Sunday, December 16, 2012

AZMEX F&F EXTRA 14-12-12


Note: Progress? If that's what they call it. Suggest taking blood
pressure meds before reading. Naughty Naughty is about what it
amounts to. Don't forget the hundreds of Mexicans who have died.
Facilitated by the Obama administration.

Progress visible on Fast and Furious

This memorial was erected where Brian Terry died in the area known as
Mesquite Seep, west of Rio Rico. Terry's colleagues and civilian
volunteers built the memorial with stones they found nearby.

11 hours ago • Tim Steller Arizona Daily Star

Two years after bandits killed U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry,
visible progress has finally occurred in the criminal cases and
internal investigations that exploded afterward.

This week, the straw purchaser of two AK-47-style rifles found at the
scene of Terry's death, west of Rio Rico, was sentenced to almost
five years in prison. Jaime Avila Jr. was one of seven defendants
from the original Operation Fast and Furious sentenced this week.

There has also been one murder conviction: Manuel Osorio-Arellanes,
who was shot during the gunfight in which Terry died, pleaded guilty
on Oct. 30 to first-degree murder in Terry's death. He is awaiting
sentencing, while one co-defendant awaits extradition in Mexico, and
three other defendants remain fugitives.

Some progress has even occurred in holding accountable the people
responsible for the ATF operation that allowed weapons into the hands
of those who killed Terry. The Wall Street Journal and others
reported this month that four Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms
and Explosives officials have been recommended for firing, and two
others have been recommended for discipline.

Terry's cousin, Robert Heyer, said the family still sees a lack of
accountability among government officials who conducted Operation
Fast and Furious or allowed it to go on despite the operation's
allowing up to 2,000 weapons into the hands of cross-border criminals.

"We're keeping our fingers crossed," Heyer said. "The Congressional
Oversight and Government Reform Committee investigation and the
Justice Department inspector general have clearly determined who is
responsible within the DOJ, who bears responsibility in the ATF and
the USA's office." Most have not been disciplined, he noted.

The attorney for one ATF official, William McMahon, acknowledged that
the bureau formally fired McMahon on Nov. 27, though he is appealing.
McMahon oversaw ATF's western U.S. region during the operation.

"The circumstances that led to his termination were tied to political
pressure arising from partisan interests that were more appropriately
directed against executive branch agencies rather than individuals
who were simply attempting to serve the perceived best interests of
our country," attorney Mark Zaid said in an email.

Attorneys for three other agents named in media reports either would
not confirm their clients' status with ATF or did not return calls
seeking comment.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and those at the top of the
hierarchy have not lost their jobs or otherwise suffered serious
consequences as a result of Terry's death or Operation Fast and
Furious, noted Art Del Cueto. He contrasted that with the
consequences that agents face - and that Terry's death brought home.

"If we mess up on small details or big details or whatever, out in
the field, we could die," he said.

On StarNet: Find extensive coverage of immigration issues at

SENTENCES for those linked to case

Federal prosecutors brought charges against 20 people in cases
stemming from the ATF gunrunning investigation brought to light by
Border Patrol agent Brian Terry's murder. Of those, 15 have been
convicted and 13 sentenced. Here are the sentences:

Jaime Avila Jr.: 4 years 9 months

Julio J. Carrillo: 3 years, 10 months

Alfredo Celis: 4 years, 9 months

Jonathan E. Fernandez: 3 years, 1 month

Dejan Hercegovac: 3 years, 4 months

Kristi G. Ireland: 5 years probation

Jacob A. Montelongo: 3 years, 5 months

Joshua D. Moore: 4 years, 9 months

Danny C. Morones: 4 years, 9 months

Jose A. Polanco: 1 year, 6 months

John W. Rowland: 3 years, 1 month

Sean C. Steward: 9 years

Kenneth J. Thompson: 5 years

Contact reporter Tim Steller at 807-8427 or at

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