Noe Aleman, a border patrol agent for 12 years in the El Paso sector of Texas, is headed to federal prison today, destined to join Border Patrol Agent Ignacio “Nacho” Ramos in solitary confinement at Yazoo City, Miss., both having been prosecuted by El Paso U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton.
He surrenders to the U.S. Marshal’s office at the U.S. District Court in El Paso at 2:00 pm local time today.
What was Aleman’s crime?
“I was prosecuted for trying to adopt the three daughters of my wife’s sister after their father died in Mexico,” Aleman said in a telephone interview. “My wife and I cannot have children and we already have an adopted Samoan child from Hawaii, Noe Aleman III, now age 18.”
But to read the statement from Sutton’s office, Aleman is a dangerous criminal who defrauded the United States by smuggling aliens, providing false testimony to the adoption court, and lying to federal authorities about the girls’ ages, whereabouts, and parentage.
“I’m just another victim in George Bush, Alberto Gonzales, and Johnny Sutton’s war against Border Patrol agents,” Aleman said in the telephone interview.
According to Aleman, Sutton’s prosecutors repeatedly lied, suggesting that Aleman had a sexual relationship with the girls, aged 12, 13, and 15 when the adoption procedures began 3 years ago, and that his purposes were prurient, not fatherly.
“Federal investigators questioned these minor girls without a lawyer present,” Aleman said. “We protested, but nothing we have said in this whole case has made any difference.”
“Sutton’s office decided my wife and I were criminals,” Aleman pleaded. “Our only offense was that we wanted to adopt my wife’s three nieces from Mexico and some forms were filled out incorrectly. How many illegal immigrants from Mexico bother to fill out any forms at all?”
Aleman argues that his problems with Sutton began with an incompetent immigration attorney made mistakes in listing the girls ages as 19, 20, and 21 in completing paperwork. Despite these mistakes, the attorney has refused to refund any of the $40,000 the Alemans paid in legal fees.
To pay legal fees, the Alemans were forced to deplete their life savings to pay criminal defense lawyers. Now, with Noe headed to prison, the family is at risk of losing their home.
Federal agents arrested Aleman on the spot when he showed up at the immigration office to correct visa mistakes, again attributable to the same immigration lawyer who had messed up the adoption papers.
Once criminal proceedings against Aleman began, the children were deported back to Mexico. Noe and Isabelle have not seen the girls for 2 years.
Today, Aleman is surrendering to federal authorities in El Paso to begin his prison sentence.
Judge Cardone, the same judge that presided at the Ramos and Compean trial, sentenced Aleman to serve six months.
Aleman is headed to Yazoo City, Miss., a medium-security prison where Ramos is today in solitary confinement.
At Yazoo City, Aleman’s fellow felons will see him as a sexual pervert law enforcement agent who smuggled minor girls into the U.S. to satisfy his lascivious purposes.
Isabel Aleman has reason to worry about her husband’s security at Yazoo.
WND broke the story that Ramos had been beaten in Yazoo Prison when the warden there placed him in the general prison population.
In six months, when Aleman is released from Yazoo City, he will spend six more months in home confinement. Judge Cardone further ordered that Aleman be placed under supervised release for a period of three years after completing his prison term.
“The Department of Justice and Johnny Sutton prosecuted me, and violated every aspect of not only our civil rights but also basic human rights for nothing more than a typo,” Aleman says in a statement on his website.
Aleman maintains that, “I was charged with smuggling my own legally adopted nieces. At the trial, the prosecution twisted everything. Nothing we wanted to say was allowed to come out as we meant it.”
No transcript is yet available of the Aleman trial, echoing another pattern of the Ramos-Compean trial where the transcript was not available for more than a year after the trial ended.
Aleman has charged that the government prosecutors in Sutton’s office themselves made false statements as they did in the Ramos-Compean trial, another parallel with the Ramos-Compean trial.
There prosecutor Deborah Kanof allowed the drug smuggler, Osvaldo Aldreta-Davila to claim he was a poor Mexican who only got involved in this one drug incident because he needed money after his Mexican commercial driver’s license expired preventing him from earning his living driving trucks.
This was despite proof which developed prior to trial that Davila was a repeat-offender, a professional drug smuggler who continued his illegal activity even after being protected with immunity by prosecutor Sutton.
WND reported that Department of Homeland Security and Drug Enforcement Administration investigative reports document that Davila was involved in bringing a second 750 pound load of marijuana across the border, while he had immunity granted by Sutton’s office to testify against Ramos and Compean.
When coming across the border with the now famous “second load,” Davila had in his possession a Department of Homeland Security border pass, that was topped off with the signature badge number of the investigating DHS officer.
At Kanof’s request, Cardone kept the information about Davila’s second load from the jury, sealing the record and threatening the Ramos and Compean families with subsequent prosecution if any family member, even the children, should say a single word to the press or the public about Davila’s second load incident.
WND has documented that Mary Stillman, defense attorney for agent Ramos, had not seen important DHS investigative reports on the case until they were published by WND after the trial.
“My wife is suffering emotionally,” Aleman explained in the telephone interview. “I try to tell her that I will only be gone for six months, but she tells me she doesn’t know how she is going to get by without me, knowing that I am in prison where my life could be at risk.”
While Sutton’s El Paso office has dedicated valuable prosecutorial resources to convicting Aleman, human trafficking across our border with Mexico continues to thrive as an organized criminal enterprise.
On Feb. 9, Gabriel Garcia, chief of the U.S. Immigration and Customs enforcement Human Smuggling and Trafficking Unit told journalists that each year some 14,500 to 17,500 people are trafficked into the United States from 65 different countries.
According to Garcia, of the 1,100 people the Department of Homeland Security has certified since 2001 to be trafficking victims, the greatest numbers have come from Vietnam, Mexico, and El Salvador.
The State Department documents that Mexico’s greatest problem in human trafficking involves child sex tourism, with children trafficked from South America or from Mexico’s poorest rural regions to urban centers where they are sold to tourists for sexual exploitation.
The State Department 2006 report on human trafficking documents that organized criminal networks traffic women via Mexico into the United States’ illegal sex trade.
The Mexican women are often brought here under false pretenses, with the criminal cartels frequently misrepresenting to the women that they are going to the U.S. to work as housekeepers and domestic help. Once in the United States, the women are held captive in the U.S. and forced to work the sex trade, typically for the financial enrichment of the criminal cartel.
The State Department report on human trafficking neglects to list as a major risk that Border Patrol agents will attempt criminally to smuggle young female family members into the United States so they can adopt them, lying about their true intents and intentionally filling out false immigration statements.
Davila has subsequently obtained a U.S. attorney and is suing the U.S. Border Patrol for $5 million, while Ramos and Compean are in federal prison serving 11 and 12 year terms respectively for firing after the drug-smuggling Davila as he attempted to escape on foot, running for the border at the Rio Grande.
Aleman’s legally adopted daughters are today at an orphanage in Juarez, separated from their adopted parents and forbidden from returning to the United States for another 10 years.
“It’s hard to see what’s happened to me as justice,” Aleman argued over the phone. “I spent 12 years of my life on the border trying to prevent criminals and illegal aliens from entering the United States and now I find myself going to federal prison.”
“What crime did I commit?” Aleman asks. “There are organized criminals out there who bring hundreds of women and children into the U.S. for sexual exploitation. I’m not one of the bad guys. I’m one of the good guys who just wanted to adopt three kids who were already part of our family.”
The Aleman family has set up a defense site at their website.