Ramos and Compean – What justice is served?
By Linda Bentley | October 8, 2008
‘I will not rest until there is justice for these two men’
PHOENIX – Riders Against Illegal Aliens (RAIA) co-sponsored a benefit and awareness ride on Saturday, Oct. 4 to raise money for the families of, and focus attention on, imprisoned Border Patrol agents Ignacio “Nacho” Ramos and Jose Compean.
The ride was also dedicated to the memory of RAIA’s founder Buck Young (AKA Paul Edward Moore), who was killed on May 5, 2008, while riding his motorcycle, after being run over by 19-year-old Vanessa Tiguila, who failed to yield the right of way while making a left turn.
During his speech at state capitol, the ride’s second stop, Rep. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, said, “What happened to Ramos and Compean is inexcusable,” and asked, “What justice is served?” by them being imprisoned for 11 and 12 years, respectively.
“I can’t say enough about our Border Patrol,” said Pearce, as he mentioned Arizona’s new laws, stating, “They can leave voluntarily or get arrested and deported.
“Jobs are the number one lure,” said Pearce, “Proposition 202 [Stop Illegal Hiring] is the most fraudulent bill,” as it undoes significant pieces of recently passed legislation addressing illegal employment.
Pearce acknowledged, “Our system makes mistakes sometimes,” and said, “Let Ramos and Compean know how much we love them,” because there is no place in the system for malicious prosecutions by people such as U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton.
“A known drug runner and known bad guy against two good guys … This is injustice,” said Pearce, adding, “I demand the release of these two men.”
Pearce said, “Great government is limited government. I think wearing a helmet is a good idea, but it shouldn’t be a law. I think wearing a seatbelt is a good idea, but it shouldn’t be a law.”
He said, “People should go to bed at night with their hearts in their hands,” knowing Ramos and Compean are in prison, concluding, “I will not rest until there is justice for these two men.”
Don Goldwater took over the microphone and to the numerous Border Patrol agents present from across the country, he said, “God bless you guys.”
He talked about how the governor decided to put the National Guard down at the border and twice they were encroached on by armed illegal aliens. However, their orders were to retreat to safety.
“We put men and women in harm’s way with orders telling them not to protect themselves,” said Goldwater.
He said, “The powers are from the people not the government,” adding, “The pen is mightier than the sword. Vote these people out.”
During the primaries, Goldwater said, “Everyone who supports secure borders won.”
Noting Pearce’s opponents had millions to spend, he stated, “Pearce won by an almost two-to-one margin.”
However, he also said this will be a long-term effort that will not be won in a day or a single election.
Chelene Nightingale from the California organization Save Our State was also present.
She said, “Our government should be helping them (Border Patrol) not hanging them.”
Nightingale said she has become close friends with Monica Ramos since she traveled to Texas just before Ramos and Compean turned themselves in to go to prison.
“When I arrived at the Ramos house,” Nightingale said, “I expected a house of tears. Instead I found a house of love and faith.”
She said when she asked Nacho if he was afraid to go to prison, he told her, “No, I have faith.”
Nightingale told the crowd, “We are living in America out of fear. There is no such thing as the lesser of two evils. Evil is evil and evil begets evil.
“This year I’m voting in faith not fear. Our government works for us. We should not fear our government. Our govern-ment should fear us.”
She said the government needs to take orders from the people when they say, “You’re going to secure our borders,” and “You’re going to free Ramos and Compean.”
Continuing on the theme of non-responsive government, Nightingale said 300-1, people said no to the bailout. However, Sen. Diane Feinstein, D-Calif., who said she received nearly 90,000 calls and e-mails with 85,000 against the bailout plan, voted in favor of it anyway.
She pointed out Chuck Baldwin, the Constitution Party presidential candidate, promised to free Ramos and Compean, first thing, if he’s elected.
In conclusion she said, “It’s been an honor to get to know the Ramos family.”
T.J. Bonner, president of the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC), recognized agents from all over the country who were participating in the rally.
He told the story of what happened that day in Fabens, Texas that ended with Ramos and Compean being sent to prison for over a decade.
Bonner said Ramos and Compean’s version of what happened was consistent with the drug smuggler’s gunshot wound.
However, he said, “Juries are no better than computers – garbage in, garbage out.”
He said, “I’m proud to be an American, a country where we can correct injustice.
“Bush pretends there’s a procedure that needs to be gone through,” said Bonner, “That’s not true. He proved that with Scooter Libby. All he has to do is pick up a pen and commute their sentences.”
Hopeful the U.S. Supreme Court will see reason, Bonner made it clear the agents do not want a pardon, because accepting a pardon would be admitting guilt.
“They want their sentences commuted,” said Bonner, “So they can be home with their families.”
The rally then moved north to the Roadrunner Saloon in New River.
Sonoran News was unable to obtain a final fundraising total for the event by press time.
Visit AgentRamos.com for more information, updates on their case or to donate money.
Photo caption: Monica Ramos, wife of imprisoned Border Patrol Agent Ignacio Ramos, listened along with her three sons as Rep. Russell Pearce, R-Mesa, gave a rousing speech on Saturday at the state capitol in support of the Border Patrol, especially agents Ramos and Jose Compean, who have been wrongly imprisoned now for over 600 days.
Photo by Linda Bentley