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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Trucker arrested in Juarez headed back to US

    Trucker arrested in Juarez headed back to US

    By Lourdes Cárdenas \ El Paso Timeselpasotimes.com
    Posted: 11/23/2012 08:58:15 AM MST

    After seven months in a Mexican prison, a U.S. truck driver arrested after driving an 18-wheeler loaded with ammunition into Juárez is expected to cross into the U.S. today, Mexican authorities said Thursday.

    Jabin Akeem Bogan, 27, who was arrested by Mexican authorities April 17, was to leave an immigration detention center in Veracruz early today and then travel to Juárez.
    "Tomorrow (Friday) he will be sent to Ciudad Juárez, and from there he will be released to U.S. authorities," said Carlos Alvarez Barroso, spokes man for the Veracruz division of the National Immigration Institute.

    Bogan has been held in an immigration detention center since Nov. 15 after being released from a federal prison in Villa Almada, Veracruz, in southern Mexico.
    The Dallas truck driver was arrested when he drove his 18-wheeler into Juárez via the Bridge of Americas carrying 268,000 rounds of ammunition -- mostly .308- and .223-caliber rounds.

    Mexican authorities argued that it was one of the largest ammunition seizures made in Juárez since the outbreak of a drug cartel war, in which more than 10,000 people have been killed in the past five years.

    Bogan was charged with possession and trafficking of ammunition, which in Mexico can carry a sentence of up to 30 years in prison. Bogan, who always insisted that he entered Juárez by mistake, was sent to a federal prison while waiting the judicial process. He has maintained that he made a wrong turn and wound up in traffic lanes going into Juárez.

    In August, a Mexican appeals judge threw out the trafficking charge, but Bogan was convicted of the lesser charge of possession of ammunition, which immediately opened the possibility of a supervised release with bond.

    "This is a very positive advance for the judicial process," said El Paso lawyer Carlos Spector, who represents Bogan. "The judge's decision is a demonstration of independence by the judicial power in Mexico."

    In a recent interview, Carlos Miguel García Treviño, a federal judge in Juárez, said the sentence for Bogan included a bond of 20,000 pesos (about $1,500) plus three years of supervised release. However, it is not clear yet how his release will be supervised.

    Immediately after his release from prison, immigration authorities detained Bogan. Chihuahua immigration officials said last week that they did not know exactly why immigration officials would hold Bogan, but that it is likely he violated immigration laws when he entered Mexico with the ammunition. Officials said U.S. citizens can travel into Mexico up to 18 miles without special documentation unless there is a criminal charge.

    "In all this time, he (Bogan) has been in the immigration station in Veracruz", said çlvarez. "He will be back in the U.S. Friday."

    Spector said Thursday that he has scheduled a press conference today. He said Bogan and his family are expected to participate.

    Lourdes Cárdenas may be reached at lcardenas@elpasotimes.com; 546-6249.

    http://www.elpasotimes.com/news/ci_22050677/trucker-jailed-juarez-headed-back-us
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Tears greet jailed trucker's return to US

    By Lorena Figueroa/El Paso Timeselpasotimes.com
    Posted: 11/23/2012 09:25:41 PM MST



    Jabin Akeem Bogan, left, gets a hug from his mother at a press conference Friday. Bogan, a U.S. truck driver, was imprisoned in Mexico after being convicted of ammunition charges in Juarez. (Victor Calzada / El Paso Times)

    A wrong turn seven months ago reshaped the life of Jabin Akeem Bogan, a U.S. truck driver who was convicted of ammunition charges in Mexico and sent to prison.

    "It changed my life," said Bogan, 27, of Dallas. "But to sum it up to you all is one thing I do know and I am certain -- you keep praying and God will show up."

    His prayers were answered on Friday when he returned to the United States and into the safe arms of his familyafter spending seven months in a Mexican prison.He had been expected to arrive on U.S. soil last week, but Mexican immigration authorities held him at a detention center while his immigration status was cleared up and the U.S. Embassy got him a passport, Bogan's lawyers said.

    Bogan arrived at Abraham González International Airport in Juárez on a commercial flight and crossed the Bridge of the Americas into El Paso around noon, according to Mexico's immigration agency in Chihuahua.

    In a news conference surrounded by his mother, lawyers and local leaders, Bogan maintained his innocence on the ammunition charges and said it was hard to be imprisoned in a foreign country for something he said he didn't do.

    "It's hard to be away from your family for seven months, not get a visit, barely get a phone call and treat you bad," Bogan said, trying to hold back tears.

    He did not want to say who mistreated him or why and did not elaborate.

    He said he was the only African-American in the prison and felt it "was me against 100 other people."

    Bogan was held in a federal maximum security prison in Villa Aldama, Veracruz. He was sent there a couple of days after his arrest on April 17 in Juárez. He was accused of crossing 268,000 rounds of ammunition -- mostly .308 and .223- caliber rounds -- into Juárez inside the container of an 18-wheeler he was driving originally to Phoenix.

    He said he took a wrong turn off Loop 375 and accidentally crossed into Mexico through the Bridge of the Americas.

    "I thought that I was going to end up in a red light, but I ended up in the border", he said.

    When he got to the port of entry, Bogan said, a U.S. agent dressed in blue directed him to cross the border and come back. Bogan was arrested when Mexican customs officials discovered the ammunition.

    "From there, everything went upside down," he said.

    Bogan was charged with trafficking ammunition, which in Mexico can carry a sentence of up to 30 years in prison.

    In August, a federal magistrate court threw out the trafficking charge and charged him with a lesser crime, possession of ammunition.

    A month later, a federal judge found Bogan guilty and sentenced him to a fine of about $1,500 and three years of prison, with the possibility of commuting it to supervised release.

    Bogan's lawyer in Mexico, Emilio de la Rosa, said that he managed to get his client a sentence of time served for his good conduct in prison, having no criminal history in Mexico and proving that the crime was not made with malice.

    He said part of the sentence included the seizure of the ammunition. The truck is still in Mexico, and Bogan's employer, Demco Trans Inc. in Dallas, has to file a motion to get it back.

    "We had to fight against many obstacles, but we made it," de la Rosa said.
    Immigration lawyer Carlos Spector of El Paso, who represented Bogan's family in the U.S., said Bogan's release is a "historic victory."

    "For the first time, a man comes back with his family within months after being imprisoned for a crime he didn't commit," Spector said.

    Bogan, who went back to Dallas with his mother, Aletha Smith, said he would like to continue to drive a truck, but he did not offer his immediate plans.

    "I am happy for having my child back," Smith said tearfully. "I never dreamed that something like this could happen to us. I am sorry that things happened the way they did, but God is good."

    Lorena Figueroa may be reached at lfigueroa@elpasotimes.com; 546-6129.

    http://www.elpasotimes.com/news/ci_22053899/trucker-released-from-mexican-prison-arrives-el-paso
    NO AMNESTY

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