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President Donald Trump took to Twitter early on Aug. 18 to call out The New York Times, accusing the newspaper of taking part in a “Racism Witch Hunt,” as he continued to draw attention to the leaked comments by the newspaper’s executive editor, Dean Baquet.

“The Failing New York Times, in one of the most devastating portrayals of bad journalism in history, got caught by a leaker that they are shifting from their Phony Russian Collusion Narrative (the Mueller Report & his testimony were a total disaster), to a Racism Witch Hunt,” Trump wrote while referencing Baquet’s comments he made in a staff town hall that were leaked to and published by Slate late last week.

“‘Journalism’ has reached a new low in the history of our Country. It is nothing more than an evil propaganda machine for the Democrat Party. The reporting is so false, biased and evil that it has now become a very sick joke…But the public is aware!” he continued.

“With all that this Administration has accomplished, think what my Poll Numbers would be if we had an honest Media, which we do not!” he added.

During the 75-minute meeting, Baquet and other members of the paper’s leadership met with staff to address concerns following a tumultuous start of the month. Earlier this week, the paper demoted its deputy Washington editor, Jonathan Weisman, for “serious lapses in judgment” in making inappropriate comments on social media.

The publication also folded to pressure from readers to change a headline after it was accused of inaccurately depicting Trump’s comments on two recent mass shootings earlier this month.

According to the meeting, Baquet said the paper’s focus “went from being a story about whether the Trump campaign had colluded with Russia and obstruction of justice to being a more head-on story about the president’s character,” referring to former special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. The investigation found that the president did not collude with Russia to influence the election and did not provide a conclusion on whether the president obstructed justice.

“We built our newsroom to cover one story [the Russian collusion story],” he said, adding that “we did it truly well. Now we have to regroup, and shift resources and emphasis to take on a different story. I’d love your help with that.”

Baquet admitted to staff that the paper was “little tiny bit flat-footed” after Mueller did not provide any new information during two House committee hearings last month. Democrats were counting on getting new information that could enable them to begin impeachment proceedings against the president.

“Our readers who want Donald Trump to go away suddenly thought, ‘Holy [expletive], Bob Mueller is not going to do it.’ And Donald Trump got a little emboldened politically, I think. Because, you know, for obvious reasons. And I think that the story changed,” he said. “We’re a little tiny bit flat-footed. I mean, that’s what happens when a story looks a certain way for two years. Right?”

He then said that the paper needed to transition away from the Mueller story and focus on a new “vision” on addressing Trump and “race.”

“I mean, the vision for coverage for the next two years is what I talked about earlier: How do we cover a guy who makes these kinds of remarks? How do we cover the world’s reaction to him? How do we do that while continuing to cover his policies? How do we cover America, that’s become so divided by Donald Trump? How do we grapple with all the stuff you all are talking about? How do we write about race in a thoughtful way, something we haven’t done in a large way in a long time?” he said.

Trump has frequently called out the publication and its staff for what he says is inaccurate and biased reporting. When reacting to Weisman’s demotion earlier this week he said the editor should have been fired instead of being reassigned.

“Wow! The Deputy Editor of the Failing New York Times was just demoted. Should have been Fired! Totally biased and inaccurate reporting. The paper is a Fraud, Zero Credibility. Fake News takes another hit, but this time a big one!” he wrote.

He has repeatedly described The New York Times as “fake news” and the “enemy of the people.

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Author: Janita Kan

Source: The Epoch Times: Trump Accuses NYT of Going on ‘Racism Witch Hunt’ Following Leaked Remarks From Top Editor

President Donald Trump reacted to the mass shooting at a Texas Walmart on Aug. 3 that left 20 people dead and 26 injured.

“Terrible shootings in ElPaso, Texas. Reports are very bad, many killed,” Trump said. “Working with State and Local authorities, and Law Enforcement. Spoke to Governor to pledge total support of Federal Government. God be with you all!”

Earlier, the White House confirmed that Trump was briefed about the situation and was monitoring the situation. It added that the president had spoken to Attorney General William Barr and Texas Governor Greg Abbott.

A police official said earlier on Aug. 3 that more than 20 people were left dead or wounded. Witnesses reported multiple shooters entering the grocery store chain near Cielo Vista Mall and opened fire at shoppers.

Law enforcement agencies respond to an active shooter at a Wal-Mart near Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, Texas, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2019. – Police said there may be more than one suspect involved in an active shooter situation Saturday in El Paso, Texas. City police said on Twitter they had received “multi reports of multipe shooters.” There was no immediate word on casualties. (Joel Angel Juarez/AFP/Getty Images)
Law enforcement officers responding to an active shooter situation at a Walmart near the Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, Texas on Aug. 3, 2019. (Joel Angel Juarez/AFP/Getty Images)

The El Paso Police Department said one suspect was in custody.

Surveillance pictures of inside the Walmart showed the suspect, who is reportedly a 21-year-old, carrying a rifle into Walmart, according to the KTSM broadcaster, who said it obtained the photos from a police source.

According to the media outlet, the shooter entered the store at around 10 a.m. local time.

Law enforcement officers respond to an active shooter situation at a Walmart near Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, Texas on Aug. 3, 2019. (Joel Angel Juarez/AFP/Getty Images)

Police said the scene was mostly contained but remained active around the mall. However, El Paso police spokesman Enrique Carrillo said there was no threat to the public.

“There’s no active shooter currently, but that isn’t to say we’ve rendered the scene safe at this time,” Carrillo told reporters.

WalMart said in a statement: “We’re in shock over the tragic events at Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, where store 2201 & club 6502 are located. We’re praying for the victims, the community & our associates, as well as the first responders. We’re working closely with law enforcement & will update as appropriate.”

Governor Abbott has also released a statement on the shooting, calling it a “heinous and senseless act of violence.”

“Our hearts go out to the victims of this horrific shooting and to the entire community in this time of loss,” Abbott said. “While no words can provide the solace needed for those impacted by this event, I ask that all Texans join Cecilia and me in offering our prayers for the victims and their families.”

He said the state of Texas and the Department of Public Safety are assisting the El Paso Police Department during the investigation.

“We have deployed troopers, special agents, Texas Rangers, tactical teams, and aircraft to the scene in a support role. The state of Texas will do everything it can to ensure justice is delivered to the perpetrators of this heinous act,” he said.

A spokesman for University Medical Center of El Paso, Ryan Mielke, told the El Paso Times that the hospital had received 11 victims and expected to receive more.

Some of them were pronounced dead, he added.

Video footage showed at least four ambulances near the Walmart and, later, multiple ambulances pulled into the hospital.

“Family members who are here may actually have family members at other hospitals, such as Del Sol,” Mielke added.

Del Sol Medical Center told Fox News at least six victims had been taken there, though it couldn’t provide information about their conditions.

NTD reporter Zachary Stieber contributed to this report.

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Author: Janita Kan

Source: The Epoch Times: President Trump Responds to Texas Mass Shooting That Left 20 Dead

President Donald Trump has commuted the sentences of two individuals and granted full pardons to five others who had already served sentences for non-violent crimes, the White House announced on July 29.

The White House announced that Trump has commuted the prison sentences of Ted Suhl, an Arkansas man who was convicted for partaking in a bribery scheme related to Medicaid payments, and Ronen Nahmani, who was convicted for selling synthetic cannabinoids. The men’s sentence commutations were strongly encouraged by leaders and prominent figures in the men’s home states and from across the political spectrum.

President Donald Trump speaks at the signing of the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund bill in the White House Rose Garden on July 29, 2019. (Charlotte Cuthbertson/The Epoch Times)

Moreover, Trump had also issued full pardons for five individuals who had already completed sentences for crimes ranging from fraud to drug-related crimes.

“After a careful review of the files of each of these individuals, President Trump has concluded that each are entirely deserving of Executive Clemency,” the statement said. “Through these full and unconditional pardons, the Federal rights of these men, including the right to vote and the right to bear arms, have been fully restored.”

“Today, they are once again full and equal citizens under the law,” it added.

The White House added that most of the men who received pardons are active in the community and are known for having good character.

Among those who were pardon was John Richard Bubala, who pleaded guilty to improper use of Federal Government property in 1990. Bubala had transferred automotive equipment to the town of Milltown, Indiana, for its maintenance use.

Roy Wayne McKeever, who served one year in prison and one year of supervised release for transporting marijuana from Mexico to Oklahoma in 1989, was also on the list to be pardoned.

Trump also granted clemency to Rodney Takumi, who was working at an illegal gambling parlor when he was arrested during a law enforcement raid in 1987. He was sentenced to two years of probation and fined $250.

Similarly, Michael Tedesco, who was convicted of drug trafficking and fraud in 1990, also received a pardon. Tedesco was first pardoned by President Barack Obama in 2017 but his fraud conviction was not included in the pardon due to a clerical error. Trump’s pardon corrects the error.

Chalmer Lee Williams, who was sentenced to four months in prison and three years of supervised release for theft and sale of weapons, was also granted clemency. Williams’ supervise release ended a year early and his voting rights reinstated due to his “impeccable behavior while serving his sentence.”

Alice Marie Johnson, who had her sentence commuted by U.S. President Donald Trump (L) after serving 21 years in prison for cocaine trafficking, thanks the press during a celebration of the First Step Act in the East Room of the White House on April 1, 2019. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Since taking office, Trump has issued pardons or sentence commutations to 21 individuals including 63-year-old Alice Marie Johnson. Trump commuted the life sentence of Johnson last year, who was imprisoned for drug conspiracy in 1997. Her release from prison garnered extensive media attention after TV personality Kim Kardashian West met with Trump to ask for clemency.

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Author: Janita Kan

Source: The Epoch Times: President Trump Grants Pardons or Sentence Commutations to 7 People

Over 700,000 civilians have now indicated that they will be participating in a bizarre event to storm an infamous secretive military facility in September to “see them aliens,” a number that has been rapidly growing since the plan was announced. The Defense Department has now warned people to think again.

In just two days the number of people who have signed up for the event has more than doubled. Meanwhile, almost 650,000 people expressed interest in participating as of the time of the publication of this article. According to the event page, the alien enthusiasts will meet at 3 a.m. on Sept. 20 “at the Area 51 Alien Center tourist attraction and coordinate our entry.”

“If we naruto run, we can move faster than their bullets. [Let’s] see them aliens,” the event said in the description of their page while referring a popular Japanese anime series.

Area 51 is a mysterious United States military base located between mountain ranges north of Las Vegas, Nevada, and has for decades been the subject of discussion for UFO sleuths and believers in government-led coverups of aliens. The CIA had previously admitted to Area 51’s existence in a declassified document of the agency’s U-2 spy plane program but there was no mention of spaceships or aliens.

Area 51 on Google Maps. (Google Maps)

Access to the facility remains highly restricted. According to inverse.com, about the closest place interested parties can get to on land to catch sight of Area 51 is Tikaboo Peak, around 26 miles away.

According to HuffPost, the page was started by a social media user who goes by the name “SmyleeKun” who is best known “for posting memes and streaming to fans on Twitch,” which is a streaming video platform used by gamers.

The news outlet reported that the post had caught the attention of the Defense Department, which has subsequently posted a warning about it.

″[Area 51] is an open training range for the U.S. Air Force, and we would discourage anyone from trying to come into the area where we train American armed forces,” Air Force spokeswoman Laura McAndrews told The Washington Post on July 12. “The U.S. Air Force always stands ready to protect America and its assets.”

CIA Declassifies Area 51 Documents

After decades of extreme secrecy surrounding the site, the CIA lifted its veil on Area 51 in 2013 in response to a public records request from George Washington University scholars in Washington, D.C.

The university’s National Security Archive released the 400-page CIA history containing the first deliberate official references to Area 51, also known as Groom Lake, as a site developed by the intelligence agency in the 1950s to test fly the high-altitude U-2 reconnaissance plane.

A warning sign marking the boundary of Area 51, in Rachel, Nevada on March 12, 2000. (Dan Callister/Getty Images)

Other top-secret aircraft were tested there later, including the supersonic reconnaissance A-12 aircraft, code-named OXCART, and the F-117 stealth ground-attack jet, said archive senior fellow Jeffrey Richelson, who asked for the CIA’s U-2 history in 2005.

“It’s the first time that there must have been a senior-level decision to acknowledge the term ‘Area 51’ and its specific location,” he told Reuters.

The CIA has also declassified a trove of UFO-related documents and published them online, inviting interested sleuths to “Take a Peek Into Our X-Files.

A separate CIA catalog headlined “UFOs Fact or Fiction?” contains decades of documentation relating to the agency’s dealings with reports of alleged alien spacecraft.

“Most of the documents concern CIA cables reporting unsubstantiated UFO sightings in the foreign press and intra-Agency memos about how the Agency handled public inquiries about UFO sightings,” the agency said.

Tom Ozimek contributed to this report.

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Author: Janita Kan

Source: The Epoch Times: US Government Responds After Over Half a Million UFO Sleuths Say They Will Storm Area 51 to ‘See Them Aliens’

Sarah Sanders said in a farewell message on her last working day as White House press secretary that she will be leaving her role with her “head held high.”

“Today I’ll walk out the gates of the White House for the last time as Press Secretary with my head held high,” Sanders wrote in a tweet.

She added, “It’s been the honor and privilege of a lifetime to work with President [Donald Trump] and his amazing team the last three and a half years. You’re the best…Thank you!”

Earlier this month, Trump announced Sanders was going to step down from her role at the end of the month and return home to Arkansas.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders with retired Marine Corps Sgt. John Peck (R) and Staff Sgt. Liam Dwyer during a White House press briefing in Washington on March. 5, 2018. (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

“After 3 1/2 years, our wonderful Sarah Huckabee Sanders will be leaving the White House at the end of the month and going home to the Great State of Arkansas. She is a very special person with extraordinary talents, who has done an incredible job! I hope she decides to run for Governor of Arkansas – she would be fantastic. Sarah, thank you for a job well done!” Trump wrote in a tweet at the time.

In an emotional speech after the president’s announcement, Sanders expressed appreciation for being able to serve the president and that she loved “every minute” of it.

“This has been the honor of a lifetime, the opportunity of a lifetime. I couldn’t be prouder to have had the opportunity to serve my country and particularly to work for this President. He has accomplished so much in these two and a half years, and it’s truly been something I will treasure forever,” Sanders said.

President Donald Trump as she speaks during an event on second chance hiring in the East Room of the White House in Washington on, June 13, 2019. Sanders is leaving her job at the end of the month. (Evan Vucci/AP Photo)
President Donald Trump speaks about White House press secretary Sarah Sanders during an event on second chance hiring in the East Room of the White House in Washington on June 13, 2019. Sanders is leaving her position at the end of the month. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

“It’s one of the greatest jobs I could ever have. I’ve loved every minute. Even the hard minutes, I have loved it. I love the President. I love the team that I’ve had the opportunity to work for. The President is surrounded by some of the most incredible and most talented people you could ever imagine. And it’s truly the most special experience.”

Sanders, who took over the role from Sean Spicer in July 2017 after previously serving as deputy press secretary, is the daughter of former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who is also a two-time Republican presidential candidate. She served as field director for her father’s 2002 reelection campaign and was the national director for his 2008 presidential bid.

The outgoing press secretary has not publicly discussed her plans after leaving the White House but her father told Fox’s “America’s Newsroom” that his daughter would likely spend the next few months readjusting to life outside the nation’s capitol.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders speaks during a news briefing at the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House March 11, 2019 in Washington. (Alex Wong/Getty Images)
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders calls on reporters during the daily news conference in the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House Sept. 5, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

He added that thinks his daughter would make a “great candidate and terrific office-holder” if she chooses to take a political route, an idea the president had previously floated.

“She wants to decompress, spend time with her kids and enjoy the summer away from it,” he said. “She will start looking to the future. She hasn’t made specific plans. I don’t know if she will run for office, but if she does she will be a great candidate and terrific office-holder whatever it might be.”

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders speaks at the press briefing at the White House in Washington, DC, on June 27, 2017. (Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images)

First lady Melania Trump’s spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham has been named to be the person to replace Sanders in the role. Grisham will also take up the role as White House communications director.

“I am pleased to announce StephGrisham45 will be the next PressSec & Comms Director! She has been with us since 2015 – potus & I can think of no better person to serve the Administration & our country. Excited to have Stephanie working for both sides of the WhiteHouse. #BeBest” the first lady posted on Twitter.

Jack Phillips contributed to this report.

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Author: Janita Kan

Source: The Epoch Times: Sarah Sanders Posts Farewell Message as She Prepares to Leave White House

The National Rifle Association (NRA) has responded to Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) after she commented on the mass shooting in Virginia beach that killed 12 people, blaming the gun rights group for the “epidemic of gun violence in this country.”

“I am outraged and heartbroken. How much longer will we ignore the pain of our communities? We need to immediately confront the power of the NRA and end the epidemic of gun violence in this country,” Omar wrote hours after the mass shooting occurred.

Responding to her comment, NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch questioned the Democratic congresswoman how the group was related to the gunman’s alleged act.

“This was a heinous tragedy. Your remarks move me to ask: What do 5 million members of the NRA have to do with this man’s crime? Was this man a card-carrying member? His purchases were legal, whose fault is that? Does he bear any blame at all? Serious questions,” Loesch said.

The suspect gunman, who has been identified as city employee DeWayne Craddock, opened fire in Building Two, a municipal building, killing 12 people and leaving at least four others wounded. The horrific incident lasted about two hours, police said.

Virginia Beach Police Chief James Cervera said during a news conference that Craddock had been a longtime public utility employee who was described as “disgruntled.” Authorities did not go into any more details into the attack or provide any motive.

“We have more questions than we really have answers,” he said.

Craddock, 40, was killed during gunfire with police after the mass shooting. He had no criminal record apart from a traffic infraction in 2013. A policeman was also wounded during the shooting but was saved by his bulletproof vest, reported Fox News.

Along with Loesch, Omar’s comments also attracted backlash from other people on social media.

“This woman is a propagandist – the NRA and its members had nothing to do with the VA Beach attack. IlhanMN political perspective is the equivalent of the ACLU in defending the 1st amendment being blamed for ANTIFA violence – it is that level of insane,” Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer, president of The London Center for policy research, wrote.

“You are not ‘outraged’ nor are you ‘heartbroken.’ If you were you would not have said anything about the .NRA. You are using the tragic deaths of innocent people to forward your anti-American political goals,” author Montgomery Granger wrote.

This is not the first time Omar has blamed the group for gun violence. After the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida, Omar took to Twitter to criticize the NRA, saying that they were the “true enemy.”

“Prayers and condolences won’t keep our kids safe, sensible GunLaws will. It’s time for you and Republicans to put the safety of Americans first and seek freedom from the NRA. They are the true enemy!” Omar wrote.

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Author: Janita Kan

Source: The Epoch Times: Ilhan Omar Blames NRA for Virginia Beach Shooting, NRA Responds

President Donald Trump reached an agreement with two House committees to delay the enforcement of subpoenas seeking his financial records from two banks.

In a joint court filing (pdf) on May 25, attorneys for President Donald Trump and the House Intelligence and Financial Services committees asked a federal court judge to put on hold the court proceedings pending the outcome of an appeal case.

“The parties jointly ask this Court to stay further proceedings in this case until Plaintiff’s interlocutory appeal from the denial of their motion for a preliminary injunction is resolved,” the joint filing states.

The document further reads that “the parties have reached an agreement regarding compliance with and enforcement of the subpoenas during the pendency of Plaintiffs’ appeal.”

On May 22, District Judge Edgardo Ramos, who was appointed by President Barack Obama, refused to block the subpoenas served to the two banks requiring them to hand to Congress the president’s banking and financial records, including “records of every single checking withdrawal, credit-card swipe, or debit-card purchase—no matter how trivial or small—made by each and every member of the Trump family,” a lawsuit filed by the Trump family stated.

The lawsuit was filed at the end of April to block the two banks from complying with the subpoenas. Trump’s lawyers argued that the Democrat-controlled House committees’ demands for records have no legitimate or lawful purpose and are so broad they would include transaction records on the Trump family’s personal shopping.

Following Ramos’s ruling, Trump’s lawyers filed an appeal on May 24 with the Second Circuit Court of Appeals on behalf of Trump, his children—Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump, and Ivanka Trump—and several of their companies to overturn the federal judge’s ruling (pdf).

President Donald Trump talks to reporters while departing the White House in Washington on May 24, 2019. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The House committees’ subpoenas for Trump’s bank records are part of one of three investigations launched by key House committees in April. The other probes are seeking the president’s tax returns and the full declassification of the partially redacted Mueller report.

Since gaining the majority in the House of Representatives, House Democrats have initiated 10 inquiries targeting Trump as well as his family, business dealings, current and former associates and White House staff.

Trump and Republicans view the investigations as a way to further obstruct Trump’s agenda, unearth embarrassing information on the president and his family, and score political points for the 2020 elections. In response, Trump has said he plans to fight “all the subpoenas” by House Democrats.

Days before the deal on the bank records, the House Intelligence committee struck a deal with the Justice Department in a standoff over a request for the full unredacted report by special counsel Mueller and the underlying foreign intelligence and counterintelligence documents. The Justice Department agreed to turn over the underlying documents in exchange for a delay for an unspecified “enforcement action” by the committee.

Democrats ramped up the intensity of their investigations of the president after Mueller concluded there is not enough evidence to establish that Trump colluded with Russia. Mueller also decided against charging the president with obstruction of justice.

Ivan Pentchoukov contributed to this report.

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Author: Janita Kan

Source: The Epoch Times: Trump’s Lawyers Come to Agreement With House Committees to Hold Off on Subpoenas

Border Patrol has identified over 3,000 fraudulent family unit cases in the past six months, highlighting how U.S. immigration law deficiencies are being taken advantage of by cartels and smugglers.

“It’s very clear that the cartel and smugglers know the weaknesses in our laws. They know that family units and unaccompanied children will be released with no consequences for their illegal entries,” acting Department of Homeland Security chief, Kevin McAleenan, said at a press conference on April 17.

McAleenan, who took over as department head after Kirstjen Nielsen’s resignation, was visiting the U.S.-Mexico border near McAllen, Texas. He said illegal immigrants are going to great lengths to seek asylum in the United States, by engaging in what he called child recycling rings, reported Texas Public Radio.

U.S. Border Patrol agents detained two large groups of illegal immigrants consisting of over 400 people within five minutes in the El Paso area on March 19, 2019. (U.S. Customs and Border Protection)

“The same child is brought across the border with an adult multiple times to try and gain that release that family units are required under court order,” McAleenan said.

He reiterated that the immigration system is full and again urge Congress to make changes to immigration policies, reported KVEO.

McAleenan drew attention to the seriousness of the border crisis stating that a total of more than 4,800 illegal immigrants crossed the border on April 16, which he described as “a new record for the modern era.”

“Almost 1,000 of them crossed in just three large groups. 375 people in the largest of those groups,” he said.

Earlier this month, CBP said agents encountered over 103,000 individuals on the southwestern border in the month of March. Of those were 92,000 border patrol apprehensions—which is an increase of 35 percent compared to February.

The agency also said that for the first half of the 2019 fiscal year, agents arrested over 385,000 individuals at the southwest border, which is more than double the apprehension during the same period last fiscal year.

Some Central American immigrants told KGBT that they were making the trek to the United States because they had seen advertisements in their local newspaper and television stations promoting better opportunities and free help from the United States if they enter illegally.

“The whole world knows, they put it in the news. They tell us everywhere if you come to the United States, they’ll help you,” said a Honduran woman, who was arrested at the border near the Rio Grande Valley, told KGBT.

A Guatemalan pastor, who was also arrested, said the same thing.

“Yes, we’ve been told that we read it on our newspapers. That’s why we’re here,” the pastor said.

New Tactics Used by Smugglers Discovered

Officials said in a statement on April 17 that the agency discovered a new tactic of counter-surveillance used by smugglers to help illegal aliens cross the El Paso sector.

One agent, who was monitoring the border at night, spotted a small airborne object—which appeared to be a drone—traveling northbound across the border. The object traveled about 100 yards into the United States before returning back to Mexico and repeated this pattern three times.

On the third time it returned to Mexico, a group of 10 illegal aliens was seen entering into the United States in the same area as the small device. The group of migrants was subsequently then taken into custody.

“This is the first known time in recent history that a drone has been utilized as a ‘look-out’ in order to aid in illegal entries in the El Paso Sector,” the statement said.

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Author: Janita Kan

Source: Theepochtimes: Over 3,000 Fraudulent Family Cases Identified by Border Patrol

A prominent Democratic congresswoman has weighed in on the recent developments of Jussie Smollett’s case, saying that the Illinois state prosecutors made the right move to drop the actor’s charges.

In an interview with Extra, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) said she thought it was the “correct” thing for prosecutors to drop 16 felony counts against Smollett. The “Empire” actor, who is black and gay, was accused of faking a hate crime against himself and blaming it on supporters of President Donald Trump.

“It’s the correct thing that the charges were dropped,” Waters told the entertainment website, during an interview after she was honored with the NAACP Chairman Award. Smollett was also nominated but did not win the best-supporting-actor award.

“First of all, we probably will never know all of the details. We’ve heard a lot of information. No one was hurt—that is, physically, killed, shot—he never committed a crime before, he forfeited the bail and it’s this kind of situation where they close the case all over the country every day. I have learned this isn’t unusual.”

The congresswoman, who made headlines herself last year for making violence-inciting comments, went on to surmise that the case attracted a lot of attention because of Smollett’s “talent.” She said, “[H]e’s an extremely talented man who people have come to love because he is on TV.”

Smollett claimed that he was attacked by two white men on Jan. 29 in downtown Chicago, but police later arrested two black Nigerian-Americans for the alleged attacks. The two men told authorities that Smollett paid them to pull off the supposed hate crime.

Actor Jussie Smollett leaves the Leighton Criminal Courthouse in Chicago on 26, 2019, after prosecutors dropped all charges against him. (Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times/Chicago Sun-Times via AP)

The 36-year-old actor was arrested in mid-February on charges of filing a false police report.

Joe Magats, the assistant state attorney who made the decision, told the New York Times that they did not exonerate Smollett. Instead, he said the decision was made in exchange for the actor completing community service and forfeiting his $10,000 bond.

The decision to drop all charges against Smollett received public backlash and condemnation from Chicago officials.

Chicago police officials and Mayor Rahm Emanuel were furious after the charges were dropped, with the mayor calling it a “whitewash of justice.”

The Illinois Prosecutors Bar Association has also criticized the Cook County State’s Attorney’s handling of Smollett’s case.

“The manner in which this case was dismissed was abnormal and unfamiliar to those who practice law in criminal courthouses across the State,” the association that represents nearly 1,000 prosecutors across the state said in a statement on March 28. “Prosecutors, defense attorneys, and judges alike do not recognize the arrangement Mr. Smollett received.”

“Even more problematic, the State’s Attorney and her representatives have fundamentally misled the public on the law and circumstances surrounding the dismissal,” they added.

Moreover, President Donald Trump said the FBI and Department of Justice will review the unusual agreement, which didn’t include Smollett admitting to any wrongdoing.

Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx speaks at a news conference in Chicago, on Feb. 22, 2019. (Kiichiro Sato/AP Photo)

In response to the public’s concern, lead prosecutor Kim Foxx said in an opinion piece on March 29 that she welcomed an outside investigation into her office for the decision to dismiss the actor’s charges.

NTD News reporter Zachary Stieber contributed to this report.

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Author: Janita Kan

Source: Theepochtimes: Maxine Waters Says Prosecutors Did ‘Correct Thing’ by Dropping Jussie Smollett’s Charges

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