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  1. #1
    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    May 2006

    Arizona Border Sheriff Deputized Federal Agents to Get Around DOJ’s Lack of Prosecuti

    Arizona Border Sheriff Deputized Federal Agents to Get Around DOJ’s Lack of Prosecution

    by Ildefonso Ortiz
    16 Sep 2015

    SIERRA VISTA, Arizona–An Arizona border sheriff has deputized federal agents as a unique way to deal with the federal government’s refusal to prosecute cartel smugglers and criminal aliens. The move allows their cases can be prosecuted in state court.

    The sheriff deputized federal agents after mandates and ramifications that came down from Washington, where the government has changed the way they prosecute federal cases in border areas, said Yuma County Sheriff Leon Wilmot.

    “There’s not a sheriff in here that wants anything to do with immigration,” Wilmot said. “We are talking about the criminals.”

    In previous years Yuma was one of the areas where the federal government had implemented operation Streamline, which called for a fence, cameras, additional agents, and full prosecution of criminals, the sheriff said.

    The move helped curb the high amount of crime brought by cartel smugglers and criminal aliens, he said.

    “Yuma, Arizona was the busiest in the whole nation for the criminal element coming across committing all their crimes, rapes, robberies, murders—all that stuff,” Wilmot said. “With that (added enforcement) we went from the worst in the nation to what they describe a success story”.

    Rather than use that model to expand the enforcement and improve public safety, political mandates shifted the focus of curbing smuggling activity towards “high intel driven investigations.” in a new program called Priority Enforcement Program.

    “We ended up being impacted by the U.S. Attorney not charging these illegals coming across smuggling illegals dope whatever their product is,” Wilmot said.

    The lack of federal prosecution in Yuma has led to many criminals being released after capture.

    “Border patrol is left sitting there saying what do we do,” Wilmot said. “In my county I cross-deputized a lot of federal agents so they could actually take their cases to the county attorney’s office, otherwise the guy that came across with 50 pounds of meth was going to walk.”
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  2. #2
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    May 2005
    Heart of Dixie

    Breitbart Texas / Ildefonso Ortiz

    by ILDEFONSO ORTIZ16 Sep 201590

    SIERRA VISTA, Arizona — The sheriffs in Arizona have been forced to spend millions of dollars to prosecute cartel smugglers, jail them and pay for their legal fees since the federal government refuses to press charges.

    “It has grown to the point of I have upwards of 130 backpackers (slang for cartel drug smuggler) because the U.S. Attorney would not charge them for smuggling, said Yuma County Sheriff Leon Wilmot during an interview with Breitbart Texas. The sheriff voiced his frustration at the government’s lack of cooperation.

    The political climate in Washington has led to federal prosecutors not charging cartel smugglers and illegal aliens who have been arrested in the U.S. on other criminal charges, Wilmot said.

    The Yuma Sheriff has since begun to deputize federal agents so that they can have their arrests prosecuted in federal court.

    “That’s a bill that I end up having to pay now because they are stuck in my jail,” Wilmot said. “That’s my cost not only to house them but to also take care of their medical problems. Then the county attorney has to burden that cost of providing a public defender.”

    While the Obama administration has been working to shift the enforcement of illegal immigration, the issue with border sheriffs is about the arrest of hardened criminals.

    “There’s not a sheriff in here that wants anything to do with immigration,” Wilmot said. “We are talking about the criminals.”
    The effort to not prosecute certain individuals and not others has resulted in other agencies turning to Wilmot to be able to take their investigations to court.

    “The issue has gotten to the point where I have had the FBI come to me because the U.S. Attorney won’t prosecute child porn cases,” Wilmot said. “That’s how ridiculous it has gotten. That’s our frustration, you say it’s your job well then do your job but if you are not and we have to do it for you then give us the money to do it. “

    In Yuma County alone, Wilmot has spent more than $500,000 since October and $950,000 in costs to prosecute, house and care for criminal aliens. Overall the sheriff’s in Arizona have spent more than $30 million to enforce the law however the federal government has been reimbursing them 4.8 cents per dollar spent.

    “That their job but they are not doing it,” he said. It is insane, with that you can understand my frustrations with DC.”

    Ildefonso Ortiz is an award winning journalist with Breitbart Texas you can follow him on Twitter and on Facebook.

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