imc indymedia

Los Angeles Indymedia : Activist News

white themeblack themered themetheme help
About Us Contact Us Calendar Publish RSS
Features
latest news
best of news
syndication
commentary


KILLRADIO

VozMob

ABCF LA

A-Infos Radio

Indymedia On Air

Dope-X-Resistance-LA List

LAAMN List




IMC Network:

Original Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: ambazonia canarias estrecho / madiaq kenya nigeria south africa canada: hamilton london, ontario maritimes montreal ontario ottawa quebec thunder bay vancouver victoria windsor winnipeg east asia: burma jakarta japan korea manila qc europe: abruzzo alacant andorra antwerpen armenia athens austria barcelona belarus belgium belgrade bristol brussels bulgaria calabria croatia cyprus emilia-romagna estrecho / madiaq euskal herria galiza germany grenoble hungary ireland istanbul italy la plana liege liguria lille linksunten lombardia london madrid malta marseille nantes napoli netherlands nice northern england norway oost-vlaanderen paris/Île-de-france patras piemonte poland portugal roma romania russia saint-petersburg scotland sverige switzerland thessaloniki torun toscana toulouse ukraine united kingdom valencia latin america: argentina bolivia chiapas chile chile sur cmi brasil colombia ecuador mexico peru puerto rico qollasuyu rosario santiago tijuana uruguay valparaiso venezuela venezuela oceania: adelaide aotearoa brisbane burma darwin jakarta manila melbourne perth qc sydney south asia: india mumbai united states: arizona arkansas asheville atlanta austin baltimore big muddy binghamton boston buffalo charlottesville chicago cleveland colorado columbus dc hawaii houston hudson mohawk kansas city la madison maine miami michigan milwaukee minneapolis/st. paul new hampshire new jersey new mexico new orleans north carolina north texas nyc oklahoma philadelphia pittsburgh portland richmond rochester rogue valley saint louis san diego san francisco san francisco bay area santa barbara santa cruz, ca sarasota seattle tampa bay tennessee urbana-champaign vermont western mass worcester west asia: armenia beirut israel palestine process: fbi/legal updates mailing lists process & imc docs tech volunteer projects: print radio satellite tv video regions: oceania united states topics: biotech

Surviving Cities

www.indymedia.org africa: canada: quebec east asia: japan europe: athens barcelona belgium bristol brussels cyprus germany grenoble ireland istanbul lille linksunten nantes netherlands norway portugal united kingdom latin america: argentina cmi brasil rosario oceania: aotearoa united states: austin big muddy binghamton boston chicago columbus la michigan nyc portland rochester saint louis san diego san francisco bay area santa cruz, ca tennessee urbana-champaign worcester west asia: palestine process: fbi/legal updates process & imc docs projects: radio satellite tv
printable version - js reader version - view hidden posts - tags and related articles

Border World

by x Saturday, Aug. 19, 2006 at 5:53 PM

not your daddys mexico...unless you are duh-bya



DHS, DOJ seeking to deliver informant to House of Death's door

By Bill Conroy,

Posted on Mon Aug 14th, 2006 at 09:55:10 PM EST

The informant in the House of Death mass murder case is now facing the consequences of his Faustian bargain with the U.S. government.

In exchange for taking the government’s gold, some 0,000, and participating in torture and murder to help advance a big drug case for U.S. prosecutors, the informant now finds himself in the devil’s court, with his life hanging in the balance.

Narco News recently tracked down legal pleadings filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eight Circuit by the informant’s attorney. The litigation reveals that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which employed the informant to narc on high-level players in the drug-trafficking netherworld, is now seeking to send the informant back into that netherworld, with his identity exposed, to face the very people he ratted out.

The appeals court pleadings trace the path of the informant’s efforts to avoid deportation to Mexico, where his deeds as an informant were carried out against a ruthless narco-trafficking organization.

DHS, which is implicated in the cover-up of their agents’ complicity in the House of Death murders, initiated the deportation proceedings against the informant, the appeals court pleadings show. DHS is arguing that the informant faces no danger in Mexico despite the fact that he betrayed powerful members of the Vicente Carrillo Fuentes Juárez drug organization.

This is a curious position for DHS officials to take, given that the informant could expose the full extent of the role played by DHS agents in the House of Death murders — so it could be argued that DHS might have a motive to see the informant out of the picture, permanently.

However, according to the court records, the immigration judge in the informant’s case disagreed with DHS’ contention and granted him relief from deportation under Article III of the United Nations Convention Against Torture — after concluding that the informant would likely be tortured and murdered by the narco-traffickers he betrayed while working for DHS if he was returned to Mexico.

DHS was not happy with that outcome and appealed the judge’s decision to the Board of Immigration Appeals, which is part of the Department of Justice (DOJ). The DOJ, too, has been implicated in the House of Death cover-up. An Assistant U.S. Attorney in El Paso, Juanita Fielden, and the U.S. Attorney in San Antonio, Johnny Sutton, have been accused of turning a blind eye to the informant’s participation in the House of Death murders because they were more interested in making a drug case against the Carrillo Fuentes organization.

The Board of Immigration Appeals, perhaps predictably, overturned the immigration judge’s ruling, which forced the informant to take his case to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in an effort to forestall his deportation.

This informant, Guillermo Eduardo Ramirez Peyro (also known as “Lalo” and by the alias Jesus Contreras) had infiltrated a narco-trafficking organization in Ciudád Juárez that was overseen by Heriberto Santillan-Tabares, whom U.S. prosecutors claim was a top lieutenant in Carrillo Fuentes organization. Between August 2003 and mid-January 2004, while under the watch of DHS agents, Ramirez helped to operated a House of Death in a residential neighborhood in Juárez where a dozen people were tortured and murdered by Mexican police who were working under the direction of Santillan.

Murder machine

The murder machine was exposed publicly in mid-January 2004 after a DEA agent and his family were nearly abducted by Santillan’s thugs. In the wake of that incident, DEA was forced to evacuate its personnel from Juarez.

Santillan was later indicted on murder and narco-trafficking charges. However, the fact that the U.S. government’s own informant, Ramirez, was complicit in those murders — with the knowledge of his DHS handlers — gave Santillan’s defense team the leverage it needed to negotiate a sweetheart plea deal with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in San Antonio — which included dropping the murder charges. (Ramirez’ handlers were federal agents with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which is part of DHS.)

The plea deal with Santillan was announced on April 19, 2005. Three days later, according to the appeals court pleadings obtained by Narco News, Ramirez emerged from U.S. government protective custody to turn himself in to U.S. immigration officials in order to seek protection — because he feared DHS was about to send him back to a certain death in Mexico at the hands of the narco-traffickers he double-crossed.

“… Heriberto Santillan pled guilty before trial. Mr. Ramirez, of no further use to United States law enforcement agencies in an informant’s role, was compelled to seek protection in the United States,” states Ramirez’ attorney, Jodi Goodwin, in the pleadings filed in the U.S. Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.

A couple weeks later, DHS began deportation proceedings against Ramirez.

From the appeals court pleadings:

Removal Proceedings [against Ramirez] began with issuance of a Notice to Appear, (NTA), on May 9, 2005. The NTA alleges Mr. Ramirez is not a citizen of the United States but a citizen of Mexico who was not in possession of a valid entry document when he presented himself for admission to the United States on April 22, 2005 … At a hearing before the [the immigration judge] on June 9, 2005, Mr. Ramirez admitted the truth of the factual allegations, conceded inadmissibility as alleged, and requested relief in the forms of Asylum, withholding of removal, and relief under the CAT [United Nations Convention Against Torture]. Mr. Ramirez subsequently stipulated in his pre-hearing brief that his involvement in drug trafficking rendered him ineligible for asylum and withholding of removal.

Mr. Ramírez testified he entered the Mexican drug trafficking industry after he left the Mexican federal highway police. His first job was as a distribution manager in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico. He became a United States government informant in 2000 and subsequently made contact with the Carrillo Fuentes Organization, (CFO), in Ciudád Juárez. His performance as an informant is extensively documented in the record. Mr. Ramirez explained he was tasked with infiltrating groups of organized criminals as a means to effectuate the arrest and prosecution of high-level participants.

Mr. Ramirez testified he was present when individuals who were involved with CFO in drug trafficking or whom CFO members believed were a threat were assassinated by two Mexican police officers in Ciudad Juarez. Mr. Ramirez submitted payment records

confirming he was paid over 0,000. The record details over fifty persons were successfully prosecuted and are serving prison sentences as a result of his cooperation. Mr. Ramirez was taken into custody as a material witness when Heriberto Santillan was arrested. Mr. Ramirez was placed into protective custody after death threats upon his life came to the attention of the United States Attorney.

Ramirez, though, was far more than “present” when “CFO members” tortured and killed people at the House of Death. According to records obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, he actually participated in the first murder at the House of Death in early August 2003.

Ramirez’ ICE handlers later debriefed him about the murder, which also was recorded on tape, according to law enforcement sources. Rather than shut down the drug sting at that point, Ramirez’ ICE handlers allowed him to return to the House of Death to pay a gravedigger for burying the body, FOIA records show.

In addition, Ramirez was allowed to continue his work in the House of Death murder machine — which was responsible for at least 11 more homicides over the ensuing four months.

A gravedigger who assisted Ramirez at the House of Death confirmed that Ramirez was physically present for at least five of the murders, according to timeline of events developed by the DEA in the days immediately following the evacuation of its personnel from Juárez.

After Sandalio Gonzalez, the DEA chief in El Paso at the time, objected to this outrage by writing a letter in February 2004 to U.S. Attorney Sutton, rather than investigate Gonzalez’ charges, Sutton used his pull within DOJ to retaliate against Gonzalez in order to silence him, according to FOIA documents obtained by Narco News. Sutton claimed, the FOIA records show, that Gonzalez’ letter contained “discovery material” that could threaten the drug case against Santillan.

Convention Against Torture

Based, in part, on a report prepared by a federal asylum officer as well as reports from other government agencies, the immigration judge in Ramirez’ deportation case granted him relief under the UN Convention Against Torture, the U.S. appeals court pleadings state. That ruling was based on evidence showing there was a high probability that Ramirez would be tortured and killed by narco-traffickers, or by Mexican law enforcers who worked with the narco-traffickers, should he be deported to Mexico.

From the appeals court pleadings:

Mr. Ramirez is a 35-year-old married male. He is a native and citizen of Mexico. Mr. Ramirez was a police officer in the Mexican state of Guerrero until 1995. He became involved in drug trafficking when he left the police force. Between 1995 and 1998, he coordinated transshipments of narcotics within Mexico and from the Mexican interior to the U.S. Mexico border.

As an informant for United States Customs, redesignated the Bureau of Customs and Immigration Enforcement, (ICE), pursuant to the Homeland Security Act of 2003, Mr. Ramirez provided information to the Drug Enforcement Administration, (DEA), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, (ATF), the Federal Bureau of Investigation, (FBI), and the United States Secret Service. Mr. Ramirez successfully infiltrated the CFO in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua. Ciudad Juarez is directly opposite El Paso, Texas, and CFO transports drugs through El Paso to distribution points throughout the United States.

... The Asylum Officer stated: "[Ramirez] infiltrated a drug smuggling Mexican cartel and became an informant for ICE, which resulted in multiple arrests. Since that time two separate attempts were made on [Ramirez’] life by the Cartel and [Ramirez] now believes that if he returns to Mexico he will be killed by the Cartel because of his actions as an informant."

… Asylum Officer Jack Berger interviewed Mr. Ramirez concerning his fear of returning to Mexico on May 1, 2005, approximately one week prior to the initiation of removal proceedings. Relying on a report by the United States Department of State issued in 2004, Officer Berger found Mr. Ramirez had a credible fear of the Mexican government. Supervisory Asylum Officer Helen Mireles reviewed the credible fear proceedings and concurred with Officer Berger.

The [immigration judge] found that the record presents various aspects of police involvement in Mexican drug trafficking, and in combination with [Ramirez’] credible testimony, he had established a probability of torture by drug traffickers and law enforcement in Mexico if he were forced to return. Mr. Ramirez substantiated his credible testimony by presenting documents prepared by agencies of the United States government, including the Office of the United States Attorney and the DEA.

The DHS appealed the immigration judge’s ruling to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), which is under the oversight of U.S. Attorney Alberto Gonzales — who, along with Sutton, has deep ties to the Bush Administration that date back to George W. Bush’s tenure as governor of Texas.

The BIA sided with DHS and overruled the immigration judge, setting Ramirez up for deportation to Mexico. (Again, it is important to note that the BIA is part of DOJ, which is overseen by Sutton’s boss, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, who has the power to appoint the board’s members and overrule or modify its decisions.)

From the appeals court pleadings:

The Department of Homeland Security, (DHS), disapproves of the findings of fact and the conclusion of the [immigration judge] and insists the record contains no evidence that Mr. Ramirez would be tortured by Mexican law enforcement while acting in their official capacity. The DHS also contends the record does not support a finding that Mr. Ramirez would be tortured by Mexican drug traffickers with the acquiescence of Mexican law enforcement.

The BIA concentrated on documentary evidence and concluded that the Mexican government is strengthening drug enforcement laws and is now more effective in eliminating organized drug traffickers such as those against whom Mr. Ramirez informed. The BIA paid special attention to testimony and record evidence concerning an offer of immunity from the Mexican government and stated it’s opinion that because most drug trafficking organizations operate in northern Mexico, the petitioner would remain safe if he relocated to a different part of the country.

Immunity?

The short mention of the Mexican government’s offer of immunity to Ramirez should not be overlooked. The Mexican government, under President Vicente Fox, has been conspicuously silent on the House of Death case, considering that most of the murder victims were Mexican citizens. The fact that a U.S. government informant was complicit in those homicides, with the knowledge of U.S. federal agents and prosecutors, should have prompted cries of protest from the Mexican government. Instead, according to the appeals court pleadings, the Mexican government is willing to provide the informant Ramirez with “immunity.”

You, the reader, will have to decide why that course was pursued — and whether some type of deal was struck between U.S. and Mexican government officials to export the House of Death cover-up to the Mexican side of the border as well.

In any event, Ramirez clearly doesn’t trust the word of either the U.S. or Mexican government, which is what prompted him to appeal the BIA decision to the U.S. Eighth Circuit in mid-June of this year. That appeal is still pending a decision.

Ramirez’ pleadings before the Eight Circuit state:

The [immigration judge’s] decision granting [Ramirez’] application for relief under Article III of the United Nations Convention Against Torture was improperly overturned by the BIA in the face of sufficiently corroborated evidence demonstrating that petitioner has a well-founded fear of torture at the hands of agents of the Mexican government in the event of his return to Mexico.

… The DHS asserts in it’s brief, ‘There is no objective proof that the Mexican government would do anything to [Ramirez] other than protect [Ramirez]. If Mr. Ramirez had any confidence in the promises of the Mexican government to protect him, he would have freely returned to Mexico.

DHS’ contention that Ramirez would have nothing to fear from the narco-traffickers he betrayed if returned to Mexico is a fantasy that might fly in a corrupted legal system, but for anyone with an understanding of how the narco-trafficking world really works, it is an argument that lacks any credibility — like the drug war itself.

The informant Ramirez certainly is not a poster child for the cause of justice, but his return to Mexico is certain to serve the interests of U.S. officials who have blood on their hands in the House of Death mass murder.

Because, as we all know, dead men can’t talk.

To view the informant’s legal pleadings before the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals, go to this link.

For more information on this story, go to the following link:

DHS informant implicated in House of Death mass murder is still in U.S., attorney confirms

Report this post as:

Local News

Change Links September 2018 posted S02 10:22PM

More Scandals Rock Southern California Nuke Plant San Onofre A30 11:09PM

Site Outage Friday A30 3:49PM

Change Links August 2018 A14 1:56AM

Setback for Developer of SC Farm Land A12 11:09PM

More problems at Shutdown San Onofre Nuke J29 10:40PM

Change Links 2018 July posted J09 8:27PM

More Pix: "Families Belong Together," Pasadena J02 7:16PM

"Families Belong Together" March, Pasadena J02 7:08PM

Short Report on the Families Belong Together Protest in Los Angeles J30 11:26PM

Summer 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert! J11 6:58AM

Watch the Debate: Excluded Candidates for Governor of California M31 5:20AM

Change Links June 2018 posted M28 7:41AM

The Montrose Peace Vigil at 12 Years M22 8:01PM

Unity Archive Project M21 9:42AM

Dianne Feinstein's Promotion of War, Secret Animal Abuse, Military Profiteering, Censorshi M17 10:22PM

CA Senate Bill 1303 would require an independent coroner rather than being part of police M10 9:08PM

Three years after OC snitch scandal, no charges filed against sheriffs deputies M10 8:57PM

California police agencies violate Brown Act (open meetings) M02 8:31PM

Insane Company Wants To Send Nuke Plant Waste To New Mexico A29 11:47PM

Change Links May 2018 A27 8:40AM

Worker-Owned Car Wash on Vermont Closed A27 5:37AM

GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE A13 12:39AM

lausd whistle blower A11 6:58AM

Website Upgrade A10 10:02AM

Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images A04 8:02PM

UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light A02 6:58PM

Change Links April 2018 A01 6:27PM

More Local News...

Other/Breaking News

Cybermonde, cyberguerre, cyberespace, cyberterrorisme S24 6:35AM

Paraphysique de psychosomatique S22 6:58AM

Chuck Grassley: Women Abusing, Animal Murdering, Illegal War Supporting Criminal S22 2:58AM

Finance Capitalism and the Digital Economy S21 4:45PM

Muselières syndicales, muselières patronales S21 7:19AM

Jeff Bezos, Amazon, The Washington Post, Whole Foods, Etc S21 2:50AM

Why Choose Nut Milk Over Cows' Milk S21 1:01AM

Antrhopocène, le grand effondrement S19 9:53AM

Abolir l'économie S18 11:18AM

The Dictatorship of Corporations S17 5:26PM

18 Lethal Consequences Of Hunting S17 3:13PM

Paraphysique de l'outplacement déontologue S15 6:51AM

Shopping du bashing S14 8:42AM

After Lehman Brothers, Experts Say Global Financial Crisis Can Happen Again S13 8:28PM

“Animaniacs in Concert!” Starring Voice Legend Rob Paulsen S12 9:30PM

Probabilités de fin d'humanité S12 6:49AM

Florida Area of Migrant Farmworkers Denied Right to Construct Health Clinic near NaplesCIW S11 2:57AM

Steer clear of work morality! S09 12:10PM

The Shortwave Report 09/07/18 Listen Globally! S06 11:23PM

August 2018 Honduras Coup update S06 12:28PM

Brett Kavanaugh Filled The 5th Circuit With Execution Judges S06 6:14AM

Augusta Georgia Woman Gets 5 Year Prison Sentence for Writing About Russians Crime Acts S05 8:29AM

Paraphysique de contextualité S05 8:29AM

Crisis Regulation in Global Capitalism S03 3:39PM

Ex-voto de réification S03 10:24AM

Please Oppose Warmonger, Execution and Torture Supporting Bush Operative Brett Kavanaugh A31 10:45PM

Paraphysique d'exploitation occultation A31 10:24PM

Ryan Zinke Is Charging Taxpayers For A Trophy Hunters' Council A31 2:10PM

More Breaking News...
© 2000-2018 Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Unless otherwise stated by the author, all content is free for non-commercial reuse, reprint, and rebroadcast, on the net and elsewhere. Opinions are those of the contributors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Los Angeles Independent Media Center. Running sf-active v0.9.4 Disclaimer | Privacy