Mexican Drug Cartel Violence: Mexican Marines arrest presumed leader of Beltran Leyva Cartel – Sergio Villarreal Barragan taken into custody

Sergio Villarreal Barragan captured in Sunday raid officials say

Mexican marines captured Sergio Villarreal Barragan, a presumed leader of the embattled Beltran Leyva cartel who appears on a list of the country’s most-wanted fugitives, in a raid Sunday in the central state of Puebla, officials said.

The presumed capo known as “El Grande” did not put up any resistance when he was arrested along with two alleged accomplices, a Navy official told The Associated Press. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with department policy, said federal officials would announce the capture shortly.

Mr. Villarreal appears on a 2009 Attorney General’s Office list of Mexico’s most-wanted drug traffickers and has a reward of just over $2-million for his capture.

He is listed as one of the remaining leaders of the Beltran Leyva cartel, whose top capo, Arturo Beltran Leyva, was killed in December in a raid by marines outside Mexico City.

Drug Cratel Violence. Young Woman Murdered & Mutilated By Cartel

Mr. Villarreal’s capture comes about two weeks after the arrest of Edgar Valdez Villarreal, or “The Barbie,” another alleged capo linked to the Beltran Leyvas.

The once-powerful Beltran Leyva cartel split following the death of Arturo — known as the “Boss of Bosses” — which launched a brutal war for control of the gang involving mass execution and beheadings in once-peaceful parts of central Mexico. The fight pitted brother Hector Beltran Leyva and Villarreal against a faction led by Edgar Valdez Villarreal. Hector Beltran Leyva remains at large.

Mr. Villarreal’s capture is the fourth major blow delivered to drug cartels by Mexico’s government in the past year. First came the death of Arturo Beltran Leyva on Dec. 16, 2009, then soldiers killed the Sinaloa cartel’s No. 3 capo, Ignacio “Nacho” Coronel, on July 29. And on Aug. 30 federal police announced the capture of “The Barbie.”

Drug Cartel Victims - Decapitated Bodies Dumped in Plaza

More than 28,000 people have been killed in Mexico since December 2006, when President Felipe Calderon launched a military offensive against the cartels soon after taking office.

In the central state of Morelos, police discovered nine bodies in clandestine graves Saturday in the same area where four more were recently found.

The Public Safety Department said in a separate statement that all 13 victims were believed to have been killed on the orders of “The Barbie” in his battle for control of the cartel.

Also Sunday, the military announced that it filed charges against four troops for the Sept. 5 shooting deaths of a man and his 15-year-old son along the highway linking the northern city of Monterrey to Laredo, Texas.

Authorities have said soldiers opened fire on the family vehicle when it failed to stop at a checkpoint, though relatives who were also in the car say they were shot at after they passed a military convoy.

The mother and wife of the two victims was also wounded in the shooting.

Cartel Violence - Decapitated Head Left in Plaza

A captain, a corporal and two infantrymen are in custody in military prison and have been charged with homicide, the Defence Department said in a statement.

Mexico’s military was already under scrutiny for this year’s killings of two brothers, ages 5 and 9, on a highway in Tamaulipas, a state bordering Nuevo Leon.

The National Human Rights Commission has accused soldiers of shooting the children and altering the scene to try to pin the deaths on drug cartel gunmen.

The army denies the allegations and says the boys were killed in the crossfire of a shootout between soldiers and suspected traffickers.

The scandal renewed demands from activists that civilian authorities, not the army, investigate human rights cases involving the military.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/americas/mexican-marines-arrest-presumed-leader-of-beltran-leyva-cartel/article1704715/?cmpid=rss1

3rd Mexican Mayor Slain by Hit Men This Month – Bodies of Police Detectives Investigating Slaughter of 72 Migrants Found

3rd Mexican Mayor Slain by Hit Men This Month

Another Mexican mayor slain; Clinton angers Mexico by comparing it to Colombia decades ago

The third Mexican mayor in a month was slain by suspected drug gang hitmen on the same day the U.S. secretary of state raised hackles in Mexico by saying the country is “looking more and more like Colombia looked 20 years ago.”

Hillary Rodham Clinton and other U.S. officials pointed to Mexican drug cartels’ use of three car bombs, a tool once favored by cartel-allied rebels in Colombia, as evidence that the gangs “are now showing more and more indices of insurgency.”

While the Mexican government quickly condemned the killing of the mayor of the northern town of El Naranjo, it rejected the comparison with Colombia, where the Medellin drug cartel waged a full frontal assault on the state, endangering its very integrity with attacks on police, politicians and judges and terror attacks against civilians.

More worrisome to Mexican legislators, Clinton suggested the United States was looking to implement some type of Plan Colombia for Mexico and Central America, referring to a U.S. anti-drug program in which American special forces teams trained Colombian troops and U.S. advisers are attached to Colombian military units.

 
 
 

Edelmiro Cavazo Mayor of Santiago, Mexico - Kidnapped from Home & Assassinated By Cartel

McAuley’s World: As in Columbia, hundreds of Politicians and Police are in the pay of the Mexican Cartels.

The reaction was swift.

Mexico — which has suffered at least three U.S. invasions — has always rejected allowing American troops on its soil, except for a single symbolic presence: Mexico’s Senate has authorized a U.S. detachment to march in next week’s Bicentennial parade.

“Starting right now, we have to say this clearly. We are not going to permit any version of a Plan Colombia,” said Sen. Santiago Creel, a member of President Felipe Calderon’s National Action Party. “We cannot permit a Plan Colombia in Mexico.”

Sen. Ricardo Monreal of the leftist Labor Party said U.S. aid to Colombia hadn’t stopped drug trafficking there. “Whoever thinks Colombia is a cure-all, and if the United States thinks it is necessary to apply the same model to us they applied to Colombia, they are mistaken,” he said.

Plan Colombia has been widely credited for helping Colombia diminish the rebel threat…

Clinton made her statements Wednesday in Washington at the Council on Foreign Relations, where she said drug cartels are “morphing into, or making common cause with, what we would consider an insurgency in Mexico and in Central America.”

Clinton also suggested that “we need to figure out what are the equivalents” for Mexico and Central America of Plan Colombia, acknowledging “there were problems and there were mistakes, but it worked.”

Edgar Valdez Villarreal, alias the "Barbie"

Mexican cartels are becoming increasingly violent — federal police reported Wednesday they had found four bodies in a clandestine grave linked to arrested U.S.-born drug hitman Edgar Valdez Villarreal, alias “La Barbie” — and are carrying out more attacks on government officials in Mexico.

Hooded gunmen burst into Mayor Alexander Lopez Garcia’s office in the northern Mexico state of San Luis Potosi on Wednesday and shot him to death.

President Felipe Calderon’s office issued a statement condemning the killing — the third mayor slain in less than a month — calling it a “cowardly and criminal” act.

There was no immediate information on the motive in the attack, but the style of the slaying resembles methods used by Mexico’s drug cartels.

On Aug. 29, the mayor of a town just across the state line in

Hidalogo Mayor Mayor Marco Antonio Leal Assassinated by Cartels 08.30.2010

Tamaulipas was shot to death and his daughter wounded. [Marco Antonio Leal Garcia, 46, was shot dead while he was driving his car, the source said. His four-year-old daughter was seriously wounded in the attack, the source said.] The mayor of Santiago, a town in the neighboring state of Nuevo Leon, was found murdered Aug. 18, a crime for local police officers allied with a drug gang are suspected.

The San Luis Potosi state prosecutors’ office said Lopez Garcia was killed by a squad of four hitmen. The rural township of about 20,000 people borders the violent-wracked state of Tamaulipas, where 72 migrants were massacred by drug gunmen in August.

On Wednesday, the Mexican government announced that marines had arrested seven gunmen suspected of killing 72 Central and South American migrants last month in the worst drug cartel massacre to date.

Four of the suspects were arrested after a Sept. 3 gunbattle with marines, and the other three were captured days later, spokesman Alejandro Poire said at a news conference.

Poire alleged the seven belong to the Zetas drug gang, but he gave no further details on their identities or what led to their arrests.

Investigators believe the migrants were kidnapped by the Zetas and killed after refusing to work for the cartel.

San Luis Potosi Central Square - City Hall in Background

The arrests “will help determine exactly what happened in San Fernando, Tamaulipas, and it’s a significant step toward ending the impunity surrounding assaults on migrants by organized crime,” Poire said.

An eighth suspect already was in custody. Marines arrested a teenager after a shootout with gunmen at the ranch the day they discovered the bodies. Three gunmen were killed during that battle.

A Twitter account linked to Calderon’s website said two youths aged 14 and 17 had also been detained for allegedly participating in the massacre, but offered no details. The president’s office was not immediately available to clarify the report.

In addition, marines last week found the bodies of three other men suspected of participating in the massacre after an anonymous caller told authorities where to find them. Officials say they have no information on who made the call, but in the past drug gangs have handed over suspects in especially brutal killings that draw too much attention.

Zetas Dump 12 Bodies Outside San Louis Petosi

A Honduran man who also survived the slaughter and is under police protection in Mexico later identified the three dead men as having been among the killers.

The latest arrests were announced one day after authorities found the bodies of two men believed to be those of a state detective and a local police chief who participated in the initial investigation of the massacre. [Prosecutor Roberto Jaime Suarez]

http://abcnews.go.com/International/wirestory?id=11589288&page=1

 

Mexican Army Kills 25: Army’s Firefight with Zetas Cartel in Monterey, Mexico

Former Presidential Candidate Luis Donaldo Colosio: Assassinated 03/24/1994, Tijuana, Baja California

MONTERREY, Mexico — Soldiers killed at least 25 suspected cartel members Thursday in a raid and gunbattle in a Mexican state near the U.S. border that has become one of the most dangerous battlegrounds in the country’s drug war.

A military aircraft flying over Ciudad Mier in Tamaulipas state spotted several gunmen in front of a building, according to a statement from Mexico’s Defense Department.

When ground troops moved in, gunmen opened fire, starting a gunbattle in which 25 suspected cartel members died, according to the military. The statement said two soldiers were wounded.

Authorities rescued three people believed to be kidnap victims in the raid, according to the statement. The military said troops seized 25 rifles, four grenades, 4,200 rounds of ammunition and 23 vehicles.

Earlier, a military spokesman said the gunmen were believed to be on a property controlled by the Zetas, who started out as a gang of drug assassins but have since evolved into a powerful cartel.

Some local media reported 27 suspected cartel members were slain, citing unnamed police officials.

Violence has surged in northeastern Mexico this year since the Zetas broke ranks with their former employer, the Gulf cartel, resulting in a flare-up of drug violence in Tamaulipas.Last week, marines discovered the bodies of 72 Central and South American migrants believed to have been gunned down by the Zetas after refusing to work for the cartel, in what may be the deadliest drug gang massacres to date. The migrants’ bodies were discovered at a ranch about 100 miles (160 kilometers) from the U.S. border in Tamaulipas.

Five days later, the mayor of the Tamaulipas town of Hidalgo (Marco Antonio Leal Garcia), bordering Nuevo Leon state, was ambushed and killed in his car in an attack that also wounded his four-year-old daughter.

In June, gunmen ambushed and killed the leading candidate for state governor a week before regional elections. And in May a mayoral candidate in Tamaulipas was assassinated.

Drug violence has claimed more than 28,000 lives since President Felipe Calderon intensified a crackdown on cartels after taking office in late 2006.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/09/03/AR2010090300773.html

Hidalgo Mayor Mayor Marco Antonio Leal Assassinated by Cartels 08/30/2010

Cartel Member Killed in Firefight

Over the weekend, 17 people were injured in four separate bomb attacks in Tamaulipas in just 24 hours.

The explosions appeared to target places connected with an investigation into the killing of 72 foreign migrants whose bodies were found on a ranch in the state on 25 August.

The 58 men and 14 women were from South and Central America. They had been trying to reach the US, and were believed to have been killed by members of the Zetas gang.

Shortly after the grim discovery of their bodies, Roberto Suarez, the detective leading the investigation into the mass slaying, went missing, along with a police officer he was travelling with.

The rising violence has led to growing criticism of President Felipe Calderon’s military crackdown on Mexico’s drug gangs. Opposition groups say the crackdown, which began three and a half years ago, has done nothing to stop the flow of drugs to the US.

In his state of the union address on Thursday morning, the president admitted the violence was worsening but defended his approach, saying the cartels were being weakened.

“The capture or killing of important criminal leaders has made the crime organisations more desperate,” Mr Calderon said.

“It is an ever more bloody war between organised crime groups fighting for territory, markets and routes.”

Mr Calderon insisted the fight had to go on.

Rodolfo Torre Canto: Gubernatorial candidate assassianted by cartels

“If we want a safe Mexico for the Mexicans of the future, we must take on the cost of achieving it today,” he said.

More than 28,000 people have died in drug-related violence in Mexico since Mr Calderon ordered the army and federal police to fight the cartels in 2006.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-11173279

 

 

List: Mexican Election Campaign Killings

June 28, 2010

Rodolfo Torre Cantú – Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) candidate for governor of Tamaulipas.
Enrique Blackmore Smer – local representative and general coordinator of Rodolfo Torre Cantú’s campaign.
Rubén López – member of Rodolfo Torre Cantú’s entourage.
Gerardo Sotero – escort for the gubernatorial candidate.
David Castelo – escort for the gubernatorial candidate.
Dante Quiroz – escort for the gubernatorial candidate.
Aurelio Balleza – escort for the gubernatorial candidate.
Alejandro Martínez – Rodolfo Torre Cantú’s private secretary.

Mayor Edelmiro Cavazos of Santiago Kidnapped & Murdered 08/18/2010

June 26, 2010

Pedro Brito Ocampo – National Action Party (PAN) manager in the Guerrero state municipality of Heliodoro Castillo. His body, found in an abandoned house, had 40 gunshot wounds.

June 19, 2010

Jesús Manuel Lara – 48 year-old Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) mayor of Guadalupe Distrito Bravo, Chihuahua, died in a house in the Santa Teresa neighborhood of Ciudad Juárez when a group of gunmen burst in and shot him.

May 21, 2010

Jorge Rogelio Ortega Ortega – Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) associate helping with the political campaigns, gunned down by heavily armed men riding in a Ranger pickup.

May 13, 2010

Mario Guajardo Varela – National Action Party (PAN) candidate for mayor of Valle Hermoso, Tamaulipas, his son, Luis Mario Guajardo Adame, and an employee named Fernando Treviño, were executed by three hitmen inside an agricultural supply store.

March 17, 2010

Sótico Silvestre López – Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD) manager in San Andrés Huaxpaltepec, a municipality on the coast of Oaxaca, was gunned down by a group of assassins.

http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2010_06_01_archive.html

Former Senator & Mexican Presidential Candidate Fernández de Cevallos Kidnapped from his home 05/15/2010

 

Juan Antonio Guajardo Anzaldua, Former mayor of Rio Bravo, 2 AFI Agents assassinated 

A memorial of flowers and candles took up yards of sidewalk Friday near the bullet-riddled cafeteria where a former mayor who had promised to rid this city of drug corruption was gunned down the previous day. Juan Antonio Guajardo Anzaldua, a father of four, would have turned 49 on Friday. He was shot dead at 5:38 p.m. Thursday at his family-owned restaurant, along with two bodyguards and three other people.

Cancun Resort Massacre: 8 Killed In Attack On Cancun Resort Bar By Mexican Drug Cartel Hitman

Zetas

CANCUN, Mexico – At least eight people were killed when molotov cocktails were thrown into a bar in the Mexican town of Cancun, a resort area popular with U.S. tourists, officials said.

“The death of eight people is confirmed. Six on site — including four women — and two others in hospital, also women,” Quintana Roo prosecutor Francisco Alor Quezada told AFP by telephone.

According to witnesses, six men threw the molotov cocktails at the establishment which had reported two attempts at extortion, apparently by the Zeta drug cartel.

http://www.leaderpost.com/news/killed+attack+Cancun/3464275/story.html#ixzz0yCOzzxsz

CANCUN, Mexico (AFP) – At least eight people were killed when molotov cocktails were thrown into a bar in the Mexican town of Cancun, a resort area popular with US tourists, officials said Tuesday.

“The death of eight people is confirmed. Six on site — including four women — and two others in hospital, also women,” prosecutor Francisco Alor Quezada, from the southeastern state of Quintana Roo, told AFP by telephone.

According to witnesses, six men threw the molotov cocktails at the establishment which had reported two attempts at extortion, apparently by the Zetas drug cartel.

The attack set off a fire which destroyed the bar, in a residential area not frequented by tourists, officials said.

The brutal Zetas, first set up by former paramilitaries in the 1990s, have grown in force since splitting off from the powerful Gulf gang, whom they are now fighting for control of drug trafficking routes.

They are suspected in last week’s massacre of 72 migrants in northeast Mexico and many kidnapping, killing and extortion cases.

Cancun has seen sporadic attacks and gruesome discoveries of bodies in wells and graves as violence has escalated since President Felipe Calderon deployed tens of thousands of soldiers to take on organized crime gangs in 2006.

More than 28,000 have died in drug-related violence nationwide since then, according to official figures.

http://www.canada.com/news/killed+attack+Cancun/3464275/story.html

Reputed Mexican Cartel Boss Captured: Edgar Valdez Villarreal (the Barbie) Taken Into Custody

Edgar Valdez Villarreal, alias "the Barbie", taken into custody

MEXICO CITY—Texas-born fugitive Edgar Valdez Villarreal, alias “the Barbie,” is the third major suspected drug lord to fall in Mexico in the past 10 months and a coup for President Felipe Calderon in his embattled war on powerful cartels.

Valdez, who got his improbable nickname from his fair complexion, is wanted in the United States for allegedly smuggling tons of cocaine and inside Mexico is blamed for a brutal turf war that has included bodies hung from bridges, decapitations and shootouts as he and a rival fought for control of the divided Beltran Leyva Cartel.

Calderon called Valdez “one of the most-wanted criminals in Mexico and abroad” in a Tweet. He vowed that operations to bring down the rest of his gang will continue following his arrest Monday in Mexico State, an area that borders Mexico City.

The arrest was the culmination of a yearlong intelligence operation, the Public Safety Department said in a statement.

The statement offered no other details, but included a photograph of Valdez sporting stubble as he kneels on the ground, a police officer’s hand on his shoulder.

SEE: Mexican Drug Cartel Violence: Mexican Marines arrest presumed leader of Beltran Leyva Cartel – Sergio Villarreal Barragan taken into custody

Valdez was charged in May in U.S. District Court in Atlanta with distributing thousands of pounds of cocaine from Mexico to the eastern U.S. from 2004 to 2006.

U.S. authorities had offered a reward of up to $2 million for information leading to his capture, and the Mexican government offered a similar amount.

There was no word from Mexican authorities on any extradition plans.

Aturo Beltran Leyva

Mexican authorities say Valdez has been battling for control of the Beltran Leyva Cartel since its leader, Arturo Beltran Leyva, was killed in a December shootout with marines in Cuernavaca, a favorite weekend getaway south of the Mexican capital.

The fight against Hector Beltran Leyva — a brother of Arturo — has made a battleground of what was once a relatively peaceful pocket of the country and brought the drug war ever closer to Mexico City. Their fight has spread westward toward the resort city of Acapulco.

The U.S. State Department says Valdez headed a group of assassins for the Beltran Leyva gang. He “is the person most responsible for pushing the battle into central and southern Mexico,” the department says on its website.

Carlos Beltran Leyva

Valdez’s capture is the government’s latest victory against the crumbling Beltran Leyva Cartel. Two other Beltran Leyva brothers have been arrested under President Felipe Calderon, who in 2006 deployed thousands of federal police and soldiers to fight drug traffickers in their strongholds.

Drug-gang violence has surged since the offensive began, claiming an unprecedented 28,000 lives. But the crackdown has brought down several major traffickers.

Aside from the Beltran Leyvas, drug lord Ignacio “Nacho” Coronel was killed in a gunbattle last month when soldiers raided his home in Guadalajara. Coronel was the No. 3 in the Sinaloa cartel, one of the world’s most powerful drug trafficking gangs.

Ignacio "Nacho" Coronel - The "King of Crystal"

Valdez, 37, was born in the border city of Laredo, Texas, and belonged to the Sinaloa cartel until its split from the Beltran Leyvas in 2008 — one of many divisions among Mexican cartels in recent years that have fueled the country’s gruesome gang violence.

Experts said Valdez’s capture could be especially valuable because of the intelligence he might provide on other top traffickers, including Sinaloa chief Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, Mexico’s most-wanted drug lord.

“Because they caught La Barbie alive, he will be a very important source of information against El Chapo,” said Raul Benitez, a professor at the National Autonomous University of Mexico who studies the drug trade. “La Barbie was once the bodyguard of El Chapo Guzman.”

Much of the most recent violence in central Mexico has been directed at Valdez’s allies.

The decapitated bodies of four men were hung from a bridge in Cuernavaca last

Joaquin Guzman, El Chapo

week, along with a message threatening allies of “La Barbie” and signed by the gang led by Hector Beltran Leyva. Two more bodies were hung from bridges near Acapulco later in the week, although no gang claimed responsibility.

Benitez said the violence in the region could drop over time, as the government has disrupted Valdez’s crusade to create a new cartel from his split with the Beltran Leyvas. But it won’t initially, he added, because the lieutenants in the gang always fight for control immediately after a big boss is brought down.

And Mexico’s violence overall is not expected to drop because other, more powerful gangs are fighting in the border city of Ciudad Juarez and along the northeastern border with the U.S., where 72 migrants were found massacred last week in what is believed to be the deadliest drug cartel attack to date.

La Barbie’s “arrest will be a public relations coup for the Mexican government, even though it will do little to quell the violence in places like Juarez and Monterrey,” the U.S.-based security think tank Stratfor said in a report.

U.S. prosecutors say they used a federal wiretap of a related case in Atlanta in January 2008 to identify Valdez as the source of thousands of kilograms of cocaine that were imported into the U.S. from 2004 to 2006.

Cartel Beheadings in Baja

Gamaliel Aguirre Tavira

Witnesses said some truckloads traveling from Laredo to Atlanta carried more than 650 pounds of cocaine. The workers sent shipments of money, often containing several million dollars in cash, back to Mexico in tractor-trailer trucks, according to the court records.

Mexican authorities had been closing in on La Barbie’s allies in recent weeks. On July 10, marines raided a house in Acapulco and captured Gamaliel Aguirre Tavira, suspected regional chief of the Valdez faction.

http://www.boston.com/news/world/latinamerica/articles/2010/08/31/mexico_says_drug_lord_the_barbie_captured/?page=1

Obama’s Solution To Secure Our Borders: After Months of Delay – 30 National Guard Troops Will Arrive In Arizona Monday – But They Won’t Have Any Law Enforcement Authority…

McAuley’s World Comment:Read it and weep …. Thankfully the November election is only 60 days away … What a “spin job” …

 Guard troops to deploy to Arizona border on Monday

PHOENIX – The first of 532 National Guard troops are set to begin their mission in the southern Arizona desert on Monday under President Barack Obama’s plan to beef up U.S.-Mexico border security, although they won’t have any law enforcement authority.About 30 troops will start their jobs on the border Monday, and waves of more troops will be deploying every Monday until all 532 are expected to be on the Arizona border by the end of September. In May, Obama ordered 1,200 National Guard

Shhh ... but They Won’t Have Any Law Enforcement Authority…

 troops to boost security along the border…. [120 days to deploy 30 troops who are reporting on station without the authority necessary to do the job ... what a Commander ... what a Leader ...  you've heard the old saying, "Never send a Community Organizer to do a man's job ...]

The troops will be “extra eyes and ears” for U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents, and though they will have guns for self-defense, they will not have the authority to arrest anyone, said Arizona National Guard spokesman Lt. Valentine Castillo. [Exactly what are the "rules of engagement" - see the first video below]

He said if troops spot illegal immigrants, they must report them to the Border Patrol, whose agents would make the arrest.

The troops will be stationed in the desert at “strategic locations” along the border, he said, but did not provide specifics.

Mario Escalante, a spokesman for the Border Patrol’s Tucson sector, said the troops will use binoculars, night-vision equipment, remote cameras and computers to conduct surveillance on the border, and will have radios to communicate with Border Patrol agents.

They’ll be set up at high points in various locations in the desert, he said.

Read the full story here:  

Remember this account of our National Guard being “detailed” to the border without proper authorization … without proper “Rules of Engagement” … the 6000 National Guard Troops mentioned in this report were sent home by Obama’s Atttorney General Holder almost two years ago …come Monday their 30 replacements will arrive …

and this report

We need an Administration that will be serious about securing our borders … Vote in November …

Obama On Border Patrol

New Immigration Policy to Restrict Illegal Immigrant Deportations

ICE Assistant Secretary John Morton, seen here, wrote the Aug. 20 memo to Peter Vincent

Federal authorities have issued a new policy aimed at stopping deportation proceedings for some illegal immigrants, according to a memo issued by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The memo, which ICE released on Aug. 20, could affect up to tens of thousands of illegal immigrants who are married or related to a U.S. citizen or a legal resident who has filed a petition on their behalf. Illegal immigrants with criminal convictions will not qualify under the plan. ICE Assistant Secretary John Morton wrote the memo to Peter Vincent, principal legal adviser and head of the agency’s removal operations.

The memo directs ICE attorneys to check cases of detained illegal immigrants for any “serious” or “adverse” factors weighing against dismissal, including criminal convictions, fraud, national security and public safety considerations.

“If no investigations … or serious adverse factors exist, the offices of chief counsel should promptly move to dismiss proceedings,” the memo reads. “Once the Field Office Director is notified, the FOD must release the alien.”

The change in policy could affect thousands of the estimated 17,000 pending removal cases. According to ICE data, nearly 40,000 immigrants obtained U.S residency status due to sponsorship of relatives who were legal residents in fiscal year 2009. By comparison, more than 393,000 illegal immigrants were deported during that same span.

Debris Left Along Cartel Controlled "Coyote" Trail

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, likened the change to a “free pass” for illegal immigrants, a characterization federal authorities denied.

 “Actions like this demoralize ICE agents who are trying to do their job and enforce the law,” Grassley told The New York Times. “Unfortunately, it appears this is more evidence that the Obama administration would rather circumvent Congress and give a free pass to illegal immigrants who have already broken our law.”

A Department of Homeland Security official told Fox News that the new policy was designed in July 2009 to improve docket efficiency.

Richard Rocha, ICE’s deputy press secretary, said the agency remains focused on removing foreign nationals who have criminal convictions.

Border Patrol Officer Wades Through Debris Left Behind On Coyote Trail

“This administration is committed to smart, effective immigration reform, prioritizing the arrest and removal of criminal aliens and those who pose a danger to national security,” Rocha said in a statement. “In 2010 to date, ICE has removed more than 150,000 convicted criminals — a record number. [McAuleys' World: It is estimated that there are between 4 million and 6 million illegals present in the Unites States with criminal conviction histories] 

“ICE is not engaged in a ‘backdoor’ amnesty and has placed more people in immigration proceedings this year than ever before.  ICE has implemented a new policy to expedite the removal of criminal aliens and those who pose a danger to national security by ensuring these cases are heard.”

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/08/27/new-immigration-policy-halt-illegal-immigrant-deportations/

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