Judge D. Thomas Ferraro, 15 lawyers, Christopher Lewis—Border Patrol lawyer, 2 hours
Visitors: One GV Samaritan, a group of young people (college?) who stayed about an hour
75 people were on the calendar today including 4 women. 40 were charged with only illegal entry (1325) and 35 had the additional charge of reentry (1326) which is a felony. 32 migrants were arrested near Sasabe, 14 near Lukeville, 13 near Nogales, 6 near Naco and 3 near Douglas. I did not hear a few and 2 were dismissed at the beginning of the proceedings. In the 1325 group 9 were from Guatemala and one each from Honduras and El Salvador. The plea bargain group had 3 from Guatemala and one from Honduras--everyone else was from Mexico.
*4 people from Mexico who entered on January 26 at Lukeville had the surname Tecomulapa. 3 were given ‘time served’ and one, Alfonso Zaragoza Tecomulapa 18-21221M (lawyer Margarita Bernal) got 180 days.
*Alberto Margarito Simon Pascual 18-21244MP from Guatemala asked, ‘What happens if I fight the case?’ The judge had him sit back down and talk to his lawyer, Raymond Panzarella. Later he said he was concerned with asylum and not the matter before this criminal court. Time served.
*Jose Guillermo Lucas Mazariegos 18-21247MP (lawyer Ben Singerman) was given time served after Mr. Lewis asked for no less than 30 days because Mr. Lucas had a prior conviction. His lawyer argued that it was due to a government snafu and so should not be counted—it wasn’t. Time served.
*Antelmo Jimenez Aguilar 18-21251MP had a very difficult time understanding. His lawyer Thomas Jacobs put on the record that he had another primary language. The judge held him over for the next group and spoke very slowly and clearly to the whole group.
*Eugenio Neftaly Parada Cruz 18-21282MP (lawyer Raymond Panzarella) had a credible fear/asylum request. His lawyer accompanied him to the door with paperwork and was talking to him and a marshal.
*Antonio De Jesus Bedolla Arenas 18-21293MP (lawyer Ben Singerman) is an English speaker, asked to proceed in English and took off his earphones.
*Kliber Enrique Perez Perez 18-21296MP (lawyer David Maldonado) from Guatemala was deemed to be a possible minor and after discussion with the judge and Mr. Lewis, his case was dismissed without prejudice.
Those charged with 1325-1326
*Juan Jose Garza Mata 18-21271M (lawyer Micaela Portillo) from Honduras came in coughing and wearing a mask. He had entered the country with his 6 year old son who had been taken from him. He was told the boy would be sent to New York despite the family having relatives in San Antonio. He did tell the Border Patrol when he was arrested that he feared to return to Honduras. He was coughing blood and the Judge Ferraro questioned him about his illness—he said he had been sick for a while and didn’t know if he was contagious. He request the Honduran Embassy be called. The judge instructed him to ask for medical help immediately when he got to his destination—75 days.
Judge Ferraro sentenced 2,415 days about the equivalent of 6.5 years. Most people will be jailed in private prisons at a cost to the taxpayer—including some of these defendants—of $388,815. A few people requested to be jailed in Florence AZ. I was told that some lawyers tell their clients to request Florence because they are more likely to get their belongings back which are taken from them when they are arrested.