Blogroll Me! How This Old Brit Sees It ...: Another Story Showing How Much Stinks In The United States

03 December 2006

Another Story Showing How Much Stinks In The United States

The ICE shown on the back of the jacket is short for the Immigration and Customs Executive of the United States. It's a branch of the increasingly infamous, Department of Homeland Security.

So, bearing that in mind please now read this excerpt from an amazing article appearing today in the UK's Guardian newspaper, and note that any emphasis is This Old Brit's.


Now, as a result of documents disclosed in three separate court cases, it is becoming clear that his murder, along with at least 11 further brutal killings, at the Juarez 'House of Death', is part of a gruesome scandal, a web of connivance and cover-up stretching from the wild Texas borderland to top Washington officials close to President Bush.

These documents, which form a dossier several inches thick, are the main source for the facts in this article. They suggest that while the eyes of the world have been largely averted, America's 'war on drugs' has moved to a new phase of cynicism and amorality, in which the loss of human life has lost all importance - especially if the victims are Hispanic.

The US agencies and officials in this saga - all of which refused to comment, citing pending lawsuits - appear to have thought it more important to get information about drugs trafficking than to stop its perpetrators killing people.

The US media have virtually ignored this story. The Observer is the first newspaper to have spoken to Janet Padilla, and this is the first narrative account to appear in print.

The story turns on one extraordinary fact: playing a central role in the House of Death was a US government informant, Guillermo Ramirez Peyro, known as Lalo, who was paid more than $220,000 (£110,000) by US law enforcement bodies to work as a spy inside the Juarez cartel. In August 2003 Lalo bought the quicklime used to dissolve the flesh of the first victim, Mexican lawyer Fernando Reyes, and then helped to kill him; he recorded the murder secretly with a bug supplied by his handlers - agents from the Immigration and Customs Executive (Ice), part of the Department of Homeland Security.
And there's more.

That first killing threw the Ice staff in El Paso into a panic. Their informant had helped to commit first-degree murder, and they feared they would have to end his contract and abort the operations for which he was being used. But the Department of Justice told them to proceed.

Here's another cut & pasted segment straight from the same shocking story.

When Lalo arrived, two cops were already there. He went out to buy the quicklime and duct tape, and when he returned Santillan turned up with Reyes. The policemen jumped on the lawyer, beating him and trying to put duct tape over his mouth.

Lalo, wearing his hidden wire supplied by Ice, recorded Reyes's desperate pleas for mercy. 'They [the police] asked me to help them get him to the floor,' reads a statement he made later. 'They tried to choke him with an extension cord, but this broke and I gave them a plastic bag and they put it on his head and suffocated him.' Even then, they were not sure Reyes was dead. One of the officers took a shovel 'and hit him many times on the head'.
Next, peruse our penultimate teaser.

Bill Conroy, a reporter who works for an investigative website,, was about to publish an article about it. On 24 February, Sandy Gonzalez, the Special Agent in Charge of the DEA office in El Paso, one of the most senior and highly decorated Hispanic law enforcement officers in America, wrote to his Ice counterpart, John Gaudioso.

'I am writing to express to you my frustration and outrage at the mishandling of investigation that has resulted in unnecessary loss of human life,' he began, 'and endangered the lives of special agents of the DEA and their immediate families. There is no excuse for the events that culminated during the evening of 14 January... and I have no choice but to hold you responsible.' Ice, Gonzalez wrote, had gone to 'extreme lengths' to protect an informant who was, in reality, a 'homicidal maniac... this situation is so bizarre that, even as I'm writing to you, it is difficult for me to believe it'.

But Ice and its allies in the DoJ were covering up their actions, helped by the US media - aside from the Dallas Morning News, not one major newspaper or TV network has covered the story.
Okay, after this one you're on your own.

In October The Observer won clearance to visit him with his lawyer, Jodi Goodwin. On the eve of the interview he was abruptly moved to a different facility where officials said a visit was impossible. Goodwin passed on a message: 'I'm not mad, I'm sad and disillusioned. Every time I did a job and brought them information, I was congratulated. Now they want to deliver me to my death.'

'If Congress and the media start to look at this properly, they will be horrified,' Sandy Gonzalez says. 'It needs a special prosecutor, as with the case of Valerie Plame [the CIA agent whose name was leaked to the media when her diplomat husband criticised Bush over Iraq's missing weapons of mass destruction].

But Valerie is a nice-looking white person and the victims here are brown. Nobody gives a shit.'

Read the rest of this report.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

The problem is, there are now so many scandals being uncovered that they've ceased to mean anything.

Sad but true. And BusgCo know this only too well. Truly, they coudn't give a flying f*ck. They've been getting away with murder (literally), for six years and have been (and still are), untouchable.

5:40 pm  
Blogger Dave said...

Good find!

I understand anonymous and the frustration but, I think I'll push this one in Canada too.

Nothing like applying pressure from the outside just to gauge the reaction.

6:23 pm  
Anonymous Rex said...

I too understand anon's frustration. But even if those at the very top 'beat the raps' -- there are many, many others who should pay a price for their parts in so many high crimes. But they always walk, too.

And to quote from the Gaurdian's quote, it seems that -- nobody gives a shit.

7:12 pm  
Anonymous whoever said...

So what's new? What's surpising? they've inflicted death, suffering, maiming and torture on hundreds of thousands of 'browns' in the middle east. And sent their own young to kill and be killed over there.

8:07 pm  
Anonymous phil said...

The only time brown or black folk get to the front is when it's the actual "front line."

8:10 pm  
Blogger bootlian said...

Senator Paul Wellstone was white. It didn't save him from BushCo though. And they got away with that too.

8:18 pm  
Anonymous Sophia said...


I read the story uesterday and I am glad you posted it.
An ICE agent pyed by federal money to work as a second man for the first man of the drug cartel in Juarez to assassinate the cartel,s ennemies, endorsed by high level officials in the Bush administration, ministry of Justice and legal counsels, and lately dismissed because those same officials are starting to feel the heat !

What kind of crimes the Bush clan did not commit yet ? I am disgusted. It is time the American nation awakes to the cancer that is eating its heart and feeding on the flesh of the people from New Orleans, to America's poor ghettos, to Palestine, Lebanon and Iraq !

1:53 am  
Anonymous Sophia said...

Oh Richard, I posted the wrong webpage and I had problems posting a comment with my new beta blogger account. Sorry for any errors.

1:54 am  
Blogger noel adamson said...

Hi Richard, all.

This story has been covered for a few months by a guy named Mike Levine, an ex-DEA agent who has a radio show on WBAI in New York. The most recent episode is available for
from his website
I haven't listened to this show yet but did catch earlier ones.

Previous shows are archived and he requires a $52 fee to access them...He is a funny guy and if you can tolerate the self promotion you can get a lot of good information on skulldudgery of this sort going back decades.

Paul Wellstone may have been "white" but "n****r lovers" are equally loathed by our far right fascists.

Disgusting and diabolical but business as usual for these evil bastards.

5:40 am  
Anonymous xxx said...

But... but ... that's the American way. And since Blair hijacked the Labour party and got into (and retains) power under false pretences, it's becoming more and more the British way too. Anything goes! At least it will as long as people are prepared to put up with it - both sides of the Atlantic.

12:07 pm  

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