Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Revolt building in Congress over conviction of border agents

More than 70 Republican Congress members are co-sponsoring a House resolution that would order the convictions and sentences of Border Patrol agents Ignacio Ramos and Jose Compean vacated and also order that they be released from custody immediately. The resolution, H.R. 563, was introduced by Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-California.

In introducing the resolution, Hunter said, "Agents Ramos and Compean fulfilled their responsibilities as Border Patrol agents and rightfully pursued a suspected and fleeing drug smuggler. It is irresponsible to punish them with jail time." Hunter’s legislative assistant added “the facts of this case are so nebulous that the case represents a severe injustice. Agents Ramos and Compean felt threatened and acted appropriately to apprehend the individual. At most, an administrative punishment is required but certainly not 11- and 12-year federal prison sentences."

The resolution, if passed, would constitute a congressional pardon, an unusual procedure given that criminal pardons typically are considered only within the constitutional purview of the president


Please be civil. Thank you.