Monday, November 19, 2007

Agents' pardon urged of Bush

Agents' pardon urged of Bush
Top conservatives have joined ranking House leaders in their bid to pressure the president to pardon two Border Patrol agents imprisoned for the nonfatal shooting of a Mexican drug smuggler in El Paso, Texas, in 2005.
The letter comes on the heels of the arrest of admitted drug smuggler Osvaldo Aldrete-Davila on charges of trafficking marijuana while he was profiting from the federal immunity deal as the star witness in the shooting case against the agents.
Ramos and Compean are serving 11 and 12 years, respectively, for the shooting, which occurred in February 2005. They have served nearly a year in solitary confinement for their own protection because of the high profile of their case. The pair is scheduled to appeal the conviction on Dec. 3 before the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

The letter is one of more than a dozen attempts — including a petition signed by nearly 400,000 people across the nation — to reach the president. Mr. Hunter hand-delivered a similar letter to the president on Friday.
The signers say they "find it unacceptable that some disillusioned Americans are being forced to conclude that the lives of Ramos and Compean are simply what the government has deemed an acceptable level of 'collateral damage' for a failed border security and national immigration policy."

Last week, U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton, whose office prosecuted the case against the Border Patrol agents, announced the arrest of Mr. Aldrete-Davila.

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