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TalkLeft Discussion Forums  |  Topics  |  Crimes 'R Us: Crimes in the News  |  Current Cases  |  Bush Commutes- But Does Not Pardon-Ramos and Compean 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Sydney Carton
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Bush Commutes- But Does Not Pardon-Ramos and Compean
« on: January 19, 2009, 04:06:48 PM »

  Bush commutes sentences of former US border agents

WASHINGTON (AP) - In his final acts of clemency, President George W. Bush on Monday commuted the prison sentences of two former U.S. Border Patrol agents whose convictions for shooting a Mexican drug dealer ignited fierce debate about illegal immigration.

Bush's decision to commute the sentences of Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean, who tried to cover up the shooting, was welcomed by both Republican and Democratic members of Congress. They had long argued that the agents were merely doing their jobs, defending the American border against criminals. They also maintained that the more than 10-year prison sentences the pair was given were too harsh.

Rancor over their convictions, sentencing and firings has simmered ever since the shooting occurred in 2005.

Ramos and Compean became a rallying point among conservatives and on talk shows where their supporters called them heroes. Nearly the entire bipartisan congressional delegation from Texas and other lawmakers from both sides of the political aisle pleaded with Bush to grant them clemency.

Bush didn't pardon the men for their crimes, but decided instead to commute their prison sentences because he believed they were excessive and that they had already suffered the loss of their jobs, freedom and reputations, a senior administration official said.

The action by the president, who believes the border agents received fair trials and that the verdicts were just, does not diminish the seriousness of their crimes, the official said.

Compean and Ramos, who have served about two years of their sentences, are expected to be released from prison within the next two months.

They were convicted of shooting admitted drug smuggler Osvaldo Aldrete Davila in the buttocks as he fled across the Rio Grande, away from an abandoned van load of marijuana. The border agents argued during their trials that they believed the smuggler was armed and that they shot him in self defense. The prosecutor in the case said there was no evidence linking the smuggler to the van of marijuana. The prosecutor also said the border agents didn't report the shooting and tampered with evidence by picking up several spent shell casings.

The agents were fired after their convictions on several charges, including assault with a dangerous weapon and with serious bodily injury, violation of civil rights and obstruction of justice. All their convictions, except obstruction of justice, were upheld on appeal.

With the new acts of clemency, Bush has granted a total of 189 pardons and 11 commutations.
http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D95QC3480&show_article=1
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Sydney Carton
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Re: Bush Commutes- But Does Not Pardon-Ramos and Compean
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2009, 07:08:04 PM »

   Bush is not to be blamed.Ramos and Campean requested the commutation rather than the pardon so that they will be free to pursue their legal fight for a reveral of the original verdict.If he had pardoned them,they would have had no chance for vindication.
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vegas
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Re: Bush Commutes- But Does Not Pardon-Ramos and Compean
« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2009, 01:20:35 PM »

Sydney - Why two months???  Why not today???  Its not like they need to get a moving van to move their stuff out of the jail. They can probably carry their few posessions out with one hand.  These guys who were doing their duty should not spend one  more second in jail  let alone another two months. I am grateful that President Bush did finally  help them. 
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Sydney Carton
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Re: Bush Commutes- But Does Not Pardon-Ramos and Compean
« Reply #3 on: February 18, 2009, 05:36:06 PM »

   Tuesday, February 17, 2009 
By Joseph Abrams

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 AP


Jan. 17, 2007: Former U.S. Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos (left) and Jose Alonso Compean (right) turn themselves in to federal authorities.
Jan. 17, 2007: Former U.S. Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos (left) and Jose Alonso Compean (right) turn themselves in to federal authorities.
 Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean have been released from federal prison after serving more than two years in solitary confinement for the non-fatal shooting of a Mexican drug smuggler.

President Bush commuted the sentences of the two border guards Jan. 19, and his order will go into effect on March 20. The pair will serve out the remaining month of their sentences in home confinement in El Paso, Texas.

Ramos' wife Monica was waiting at the federal penitentiary in Phoenix for her husband's release and told FOXNews.com she was overjoyed to be reunited with her husband.

"I can tell you it's a great day for me. We've been anticipating this for quite a while now but seeing him walk through those doors today was just surreal," she said. He is expected to land in El Paso at 2:30 p.m. EST.

Click here for photos.

Ramos and Compean were sentenced to 11 years and 12 years respectively for the 2005 shooting of Osvaldo Aldrete-Davila, a Mexican national now in prison for attempting to smuggle hundreds of pounds of marijuana in to the U.S.

Aldrete-Davila was shot in the buttocks while attempting to flee along the border in Fabens, Texas, which lies 10 miles southeast of El Paso. Prosecutors say Ramos and Compean tried to cover up evidence of the incident; the border agents say they were defending themselves in the line of duty.

The case became a cause celebre for a chorus of organizations and members of Congress many of them Republican who rallied to the border agents' side. Republican lawmakers were ecstatic on the news of their release Tuesday.

"At last, Ramos and Compean have been rightfully reunited with their families," said Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif. "This day is long overdue. I wish the Ramos and Compean families the best as they now try to pick up the pieces and begin to heal from this terrible ordeal."

Ramos and Compean were unable to comment Tuesday as they are under a gag order until they are released from federal custody on March 20.


The pair will remain on "supervised release" for a period of up to three years, according to a statement from Ramos' lawyer, David Botsford. Botsford said it was appropriate to commute the pair's sentence in light of the "onerous" conditions they experienced while incarcerated.

Monica Ramos told FOXNews.com that the family has appealed the conviction to the Supreme Court and is awaiting word on whether it will hear their case.

"I won't stop until they tell me I've exhausted all avenues and they tell us that we can't fight it any more," she said. "We'll continue to press it every step of the way."

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