Decision in case of Sgt Tahmooressi, Marine in Mexico, could take a...

Decision in case of Sgt Tahmooressi, Marine in Mexico, could take a year

by -
31 1212

WASHINGTON, July 9 2014 — Marine Sergeant Tahmooressi today told Mexican Judge Fernando Benitez de Castillo that Mexican custom agents asked him for money, weapons and a vehicle to set him free, according to a posting by Mexican reporter Said Betanzos on his Facebook page at approximately 3:30 today.

The Judge announced to the Court before the proceedings that the hearing was to present evidence, and that three customs officers would testify.

Under the Mexican judicial system, a single judge will decide Tahmooressi’s fate. The judge will review testimony from Tahmooressi and from officials as well as other evidence before making a decision. That decision could take up to another year.

The next hearing will take place in August.

Tahmooressi, a former U.S. Marine, has been held in a Mexican jail for 101 days. He was finally allowed to present his case to a judge today.

According to Tahmooressi, he was arrested by Mexican authorities on April 1, when he accidentally took a wrong turn and crossed the border. At the time of his arrest, Tahmooressi had three firearms in his car, all of which were legally registered.

Mexican officials say Tahmooressi had crossed the border three previous times.

He has spent the last 101 days in a Mexican jail, sometimes handcuffed to his cot.

The American has received support from high-profile celebrities including Gary Sinese, and talk show host Greta Van Susteren who publicized the hash tag #MarineHeldInMexico.



Several U.S. lawmakers have also championed Tahmooressi’s cause, including U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who has lobbied for his release; U.S. Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, along with Rep. Matt Salmon, R-Ariz., who visited Tahmooressi in prison; U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla.; and Senator John McCain, R-Ariz.

In early June, the White House finally broke its silence on Tahmooressi and issued a statement. At that time, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the situation with Tahmooressi is different from that of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, because the latter was being held by an enemy combatant.

“I don’t have a lot of information to provide you in terms of the current efforts underway,” Earnest said.

Earnest then added, “Certainly the president is concerned about all detainees or Americans who are being held against their will in other countries. This is something the president is certainly concerned about. But in terms of what specific efforts are underway, I’d refer you to the State Department.”

Critics say the White House has not worked hard enough to win the release of Tahmooressi.

The Mexican judge could decide Tahmooressi’s fate as early as today.

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2014 Communities Digital News

This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities Digital News, LLC. Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.

Correspondingly, Communities Digital News, LLC uses its best efforts to operate in accordance with the Fair Use Doctrine under US Copyright Law and always tries to provide proper attribution. If you have reason to believe that any written material or image has been innocently infringed, please bring it to the immediate attention of CDN via the e-mail address or phone number listed on the Contact page so that it can be resolved expeditiously.

Lisa M. Ruth
Lisa M. Ruth is Editor-in-Chief of CDN. In addition to her editing and leadership duties, she also writes on international events, intelligence, and other topics. She has worked with CDN as a journalist since 2009. Lisa is also President of CTC International Group, Inc., a research and analysis firm in South Florida, providing actionable intelligence to decisionmakers. She started her career at the CIA, where she won several distinguished awards for her service. She holds an MA in international relations from the University of Virginia, and a BA in international relations from George Mason University. She also serves as Chairman of the Board of Horses Healing Hearts, and is involved with several other charitable organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, The Boys and Girls Clubs of America, and AYSO.