Can US government intervene to bring ex-Marine home?
Jon Hammar being held in Mexican prison over antique shotgun
- Duration 7:00
- Date Dec 18, 2012
Jon Hammar being held in Mexican prison over antique shotgun
Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
Fox News -- as America gets its first look at a former marine as he sits locked up in a Mexican prison.
Shirtless and change it to the bed post.
Over what -- -- what lawyer says this isn't trumped up charge of carrying a supposedly illegal shotgun.
Over the US border into Mexico John hammer appears to be -- -- in this image but the conditions that he's being held in.
Are what is worrying his family and when his mother was asked about how this photo made her feel when she sought earlier today.
She said the emotions for her are simply too much to bear.
-- -- I was just -- he looks.
He -- so hopeless and I you know as a mother to see your child look like that and not be able to help them.
This just it feels obscene.
How she feels.
Eric Shawn is here and us here in New York kind of background on this story morning -- good morning Martha -- you know he served in Iraq and Afghanistan and -- -- you can say.
Former US marine John hammer -- he's locked look at that right there in solitary confinement in a Mexican prison.
By his foot to a bed over what his family calls a clerical error.
Hammer and a power on the way to hunt didn't -- this summer and Costa Rica.
When as they arrived in Mexico they were arrested for bringing in an illegal weapon a gun and his mother Olivia says.
Is actually an antique that belonged to his great grandfather and that he did try to register.
But Mexican authorities said the -- was too short under their legal limits there.
His mom told FOX & Friends this morning it's all -- administrative mistake.
Johnny made an an administrative.
He didn't register.
He should've registered the -- at an embassy in the United States before going out there so basically he -- been.
In jail for four months chain to a bad over a clerical error.
How she does not hold out hope that John will be home by Christmas because his next court date doesn't come until the middle of January -- Way past to air what is the Mexican government saying.
About this case on the Mexican government in the ambassador says -- or not it's illegal to import guns into the country.
They say that is why John was arrested there's a letter from the US ambassador from Mexico to the United States Arturo Chirac and and he says quote the fact that this case has been a process since August -- normal given the nature of the felony it's been detained four.
-- must underscore he wrote that introducing and -- possessing weapons of this kind in Mexico regardless of content.
Is illegal and considered a serious offense.
In the US State Department also says Americans are arrested in Mexico every year for violating that country's gun laws meanwhile disabled Vietnam veteran has started an online petition.
On FaceBook it's called free John hammer.
And -- -- is not afraid he faces a possible twelve more years in their Mexican prison if he's convicted -- just imagine what his family is going through Eric.
Thank you for that background.
On all of that so here with more on this case Sculley stimson is a former deputy assistant secretary of defense.
For detainees he is also senior legal fellow at The Heritage Foundation.
And we thank -- for joining us and also -- -- -- Costa is a former district director.
At the US Department of Justice at the US embassy in Mexico City so you have a lot of background in this area.
How to let me start with you.
Eight -- do great -- is there any way that he could be home for Christmas.
I don't see that he'll be home.
For Christmas at all I think you know the the earlier reports here -- next hearing.
Is in mid January and I don't expect any action to be taken until them.
-- -- when he make in this case.
Well well I think they're trying to.
That's got to -- first.
-- thanks Martha it's a tragedy.
Because from what I've read.
He actually tried to speak with US custom and Border Patrol agents before he even crossed into the Mexican border to make sure it was okay to bring this 24 inch.
For ten shotgun.
Transit through Mexico to go surfing down a -- -- so he clearly had no ill intent.
But I agree with my -- guests that doesn't look like there's going to be any action.
Except for the court action in January but the administration needs to do more quietly behind the scenes to make sure that he's provided.
The counselor services he deserves and has a right to have especially as a combat decorated marine.
Yeah I mean is it typical for this kind of violation -- To garner this kind of prison sentence and that kind of treatment that he's -- -- chain to a bed really I mean for.
For bringing and unregistered gun across the border my goodness we've seen.
You know -- fast and furious we've seen guns quiet cross this border and nobody seems to pay the price except for.
You know some people lost their lives in that transaction.
Well and you know -- -- clear the -- -- and that's been jailed are deplorable and -- you know Mexican addresses the importation of weapons as described a -- in the letter from the US ambassador good but the reality here is that the intention of this American was not to violate.
Mexican the Mexican immigration law and you know what what I find him -- more deplorable is that the Mexican government will be.
The very harsh on any treatment and other Mexican citizens even even of the -- the country illegally and violate the law.
-- -- -- On in this particular case it goes to say that there was knowing that the mr.
To violate the law as he entered Mexico he tried to declare the weapon.
Yet I would tell you that Mexican prosecutors will not back off regardless of what the intent of mr.
I'd say it -- you look for a way to deal with this problem -- NA in Washington.
Behind closed doors so it doesn't become you know something that it is an embarrassment to the Mexican government if they.
-- appear to have backed down on their charges against this young man.
You know what is the best way for his family to pursue this and what do you think is -- -- with the the government to handle it.
Well I think the -- is on the right thing that you get on the media they need to contact their representatives representatives have written.
The secretary of state here in United States Nam and the media needs to keep on this story so.
If we get to the point where there is either -- plea in January or shortly -- after.
After a trial it's at that point when he sensed I think when the government of the United States -- most leverage and they come and say OK look.
You got your pound of flesh to prosecuted and that sense is way too long.
Let him come home and serve out his jail term here will take care of the situation and bring them home you have justice was served now it's time to bring home and I think.
Pressure really matters especially behind the scenes and -- the US government really wanted to sky home.
They could do a lot to pressure the Mexican government behind the scenes to make it happen sometime in January.
-- -- -- our organist and I thank you so much shed down and a part of -- to have you with us today -- always a pleasure thank you expects Martha so what now.