Homeland Security Memos Contradict U.S. Attorney

More information trickles out about two U.S. Border Patrol officers imprisoned after shooting and wounding a Mexican drug smuggler.

In the high-profile case of two U.S. Border Patrol officers imprisoned after shooting and wounding a Mexican drug smuggler, two Department of Homeland Security documents apparently contradict the version of events put forth by the U.S. attorney who successfully prosecuted the case.

The internal Department of Homeland Security memoranda – which have been denied Congress despite repeated requests by two House members – show that within one month of the shooting incident involving Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean, government investigators had identified the smuggler as Osbaldo Aldrete-Davila.

But this seems to contradict U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton’s claim that Aldrete-Davila came forward through a Mexican lawyer who offered to identify his client in exchange for immunity.

A March 14, 2005, memo notes that Aldrete-Davila’s mother had contacted the mother-in-law of a U.S. Border Patrol agent to talk about the shooting and a memo from four months later talks about an interview with that Border Patrol agent. Also, the immunity agreement offered to Aldrete-Davila promises no prosecution against him will result from his testimony and reveals that it was signed on March 15, 2005.

Andy Ramirez, chairman of Friends of the Border Patrol, says the documents raise questions as to why Sutton chose to prosecute the Border Patrol agents rather than the drug smuggler.

Sutton defended his prosecution in an interview with WND.

He said he had no choice. “You have to understand that we could not turn our backs on this,” he told WND. “Two Border Patrol officers shot 15 times at an unarmed man who was running away and posed no real threat.” The Bush administration continues to argue on background that Ramos and Compean lied to Border Patrol officials and covered up evidence, asserting the drug smuggler was not armed and had attempted to surrender peacefully.

The documents further reveal Aldrete-Davila and his Mexican drug associates wanted to organize a “hunting party” to kill Border Patrol agents in retaliation for his being shot. The revelation raises the possibility Aldrete-Davila violated the terms of his immunity by concealing material information from the prosecutor and the jury at trial.

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