Judge Bernardo P. Velasco, 16 lawyers 1:30-2:40
Observers: One Sam, Katrina Schumacher
There were 73 migrants on the calendar including 9 women. 40 were charged only with illegal entry—1325 and 33 had the additional charge of illegal reentry—1326. I had a terrible time hearing today; a combination of faulty ears, fast talking mumbling judge and several people coughing and talking in the courtroom. So, there will be some mistakes. 21 people were picked up near Sasabe, 20 near Nogales, 10 near Naco, 4 near Douglas and 2 near Lukeville. One was attempting to pass through the port at Naco—I believe. 41 people were from Mexico, 17 from Guatemala and 1 from Honduras. The judge did not give any information on the first group of 9 who were all dismissed. Most of them appeared to be from southern Mexico or Central America.
Everyone else was seen unshackled in groups of 7.
Five of the migrants in the 1325 group were dismissed. Everyone else received ‘time served’. The attorneys of three 1325 women mention credible fear and/or asylum.
Cecilia Felipe Chile 17-31556MP (Lawyer Gary Rosoff)
Jasmynn Eugenia Jimenez 17-31557MP (lawyer Ruben Teran)
Adalinda Alvarado Gomez 17-31559MP (lawyer Victoria Trull)
Mario Perez Lopez 17-31600MP from Guatemala is a Mam speaker and his lawyer Myrna Beards put that on the record. Judge Velasco asked him why he had come here and he said in Spanish, ‘I was looking for a better life.’
The plea bargain group had a few location requests that were granted, though the judge does not have the final say as to where a person will be incarcerated.
Josue Dorantes Placencia 17-31585M from Mexico spoke English when answering the questions.
29 migrants were sentenced to 2085 days of incarceration—close to 5.7 years—at a cost to taxpayers and a benefit primarily to private prisons of $335,685. What could we do with all that gold.