joe Loya, father-in-law of imprisoned Border Agent Ignacio Ramos
Mr Duvall was quite gracious in spending his time among the Ramos, Compean and Hernandez supporters as his admirers crowded around him for photos.
It was a nice way to end a very good evening with speeches from Congressman Duncan Hunter, Senator Dana Rohrabacher, Senator Ted Poe and Senator Brian Bilbray - all emphatically in support of our imprisoned Border Agents and Sheriff Hernandez. A collection was taken that garnered around $1600 just from the people attending the event and a check for around $6000 was presented by FAIR president Dan Stein to the wives of the two Border Agents, Monica Ramos and Patty Compean.
Monica Ramos read a very emotional and moving letter to her from Ignacio telling her to be strong. Many sniffles could be heard around the room and somehow Monica showed her strength in being able to read it in front of a room full of supporters without letting her tears stop her. I will have you know that I saw Dana Rohrabacher visibly moved by her letter... you won't see that from very many politicians I can tell you that. Dana Rohrabacher is a stand-up guy as are many of the politicians who have spoken out against this administration for what they have done to our Border Agents and other law enforcement officers who are involved with securing our borders.