US Government Refuses to Call Posada Carriles a Terrorist
American immigration authorities say they do not have to justify the detention of terrorist Luis Posada Carriles for having illegally entered the country
Feb. 1, 2007
Reprinted from Juventud Rebelde
US immigration officials said on Wednesday that they does not have to justify the detention of terrorist Luis Posada Carriles for having illegally entered the country, because he is under the custody of another agency for another case.
This was the Immigration and Naturalization Service’s (INS) response to a federal judge in El Paso, Texas who ordered the agency to either justify Posada’s detention prior to a court-imposed deadline or to set of Posada Carriles free. In this way the INS circumvents the habeas corpus request presented by Posada Carriles’ lawyers.
The INS stated that Posada is currently under the jurisdiction of the Justice Department under criminal charges, referring to his indictment in January of this year before a federal grand jury in the Western District of Texas. He was charged with naturalization fraud, having made false statements, and lying on his application for naturalization. He had said that he entered the United States illegally by land across the border with Mexico on March 2005, when in fact he entered by sea aboard a fishing vessel with several accomplices.
“The (US government) does not want to declare Posada a terrorist or present evidence or documents proving that he is a criminal, so it is asking the court to reject habeas corpus using the technical justification that he is been charged in Texas for a crime; therefore the judge in overseeing the criminal case is the one preventing his release,” said lawyer Jose Pertierra, who is representing the government of Venezuela in the case of extradition of the terrorist.
The four pages INS report adds that since, for the moment, Posada has said that he does not challenge the arrest warrant on criminal charges, the habeas corpus request in the El Paso court is therefore overruled.
For this same reason, says the motion, an answer from the government to the court was not necessary before the February 1 deadline, or that it present evidence proving that Posada is a terrorist, a danger or someone whose release jeopardizes the interests of the US foreign relations.
It concluded by saying that Posada’s indictment and the arrest warrant of the district attorney’s office make inadmissible the habeas corpus request to the immigration court in El Paso.
“In other words,” said Pertierra, “they are not going to present any arguments against Posada Carriles. This is an extension of the initial strategy of the case, to not use the word ‘terrorist’ in relation to Posada Carriles. They are trying to hide behind deceitful charges to avoid processing Posada for the 73 first degree homicides related to the case of his blowing up the airplane,” a crime being pursued in Venezuela.
Pertierra said that by processing Posada only for lying, the US government is trying to prevent him from being declared a terrorist by a federal judge and to postpone its obligation to extradite him to Venezuela or to try him in the United States on charges of murder.
The lawyer assured that the criminal charges serve a double function. First, they allow the extradition process to be legally deferred. Secondly, the US government is trying to get around the deadline to go before a federal judge who would make it present evidences of Posada’s crimes and to use the word terrorist.
“It is a legal maneuver to evade justice owed to the memory of the 73 dead and their relatives of those killed by Posada on October 6, 1976.”