Border Boletín: No mention of apprehension claim in Dever's testimony
By Brady McCombs | Posted: Friday, April 8, 2011 11:53 am | Comments
Sheriff Larry Dever's Senate testimony (April 7)
Sheriff Dever's statement about apprehension claim (April 2)
In his written testimony submitted to a Senate committee, Cochise
County Sheriff Larry Dever didn't mention anything about his
allegation that Border Patrol agents are being instructed not to
arrest all illegal border crossers to keep apprehension numbers down.
The allegation — made late last week to Fox News — caused major
waves. On Monday, the national chief of the Border Patrol sent a
letter to Dever, calling the claim 100 percent false.
And on Thursday at the Senate hearing, Pinal County Sheriff Paul
Babeu — who replaced Dever after a scheduling conflict prevented
Dever from attending the hearing — backed Dever's claim. Babeu cited
second- and third-hand sources.
Cochise County Sheriff's spokeswoman Carol Capas said this week that
Dever stands behind his allegation, which he has made several times
"I do not make this stuff up," said Dever in an emailed statement. "I
can unequivocally say what I have told you comes from Border Patrol
agents who work the problem every day and other federal government
officials from various organizations. Some of it is 3 years old, some
of it is current."
You can read this full statement in the box to the left.
The Fox News story quoted Dever as saying he planned to tell the
committee about the substance of his conversations with Border Patrol
"I will raise my hand to tell the truth and swear to God, and nothing
is more serious or important than that," Dever said in the story.
"I'm going to tell them that, here's what I hear and see every day: I
had conversation with agent A, B, C, D and this is what they told me."
But the testimony submitted to the Senate Homeland Security and
Governmental Affairs Committee does not elaborate on his claims.
His two-page statement includes information about the level of drug
and people smuggling through his county, and questions how Department
of Homeland Security officials can call the border secure without
defining what that means. You can read the full testimony in the box
to the left. He ended his testimony with this:
"In the words of almost every Border Patrol agent that works this
problem every day, 'We've made some progress, but we still have a
long way to go.' So, in the words of Larry the Cable Guy, 'get 'er
UPDATE; at least one.
Officials: So far, no victims found in mass graves are U.S. citizens
April 08, 2011 8:19 PM
The Brownsville Herald
BROWNSVILLE -- While the number of dead from the mass graves found in
San Fernando this week continues to mount, officials say that none of
the victims have been identified as U.S. citizens.
The U.S. Consulate in Matamoros said Friday that it has been working
closely with Mexican officials in the investigation.
"We are responsible for the safety of U.S. citizens in Mexico and,
accordingly, have been working closely with Mexican authorities
investigating the case," Consul General Michael Barkin said in a
At least 72 bodies have been found since Wednesday, when authorities
discovered the graves.
Gerardo Acevedo Danache, vice president of international affairs for
the Matamoros Chamber of Commerce, said there is still the
possibility that some victims were U.S. residents or citizens.
"It is presumed that they are Mexican citizens, but it cannot be
discounted that some of the victims could be from the U.S. or from
Central America," he said.
Some of the victims have been taken to morgues in Matamoros and
Reynosa in order to handle the number of bodies, he said. Acevedo
Danache said the remains were transferred to the two cities because
of their proximity to San Fernando.
The identification the victims may take some time since they were in
a state of advanced decomposition when found, he said.
Brownsville Mayor Pat M. Ahumada Jr. said he was waiting to hear from
Barkin because there is concern that some of the victims could be
from the United States or have families here.
Authorities believe the victims had been traveling by bus from the
interior of Mexico to the U.S. border.
Norma Zamora and Liz Suarez, the public bus transit directors in
Brownsville and McAllen respectively, said they had not heard
anything from people or from private bus companies in Mexico
regarding the disappearance of buses or passengers.
Acevedo Danache said, "We are concerned that there could be other
narco-gravesites. This transcends the border. Security measures must
be implemented on the roadways."
The violence in Mexico is hitting close to home for Acevedo Danache.
His nephew left his house in Matamoros two years ago to play a game
of soccer. The young man, who would be 23 now, hasn't been heard from
"We can't find him," Acevedo Danache said.
He could be one of the thousands of "desaparecidos" in Mexico.
"There is not one person who has not been affected by the situation,"
Acevedo Danache said.
"Eso ya no puede seguir!" he said — "this cannot continue!"
Barkin said the consulate has received reports of missing American
citizens in its consular district.
"Due to privacy concerns, we are unable to provide further details on
individual cases," he said.
Intelligence sources said the Zetas criminal organization is behind
the massacre discovered this week.
The Mexican government has said the Zetas were behind the massacre
last year of 72 migrants whose bodies also were found in San Fernando.
The Zetas have turned to mass murder in their attempt to regain
strength as pressures from the Mexican government and rival cartels
mount, intelligence sources say.
"They are showing their machismo side that they are not to be
challenged," said Phil Jordan, former director of the El Paso
Intelligence Center and formerly in charge of the U.S. Drug
Enforcement Administration's Dallas office.
"The Zetas are being decimated," he said. "Intelligence sources have
indicated that the Zetas are recruiting even teenagers to help in
their criminal activities."
Note: have to wonder just what the threshold is? Could save a lot
of folks the hassle of the lines. Especially on weekends.
No charges vs. citizen border-hopper
Published Friday, April 8, 2011 10:35 AM CDT
The Border Patrol has decided not to pursue charges against a 21-year-
old male U.S. citizen who jumped the border fence from Mexico into
the United States last weekend.
The suspect, whose name was not released by the Border Patrol, was
climbing the wall on Sunday when he was spotted by cameras monitoring
the border near west International Street, said Border Patrol
spokeswoman Colleen Agle.
He was apprehended alone at about 10:30 p.m. and was not suspected of
being involved in a crime other than "illegal entry" or not using the
port to enter the United States, Agle said.
He was then taken to the Dennis DeConcini Port of Entry for further
questioning before being released.
"It happens every once in a while," Agle said of Americans climbing
the border fence or illegally entering the country, a felony that can
carry up to a year in prison and a $5,000 fine for first-time offenders.
For second-time offenders, the fine goes up to $10,000.
"I've never heard of anyone doing it twice," Agle said.
The U.S. Attorney's Office also couldn't release the suspect's name
because Customs and Border Protection decided not to file charges,
said Robbie Sherwood, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in
"Vic Brabble from (U.S. Customs and Border Protection) did some
checking and found out that this guy was handed over to customs,
determined to be a U.S. citizen, and apparently didn't meet the
threshold to cite," Sherwood said in an email.
Note: privileged class syndrome, or fraud ?
Colleague disputes story of professor who says he was ambushed in Mexico
April 08, 2011 5:47 PM
McALLEN — A Mexican professor who was scheduled to be a keynote
speaker at a human trafficking conference hosted by South Texas
College, was ambushed, along with two students, on a Mexican highway
Wednesday, according to an event organizer.
Arun Kumar Acharya, professor and investigator at the Institute of
Social Investigations for the Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon in
Monterrey — better known for its Spanish acronym, UNAM — was supposed
to give a lecture at STC on Thursday about sex trafficking in Mexico,
but he never arrived, Chair and Conference Organizer Jenny Bryson
Acharya and two students were stopped along the road Wednesday
while traveling from Monterrey to McAllen and robbed, but it is
unclear by whom, Clark said.
"I don't know much about how it happened. All I got from his emails
was that it was very violent, but no one was hurt," she said.
The assailants took Acharya's vehicle, laptop and other belongings,
leaving them stranded about an hour away from the U.S.-Mexico border,
"They ended up having to stay at a hotel, and the students' parents
had to eventually come down and pick them up the day after," Clark said.
All three of them are home now, she added.
"He mentioned to me in an email that he'll never be the same after
this experience. It really did shake him up considerably," the
However, a man who identified himself as a colleague of Acharya but
would not disclose his identity said the trip was never made.
"It's false," he said during a phone call made by a Monitor reporter
to the institute in Mexico. "Because of the same insecurity, the trip
was cancelled…. Check the facts and please contradict that information."
Clark, however, said she had personal communication with Acharya, who
informed her of the situation.
"He's been emailing me back and forth," she said about Acharya.
Several attempts to locate the professor at the institute were
"He's home trying to recover," Clark said.
Naxiely Lopez covers law enforcement and general assignments for The
Monitor. She can be reached at (956) 683-4434.