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Mexican Man Indicted in Murder of Border Agent Brian Terry

Brian Terry

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A Mexican man has been indicted in the murder last Dec. 14 of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in Southern Arizona.  Terry was killed during a firefight.

Manuel Osorio-Arellanes, of El Fuerte, Mexico, and his co-defendants, who are fugitives,  were charged in a 14-count indictment that was unsealed Friday, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. The names of his co-defendants remain under seal while they are on the lam.

Osorio-Arenllanes was arraigned Friday in Tucson. Trial is set for June 17 before U.S. District Court Judge David C. Bury in Tucson.

Terry’s murder became the subject of a controversy after Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif) and Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Ia.) claimed that a gun sold through ATF’s Operation Fast and Furious may have been used to kill him. The operation encouraged gun dealers to sell to straw purchasers, all with the hopes of tracing the weapons to the drug cartels.

“Today’s indictment is an important step in this case, but it is only a first step to serving justice on behalf of Agent Brian Terry, his family and the other agents who were with Terry and their families,” said U.S. Attorney Dennis K. Burke. “This is an active ongoing investigation that is making more and more progress every day.”

Burke added: “Agent Terry – who served his country honorably as both a Marine and a member of the Border Patrol – made the ultimate sacrifice in service to the people of the United States. His family deserves to see justice served, and everybody involved in this investigation is deeply committed to making that happen.”

Authorities alleged that  Osorio-Arellanes was part of an armed group of illegal immigrants who got into  a firefight with Agent Terry and other border patrol agents in  a remote area known as Mesquite Seep near Rio Rico, Ariz.

Agent Terry died from his wound.

Authorities said Osorio-Arellanes, who was wounded, was apprehended, treated for his injuries. Authorities had him detained on felony immigration charges.

On Friday, Rep.  Issa issued a statement on the arrest:

“The announcement of an indictment against Manuel Osorio-Arellanes for the murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry is certainly good news, but leaves critical questions unanswered.

“The Justice Department still hasn’t said how and why guns purportedly being tracked and monitored by federal law enforcement officials as part of Operation Fast and Furious ended up in the hands of Agent Terry’s killers.”

“It angers me to think that this death might not have occurred had it not been for reckless decisions made by officials at the Department of Justice who authorized and supported an operation that knowingly put guns in the hands of criminals. For these officials to imagine that this operation would result in anything other than a tragic outcome was naive and negligent. Sen. Charles Grassley and I continue to demand accountability as we investigate this matter.”


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