We will cover this tonight ON THE RECORD at 10pm...but here is what has caught my attention. Something is really, really, really not right…
The New York Times has a really bizarre story on the front page today. I will make some remarks about the story and then there is a link at the bottom for you to read the entire story. I don’t want to run wild with crazy conspiracy stories but there are some really peculiar parts of this New York Time story that warrants further investigation.
First some bullet points:
* Juan Jose Rojas Cardona (“Pepe” and hereinafter I will refer to him as that) lives in Mexico and is part of the casino business (known as Mexico’s casino czar) with a very shady background and record. He is linked to violence and corruption in Mexico. According to a State Department cable in 2009, he was suspected of orchestrating the assassination of a business rival and making illegal campaign donations to Mexican officials;
* Pepe is wanted in the USA for state charges in Iowa going back to the early 1990′s. After his Iowa conviction in the early 90′s, he was sentenced to 5 years but then he jumped bail on the Iowa conviction.
* Pepe surfaced a bit later, while a bail jumper from Iowa, in New Mexico and got in more trouble – this time with the Feds. He pleaded guilty in 1994 to Federal Drug charges. While on bail for THAT plea of guilty to Federal charges, he disappeared again. He later surfaced in Mexico (where he got into the casino business and where he was later accused of illegal campaign donations and orchestrating an assassination.)
* THE STRANGEST THING HAPPENED IN 1998 – 4 years after his plea of guilty to Federal charges. I have never seen this happen before — Federal Prosecutors, even though Pepe had jumped bail a second time (and thus avoiding prison) and was in Mexico beyond their reach, went to a Federal Judge and convinced the Judge to quash the indictment. Quash an indictment of a Federal felon who was on the run? I have never seen prosecutors do that. Why would they, after a plea of guilty to Federal charges, ask a Judge to dismiss the indictment? Ordinarily, the prosecutors would be doing the opposite. They would be begging the Justice Department to put pressure on the host country – here Mexico – to turn the fleeing felon over. Something is very odd about this.
* Out of the blue, beginning last fall, Pepe’s brothers, who live in Chicago, became big fundraisers for President Obama – achieving what is called the ‘bundler’ status. In total, the family gave to the President and the DNC about $200,000 in legal donations. What is odd about this is that no one had heard of the brothers before in political circles and then just suddenly showed up and they were raising money in big, big ways. [Note that since the NYT started sniffing around about Pepe's family's donations, the Obama campaign has said it will return the donations.]
* Now here is where I may be taking this way too far and just having a wild imagination day….but, I have never been able to figure out this war in Mexico and why it gets so little attention from the Obama Administration (and perhaps the Bush Administration before.) I know many have pointed out that President Calderone has declared war on the cartels but the problem of cartels sure does not get better….in fact, it gets worse. Maybe the crisis is impossible to solve? The number of deaths in Mexico from the war is huge. The violence is unthinkable – beheadings with the heads left behind to intimidate and scare, copes and prosecutors gunned down, innocents murdered and kidnapped etc and the violence even extending to parts of Mexico where Americans thought safe to vacation. I am curious (and this is where my imagination begins to travel) whether Pepe is a big political donor to Calderone …and is Calderon’s administration giving him a safe haven in Mexico? And of course I could never figure out why President Obama and President Calderone both rebuked Secretary of State Hillary Clinton when she said 2 years ago that Mexico is like Colombia of 20 years ago. Why were both President Calderone and President Obama so hot under the collar about that description? Frankly, Mexico IS like Colombia of 20 years ago — maybe even worse. In reading the foregoing, read with caution since this is only my imagination – I have no hard facts. Facts are very different from imagination.
But of course the real weird part is the Federal Prosecutors getting an indictment quashed AFTER a PLEA of guilty and AFTER the guy has jumped bail and fled the country. I have never seen prosecutors be so…well…generous? It is weird. This is not my imagination but my experience. Prosecutors just don’t do this. Something is odd..