Antique shotgun puts US Marine behind bars in Mexico
Attorney for John Hammar's family speaks out
- Duration 7:29
- Date Dec 14, 2012
Attorney for John Hammar's family speaks out
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Yes joining us now is John Hammer's family attorney -- -- Levy he is with us live from Mexico City good morning -- Good morning Alison good to talk to you you to let me make sure that we have this story correct John has been held since August he was traveling.
On a road trip with a buddy there were going to Costa Rica to go surfing why did John have this antique gun with him.
I'll tell you that way that I understand is that we're gonna go hunting.
To Costa Rica Nicaragua and what they have was his single shotgun in you win a Bible kind of a camper.
And so they have to go -- Mexico to get over there of course and that's where they were gonna -- -- which is basically it's fourteen gun used in the United States of America.
Okay and he did all the right things he declared the gun he did he filled out all the paperwork he alerted officials.
That he had begun and yet they still arrested him now we understand of the prison where he's being held is notorious.
For housing very dangerous criminals members of the -- status drug cartel doing time for murder.
We of course have also heard the reports that he's been change it.
To his bed in his cell because they feared.
The officials in the prison -- that he might.
Try to escape now the State Department was asked about all of this yesterday so let me play you their response.
This is un believable that the Mexican government.
Is not stepping in to help us while they take our money and take all the help we give them.
And it's incredible.
There our own the US government is not doing all that we can.
To bring hammer home for Christmas.
The cut that family deserves this he's done nothing wrong.
I that was actually really and a Ross -- and she's the congresswoman who's leading the charge to get him out with the State Department told us.
We fix those problems he's now out of the general population he's no longer in danger and he's not being change in his bed is that accurate.
Let me let me take this one by one because that -- you're you're free preamble it's correct up to point.
There was something very wrong that took place in the first place well when he went to Mexico.
He stopped in did you is -- site.
And he -- it Customs and Border Protection agent.
Whether it was legal to take -- gone to Mexico to shut them.
He responded yes all you have to do is field this paperwork and then -- -- on your way.
He -- paperwork but that -- -- what was really to come back into the United States.
The United States customs you know of a personal had no business telling them because they don't know what Mexican law states.
Mexico all states that certain kind of weapons with a we'd like it or not.
-- -- -- there if they're deemed to be for the exclusive use of the armed forces.
That's the issue here when I'm on the.
-- just another -- he got misinformation he he didn't understand that what the rules were so again this seems like if technicality.
It -- two countries that are allies could be quickly resolved why is he still in prison from August.
Personable it has to be result under the law I mean did that the you know the Boris they would -- phone call.
Things can happen we -- -- just that we haven't noticed is the court system well let me let me let me put a little more -- into this New York correct.
I filed three -- -- federal injunctions.
One should've been dubbed given to be about four weeks ago the prosecutor didn't even respond that.
Because we have glitch and we proved violations of Doug Johns Mexican constitutional rights and I'm still waiting right now for the -- to issue.
He's just been because he could be free within 24 hours once he -- those violations.
-- we talked to the judge.
More than two times I know we're gonna do we need to we're gonna take it upstairs you know would -- to the Mexican Supreme Court OK but by by right now.
By not that this is an issue it is a technicality.
But -- -- he gets better here.
You see the caliber of the -- which is a point 410.
It's what it's being new dawn for the exclusive use of the army the gauges of the bullets for the non exclusive use of the army -- shut -- And the only difference between making it okay or just like -- administrative fine.
It's point eighteen merely meters -- the -- -- your finger -- them about it.
What's ridiculous but -- edit any there's a lot of stuff here that it taken on face value does sound.
Ridiculous -- understanding you say it has to go through court process okay so is he getting a trial is he scheduled for trial.
He though he he has but but but I'll tell you up right now putting them in the Mexican judicial system.
-- -- because of two judges really and a prosecutor who we would -- -- he's up prosecutorial discretion.
That he could have used -- -- the first prosecutor made a big mistake in measuring to shut down.
The prosecutor's own expert had another measurement so I -- my expert because we believe.
Anyway that that -- -- -- -- -- there with -- that was taken.
That's -- -- did -- -- liberty and and present right now but we believe but we're very very -- judge is gonna come home I'll tell you that.
-- well I -- I -- comforted by your optimism because as we also know.
John suffers from PT EST he served multiple tours of duty.
In Afghanistan and Iraq in fact she was in a gun battle in Fallujah in 2004 how is he doing today.
Let let me tell you because I haven't spoken to him lately his family has we decided to do.
Two separate little bit -- some strategy that I -- not at liberty to discuss but some of the court hearings.
John and -- tell you -- football the week it's great -- -- pushing for him and then we need your help in that.
But -- -- tell you.
John is that tough cookie let me tell you you know separate by the Marines prepare really good you know not used to -- that is something also which is very true.
He was moved over when I got into the case because other lawyers have been there.
And there was some legal maneuvering if you will that took place.
After this I spoke to the judge personally because I wanted to cross examine the Mexican customs agent that should have released them anyway.
There were two court hearings.
Set 14 November 17 one for November 23.
So the judge compete -- a hearing to -- seventeen and I said okay.
On the -- thirtieth would get ready to -- trial -- -- New York with my kids in Thanksgiving.
And I got a phone call telling me that -- was sticking to court on November 20 certain.
Without you -- your press -- that's me and most important they talked to him.
And that was adamant and furious because they really want to push him.
To cut a plea guilty off course you did and because again let me tell you and -- -- first lawyers wanting him because -- are -- getting three years I don't know but I don't deplete I -- -- but I have to plea to felony.
Right of course not Whitman in new York and -- of his innocence as he is as is I -- his down I am convinced we hear him.
And -- gonna bring him out that that we like your optimism adding there and Levy thanks so much for the update on exactly what is going on down there.
My pleasure I was so thanks for having me.
And everybody keep writing letters you pick your -- please in the I feel the support especially bring spiritually because that we've got all out of -- couple of judges as well we're gonna put.
I'm going to be -- -- its radar right now I'm sure are playing with the judiciary.
I'm sure our viewers will -- comply with your request this is a topic that is near and dear to their hearts now thanks so much -- you mention this prison to.