CARLOS NOT GUILTY
This is a true story of my cousin, Carlos Nieto, from Presidio, Texas. It is a story that I have gathered from articles mainly featured in the Presidio International-News and other news sources. The comments are based on my personal knowledge of the protagonists and relate to what I know and feel about the law and the constitutional rights that every American citizen should enjoy in this country. I have tried to find a balance between what Carlos is being accused of doing and what leaders of Presidio did fifteen years ago to two elderly ladies, Grace and Frances Brown, victims of extortion. I take full responsibility of what I have written in this book. I also give thanks to Robert and Rosario Halpern, editor and owners of the “International” for doing an excellent job in reporting articles and stories in their newspaper.
Luis A Jimenez/210 firstname.lastname@example.org
107 Atwater Dr., San Antonio, TX 78213
On June 28, 2017 Carlos was arrested on federal bribery charges and was remanded to jail for 8 days to wait for his appeal bond hearing that took place on 06 Jul 2017. The first news breaking report of Carlos and Lorenzo being arrested came out in the Presidio International Newspaper dated 06 July, 2017 and was well documented, except for one very important fact that had not been reported. This fact came to light a week after the arrest, in which it was made known that the arrest had been based on a “sting “ operation. The operation was set up by the FBI and law enforcement agents and since than, I have concluded that not only were the arrests made on a false premise of bribery, but also on an illegal FBI ”sting” that included serious elements of “entrapment”.
Another facet of my story is that, Mayor John Ferguson along with anybody else deserves to be investigated for dereliction of duty. He, as mayor, had the responsibility to ensure the financial health of the city, which he did not do and that is why Presidio is now having to pay the IRS one million dollars in fines, penalties and taxes for the past five years (2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016) that the city ignored correcting the failed annual audits. The mayor blamed it on the previous city administrator Marco Baeza, saying that Marco did not have the skills to being a city administrator. On the other hand, Carlos is being
punished by being banished from going back to his home town to wait for his trial date, 29 October 2018. He is charged for accepting a $8,300.00 bribe in a “sting” operation that clearly can be classified as an “entrapment” directed by the FBI and approved by the Honorable Judge David Guaderrama of El Paso.
I’m also including a story of how two elderly sisters who were extorted out of at least $150,000.00 by local people residing and living in Presidio, Texas and Oginaga, Chihuahua, Mexico. These ladies were American citizens whose names were Grace Brown, who died Feb 13, 1993 at the age of 82 and Frances Brown who died July 08, 2004 at the age of 96. They were extorted of tens of thousand of dollars by people who everybody knew in the Presidio area, but yet no one chose to help them. I was their “absentee” landlord up to the time that Grace died and Frances was transferred to the Alpine Nursing Home where she died. After Frances vacated my rental house, I immediately started to investigate a trail of evidence that led to the villains that robbed these two ladies. The reason, I’m now bringing this up is to lend BALANCE to the highly charged stories of Carlos, whom the authorities claim he defrauded the people of Presidio. The truth of the matter is that Carlos did not defraud anybody. The International News has consistently quoted the judges and prosecutors of Carlos that he stole from the community, which is not really true and I will prove it. Actually, it was the other way around. The community stole from from these two elderly ladies that the city of Presidio knew very well. I also, detailed their extortion in chapter 14, pages 286-297 of my autobiography “Moyeboy-51” that I had published in 2012.
The main story of Carlos will include many despicable people that I will identify by name and what they did to him as well as to the Brown Sisters. These people have no shame or conscious, which has lead me to take a personal interest in this case not just because Carlos is my cousin, but because I would like to think that I would do the same for a friend, who was being grossly abused by the FBI and our justice system. The bill of rights means nothing to them, however before ending my preface, I will leave you with the full definition of “entrapment,” which I find it to be a very appropriate term to describe what the law enforcement agents have done to Carlos in trapping him.
Entrapment is a complete defense to a criminal charge, on the theory that government agents may not originate a criminal design, implant in an innocent persons’ mind the disposition to commit a criminal act and than induce commission of the crime, so that the Government may prosecute. Source: Criminal Resource Manuel 601-699.
CARLOS NOT GUILTY
Carlos’ Picture 01
Part One: Five Hateful Letter Writers 10
Part Two: Carlos Nieto 24
Part Three: Factors leading to the arrest 31
Part Four: Arrest and arraignment 40
Part Five: Rod Ponton & John Ferguson 47
Part Six: The Brown Sisters 62
Part Seven: Bond Restrictions 70
Part Eight: Rule 29 83
Part Nine: Personal Observations & Reviews 87
By: Jose Antonio Jimenez, Cousin to Carlos
PART TEN: Pretrial Hearing 93
Attachments: (Available, but not included)
CARLOS NOT GUILTY
The Five most hateful letter writers in Presidio County wrote very disparaging comments about my 65 year old cousin, Carlos, to Judge David Guaderrama. Carlos was Presidio’s Special Projects Coordinator and a Presidio ISD board member before he and Lorenzo Padilla Hernandez were arrested. Carlos was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud and one count of mail fraud and the deprivation of honest services including accepting $8,300.00 worth of bribes. His 55 year old codefendant Lorenzo, who was Presidio County Precinct 3 Commissioner and arrested and charged along with Carlos on a federal bribery, fraud and deprivation of honest services including taking $18,000.00 worth of bribes as announced by the U. S. Attorney Richard Durbin Jr. and FBI Special Agent in charge Emmerson Buie Jr. of the El Paso Division.
Each of the four letters (Mayor Ferguson posted his on Facebook) that were written and hand carried by Presidio County Attorney, Rod Ponton and delivered to The Honorable Judge David C. Guaderrama during Carlos’ arraignment, on July 06, 2017 in Pecos, TX were obviously conspired by these five hateful individuals. All five requested Carlos’ banishment from Presidio, while he waited for his trial and they all stated that Carlos was a flight risk if allowed to go back to Presidio. They also, stated that if he went back he would intimidate the people on the up coming elections, where Mayor Ferguson was running for county judge. This led me to write judge Guaderrama a letter on July 28, 2017 advising him of how badly the justice system and the FBI had been treating Carlos since he was arrested on June 29, 2017. Later on, the judge admitted that he was complicit in agreeing with the five letter writers to not allow Carlos to go back to his home town of Presidio. In my letter to the judge, I also included the countless good deeds that Carlos and his whole family had contributed to the city of Presidio during the past 50 years.
These five Hateful writers include the following:
1. Alcee Tavarez, Mayor Pro-Tem, City of Presidio, whose parents were Julian Melendez “Nanito” and Audrey Bernice “Bonnie”. Tavarez, one of Presidio’s finest couples. “Nanito” religiously performed all deacon like duties at the Presidio Santa Tereza Catholic Church and his parents were Manuel and Juanita Tavarez, who were very well liked by everyone in town, especially by the men, who always looked forward in getting their hair cuts by Manuel at his barber shop.
2. Jose Portillo, Jr. City Administrator of Presidio, whose parents are Pepe and Amalia Portillo, who have always been one of my best friends and his parents Juan and Carmen Portillo, who were very good friends of my parents and kept the city well supplied with butane gas.
Alcee and Jose, both signed one of the letters and I quote; “The City of Presidio has hope for the future and does not take for granted the importance of a recently issued presidential permit for the expansion of our port of entry bringing with it a surge of private sector business interests and prospective development. It will have a historical and positive economic impact for the city of Presidio, but only if there is trust by our state and federal partners to continue with these projects, as well as the trust citizens and private business of our city have on us as public servants. We must be held to the highest level of moral and ethical standards. Mr. Nieto has failed to hold himself to these standards, so on Wednesday, July 5th, during a special meeting by the city council of Presidio his position of special projects coordinator was abolished unanimously. If Mr. Nieto returns to Presidio it would be a disruption and divide this community further, while we try and regain the confidence of all interested parties. We respectfully request that Mr. Nieto not be allowed to return to the city of Presidio or have contact with its elected officials and city employees. We believe he will attempt to gain sympathy from the uninformed and threaten and intimidate others, such as coconspirators to sabotage our efforts as we try and move forward improving our internal fiscal controls, updating our policies and providing transparency”.
The letter implies that the people of Presidio are uninformed and don’t know how to protect themselves from the likes of Carlos. These hateful writers are actually scared and envious of Carlos, because they only wished they could have done a fraction of what Carlos has and is doing for Presidio. (See PART TWO) They have seen fit to form a cowardly conspiracy against him and Lorenzo, by having the FBI use a “sting” operation and the court system to keep Carlos away from Presidio. On the other hand, Lorenzo was allowed to go back to Presidio and wait for his trial, while at the same time continued working to support his family. In spit of being the city leaders, these hateful letter writers, do not exhibit the will nor the intelligence to manage the city’s finances for the past five consecutive years. This is outright dereliction of duty on their part to not have made followups on five failed city audits. Now the city is having to pay the IRS one million dollars in interest, penalties and taxes.
3. Judge Cinderella Gevara, Presidio County Judge, is unknown to me, for she lives in Marfa, TX, sixty miles North of Presidio. Nevertheless, she must have been a coconspirator among the other four, because they all had one thing in common and that was to banish Carlos from Presidio, while he waited for his trial. Judge Guevara signed and dated her letter July 18, 2017 and I quote: “I am the county judge for Presidio County. I respectfully request that you deny bail to Carlos Nieto and Lorenzo Hernandez. I believe that allowing them to walk out on bail will undermine the efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other agencies in their effort to stop corruption. Carlos Nieto and Lorenzo Hernandez are a flight risk. They are a danger to society. They are known to have corrupt influence and connections in Mexico. If they are allowed to have bail, I ask that you make a condition of their bond that they are not to return to Presidio County. I believe that this condition of bond would help restore peace to our community. They have dragged down the morale and effectiveness of leadership long enough. Your Honor, Please send a strong message; “zero tolerance” for those who are only in public service for their own ego or wallet. Especially Carlos, who would come before commissioners court and behave as if he was an untouchable bully with special entitlements , and which ironically, no one liked or respected. I write to you, Your Honor, for the health and future of Presidio County and other local governments. It is time for someone to set limits.
COMMENT: What Judge Guevara says in her letter is not different from what the other four have to say about Carlos. She lives in Marfa, Texas and I doubt that she knew what Carlos did in Presidio. For a county judge, she does not say any thing that Carlos did or has not done in particular for the county and since I don’t know her, I will not comment on her position. Instead, I will match what Carlos has done for Presidio against what she has done for Marfa and or the county.
4. Rod Ponton, Presidio County Attorney, whose father was my mother’s doctor, because I remember she saying Dr. Ponton this and Dr. Ponton that, which I have no reason to doubt that he was a good man.
Ron Ponton did not signed nor dated his letter to Judge Guaderrama and I quote: I understand that Mr. Nieto has a pending bond before Your Honor on July 18, 2017 in Alpine, Texas. I have dealt with Mr. Nieto and understand the web of influence, family connections and intimidations that he has pursue on Presidio in order to engage in the conduct for which he has been indicted. Mr.
Nieto was recently reelected to the Presidio School Board and has used the school to hire friends or fire enemies. Nieto still has many family members in Presidio and Oginaga, including some of influence.
On the other hand, the public officials in Presidio County are anxious to do away with the old ways, to no longer allow improper influence or bribes to be any part of our public dealings. For Mr. Nieto to return to Presidio, while on bond would allow Mr. Nieto to continue his old ways of influence, threats and intimidations and be a disruption to this community, while we move forward. I respectfully request on behalf of Presidio County that if Your Honor allows the release of Mr. Nieto that restrictions be added that Mr. Nieto not return to Presidio County or contact any person in Presidio County other than family members or through council. Mr. Nieto has family in the Division of the Western District of Texas, he has no job or any means to continue to be in the Pecos Division. Sincerely,
Have any reports been provided to competent authorities by any one who has been influenced, threaten, or intimidated by Mr. Nieto? I would like to know, otherwise this letter and the other four are hearsay letters meant to hurt Carlos and his family as they have. The Honorable Judge Guaderrama should never have accepted them to make him act as he did in approving Carlos’ banishment from Presidio. Ron Ponton, the author of one letter and the carrier of the other four took these conspiracy laden letters to Judge Guaderrama for his action to prevent Carlos from going back to Presidio.
Mr. Ponton and I go back many years. When I first met him, I found out that he was an attorney and represented two clients that were suing me for $500,000.00. Immediately, I welcomed the opportunity of showing him and his clients who Luis A. Jimenez really was. Mr. Ponton’s initial strategy must have been to scare me into running out and retaining a very smart and expensive attorney and thus leaving the door open for a plea deal that would have cost me a lot of money, but Instead, I represented my self and easily won the case. I knew I had nothing to worry about, because my whole defense was having told the truth and exposed a small technical error in prosecuting his case. In my autobiography book titled “Moyeboy-51”, which I had published and copyrighted in 2012 is available in any book store nation wide, including the First Presidio Bank, The Three Palms Motel and the Presidio library. I fully describe the case on pages 258 and 259 and it certainly does not lend any credit to attorney Ron Ponton, who claims to be a very highly experienced lawyer.
The case took one year to litigate, from February 24, 2003 to February 24, 2004. It included six continuances and one appeal all requested by Mr. Ponton. We first fought in municipal court of Presidio and then moved it to the county court in Marfa, Texas. I was very surprised that Mr. Ponton took this case in the first place, because he should have known that the case lacked merit and was technically flawed from the beginning. On top of everything else, I lived in San Antonio, so the sheer logistics of driving back and forth was no easy task, but at the end, I prevailed.
Towards the end of the case, I finally gave up trying to fight Mr. Ponton in court, because he would always seek continuances after continuances, so I retained attorney Roy Ferguson from Marfa and provided him with all my briefs, so that he could fight my case against Mr. Ponton, because my trips from San Antonio to Marfa were beginning to get very expensive and tiring. Each trip to Marfa was $300.00 and each time that I kept my court date Mr. Ponton would request a continuance and Judge Jerry C. Agan would grant the delay. It finally got to the point that I request the judge to deny giving Mr. Ponton last minute continuances. The judge granted my request and told Mr. Ponton any such request would have to be made three working days prior to the court date.
The following is an advertisement from the Presidio International Paper dated February 2016 and titled ”The Big Bend Deserves Better” by Jaime EscuderI and I quote: The district attorney’s office is charged with the prosecution of major crimes. In order for the threat of prosecution to be creditable, opposing lawyers must know that the risk of conviction at trial is real. This means that the district attorney must be someone who knows how to successfully try a case and can manage a workplace. After three years in office our current DA’s (Mr. Rod Ponton) record shows that he is not that person. Since Mr Ponton began his term in 2013, the 83rd District Attorney’s Office took twelve cases to jury trial. It lost five of them. This means that the district attorney’s Office currently loses over forty percent of its cases. The statewide average is less than twenty percent. This loss percentage is telling. It means that Mr. Ponton either indicts a large number of cases that he cannot prove, or he loses more than he ought to. Either explanation is unacceptable.
Mr. Ponton has also struggled as a manager. He has had five assistant DA’s quit his Alpine office in the last two years. That office only has two ADA positions. This means that Mr.Ponton’s legal staff has turned over more than once under his leadership. In fact, at the time of this printing, Mr. Ponton has no attorneys, other than himself, in the Alpine office and that’s just the lawyers. He’s also had to replace support staff. This kind of discontinuity
creates all sorts of challenges. Indeed, Mr. Ponton recently admitted under oath that his office’s extraordinary attrition rate has contributed to the poor management of cases. During the McWilliams trial, for example it came out that Mr. Ponton failed to disclose required information to the defense. When asked how this could have happened, Mr. Ponton offered his staff’s turnover rate as a possible explanation.
Also, Mr. Ponton’s assertions are often misleading. For example, in his announcement for reelection, Mr. Ponton mentioned the case of Andres Alvarado as proof of his pledge to convict sex offenders. In fact, the Texas Attorney General’s office, and not Mr. Ponton’s office tried the case against Mr. Alvarado.
Another example is that during our recent candidate forum. Mr. Ponton stated that he has personally tried 1,000 cases. I doubt that. In order to reach that figure, Mr. Ponton would have had to try at least two cases a month, every month, for more than three decades. As mentioned above, the entire 83rd DA’s office itself has only tried twelve cases in the last four years, and Mr. Ponton didn’t even participate in all of them. Actually, if Mr. Ponton’s number is true, that would be quite disturbing. Any trial lawyer knows that it generally takes much more than fourteen days to properly prepare a case for trial. For a lawyer to try a case every other week for years on end would be the height of recklessness.
After the above indictments, I have little else to say at this time about Mr. Ponton’s lack of abilities to try a case or manage a workplace, except that it leads me to wonder how can the Presidio County Attorney get involved with the most hateful conspirators in Presidio to ask Judge Guaderrama to have Carlos banished from his home town while waiting for his trial when Carlos’ up to now has not been found guilty of any thing and is legally under a $20,000.00 bail bond and should be allowed to go home to his family until his trial comes up on October 29, 2018.
5. John Ferguson being the mayor, school principal, and music director of two local “mariachi” groups is and forms part of the five most hateful letter writers that want Carlos out of town. He and his wife, Lucy and two siblings Max and Molly are all very accomplished musicians and participate in all school and city musical functions. As I understand, he and Lucy came from San Antonio thirty years ago and have been teaching ever since in Presidio. They have certainly given a lot to the educational and social fabric of the city, but Presidio has also given a whole lot to the Ferguson’s, otherwise they would probably be living in
San Antonio. I find it difficult to fantom the degree of animosity that he and the other four writers have gardened against Carlos to the point of asking for his banishment from Presidio. I can understand normal and even serious disagreements between and among city leaders, but not to the extent that these hateful letter writers have all waited to turned against Carlos when he was most vulnerable.
On July 06, 2017, Mr. Ferguson took advantage of Carlos’ plight with the law and he posted in Facebook this letter and I quote: The Presidio Council held a special meeting Wednesday night to terminate the position of Special Projects Coordinator, held by recently arrested Carlos Nieto. The FBI took Nieto and Presidio County Commissioner, Lorenzo Hernandez into custody last Thursday for charges of federal bribery, fraud, and deprivation of honest services. Nieto’s employment with the city was terminated following the council’s decision to do away with his position as per action taken by the city council tonight the position no longer is in existence, so therefore Mr. Nieto no longer has a position to be employed.
I think a lot of people are demanding some transparency, some accountability from the city of Presidio. We want to give it to them. Nieto was hired as special projects coordinator approximately seven years ago. The position was created to employ Nieto’s consultation services. His work consisted of lobbying and searching for projects to benefit the community. Mr. Nieto knows a lot of people, so it was felt at the time he had a great deal to offer with his contacts.
Initially, the work was somewhat contractual, but became a full-time position for Nieto as the years went by. Last year his annual salary was increased to $47,000.00 in response to new employment guidelines established by the Obama administration.
There was concern about Mr. Nieto being accountable. He was doing his thing and I think that’s one of the concerns people raised. It’s uncleared what Nieto accomplished during his time as special projects coordinator. He would work on assignments as needed, reporting to the mayor and city council when requested.
He was more an advocate for the city, helping us with whatever we were trying to do to help the city. Councilman Samuel Carrasco explained that Nieto’s position was terminated, because of changes in administration, not due to recent events. The position was no longer needed. It’s something that was put on the table as far as not really benefitting the city of Presidio, because it was more meant to be an at-will position. Basically, with all the audits that the city
has been doing and the restructuring and putting it altogether again to fix what was broken were positions that factored in.
None of the five letters written provide any evidence of someone filing a complaint to competent authorities about Carlos. They are all here say and it is evident that all five letter writers illegally conspired together in writing Judge Guaderrama to not allow Carlos to return to his home town, Presidio. Conspiracy, to harm others is an illegal act and in this case it can easily be proven in a court of law. The hatred is not only directed towards Carlos, but also falls on his family and friends. All the judges, prosecutors and lawmen that took part in approving Carlos’ banishment from Presidio, while he awaits trial are cruel and mean “sickcos” who have no compassion nor empathy for someone who is supposedly out under a $20,000.00 bail bond. Banishment is not used any more in this country and is a cruel and mean thing to impose on someone who needs to support his family and he can’t do it from three hundred miles away in El Paso.
Up to now, I know of no reason why these letter writers chose to write such hateful letters to Judge Guaderrama about Carlos, who for the past 30 years has done so much for the city of Presidio. As far as I know all five came from respectable Presidio families. The parents of Alcee and Jose were very good friends of Carlos’ parents and grand parents and now to have their sons and daughter hurt Carlos as they have is not what they would have approved of their siblings doing.
In my letter to Judge Guaderrama, I provided the judge an extensive summary of a multitude of worthy causes that Carlos has been involve in for the city of Presidio as well as a list of cruel and mean deeds that law enforcement and the justice system has done to him without any empathy or compassion. Carlos has not yet been found guilty of having committed any crime. One of the meanest things that they did was not allowing him to see his dying father on his death bed nor allowing him to attend his funeral.
Carlos’ family includes his wife, Noemi and four siblings: Miguel Edmundo-a senior at the University of Texas at Austin, Carlos Edwardo-a junior at San Marcus University, Juan Carlos- freshman at University of Texas at Austin and Claudia-a senior at Presidio High School.
His brothers: Edmundo Miguel-an architect: Juan Manuel- a medical doctor, and Mario Luis and Carlos Edmundo co owners of Miguel Nieto Department Store.
Acquired a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Denver
Earned a Master’s degree in hospital administration from University of California at Berkeley
Elected President and member of the Presidio school board for the past thirty years.
Maintained a clear criminal and vehicular driving record
Improved and maintained the state’s school accreditation
Coordinated smooth transition of superintendents
Expanded technology resources and distant learning facilities
Established full day prekindergarten and kindergarten
Arranged for a home based teaching system for three year olds
Increased number of scholarships for graduates
Secured Millions of dollars in federal and state matching funds
Hosted the first bi-national border health committees with the directors of Public Regions 8 and 10
Cultivated parental involvement and culture awareness
Led bond elections to improve and construct new facilities like the Franco Middle School
Created local employment opportunities and increased local business activities through construction programs
Arranged for a school based clinic for students and staff
Donated with his brother Dr. Juan Nieto the first ambulance to the Presidio clinic
His brother Mario was among the first volunteer fireman in Presidio
His brother Edmundo Miguel designed the lighting at the Santa de Teresa Catholic Church and the baseball fields
was a member of the Presidio County Appraisal Board
Helped bring the gas line from the Permian basin through Presidio and across the river into Mexico
Elected President of all Texas School district Boards
Supported and facilitated keeping the port of entry open for the importation of cattle from Mexico into the U. S
contributed to bringing a group of college professors from the Philippines to teach at Presidio High School and enabling the school to increase its academic standards and develop a rocketry team that earned them a trip to the white house
facilitated the William and Susan Soza Scholarship Fund worth several million dollars
worked with former Representative Ciro Rodriguez to clinch a Department of Energy grant to establish a solar energy system at the high school
The above accomplishments are not all inclusive and neither do they reflect the many more benefits and donations of his father Edmundo and grandfather Miguel Nieto. I included these accomplishments in my letter to Judge Guaderrama and emphasized how could someone at the age of sixty five and done what Carlos has done for the city of Presidio think of fleeing to Mexico, while waiting for his trial under a $20,000.00 bail bond? The five letter writers and all the other judges and prosecutors including Judge Guaderrama, Judge David Fanin, special FBI agent Monty Kimbal and others exhibited a great lack of not only common sense, but a deplorable attitude in denying him to wait for his trial in Presidio. Carlos was not a flight risk and should have been allowed to go home to his family. I never received a response from Judge Guaderrama.
I hold Judge Guaderrama totally responsible for Carlos’ banishment from Presidio, because he concurred with the wishes of these despicable letter writers. He used his legal prerogative to take a man further down when he was already down and at the mercy of the law itself, under a $20,000.00 bail bond. The voters and their families and friends that for the past thirty years have kept electing Carlos president and board member of so many significant local and state organizations are now alienated against each other. The one’s against Carlos completely ignored all the major improvements that he has helped make possible in the city and county of Presidio. It is also apparent that the inexplicable hatred that these writers have against Carlos can only be, because of their envy of not having had anything measurably to contribute for the city, the school and the church like Carlos has done. Now they want him out of town, so they can further their agenda without any encumbrances from Carlos’ experiences.
The comments in these letters do not qualify for being legal affidavits nor depositions, that a judge can use in ruling for or against any defendant or plaintiff, because they were not sworn under oath and no substantiated evidence was submitted. This is unforgivable and sheer meanness on the part of Judge Guaderrama, Judge Lewis, Judge Fannin and U. S. Prosecutor Monty Kimbal at Carlos’ arraignment. Carlos has always defended the best interests of Presidio, regardless of what the respective agendas were of those who opposed him. Also, these five letter writers were complicit in participating in an illegal and harmful conspiracy against not only Carlos, but also seriously affected his family.
I don’t understand why these cowardly people acted the way they did toward Carlos, who was already under arrest and charged and only required him to show up for trial. These hateful people went far beyond their call of duty to hurt Carlos and his family by directing him to live in El Paso and not his own home town of Presidio. Again, these cruel and mean people seemed to relish not only punishing Carlos, but also his whole family. Carlos did not deserve this, because he had already been arrested, charged, arraigned and was out under a reasonable $20,000.00 bail bond. There was no reason for these “goons” to hurt Carlos any more, because what they were doing did not meet or conform to the standards of conduct and integrity of the Home Land and Security Agency Code of Ethics. I will out line all the abuses that Carlos went through as I continue writing my story.
Factors Leading to Carlos’ Arrest
About two years ago, there was a “sting” operation that was set up by the FBI to entice Carlos to join Lorenzo his codefendant, and member of the Presidio County Commissioners Court to support a purchase of a Document Digitalizing System for the county. At this time Lorenzo was already in the sights of the FBI, but they wanted Carlos to lend strength to Lorenzos’ pitch to the commissioners board by making it known that Carlos thought it was also a good idea. Actually, Carlos, thought that it was, but he doubted that the county could afford the $300,000.00 it would cost.
Carlos saw that this system would make it easier to track all the city hall’s expenses as well as the county’s and in addition it would make the accounting functions more user friendly and not have to rely on hiring an outside auditor to laboriously audit the books as it was forced to do recently for the years 2012 thru 2016. (I’ll have more to say about this later on) Soon after Mr. Portillo Jr. was hired by the city, as city manager he was forced to retain Mr. Doak Painter, a CPA auditor to audit the city hall’s books, whose past five annual audit inspections had failed, because of dereliction of duty on the part of past city administrators and city mayor. In the initial phase of the audits, Mr. Painter found that that there were no daily transaction logs to audit, nor quarterly statements to examine and a third of the documents were missing. Neither were any quarterly filings made of the employment Tax Forms 941 that go to the IRS which reflects the employee’s earnings and withholdings of employees Federal, Medical and Social Security taxes. These discrepancies were major and serious for they proved that there had been a total lack of oversight for the past five years.
To this date, I have not read how much the city of Presidio was billed by Mr. Painter for his year long service in bringing the city’s books up to acceptable minimal compliance, but according to the International issue dated 12 July 2018 the city has dipped into its general fund to pay the IRS nearly $1,000,000.00 in back taxes, penalties and interest. This amount stemmed from the five years the city did not performed the required outside fiscal audits. When Mr. Portillo hired Mr Painter, he did not coordinate with Carlos as he should have, because Carlos was the city’s special projects coordinator, so as a result Carlos admonished Portillo for not advising him of having hired Mr. Painter to which apparently Portillo’s feelings were hurt. This may have contributed to the bad feelings between them that led Portillo to write his letter to Judge Guaderrama and also that could have been one reason why Jose and Alcee wrote such demeaning things about Carlos. There is no doubt that all five letter writers wanted Carlos out of the way. The main reason for these deficiencies and penalties can be blamed on the Mayor for not doing his job of not following up on the city’s fiscal state of affairs during these five years.
Perhaps, there could be another wrinkle in the hurt feels between city leaders and Carlos’ vision or no vision for the city of Presidio embarking on acquiring a micro hospital for Presidio. The Presidio International in its 29 March 2018 issue details of the latest plans for such a hospital in Presidio. It certainly would not be a stretch to have such a project create huge opposing points of view between the city and Carlos, especially when Carlos has a major in hospital administration from the University of of California at Berkeley and has worked in major city hospitals plus his brother Juan Nieto is a doctor, MD in Austin.
Now, who in Presidio thinks they can operate a hospital in Presidio at this time, when even the mayor and city administrators have not been able to keep books at city hall for the past five years? Just for the immediate interest of my readers, I will now quote a few beginning paragraphs of the story as it appears in the International.
The city of Presidio embarks on micro hospital initiative by John Daniel Garcia and Robert Halpern and I quote: Presidio-City of Presidio officials are pursuing a plan to build a micro hospital in the border community.
The hospital would be a public-private partnership, according to a working document provided by the city of Presidio and Presidio County Attorney Rod Ponton, who is helping with the project. Marfa developer Tim Crowley is also consulting.
The initiative was to be presented to the Presidio City Council on Wednesday, according to the meeting’s agenda.
In a letter addressed to Ponton and City of Presidio Administrator, Joe Portillo from Texas Tech University Health Science Center (TTUHSC) in El Paso. Dr. Richard Lang, the hospital would have to be a non-profit, have an emergency room,10 examining rooms, and be equipped to provide specialty care through telemedicine.
Ponton said the hospital could conceivably have 100 employees and medical and healthcare students.
It would be modeled after a Horizon City, (not quoted: a city just inside the city limits of the metropolitan area of El Paso) Texas that opened last September.
Portillo, notes that Presidio residents have to travel almost 200 miles roundtrip to the only hospital in the area, in Alpine, a hardship to both residents and a growing federal presence in town. In addition, Presidio’s distance from a hospital costs the city almost $1 million annually to operate it’s EMS ambulance service. Portillo stated, that there may be available the use of New Markets Tax Credits in financing of the hospital and that the total cost to finance the hospital would be $16 million.
The city, he explained, would be able to repay the loan using an estimated $800,000.00 per year savings that the city would have on hand as EMS costs would fall to around $200,000.00 per year as city ambulances would be spared the 200-mile round-trip drive per emergency.
Following Carlos’ arrest, The Mayor immediately fired Carlos as the City’s Special Projects Coordinator. At the beginning the position was created to employ Carlos’ consulting services. His work consisted of lobbying and searching for projects to benefit the City, because Carlos knew a lot of people, so it was felt at the time he had great deal to offer with his contacts. Initially, his work was somewhat contractually, but as time went on it became a full time position. According to Mayor Ferguson, his last year Carlos’ annual salary was increased to $47,000.00 in response to new employment guide lines. The Mayor also added that it was unclear what Carlos had accomplished during his time as special projects coordinator. He would work on assignment as needed, reporting to the mayor and city council when requested. He had no office hours nor did he report to city hall like a regular employee. Following his arrest his position was terminated. This will certainly be dealt with at a later date.
The following letter to the editor from Mr. Peter A. Smyke from Alpine, Texas is very relevant to Carlos’ case and I quote:
Editor, it’s great that the FBI spent two years and countless resources “stinging” two officials in Presidio County for penny-ante bribery. However, the FBI needs to explain to Alpine citizens why they failed to charge anyone when notified of a massive conspiracy at the City of Alpine, that saw over $750,000. diverted into employees’ pockets between 2004 and 2012. City and state records supporting these allegations may be found by pasting http://corruptionalpine.com into one’s internet browser.
Bree is a spirited and standout font that takes its inspiration from handwriting. It's sure to grab your reader's attention, especially in short paragraphs.
Bree is a spirited and standout font that takes its inspiration from handwriting. It's sure to grab your reader's attention, especially in short paragraphs.
The Midland FBI office was notified by the city government itself in April, 2013. In September 2013, the forensic auditor the city hired was fired in mid-investigation. She drove straight to Midland, giving her “evidence” file to the FBI. In December, the Midland office received extensive city records detailing amounts diverted by name and position in the city government.
These diversions continued over eight years, and were duly reported by the city auditor every year to City Council and staff, who did nothing to stop them. Investigating the roles of City Council members, and the City Manager, Attorney, Secretary, and Finance Director in this taxpayer rip off was a no brainer. Instead, a truncated state/local “investigation” was conducted, with no City employees charged for diverting money, even though city records show Alpine police officers took some $165,000. for personal use.
Not holding these officers accountable makes a mockery of our justice system, and robs every honest officer in the Big Bend of their integrity. We take a page from Putin’s Russia when authorities can remain above the law, even as they subject honest citizens to their whims.
City, State, and Federal Law enforcement and our “justice system” all spectacularly failed Alpine’s taxpayers. Perhaps we should make our city’s motto more truthful, and change it to “Home of the Lawless Frontier,”
Peter A. Smyke
COMMENT: Mr. Smyke hit the nail in the head, because he recognized the great imbalance of punishing Carlos for a penny-ante bribe, while at the same time, the FBI failed to charge anyone, when notified of a massive conspiracy in the City of Alpine, Texas that saw over $750,000. diverted into employees pockets between 2004 and 2012. This is a great example at its worst of discretionary justice and might even be considered discriminatory. This would be a very good base for Carlos’ attorney to seek an acquittal.
This is another article that appeared in the “International-News” dated 12 August 2018. Alpine mayor charged over Facebook photo and I quote: Alpine Mayor Andy Ramos said this week a Class C misdemeanor citation for an alleged “pornographic” photograph on Facebook he sent to a woman was not intentional.
An email to the Big Bend Sentinel this week alleges that an Alpine resident received a private message via Facebook from the mayor on March 23 that contained a hardcore pornographic photograph.
Brewster County Sheriff Ronny Dodson, on receiving word of the complaint, filed a citation against the mayor on Monday. The State Penal Code, Chapter 43.22, Obscene Display or distribution says, “A person commits an offense if he intentionally or knowingly displays or distributes an obscene photograph, drawing, or similar visual representation or other obscene material and is reckless about whether a person is present who will be offended or alarmed by the display or distribution”.
“She received an apology. End of story, it’s closed, Ramos said. It is like a traffic ticket, nothing more. Everything has been resolved and it wasn’t anything intentional.”
Justice of the Peace, Gilbert Valenzuela said it was a group email that was sent to men not to women. A few women saw it.
Comment: Thank God that, Carlos has not yet been accused of dealing in “pornographic” material.
Carlos’ Arrest and Arrigement
On 29 Jun 2017, Carlos and Lorenzo were arrested by the FBI for fraud and bribery. They found out that they had been set up in a “sting” operation which left the door wide open to speculate that they were not only being “stung” but also “entrapped”. In support of this “sting” and entrapment operation on September 13, 2016, an FBI agent, posing as Matthew Brown and supposedly representing a fictitious company called S & K Computer Works, gave a detailed presentation to the Presidio County Commissioners Court, describing how his company could digitalize all county records and set up a “cloud” service accessible to the public.
On July 6, at the bail bond hearing, Hernandez’ defense Attorney, David M Quinn commented to Special FBI Agent Sean Powers that the FBI actually “Lied to the commissioners court and to the people of Presidio County”, because there was no such company as S & K Computer in existence and neither a Mr. Mathew Brown. This is certainly grounds for a DISMISSAL WITH PREJUDICE, because this fact meets subjectively and objectively the criteria of being an ENTRAPMENT case.
On September 14, 2017, the FBI published in the Presidio International Newspaper paper that they were still interested in talking with anyone who may have pertinent information on Carlos. This to me, means that the FBI still did not have sufficient evidence to go to trial in spite of already taking two years of investigating his case in the small city of Presidio with less than five thousand inhabitants. This proves that someone is out to get Carlos in one way or another and using the court system and FBI to do it.
All four of the letters had a type written title of the writer’s official city function and dealt with the same subject matter. Alcee Tavarez and Jose Portillo together signed one letter, while Attorney Ron Ponton did not even signed his nor was it dated. Judge Cinderella Guevara, appeals to Judge Guaderrama to deny bail to Carlos and Lorenzo, saying that they are a danger to society and should not be allowed bail. Judge Guaderrama should not have acknowledged these letters when they were presented to him by Presidio County Attorney, Rod Ponton. The Judge nevertheless, accepted them and used them to rule on Carlos’ restrictions. Carlos’ attorney should bring this to the court, so that it can rule for a mistrial.
Carlos’ arraignment hearing resulted in a $20,000.00 bail bond along with several other restrictions. These restrictions were mainly influenced by the letter writers and the court itself that compromised many natural guide lines of law and order and just plain human decency by not allowing Carlos to return to Presidio to continue caring for his terminally ill father, who past away three days after Carlos was arrested. Carlos had been his primary care giver and when he really needed to see him, he died asking for him and wondering where Carlos was. The acceptance of these letters by Judge Guaderrama clearly violated the spirit of the conditions that the court imposed upon Carlos to not try and influence anyone, whereas these writers were clearly influencing the Judge himself. In other words, the acceptance and reaction to these letters clearly runs parallel to the old saying of ”do as I say, but not as I do.”
I fine it pathetic that the U. S. Government and law enforcement agencies did not facilitate Carlos to see his father before he died. Edmundo Nieto was 96 years old and a veteran of WWII who fought for our country and yet his government not only denied his son to be present at his death, but also did not allow him to attend any of the funeral arrangements. I personally wrote and called Judge Guaderama and according to his office clerk, Mr. Guaheed, the Judge does not read such letters, but actually it turned out not to be true, because he not only read them, but acted in the writers interests. I also question Ron Ponton’s judgement in legal matters, because I, as an “Attorney “per say” beat him twice in court, once in municipal court in Presidio and once in county court in Marfa, on a $500,000.00 slander suit leveled against me. I also suspect that he is one of those leaders who knowingly and willfully was engaged in a conspiracy to hurt Carlos and he has.
Towards the end of the arraignment, U. S. Magistrate David Fannin ruled that Carlos could “walk” without any restrictions with only a $20,000.00 bail bond. However, Attorney Monty Kimball countered the ruling with an appeal to remand Carlos back to jail and to keep him from going to Presidio. In order to accommodate Kimball’s appeal, Judge Fannin chose to reverse his first ruling and incorporate Kimball’s appeal that would be taken up on the 6th of July. In the meantime, Carlos went to jail to await his new titled hearing of an “appeal” bond hearing. I have a problem with Fannin reversing his first ruling, because, Carlos could have “walked” immediately after this first ruling and Kimball’s appeal should have been dealt apart from Fannin’s first ruling, but it was not. This is where it gets “murky”, because we now have two arraignment rulings and this is where “shenanigans” or “chingaderas” start to appear.
In order for Attorney Kimball’s appeal to be perfected there has to be an appeal hearing by the PROSECUTOR and DEFENSE ATTORNEY before a judge can rule on the appeal. It seems to me that Carlos’ attorney could have told the judge that she was not ready to have the hearing. This would have had an effect of delaying the hearing for another day and allowing Carlos to go home as per the first ruling. I really don’t know why this did not happen. Also, once an appeal is made, the defense/plaintiff has ten days from the date it is filed to the date that the bond has to be paid. If the bond is not paid the appeal goes away and the defendant continues to “walk” awaiting his trail. Carlos should have been able to be with his father during his last days on earth, but the court did not allow him to be with him nor attend the rosary and mass…so sad. Instead, Carlos was illegally remanded to jail from the time he was arrested, 29 June to the 06th of July 2017, when his hearing took place in Pecos. It would be easy to find out if the appeal bond was paid, by requesting a copy from the Pecos Federal Court House. I did that and there is no copy, because according to the court clerk there was never one made, this than becomes very troubling for the court in explaining why there is no copy of the appeal bond payment.
The hearing room at the Pecos court house was packed with Carlos’ supporters who several of them were called up to testify by Carlos’ Attorney, Liz Rogers of Alpine. Among the ones called included “retired federal agent Hipolito “Poli” Acosta one of the most decorated officers in the history of law enforcement who has since written three books about his foreign service assignments, and who grew up in Radford and Presidio and has known Carlos for many years; Retired federal Agent Richard Joachim, who served several tours in Presidio both as a Border Patrol agent and U. S. Customs officer, and served on the Presidio school board with Carlos; Jose “Joe” Tavarez, an Attorney, Presidio native and a life long friend of Carlos; Father Fabian Marquez, now with the El Paso Catholic Diocese, but served as the parish priest at Santa Teresa de Jesus Catholic Church in Presidio. Defense Attorney Rogers also acknowledged Carlos’ wife and four children, sitting in the court. Also in the courtroom was Carlos’ brother from Presidio, Mario Nieto. Carlos’ attorney final statement was only that this is a remarkable family and Carlos is not a flight risk.
In addition to all these alcaldes from all the witnesses who supported Carlos’ and who even vouched to sign a surety bond for his release apparently fell on deft ears on all three judges, because they were only determined to punish Carlos hard, and they did. I have quoted parts of the above paragraph from Robert Halpern, Editor of the Presidio International to make a point and the point is that in spite of all these well known witnesses, the U.S. Magistrate David Fannin of Marfa, Assistant U. S. Attorney Monty Kimball of Alpine and Honorable Judge Guaderrama from El Paso were not moved nor impressed to release Carlos to his family, but yet these same judges accepted four “trashy” letters from the four most hateful letter writers in Presidio to rule against Carlos. This is very disturbing to have such judges without common sense nor compassion running our justice system in West Texas.
One of the plaintiff’s witness, Joe Portillo Jr. testified on July 06, 2017 at Carlos’ arraignment that Carlos should not be allowed to go back to Presidio, because he controlled every thing and in his letter to Judge Guaderrama he and Alcee Tavarez wrote that they were afraid that Carlos would intimidate and coerce the people in Presidio in the same manner for which he was being charged. This testimony high lights the shallowness of the witness, because his direct boss is Mayor John Ferguson who is the one and only that controls every thing in Presidio given the fact that as a mayor you might say he owns the town.
Rod Ponton and John Ferguson
As the Mayor of Presidio, Texas, John Ferguson is accountable for a litany of town services such as the water utilities, fire and police departments, city dump, city administrative offices, city vehicles and equipment, road and grounds maintenance and a host of other things.
As the high school principle and music teacher, he is accountable for all educational needs of the students including out of town trips for music or sports endeavors. Currently, he is in a run off election for County Judge and if he wins there will be no one in Presidio that will escape his reach. On the other hand Carlos is an elected member of only two boards, the school board and the appraisal board. Since his arrest he has resigned both position. So now, it seems that Mayor Ferguson has the most control over the city and not Carlos. I will make it my business to see that Mayor John Ferguson does not win the race for County Judge.
My Letter to the Editor of the Presidio International: Subject: Critic of Presidio Elections: May 2, 2018
Mayor Ferguson only got 25 more votes in the run off in spite of Losoya Marquez pledging all her 380 primary votes to Ferguson after her loss. This indicates that 284 voters stayed home and may have exercised my campaign premise that too much concentration of power in one individual is not only dangerous, but certainly merits scrutiny, because it may lead to unintended consequences. If the Mayor would have won, he would then have had complete control of the city in exercising his duties of county judge, city mayor, school counselor and music director of two very popular family musical groups, The Resonators and Mariachi Santa Cruz. No one should have a monopoly like this in running peoples lives like he would have.
The way the mayor washed his hands of Carlos’ plight with the law in his facebook letter dated 06, 2017 was totally self serving. He stated that he really did not know what Carlos had done during the past seven years that he worked for him and the city. He also stated that the city hired him to lobby and search for projects to benefit the community. Well, that was exactly what he was doing at the time of his arrest. He was working in acquiring a digitized document management system for Presidio, but unknowingly he was being set up by the FBI in a “sting” operation that led to his entrapment.
As mayor, he should have had current information as to what projects he was working on. He also mentioned that the city was demanding more accountability and transparency. Well, he should have known that he was in effect the city’s informational fountain that should have been providing this accountability and he failed. The fact that all members of his family are very successful musicians leaves me to think that his many duties as mayor, school principal, school (mariachi) band director and numerous other private and official functions that he regularly attends in Ojinaga and else where, must leave him with little time to keep his city informed.
He, also eliminated Carlos’ position immediately after his arrest and justified it by stating that is was no longer required and not because of his present situation with the law. This was also a very disingenuous statement that may come to haunt him if a suit is filed against the city.
Carlos was actually hired as a consultant, because he was well known in the fields of business, education, medicine, politics, ranching, cattle grazing and farming. He knew many professional people in Mexico. He has a masters degree in hospital administration from the University of California at Berkeley. Presidio was very fortunate in being able to hire him at near minimum wage. He could readily draw from his quiver extensive number of skills in attacking any project for the city. His communicative skills in writing, speaking and reading the English and spanish languages made Carlos a very valuable asset to have on board at city hall.
My anti Ferguson campaign efforts included, sending forty letters to “Key” voters in Presidio via emails and UPS services. I also made several Facebook postings and emailed two letters to the editor of the Marfa paper which he published. I also made several phone calls to friends and foes of the Mayor. Therefore, I am very pleased with the out come of the election and feel that my campaign was very successful in helping the voters of Presidio win. As far as I know, I was the only activist, who openly did not support the Mayor, which incidentally could be the reason why he lost and chose to “unfriend” me from his Facebook page. Could this be what the agony of defeat can do to friends or foes?
Letter to the Editor of the International dated April 19,2018.
and I’ll quote: Editor, you refused to publish my Feb 19, 2018 letter regarding Presidio Mayor Ferguson and his many titles and duties, which could bring about unintended consequences like not overseeing the accounting mess at
city hall for the years 2013-2016 and having the city of Presidio hire a CPA accountant for one year to bring the books into compliance.
I quit writing about these matters, because you apparently interpreted my letter as being too political and against the policy of your paper that refrains from printing such letters during election times.
On the other hand, you saw fit to quote Mayor Ferguson when he said that he had traveled to Alpine to tell the judge that he believed Carlos would try and influence and outcome of two May county runoff elections. One to replace Lorenzo Hernandez and the other being his own runoff with the county judge Cinderella Guevara if Nieto was allowed to return to Presidio full time.
You further quoted Mayor Ferguson that he wanted this election to be fair and therefore Carlos should not be in our community. Let’s not have these elections under the shadow of Nieto.
I was horrified to read these words that went against your own paper’s policy and second you allowed the mayor’s comments to insult the intelligence of all the voters in Presidio County as not being intelligent enough to be able to think for themselves on who to vote for.
For your information, the mayor’s comments certainly went against our First Amendment rights. Nieto as well as anyone can campaign and vote for whom ever he/she wants to without having to protect them from Carlos. He only wants to be home with his family and has no interest in steering anyone to vote one way or the other.
The way the FBI and justice system has treated Carlos is completely below the ethical standard that our country was found on. Carlos has not been tried under a court of law yet, but people like Ferguson and the four most hateful letter writers in Presidio and Marfa have already tried him in the court of public opinion. Regards, Luis
The following Facebook postings from me, to Mayor Ferguson and vis versa are as follows and I quote:
Luis A. Jimenez: Today is Memorial Day and I got up and fired up my computer and was very much relieved to not see any more of Mayor Ferguson’s campaign posters running in the run off election for county judge. The run off election took place on May 06,2018 and he lost by 100 votes, but nevertheless, I soon discovered that what I was looking at were exclusive John Ferguson postings that resembled the help wanted and social ads of a newspaper. The system was all jammed packed with Ferguson’s self serving posts from soliciting help in moving a couple from Shafter to Alpine to informing the community of the busy musical schedule of the Ferguson’s. In a way these postings certainly served a good cause, but they are very obvious that perhaps are becoming part of a hidden agenda. Is Mayor Ferguson
running for something else? Thank God, I still subscribe to the “International News”. Some of the postings include the following people:
Laurie Holman: Luis, that was uncalled for. He tries to help those that need it and that couple in Shafter are older. As my mother use to say, if you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all.
Cande Myers: Luis, you do not live in Presidio, so with all due respect you do not know what happens here in a day to day basis. The Ferguson’s have given so much to this community on so many levels. Thank you Ferguson’s for all you do and continue to do for this community.
John Ferguson: Luis, you give me way too much credit. I’m currently trying to coax my weary body out of bed, after a great, but long trip with my wife’s band students to Austin. We arrived in Presidio at about 2:30 A. M, this morning. Facebook is a fun hobby for me. If you think that I somehow am using it for some sinister scheme, you are giving me way too much credit. I’d suggest if you are worried about the goings-on here in Presidio, move back here and get involved in the community.
Laurie Holman: If you don’t like what he posts, says or agree with what he is doing, then block, unfriend or just unfollow… Don’t bitch unless you have some sort of constructive criticism or solution or plan to positively get involved… Oh wait…You don’t even live here anymore. Your incessant accusations and complaining make you look like a …pardon the language…but a real asshole.
Luis A Jimenez: Laurie, John and Cande, it pains me to have to respond to your comments, but in light of the spontaneous hatred that erupted a year ago against Carlos Nieto this pent-up hatred should first have been brought up to your attention, Mayor, so remedial action could have been taken, but was not. Instead, you fired him immediately and the city leaders and the justice department chose to banish him from Presidio without first finding him guilty of the charges against him.
It is hard for me to believe that five of the Presidio leaders , Rod Ponton. presidio county attorney, Alcee Tavarez. mayor pro-team, Jose Portillo, Jr. Presidio Administrator and cinderella Guevara, Presidio County Judge of Marfa and Presidio Mayor John Ferguson wrote scurrilous letters to The Honorable David C. Guaderrama, U. S. District Judge asking him to banish Carlos from Presidio to which prompted you, Mr. Mayor to later on dash out and jump in your vehicle or motorcycle and race to Alpine to advise the presiding judge at Carlos’ hearing NOT to allow Carlos to visit with his three sons and daughter a few days during spring break. I feel that it was certainly not what a prospective judge would do in addition to already being the mayor, school counselor and music director of two very successful bands in Presidio. “Que mas quieres, John?
Laurie Holman: It pains us ALL that you come on to John’s page, firing off accusations like it was him who broke the law, like it was him who was under a “sting” operation by the FBI for two years, like it was him who stole from the community and is now facing federal charges. If you want to protest or cry how Carlos can’t come visit Presidio (AND WE ALL KNOW WHY HE CAN’T), then go do it on your own page, go write a letter to the editor, go do something positive instead of negative, but please have some common sense. Don’t come bashing someone who has done nothing, but put Presidio in a good light, whose family dose nothing but good and positive things for the area, community, for the youth and for our relations with Ojinaga and Mexico. You are doing nothing to help Carlos by doing what you are doing. You are hurting your own cause. Stop trying to turn the tortilla and place blame where it should not be place.
Cande Myers: Could not have said it any better.
Luis A. Jimenez: Laurie, there has not been a law broken yet. At least not until a court of law says it has been broken. I have not been accusing any one, because what I have been doing is stating facts that have been proven by actual deeds and signed letters by specific hateful letter writers. Even you as a well respected art teacher in Presidio knows that one of the privileges that American citizens have is freedom of expression, right?
Additional comment to Laurie Holman: Luis A Jimenez: Laurie, I’m puzzled why you defend the Mayor so much, from the likes of me. Oh, I just remembered that he as counselor or school principal may at times be your boss and that, I can understand, but what I don’t understand is you calling me a “real asshole” in your postings and also telling me that Carlos stole from the community. Please read Part Six (pages 59-65) of this book and find out who actually robbed who.
For your information, Carlos and Lorenzo got what the “Narcos” forfeit to the government after they are caught and it all goes into one federal budget account to fund all similar “sting” operations, so actually, the money that Carlos and Lorenzo got was part of an appropriated federal budget and not from the Presidio community. They did not defraud anyone, it was acquired fair and square from congressional budget appropriations for “sting” operations in Washington D. C. If you don’t believe me, consult the U. S. Budget Office. What probably happened is that you repeated the great big bold face lie that the “International News” quoted in the first paragraph of its headline article entitled “ Hernandez Pleads guilty to bribery” in the August 09, 2018 issue. The paper was quoting the U. S. Attorney John F Bash and FBI Special Agent in Charge Emmerson Buie Jr of El Paso Division. They both lied in characterizing Lorenzo and Carlos as defrauding the people of the community.
I sent the Editor of the “International” an email requesting that he try getting a retraction from Attorney Bash and FBI agent Buie Jr. regarding their quote that “Lorenzo
Hernandez admitted to defrauding the citizens of Presidio, TX.” So far, I have not gotten a response.
The following is my letter to the Editor titled “Critic of Presidio Elections” for county judge: which I will quote:
Date of of the elections: 06 Mar 2018 22 May 2018 Cinderela Guevara 567 *14.% 638 *15.% +7
John Ferguson 513 12.% 538 *13.% + 25
Losoya Marques 380 09.%
Total Votes for judges:1460 35.% 1176 *29.%
Did not vote in the run off 284 * 07.%
* Total registered voters in Presidio County 4045
Presidio County Precinct 3 Commissioners Race
Jose Cabezuela 145
Edgar Ramirez 144
This race was very interesting, because one vote really mattered.
Mayor Ferguson only got 25 more votes in the run off in spite of Losoya Marquez pledging all her 380 votes to him after her loss. This indicates that 284 votes stayed home and may have exercised my campaign premise that too much concentration of power in one individual is not only dangerous, but
certainly merits scrutiny, because it could lead to unintended consequences. If the Mayor would have won, he would then have had complete control of the city in exercising his duties of county Judge, city mayor, school counselor and director of two very popular family musical groups, the Resonators and Mariachi Santa Cruz. No one should have a monopoly on running a city.
My anti Ferguson campaign efforts included, sending 40 letters to “key” voters via emails and UPS services. I also made several facebook postings and emailed two letters to the editor of the Marfa paper, which he published. I also made several phone calls to friends and foes of the mayor. I am very pleased with the out come of the election and feel that my campaign was very successful in helping the voters of Presidio win. As far as I know, I was the only activist who openly did not support the Mayor, which incidentally could be the reason why he lost and chose to “unfriend” me from his facebook page. Could this be what the agony of defeat can do to friends or foes?
Even though, I did not wish the Mayor to win his judgeship of Presidio County, I still defend every vote he got, because I’m an American citizen and I respect our constitution, which is something that he should know, but don’t practice. His reason for keeping Carlos from going to Presidio and wait for his trial date was that he did not want Carlos to influence the electorate against him. Instead I stood up for Carlos and apparently my anti Ferguson campaign paid off resulting in he loosing the election.
The editor’s response to my April 19, 2018 letter: I quote: Your letter is flawed in that Ferguson would have to resign as mayor. Mr. Nieto was an elected school trustee, chairman of the Presidio County Appraisal District board of directors, the city of Presidio special projects coordinator, served on the Presidio Education Foundation board, and served on the Presidio port authority board before he allegedly took a bribe. What’s the difference?
My answer to the above letter and I quote: Robert, thank you for proving my point. Too much concentration of power may lead to unintended consequences and conflicts of interest and yes, Carlos, perhaps could be considered a prime example off having too much power, but I don’t understand why you classified my letter as being “Flawed” when I was only critiquing the results of the election and my efforts in the campaign. I did not mention how much power the “media” can exert nor Ferguson having to resign as mayor. I did not ask you to find my letter flawed. I think that would be up to your readers . I did not ask you to come back to me with reciting Carlos’ alleged bribes and capping it with what is the difference. My only intentions in sending you my letter were to hopefully have you print it in it’s “as is” state. If you chose to not print it that would be your prerogative as an editor, but since you went ahead and printed it, I thank you.
Seven years ago on May 12, 2011, Presidio ISD Superintendent Dennis McEntire had a letter to the Editor published in the Presidio International, where he provided very noble reasons why John Ferguson, Presidio High School Principal had withdrawn from the Presidio Mayor’s race after the filing date. McEntire went on to explain that Ferguson’s decision to withdraw was. because of a strong sense of duty to the children of Presidio, who would require his full attention.
The reason I’m bringing this historical fact to light now is, because in spit of all the outstanding musical accomplishments the Presidio School District, Mayor Ferguson has also acquired several other titles such as Mayor, Music Director, band leader and now he is
running for the Presidio County Judge Post. I can’t help, but wonder if the law of diminishing returns has finally caught up to him after surviving the city hall one year audit fiscal disaster.
One of the highest priorities of responsibilities any mayor has is to ensure his city’s fiscal policies are being carried out in compliance will good accounting principals that meet Federal, State, County and City standards. Such was not the case in Presidio. The problem Mr. Painter, the suditor, faced was that there were no daily transactions logs to audit, no reconciled bank statements to examine and a third of the documents were missing. Also, there were no quarterly filings of the employment Tax Forms 941’s that go directly to the IRS, which reflect the employee’s earnings and withholdings for federal, medicare and medicare and social security taxes. These discrepancies were major and serious and showed that there was a total lack of oversight for the years 2013 thru 2016 on the part of city hall administrators as well as from the mayor.
I personally think that the mayor is a very capable school administrator as well as a role model in musical endeavors for our young minds, but sometimes taking added responsibilities can be very taxing to the best of us and they may bring unintended consequences.
The Brown Sisters Extortion
I would like to know, if Laurie could name a citizen of the community that was defrauded by Carlos or Lorenzo. As to being called “an asshole” by Laurie, I will not comment on this name she assigned to me in Facebook, because I have been called worst by her school colleague, Rebecca Coffman and her friend Don Lewis. They seemed to have been very close friends of Grace and Frances and it appears that Rebecca in particular played a significant part in the extortionists who might have robbed these ladies out of $150,000.00, because of the following reasons: Rebecca Coffman:
01. lived in her farm house next to the Brown sisters.
02. had Frances’ power of attorney…
03. kept her check book and paid their bills
04. knew, I was their friend and absentee land lord….
05. did not notified me when Frances died….
06. never answered my phone calls or letters
07. took Frances to have her will drawn….
08 never told or gave the nursing home a copy of the will for safe keeping.
09. participated or knew those who robbed these ladies
10. never did alert the authorities of any unusual activities at these ladies’ house.
11. If she was not the extortionist, she probably knows who was and if she does not know, she is than guilty of not complying with the fiduciary responsibility that she incurred when she got Frances’ power of attorney.
In addition to Rebecca being the most involved person with the Brown Sisters, there are others who contributed to the robbery by virtue of refusing to help me investigate how these ladies, between the years 1987 and 2004, were victimized. I have included in this book as well as in my autobiography “Moyeboy-51” published in 2012 the actions I took to investigate this grand theft. 1. Feb 04, 97 Received Frances’ letter saying that she had included me in her will for a sum of her estate and that according to Rebecca Coffman her balance at the Marfa National Bank was $87,299.00.
2. Jul 15, 04 Frances Brown’s obituary: born Sept 16,1908 and died Jul 08, 2004 at the Alpine Valley Care Center.
3. Jul 22, 04 Called Katherine Baker, Attorney, in Montgomery, TX, ph 936 588-3627 to see if she had a copy of Frances will. She remembers writing it, but did not make a copy.
4. Jul 22, 04 I Called Alpine Valley Care Center ph 432 837-3343 and asked Mrs. Sledge, Director of Nursing and Mrs. Nancy Bradford, Director of Finance if they knew where Frances’ personal property was. In particular, what became of her letters, bank statements, income tax, social security, personal letters, books, medical care payment statements and also, who got her residual bank funds? Surely, there must have been someone that got whatever she had left in her bank account.
They both advised me that she had nothing when she died, but neither did they tell me what had happened to the items that I’ve just mentioned. This tells me that the nursing home was one that should not be excluded from those that robbed her. The only useful information they gave me was that Rebecca Coffman, a newly acquire friend of Frances had been given power of attorney from Frances, but it had been revoked by APS (Adult Protective Services). No reason was given why it was revoked.
5. Jul 27, 04 Called Brewster County Clerk’s Office requesting a search of Frances’ will. None was found, but was informed that a power of attorney had been granted to Rebecca Coffman.
6. Jul 27, 04 My letter to Brewster County Clerk’s Office requesting a copy of Rebecca’s Power of Attorney.
7. Jul 30, 04 Called Presidio County Clerk’s Office Ph 432 729-4074 requesting a search for Frances’ will. None found.
8. letter to Rebecca Coffman requesting information to the whereabouts of Frances’ will that was written by Katherine Baker. As of this date no response has been received from Rebecca and neither has sheever returned my calls.
9. Aug 03, 04 and Aug 10,04 Called and wrote to Marfa National Bank requesting assistance in locating Frances’ will and bank statements. They stated that no information was available to me.
10. Aug 10 Called APS in Marfa ph 432 729-3131 and requested copies of all Frances’ files in order to possibly learn the whereabouts of Frances’ will and personal property.
11. Aug 03, 04 Received copy Rebecca’s power of attorney dated Apr 16, 99.
12. Aug 10, 04 Received Marfa National Bank’s letter stating they have no information in locating Frances will.
13. Called APS, Marfa Ph 432 729-3131 requesting a form for me to fill out and get information leading to finding Frances’ will and personal property.
14, Called Steve Spurgin, attorney in Marfa, Ph (432) 729-3813 and explained this matter to him. He advised me to wait until I had all the documents, so that I could than petition the district attorney to do an appropriate investigation.
15. Sept 01, 2004 APS forms arrived and I filled them out and mailed them back.
16. Sept 21, 2004 Received an answer to my Sept 01, 2004 from the APS stating that I could not have Frances’ files unless they were required for an active court case. Attorney Steve Spurgin probably knew that APS was not going to give me Frances’ files, because there was no active court case. He also probably did not want to fool with the case.
17. It is very note worthy that the letter that I wrote the District Attorney of Brewster County, Frank Brown on 06 Oct 2004 requesting an investigation be done leading to the whereabouts of Frances Brown’s will and personal property who died in Alpine on 08Jul04.
He did not answer my letter, that led me to call him on the phone and I talked to his secretary who told me he was busy, but would ask him about my letter. She came back and told me that the district attorney was working on it. I than waited till 20 Nov, 2004 and wrote him a follow up letter, which he never answered. As far as I’m concerned, I consider him another facilitator of Frances’ extortion.
18. Apart from the names that I have just mentioned, each could have shed some information leading to knowing who the thieves were, but they chose to be part of the cover up.
When I found out about the extortion, I traveled from San Antonio to Presidio to take an inventory of everything inside the house. I also had Sheriff Dominguez accompany me through the house and it was not long before I noticed that Frances and Grace’s suitcases were missing as well as Joe’s, big steamer truck, where he kept WWII memorabilia like German rifles, helmets and “Natzi” flags and personal family documents. The house seemed practically empty. By now Grace had died and Frances had already been taken to the Alpine Nursing Home where she passed away on July 08,004. A year or so later I was given an unsolicited envelop by an Alpine attorney, who had Frances cancelled checks for only the month of January 1993, so I was not abled to know the balance in her account at the end of that period, but if anyone is interested in knowing more than what I have already said, please give me a call at 210 341-1210.
The bank envelope only included 44 bank paid checks for cash that Grace and Frances had written. This caused me to generate a complete report on the 44 checks that I now have as proof that these ladies were being extorted and by whom and by how much. The owners/employees of 6 major local Presidio stores should have figured out that these ladies could not possibly have been eating and consuming that much every day, but no such red flags were ever
raised neither did the First Presidio Bank nor the Marfa National Bank took note of this. All forty four checks cleared through them. Both Frances and Grace had checking accounts with the Marfa National Bank. The checks with the exception of three were made out to cash for a month’s total of $4,733.00. Grace and Frances’ household expenses never exceeded $200.00 at most. This figure does not include their monthly rent payment to me of $200.00.
The merchants and banks all knew these ladies and yet no one questioned these checks. Needless, to say this prompted me to take action like I stated above, but I got nowhere. During this time, I was living in San Antonio, but the time before that I lived six years in South America and six years in Saudi Arabia, so understandably, it made it difficult for me to get people to talk to me for I really did not know them right away until I came back and started looking into my renters situation. Eventually, not finding people to cooperate with me, I gradually ceased my inquires, but continued holding Rebecca Coffman and District Attorney Frank Brown and others responsible for the Brown’s extortion and the failure of coming up with Frances’ will and property.
In my autobiography “Moyeboy-51” in 2012, I described everything I knew about the Browns having been extorted and was hoping that someone would sue me or furnish me additional information, by reading my book. I welcome this second opportunity of telling the Brown sisters story hoping someone will bring to light something that can lead me to find Frances will and property.
For those who have consistently blamed Carlos for robbing the citizens of this community, I hope they read this book and understand that there are very influential people in Presidio that robbed these ninety year old ladies of their money and personal belongings. Again, I will repeat, Carlos Nieto did not rob anyone from the Presidio community, because what he got was legally appropriated by the U. S Government to be used for thousands of “sting” operations here and abroad.
As the Presidio County Attorney, Mr. Ponton succeeded in influencing Judge Guarderrama to banish Carlos from Presidio for fear that he may influence some people to act in his own best interest. In other words, he was asking the judge to not allow Carlos to go back to Presidio for fear of him doing exactly the same thing he does during his political campaigns. Why is it all right for him to influence people, while Carlos cannot. We all live in the U. S. A. and enjoy all the freedoms under our constitution. The letters that he, Alcee Tavarez, Jose Portillo, Jr., Cinderella Guevara wrote and sent Judge Guaderrama, were meant to influence the judge Guaderrama into banishing Carlos from Presidio. This was outrageous and shows the deep hatred that these “leaders” have against not only Carlos, but against his whole family and friends. As for Judge Guaderrama, he too was denying Carlos’ constitutional freedoms, which speaks volumes of how ignorant, vindictive, mean and cruel he is.
Carlos’ Bail Bond Restrictions
Right now, Carlos, is going through an over bearing federal court experience that I classify as cruel and unusual punishment without yet being tried. His family is innocent, but yet they are being made to suffer the indignities that Carlos is going through. By virtue of having been remanded to jail, he also was not allowed to attend his father’s burial on Saturday, July 08, 2018. This certainly was a violation of his civil rights and also an act of discrimination based on not being allowed to return to his home on the border of Mexico, because the authorities feared that he would flee to Mexico. This country is now undergoing a great political upheaval and yet the FBI sees fit to spend time and money in applying the full weight of the law on Carlos.
It puzzles me that neither the judges nor the law enforcement agencies were impressed in exercising discretionary justice in light of listening to the very distinguished witnesses that the defense brought forward to testify during Carlos’ arraignment. One was an ex Presidio parish priest, another one was a retired DEA agent from Radford, TX and a published author with three books depicting his undercover assignments through out the world, and another one was a retired FBI agent and cousin of Carlos and as a group they even agreed to sign a bail bond for Carlos’ release. All of them have known Carlos for decades and know he is not a flight risk. All this also proved fruitless for the judges present at the hearing who refused to release Carlos to attend his father’s funeral. Is this justice? The Nieto family for the past one hundred years has been the founding pioneers of Presidio and each generation has made Presidio a better place to live.
Carlos and his family do not deserve to go through this experience. How can they keep kicking Carlos when he is down. I believe this thing is going to get much worst, so Lord help us all especially after the investigation of the city hall. Now back to the arraignment in Pecos, Texas.
All actions taken, after Magistrate Fannin's ruling, became very compromising and confusing to me and therefore there has to be an inquiry made on every thing that was done to Carlos during and after his arraignment hearing. For one thing, I doubt that an appeal bond was ever paid, because if it was not, the whole appeal stops in its tracks and Carlos goes free to await his trial. I am very much surprised that not one attorney of the many that must have been present did not question the ”shenanigans/chingaderas” that I find that went on
in banishing Carlos from Presidio. I actually think that no court in the U. S. including the Supreme Court has the right or would banish any U. S.Citizen from his home town. It is ironic also, that these hateful writers did what Carlos was told not to do “influence people and/or judges.
I have also read John Daniel Garcia’s article in the International paper entitled “Nieto release conditions eased” and I was glad to know that his restrictions were eased, but it does not excuse Judge Guarderrama nor the others from imposing them in the first place under the prevailing circumstances. On 28 Aug 2017, I sent Mario, Carlos’ brother an e-mail, suggesting that Carlos’ attorney, Joe Spencer should file an injunction to delete Carlos’ restriction of prohibiting him from going to Presidio. During the seven months following my e-mail, no action was taken until this past week of March 24, 2018, that Attorney Spencer filed a motion requesting that Carlos should be allowed to spend the spring break with his children and in a separate motion he requested that Carlos be allowed to wait for his trial in Presidio, his home town. Both motions, were denied in spit of the Pretrial Service Officer Luis Fausto not opposing them, but they lacked the concurrence of assistant U. S. Attorney Bill Lewis.
I, personally think that this motion was made too late, because Carlos’ trial at that time was very imminent, for it was scheduled to take place on Jun 19 2018 barring any further resets (Yes, since than, it has been reset to October 29, 2018 in Pecos, Texas). For reasons unknown to me as to why the motion was not carried, rests with Attorney Bill Lewis, but I would like to think that my August 28, 2017 letter to Mario and Carlos, brought about the easing of Carlos’ restriction, because, I advised them to provide Joe Spencer, attorney for Carlos, a copy. The injunction was never filed by attorney Joe Spenser.
It is also, my personal belief that Judge Guaderrama committed a grave miscarriage of human justice, when he conspired to keep Carlos from seeing his dying father for the last time and at the same time banishing him from Presidio. These letters are totally devoid of any empathy and compassion and appear to be a product of not only a mean conspiracy, but also, it is very ironic that the article states that judge Guaderrama admitted he was very complicit in taking the action that he did by reading these four letters.
These inconsistencies and many others should forcefully be brought out by the defense attorney in seeking a dismissal with prejudice in accordance with Rule 48 (b)(3) Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. I can’t help, but think about the importance our government places on bringing home our sons and daughters on bereavement leave from where ever they are, like it did me and my wife when my father died on 10 November 1983 in Presidio, TX.
I give thanks to the Royal Saudi Air Force (RSAF) that in less than 30 hours of being notified at work in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, half way around the world, they made it possible for my wife and I to join my family in Presidio, Texas. Also, all our travel expenses and a ten day per diem rate of $300.00 per day was paid to each one of us. On the other hand, neither did the FBI nor our justice system saw fit to allow Carlos to see his father die three days after he was arrested (July 29, 2017) and neither was he allowed to attend his funeral (July 08-09, 2017).
This country owed so much to Edmundo Nieto for fighting and defending us from German domination during WW II. He certainly did not deserved to die without his care giver son by his side. Instead there were six car loads of FBI “THUGS” searching and ram-sacking both Carlos’ house as well as his father’s, while he laid in the next room dying, yes dying for he died the following day. Maybe, these FBI “RUFFIANS” were expecting to find rooms full of guns, money or drugs and could not wait for another day to do their job. I don’t think they found what they were looking for, but they really showed off their “BULLING” tactics to Carlos’ family, whom they must have been terrified watching these 6 foot 6 “GOONS” searching their property without Carlos being there.
In addition to the restrictions and injustices that Carlos has had to undergo, I’m including others that for his 65 years of age and having a clean criminal record, he should not have been banished from Presidio. On this date (October 29, 2018) Carlos will have undergone sixteen months of pain and suffering away from his home and family and suffering the following indignities:
He has had to maintain two households 300 miles apart with five dependents including three of them in college.
He has been deprived from earning a living by being force to live in El Paso.
His curfew from 6: AM to 10PM is impractical and arbitrary that only serves the whims of his parol officers.
No briefing was given in Alpine on how to operate and maintain his GPS ankle monitoring bracelet.
The rage exhibited by Attorney Kimball throughout the appeal bond hearing was consistent with a disturbed man rather than one of a sane prosecutor, according to eyewitnesses present at his bail bond hearing.
He was given the wrong address and phone number of where to report to in El Paso after leaving his July 06, 2017 bail bond hearing, thus arriving late and having to answer why.
He was denied spending two extra days being with his sons at home during spring break.
To have Carlos and his family endure any more physical and mental pain in addition to what they have already gone through, serves no constructive purpose to the State, so therefore, I would implore Judge Guaderrama, to have this case dismissed with prejudice and entered as a judgement of acquittal and have his bond exonerated. This action would include barring a retrial and returning his clean criminal record to its original state. After all, Carlos did not kill, raped, assaulted, dealt in drugs, harm, lied or stole from anyone. He did not do any thing different then what lobbyists do every single day in the real world to
real people. They simply charge a referral fee for their services to which the sellers charge their company as a cost of doing business.
The actual reason why Carlos was remanded back to jail pending his bond hearing was that he was considered a flight risk and if allowed to go back home he would flee to Mexico. Instead, Judge Fannin of Alpine, the presiding judge at Carlos’ arraignment remanded Carlos to jail pending his bail bond hearing scheduled for July 06, 2017.
There are many stories in the front pages of every newspaper in the country that depict people out on bail carrying out their normal duties at home awaiting trail that have done worst to real people and not to fictitious FBI imposters. Some very recent examples are:
Carlos’ codefendant Lorenzo Hernandez is out on bond working and tending to his trucking business in Presidio and Ojinaga, while at the same time is providing a lively hood for his family. (on August 03, 2018 in Midland’s Federal Court Lorenzo Hernandez admitted to defrauding the citizens of Presidio by taking bribes while in office) I do not agree that he defrauded the citizens of Presidio, but I guess he took his attorneys’ advise and went for it.
Chris Estrada of Marathon, Texas was allowed out on bond after he was arraigned pending to his May 21, 2018 trial for allegedly being implicated in the cover up of a victim’s murder at a Dollar General Store.
Daniel Merrill Sullivan is a 30 year old Fort Davis man charged with murdering his wife a Marfa Teacher and he was out on bond one day after being charged.
The grand daddy of them all is the State Senator Carlos Uresti’s conviction in the Four Winds Logistics Case that on June 26, 2018 got him 12 years, but on top of that on Friday October 12, 2018 he again pleaded guilty for another conviction of bribery, wire fraud and other charges for which he remains free on bail bond till January 14, 2018. This makes no sense, in light of the fact that his convictions involved millions and millions of dollars, while Carlos’ chargers have not seen the inside of a court room yet and only involve $8.000. in alleged bribes. His bail bond restrictions include banishment from his home until his trial comes up in October 20, 2018. This does not make sense, either, but it is something that we have to contend with until the justice system replaces these judges and prosecutors that have no common senses and hurt the accused defendants.
There are other local cases that have been brought up to the federal court in Pecos, Texas and all of them the defendants have been granted immediate bail after being arraigned which include very prominent Presidio County residents.
This past Wednesday, the San Antonio-News reported the following: A federal Judge on Tuesday granted bond to the operator of a San Antonio dog-training business, who was charged with defrauding the GI Bill program out of more than $1.2 million. After hearing nearly a full day of government testimony alleging Bradley Lane Croft, 46 was violent, vindictive and volatile. U. S, Magistrate Judge Richard Farrer said federal law allowed him to set bail with restrictions aimed at protecting the safety of the public. Farrer was not swayed by the prosecution’s claim that Croft is a flight risk. The judge set a $50,000.00 UNSECURED bond, meaning Croft did not need to put money down and ordered Croft to the custody of one of Croft’s friends.
From the very beginning the authorities have maintained that if Carlos was allowed to go to Presidio and wait for his trial he would certainly flee to Mexico, so instead, Judges Guaderrama, Fannin, Lewis, and Attorney Monty Kimball decided to direct Carlos to set up residency in El Paso. Now, how smart do you have to be to know that Carlos can very well flee from Presidio to Mexico as he can from El Paso? “DIOS MIO”, these justices, attorneys and law men really have no common sense at all and have no clue in knowing nor want to know how Carlos at 65 years of age is going to provide for his five dependents in Presidio that need for him to be there. Again, these people are being very mean to Carlos for what ever reasons they may have, it is a long ways from being part of the American system of justice. The way it looks now, Carlos will have to wait sixteen months in exile in El Paso waiting for his trial which is now scheduled to be on October 29, 2018 sixteen months after he was arraigned.
Carlos’ attorney Joe Spencer, should seriously consider filing a motion for a judgement of acquittal based on Rule 29 (Motion for a Judgement of acquittal) which I will quote:
Before submission to the Jury, after the government closes its evidence or after the close of all the evidence, the court on the defendant’s motion must enter a judgement of acquittal of any offense for which the evidence is insufficient to sustain a conviction. If the court denies a motion for a judgement of acquittal at the close of the government’s evidence, the defendant may offer evidence without having reserved the right to do so.
Reserving decision. The court may reserve decision on the motion, proceed with the trial (where the motion is made before the close of all the evidence) submit the case to the jury, and decide the motion either before the jury returns a verdict or after it returns a verdict of guilty or is discharged without having returned a verdict. If the court reserves decision, it must decide the motion on the basis of the evidence at the time the ruling was reserved.
After Jury verdict or discharged.
Time for a motion. A defendant may move for a judgement of acquittal, or renew such a motion, within 14 days after a guilty verdict or after the court discharges the jury, whichever is later.
Ruling on the motion. If the jury has returned a guilty verdict, the court may set aside the verdict and enter an acquittal, if the jury has failed to return a verdict, the court may enter a judgement of acquittal.
No prior motion required. A defendant is not required to move for a judgement of acquittal before the court submits the case to the jury as a prerequisite for making such a notion after jury discharged.
(d) Conditional ruling on a motion for a new trial.
Motion for a new trial. If the court enters a judgement of acquittal after a guilty verdict, the court must also conditionally determine whether any motion for a new trial should be granted if the judgement of acquittal is later vacated or reversed. The court must specify the reasons for that determination.
Finally, The court’s order conditionally granting a motion for a new trial does not affect the finality of the judgement of acquittal.
Grant of a motion for a new Trial. If the court conditionally grants a motion for a new trial and an appellate court later reverses the judgement of acquittal, the trial court must proceed with the new trial unless the appellate court orders otherwise.
Denial of a motion for a new trial. If the court conditionally denies a motion for a new trial, an appeal may assert that the denial was erroneous. If the appellate court later reverses the judgement of the acquittal, the trial court must proceed as the appellate court directs.
From the very beginning, Carlos’ defense attorney should have advised Carlos of his housing options if the court was going to banish him from his home town. I wonder, what would have happened if Carlos would have told the Judge that he could not afford to live anywhere else that was not his home? I doubt that the judge would have allowed him to be homeless and I also doubt that he would have remanned Carlos to jail, because it would not be cost effective for the tax payer. The going rate for maintaining a federal inmate in jail is $100.00 per day.
All the defendants that are classified as being a flight risk after their arraignment are assigned an appropriate bail bond that will make it difficult for them to meet and thus ensuring their way back to jail to wait for their court date. According to judge, Fannin, Carlos was classified as being a flight risk, but yet was allowed to “walk” out from his arraignment with an unreasonable restriction of not being allowed two live with his family. On the other hand, his codefendant, Lorenzo Hernandez, was also allowed to “walk” but without any restrictions as to where he should wait for his trail. I consider Judge Fannin, Judge Guaderram and Judge Lewis including Prosecutor Monty Kimball to be the cruelest and most inconsiderate trio of justices that any defendant could possibly face in court.
They should all recuse themselves from this case in the best interest of the behavioral code of the justice system. I don’t know of any case where the defendant is deem a flight risk and is banished from his home town and sent 300 miles away to wait his trial. This is certainly cruel and unusual punishment for someone that has not even been tried yet.
Personal Observation and Opinions
Jose Antonio Jimenez, Jul 23,2017: The content below are my personal observations and opinions about the case against my cousin, Carlos Nieto.
First and foremost, I want to remind everyone that Carlos Nieto may or may not be guilty.
The case and the evidence have not been presented, heard or judged and Carlos has not yet been pronounced guilty or not guilty. Yet Presidio city officials have already indicated that they believe that he is guilty and they do not want him to return to Presidio. What ever happened to the constitutional right that a man is innocent until proven guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt? Carlos Nieto is a U. S. citizen and entitled to all the rights of citizenship. What authority does the city government officials have to try to influence the judge to ban a citizen from his legal residence and away from his family, business and community prior to the court finding him guilty. Seems to me this information should more appropriately be addressed by the prosecutor or defense attorney and not the judge.
It is my opinion that the request for banishment and rejection of Carlos by city government officials is excessive punishment that does not fit the crime that Carlos has been charged. I believe that “Banishment of the accused” is a very serious punishment for a very serious crime. Prior to banishment of an accused person, proper and legal processes must be followed through the courts. I do not believe that you can banish an accused person with a simple request for banishment from a city mayor or city government official without seriously infringing on the individual civil rights. They can request it, but I believe banishment maybe legal after (and only maybe), the accused is found or declared guilty by a judge or jury. Banishment could also be considered cruel and unusual punishment which would be unconstitutional under the Bill of Rights. This could be indicative of a lack of awareness of the constitutional rights of an accused person/citizen, in which case, the lawyer for the accused would best be qualified to know and defend. It is evident that these city officials have not properly thought out Carlos’ constitutional rights and are intent on throwing Carlos “under the bus”. Perhaps to cover up some of their own deficiencies or individual hatred they have towards Carlos and nothing to do with the betterment and administration of the city or its citizens.
I question if the request from the city officials are truly representative of the citizens of Presidio. During my recent trip to Presidio, I heard numerous unsolicited favorable comments about Carlos and his contributions to the betterment of the city. I also heard a few unfavorable ones, but to the degree that called for banishment from the city, no. I just do not know where the idea of banishment originated.
I have to wonder if these officials truly considered the seriousness of all the implications resulting from their request for banishment of Carlos form Presidio. Was their hatred towards Carlos so intense that their intent to hurt him included his family and implicated the survival and educational future of his children? Did they feel so strong about their feelings that family relationships would be forever terminated. This includes respect, friendship and loyalty. Some of these relationships go back for several generations. This could lead to the ruination of a family’s future. Is Carlos’ “sin” deserving of such hatred and such punishment? Even if Carlos is found “not” guilty and returns to Presidio, how can these officials face him, or he them? The friendship, respect and loyalty has been lost for ever. Not only Carlos’ immediate family, but for his extended family as well. Can these officials truly say that they acted on behalf of the citizens of Presidio and be proud of their actions?
It really appears that the incompetence of the officials is really the root cause of Carlos’ trouble. First of all, why was a position created for Carlos to become a project manager/administrator? It is my understanding that Carlos was really hired to seek ways to promote the economy of the city by seeking and taking advantage of opportunities for the city. It was felt that his education, management experience, dedication/loyalty to the city, would be of great benefit to the city of Presidio. It is evident that none of these qualities or capabilities were possessed by the so called leaders of the city. It is also my understanding that Carlos did accomplished numerous projects that benefitted the city substantially. These were in areas of the city, the school and church and the county. I would love to compare Carlos accomplishments with those of the city officials, either individually or combined.
Carlos accepted the position for a measly salary, close to or equivalent to that of a laborer with hardly any education, experience or profession. He accepted it mostly for the love of the city, the people and above all, the children of Presidio. To the best of his ability and intent, he wanted to help provide the best of education and preparation to the children so that they could go on to succeed in whatever college or field they chose. The Nieto family, pioneers of Presidio have traditionally sought opportunities to better improve its citizens.
Unfortunately, those leaders of Presidio that are complaining about Carlos and “Kicking him while he is down” and many its citizens that have never understood what it takes to be a true leader that can direct and lead and will have to settle for inept city government officials in name only.
The dislikes listed in the letters, they are all hearsay. They do not offer one piece of evidence to back up their accusations. Later, Carlos salary was increased to an amount that could hardly be called a salary. If Carlos was not performing to the expectations of those that hired him, why did they decide to give him a salary increase? I have my doubts that the city government officials deserve the salaries that they are getting. Carlos deserved a salary commensurate with his qualifications and the contributions he performed for the city. Instead, Carlos salary was no where close to being commensurate with his accomplishments. The demands of the job or its responsibilities. It is evident that income supplements became necessary from his family, relatives and whatever other sources that were available. The limited information that I have leads me to believe that he might have requested, negotiated and perhaps accepted simple fees paid equivalent to or in the same manner or intent that are paid to a lobbyist. Lobbing (with pay) is common throughout our government and evidently authorized at the highest levels of our government. At this point, I see no difference in lobbying for beneficial opportunities for Presidio or lobbying for beneficial opportunities in Washington D. C.
I question these leaders of Presidio, why did they not approached Carlos about their dislikes and/or and why didn’t they take action to fire him? Sounds like these leaders were afraid of Carlos. Silence would be an indication of approval. Why was Carlos the only one on the chopping block? The accountable official would be responsible for knowing what projects Carlos was working on and the status of the projects via regular scheduled meetings, audits, and reports. There is no indication in any of the documentation that I have read that mentions any reports. Carlos’ supervisor, the Mayor, is certainly implicated and involved in this case and should be right in the middle of the investigation.
The constitution of this great nation, provides that a suspect is not guilty until proven guilty. Yet, these officials have already eliminated his job position and asked for his banning from the city. Are these individuals trying to influence the judge or jury in their consideration of the facts? Seems like these officials are jumping the gun and not even giving Carlos the benefit of presenting his case to the court. The city government has already decided that Carlos is guilty and gone ahead and declared him as guilty by eliminating his job. If per chance, Carlos is found not guilty, these officials will look like “Damn fools”. I am not a lawyer, but in such a case, I would think that Carlos would be justified in suing the city and these officials for defamation of character and reputation as a minimum.
Jose A. Jimenez, first cousin of Carlos Nieto, born and raised in Preasidio, Texas, Disabled USAF Viet-Nam Veteran, 1713 High Ridge Rd., Bennbrook, Texas
At seven o’clock P. M. on Tuesday the 23rd of October 2018, I received a phone call from my cousin Virginia Spencer, who lives in Midland, Texas informing me that according to the Midland CBS T. V. channel, it was saying that Carlos Nieto had pleaded “guilty” to all his charges this afternoon in the district court of Alpine. Needless to say, it was a great shock for me and to everybody else, especially to his family and friends, because we were all very confident that his attorney, Joe Spencer from El Paso would fight for his client, but that was not the case. Instead, Spencer chose to withhold vital information that I had included in this book in support of Carlos’ defense.
This information was meant to be used or reviewed by Spenser and if appropriate added to his court room defense of Carlos. I also took for granted that he would discuss with Carlos’ what I had to say in my narrative. I cannot believe that Spencer did not even showed Carlos my book prior to driving to Alpine on the 23rd of October, 2018 for the pretrial hearing that led Carlos to plead guilty. Instead, he suppressed the defensive options that, I had suggested to use in Carlos’ defense and I’m also certain that if Carlos would have read my book he would never have pleaded guilty. Spencer had sixteen months to prepare for Carlos’ court case, plus he asked for five delays (continuances) during these sixteen months. Again, I am almost positive that Carlos would never have pleaded guilty, unless his attorney advised and encouraged him to do so. In addition to his attorney’s advise, I have kept Carlos’ family well informed about my writings for which they have all been very supportive and have agreed with what I was doing. Now, I dread what is coming up next.
His sentencing date has been scheduled for February 19, 2019 in Pecos. I don’t know if his residency will change after living in El Paso for the past sixteen months for I plan to up date this work after the sentencing and hope to than complete my story on Carlos. The work that I’ve done on this project was one of offering different options that would lead to a judgement of acquittal, discharge, mistrial all leading to exoneration of all charges primarily based on an entrapment motion. I felt that there were solid grounds for “entrapment”, since a “sting” had to be used to serve these people’s agenda. Lying by the FBI to the County Commissioners Court by a nonexistent company and sales representative should have been used to call it a mistrial. Banishment of Carlos from his home town is a practice that is not used any more and has been out lawed since the days of slavery. His constitutional rights were denied as well like freedom of speech. His right to work was also denied or impaired by the court directing him to live 300 miles from his home town at the age of 66 years old. There are other options that I have fitted into their right contexts.
Apparently the court did not care if Carlos had any means to support his family. Instead, the court favored the wishes of five hateful letter writers who together illegally conspired to banish him from Presidio. Also, the law enforcement agents denied Carlos to see his father on his death bed who past away the following day of his arrest. His home and that of his father were searched by the FBI at the same time that his father laid dying in the next room and also prevented Carlos from being with him and attending his Dad’s mass and funeral. All these actions taken by the FBI were either illegal or cruel and unusual punishment suffered by Carlos and his family. I don’t understand why Carlos has had to endure such bad treatment, when others that are murders or worst get to walk out on bail without any restrictions and in my book I give names of those that walked.
I can’t imagine why Spencer had Carlos plead guilty, when he could have put up a good fight for him even if the court would have found Carlos guilty, but at least he would have tried to save him, but he didn’t. Neither, did Spencer acknowledged receiving my manuscript which he chose to not show Carlos. After being informed of the guilty plea, I called Spencer, but his secretary told me he was busy, so I emailed him and asked if he had received my book and if so did he read it and if he had shown it to Carlos. Within thirty minutes, I received his email response saying yes he had gotten it and had read it, but did not show it to Carlos. No reason was given as to why he did not chose to show it to his client. This did not make any sense at all, because this indicated to me that he wanted to purposely suppress this information from Carlos days before the trial.
I believe that if he had had Carlos read it Carlos would not have pleaded guilty. He would have seen the many options that I brought up that could have been won in court by an attorney that was capable and willing to take a shot in winning the case. I can’t imagine what lead Carlos to plead guilty. Only Spencer, Carlos and the prosecutor will ever know and as for knowing if my strategy would have worked, I guess we will never know. My heart goes out to Carlos and especially his family. May God bless them and help them over come their hurt and sadness. As for the five hateful letter writers, judges and law enforcement agents who banished Carlos from Presidio, may God forbid them to do what they did to him do to someone else.
Before ending my story, I will quote a narrative of what an FBI entrapment “sting” operation can do to an ordinary person. This narrative was written by the Human Rights Watch organization based in Washington , D. C, and the article’s title is “Most would-be US Terrorists Would not have Committed a Crime without FBI Entrapment” One of the 214-page report, “Illusion of Justice: Human rights Abuses in US Terrorism Prosecutions,” examines 27 federal terrorism cases from initiation of the investigations to sentencing and post-conviction conditions of confinement. It documents the significant human cost of certain counterterrorism practices, such as overly aggressive sting operations and unnecessarily restrictive conditions of confinement.”
“Americans have been told that their government is keeping them safe by preventing and prosecuting terrorism inside the US,” said Andrea Prasow, deputy Washington director at Human Rights Watch and one of the authors of the report. “But take a closer look and you realize that many of these people would never have committed a crime if not for law enforcement encouraging, pressuring, and sometimes paying them to commit terrorist acts.
“In the case of the Newburgh Four, for example, who were accused of planning to blow up synagogues and attack a US military base, a judge said the government “Came up with the crime, provided the means, and removed all relevant obstacles and had, in the process, made a terrorist out of a man whose buffoonery is positively Shakespearean in scope.
The article goes on and on proving what an FBI “sting“ operation” can do to law abiding people. It is my intention to proceed with advising Carlos in seek legal counsel to appeal his “guilty” plea and see what action can be taken to address Joe Spencer’s suppression of evidence prior to trial.
I have made it a very special project writing this book, because I dearly believe in our constitutional rights that I feel have been violated in the treatment of Carlos by the FBI and justice system. I take full responsibility to everything that I have written and I would like the readers to give it maximum exposure. Thank you.
Justice Delayed. Justice Denied
by Luis A Jimenez
P, S, I think that sixteen months of waiting for trial in “banishment” status is long enough time for any defense attorney to be ready to go to trial, but apparently not , because the defendant wound-up pleading guilty and thus there was no trial.
(available, but not included)
01-01 18Jul17 Letter from Judge Guevara to Judge Guaderrama.
02-01 blank Letter from Alcee Tavarez and Jose Portillo to Judge Guaderrama.
03-01 blank Letter from Rod Ponton to Judge Guaderrama.
04-05 30Apr17 Copies of appeal bond conditions.
05 -01 27Jul17 My letter to Mayor Ferguson about banishing Carlos and PR problem.
06-04 28Jul17 My letter to Judge Guaderrama about the in justices to Carlos.
07-07 06Jul17 Mayor’s facebook letter to the public about terminating Carlos.
08-06 09Jul17 Nieto/ Hernandez caught in FBI “sting” operation.
09-05 19Jul17 Hernandez, Nieto released on bond, but Nieto can’t return to Presidio.
10-01 06Aug17 Juan Nieto’s letter to me. He spoke to his dad before he died.
11-01 28Aug17 My letter to Mario suggesting an injunction be filed.
12-01 19Sep17My letter to Mario Regarding FBI’s request for additional info on Carlos
13-03 05Apr1 Carlos’ motion to reside in Presidio denied
14-01 08Dec17 My letter to Joe Spencer, identifying the most hateful letter writers.
15-01 15Jan18 Ferguson’s withdrawal from the mayor’s race
16-01 19Feb18 My Letter to the Editor quoting the Mayor “wanting the elections to be fair.
17-01 19Apr18 My letter to Editor countering its own policies during times of elections
18-01 25Apr18 My proposed petition form to Mario for Carlos to come home.
19-04 30Apr18 My latest postings and those of Juan Nieto on internet directed at Furgeson.
20-02 12May18 The Law of Diminishing Returns and the city’s accounting problems.
21-Pk 01May18 Sent Pedro Rohana a copy of my package of actions taken.
22-02 08May18 Pedro Rohana’s letter to me critiquing my package.
23-02 06May18 My letter to Pedro Rohana “Gringo”.
24-02 11May18 My letter to Mario “Who is Brian Vasquez”?
25-03 11May18 Nieto files motion to see children: motion denied.
26-01 17May18 My letter to whomever it may concern regarding concentration of power.
27-01 14Jun18 My Letter to the editor critiquing the Presidio County Elections.
28-05 13Jul18 Congratulations to Carlos Nieto, Jr. for a job well done teaching leadership classes.
29-01 05Jul18 Arrest made in $5.8 million fraud case against Mr. Howard and he was released on bond.
30-05 29Mar18 Daniel Merrill Sullivan charged with murdering his wife and released on bond.
31-01 02AUG18 Alpine mayor charged over a “porno” photo sent to a woman and case was closed.
32-03 12Dec17 Former trustee at SAISD found not guilty.
33-06 19Dec17 Marathon woman charged with murder in Alpine, bailed out right after arraignment.
34-02 26Jul18 The International reported that the city paid IRS $900.000.00 in back taxes, penalties and interest
35-01 01Jan18 Letter from Hernandez’s attorney, David M Guinn, Jr. to Judge Guevara advising of Lorenzo, vacation
36-02 16Apr18 My letter to editor who refused to publish it and his reversal response to do so.
37-07 05Apr18 My letter to all “According to my thinking, Carlos is not guilty”.
38-05 13Jul18 Carlos Nieto, Jr’s thank you to me for all the things that I have done for Carlos and his family.
39-02 13Au18 Former Presidio County Commissioner pleads guilty to Bribery.
40-02 09Aug18 Denial of open records: the city alludes to Criminal Investigation.
41-01 16Aug18 My letter to editor seeking retraction to article “Carlos defrauded the city.”
42-02 13Aug18 My letter to Attorney Joe Spencer requesting change of venue for the trial.
43-01 13Aug18 Baeza terminated after 16 years with the City of Presidio.
44-03 13Sep03 Luis Jimenez vs Mark Smutz and Katherine Smutz.
45-01 18Feb16 Ad about Ron Ponton “The Big Bend Deserves Better”.
46-03 22Jan04 My Plaintiff’s Original Petition to Presidio County Court regarding case of Jimenez vs Smutz
47-01 18Feb04 My letter to the editor regarding Ron Ponton.
48-02 29Mar18 Micro Hospital Initiative in Presidio
49-03 10Jul18 Rule 29, My motion for an acquittal.
50-09 06Jul17 Nieto caught in FBI “sting” operation.
51-06 19Jul17 Nieto released on bond, but can’t return to Presidio.
52-04 23Jul17 Jose A Jimenez’s letter: Observations, Opinions and Comments about Carlos.
53-03 19Jul17 Nieto resigns from the Presidio ISD Education Foundation Board.
54-02 29Aug18 Dog training school owner defrauds the GI Bill out of $1.2 million and is out on bond
55-02 15Jun18 My postings on Facebook regarding John Ferguson, Laurie Holman & Cande Myers
56-03 22Dec18 My letter about The Brown’s extortion checks
57-03 06Oct04 My two letters to Frank Brown that went unanswered
58-04 16Apr99 Rebecca Coffman’s Power of Attorney for Frances
59-02 15 Sep04 My letter to The Alpine Valley Care Center requesting information leading to finding Frances’ property
60-02 21Sep04 Received response from the Texas Dept. of Protective Services saying “I can’t have Frances files”
61-01 02Aug04 My Ltr to Rebecca Coffman requesting information leading to finding Frances’ will and property
62-01 01Jan18 Mr. Smyke letter to the Editor about the conspiracy of distributing $750.000 to city employees
63-01 06Oct18 My draft to Mario on banishment
64-03 12Oct18 State Senator Carlos Uresti pleads again for the second time and continues to be out on bail
65-43 21May18 My letters sent regarding the five most hateful letter writers in Presidio County.
66 - 01 11Oct18 My cover letter to Joe Spencer of my 1st half of my manuscript “CARLOS NOT GUILTY”
67 - 01 18May18 My letter to Jose Jimenez Concentration of power is not the best way to run a city
68 - 05 30Apr18 My letter to Western District Court requesting copies of appeal bond payment
69 - 01 01JUN18 My response on Facebook regarding the “The Old Brown House and Store”
70 - 02 08May18 Pete Rohana’s letter to me critiquing my letter
71 - 01 07Aug18 My letter to Frank Mayer, thanking him for critiquing my letter
72 - 01 14Aug18 My letter to “Picho”, thanking him for contributing towards adding to Carlos’ accomplishments
73 - 03 23Oct18 My Memo for record telecom with Ivette Lujan, Alpine Federal Court Clerk, there may not be a trial.
74 - 01 24Oct18 My email to Attorney Spencer; asking if he received my manuscript that I mailed him 11 Oct1 18.
75 - 03 15May18 My email address list of people whom I have sent copies of Carlos’ manuscript
76 - 02 23Oct18 Carlos’ breaking news on Facebook stating that he pleaded “guilty”
77 - 01 24Oct18 Recived response from Joe Spencer. “I read it, but did not showed it to Carlos
78 - 08 22Oct14 Most would-be US Terrorists Would not have Committed a Crime without FBI Entrapment