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Law enforcement officers in Arizona say they have broken up an alleged plot to assassinate Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who is at odds with the White House over his investigation of Obama’s birth documentation, with the Department of Justice over his crackdown on illegal aliens, and assorted criminals already in jail.

The sheriff’s office said today that three maximum security inmates were arrested for conspiracy to commit murder “stemming from a complex plot” that involved the assassination of the sheriff as well as a plot to murder another inmate.

Authorities report Mark Cons, 33, and Rudolfa Santos, 37, “members of the Mexican Mafia currently housed in the sheriff’s 4th Avenue Jail on felony counts,” were served with arrest warrants for the alleged plots.

Samual Matta, 29, “a member of a documented street gang and who is currently incarcerated in the state prison in Florence,” also was accused of conspiracy to commit murder.

Authorities say the investigation began several months ago when detectives were tipped off by an inmate in jail on multiple homicide charges that Matta allegedly was planning to assassinate Arpaio using a rifle.

“Matta, who was planning to carry out the assassination plot once he was released from jail, believed that the sheriff was personally responsible for the deportation of some of his members of his family to Mexico from their home in El Mirage, Ariz.,” the detectives’ report said.

The investigation into that alleged plot then led to information about another scenario in which the three inmates allegedly conspired to kill an inmate who was a member of a rival gang.

Matta failed to carry out his plot because he was not successful in his bid to be released on $1,800 bond.

“The detectives, however, did capture audio surveillance which unveiled a conspiracy to murder another inmate for the sole reason that he is a member of a rival gang,” detectives said.

“Given our jailhouse clientele, my staff is always monitoring situations which can potentially lead to violent criminal activity both inside and outside of the jail walls,” Arpaio said in a prepared statement. “In this case, their professionalism and perseverance prevented two potential murders.”

A spokesman for the sheriff said it was at least the third plot that has been uncovered targeting Arpaio just this year.

The spokesman said Arpaio’s high profile positions on issues such as the investigation of Obama’s eligibility, and his determination to enforce laws against illegal immigration, have made him a bigger target than some sheriffs.

One of the threats, in fact, specifically cited Arpaio’s work on the Obama case. Authorities in Tennessee reported Adam Eugene Cox, 33, of Knoxville pleaded guilty to threatening to kill Arpaio and his family and was given supervised probation.

Cox was arrested Jan. 27 as a prime suspect in an investigation of threats posted online.

Knox’s postings referenced his support of Obama and authorities believe his anger stemmed from the investigation into the legitimacy of the president’s birth certificate.

Arpaio has been dueling with the Department of Justice over allegations that his officers profile based on race. He denies the claims and says it’s time to go to court for the proof.

Last year he launched an investigation into Obama based on constituents’ stated concerns that Obama was not an eligible candidate and having him on the 2012 ballot in the state would perpetrate a fraud on the residents of Arizona.

The sheriff assembled a Cold Case Posse of law enforcement personnel to handle the case, and they are working largely without taxpayer support in the county.

Earlier this year, the investigators released information that confirmed there is probable cause to believe Obama’s birth documentation, posted last year on the White House website, is a forgery, and presenting it as a real government document could be fraud.

Arpaio and his Cold Case Posse now have scheduled another event to reveal more information about their investigation.

Arpaio told WND a press conference will be held July 17 at 2:30 p.m. local time at the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office in Phoenix, Ariz.

WND has announced it will live-stream the event as it did in March.

The evidence will include information gathered in the posse’s recent investigative trip to Hawaii as well as an update on the ongoing investigation.

At the March 1 conference, as WND reported, Arpaio and his Cold Case Posse announced there is probable cause that the document released by the White House in April 2011 purporting to be Obama’s original, long-form birth certificate is a forgery. The posse said it also found probable cause that Obama’s Selective Service registration form is fraudulent.

Sign up now to get free access to the press conference.

Join with Sheriff Arpaio is his work to uncover the truth by donating to the Cold Case Posse expenses, or contribute to a fund that supports investigations by both WND and the sheriff.

WND reported last month that a letter from Hawaii’s Department of Health verifying Obama’s birth in Honolulu has “opened the door” to some “shocking revelations” the posse is promising to disclose.

Among the details leaked early by Cold Case Posse lead investigator Mike Zullo: There are allegedly several stamps bearing Registrar Alvin Onaka’s name “floating around” inside the Hawaii Department of Health.

“I can’t disclose to you what we’ve discovered, but it’s going to be a shocking revelation at our press conference,” Zullo told Tea Party Power Hour host Mark Gillar in a telephone interview from Hawaii.

Three weeks after the March 1 press conference, Arpaio said there was “tons” more potentially shocking information on Obama in connection with his probe into the president’s eligibility.

Zullo has said he and his investigators have reservations about a letter stamped with Onaka’s name that was sent to Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett as verification of Obama’s Hawaiian birth.

Zullo said the letter fails to list Obama’s birth date, and it’s merely stamped with the registrar’s name, while another set of initials – not Onaka’s – appears next to the signature.

Sign up here to be emailed instructions on how to view the July 17 live event.

Is Obama constitutionally eligible to serve? Here’s WND’s complete archive of news reports on the issue.

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