Warren: Not Appropriate for Feds to Indict Judge Who Helped Illegal Escape Arrest

The Associated Press

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) reportedly said over the weekend that it was inappropriate for the federal government to indict a Massachusetts state court judge and a former courtroom officer last week for allegedly helping an illegal immigrant who had already been deported twice escape out the back door of a courthouse in 2018 while an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officer was waiting for the illegal alien by the front door.

According a Monday report in the Washington Post, Warren said after a Service Employees International Union (SEIU) event in Nevada “that she thinks it was inappropriate” for prosecutors to indict the Masschusetts tandem from a sanctuary city who allegedly helped the twice-deported illegal immigrant escape.

“I want to see all of the facts around it, but this is someone who’s trying to carry out the law and make sure that in her courtroom she’s got people who will come and who will testify. I think that’s important,” Warren told the Post. “I believe that law enforcement should be carried out in a way that makes people feel safe to report a crime, to testify against those who have committed crimes, and right now in some areas that’s not happening with our immigration system.”

As Breitbart News reported, the “illegal alien” who allegedly escaped “was arrested in March 2018 for narcotics possession,” and the ICE agent “was sent to the courthouse to arrest and deport the alien, who ‘had twice been deported from the United States – in 2003 and 2007.” The Dominican national was barred from re-entering the country until 2027.

District Court Judge Shelley Richmond Joseph and then-Trial Court Officer Wesley MacGregor, who retired last month, allegedly helped the illegal alien escape in 2018 and now, according to the Department of Justice, face multiple penalties, including: “charges of conspiracy to obstruct justice and obstruction of a federal proceeding – aiding and abetting provide for sentences of no greater than 20 and five years in prison, respectively; five and three years of supervised release, respectively; and a fine of $250,000.”

The Department of Justice last week described how the duo allegedly helped the illegal immigrant escape in 2018:

At 9:30 a.m. on April 2, 2018, a plainclothes ICE officer was dispatched to NDC to execute the Warrant and take custody of the defendant following his release from NDC. The Officer announced his presence to Courthouse personnel, including Joseph, upon arrival. Prior to the afternoon session, the courtroom clerk – at Joseph’s direction – allegedly instructed the ICE Officer to leave the courtroom and wait outside in the lobby, stating that in the event that the defendant was released, it would be through the courtroom and into the lobby.

At 2:48 p.m. the case was called and the proceedings were captured on the courtroom’s audio recorder, as prescribed under the rules for all State District Courts. The audio recording captured Joseph, the defense attorney and the ADA speaking at side bar about the defendant and the ICE detainer. Joseph then allegedly ordered the courtroom clerk to “go off the record for a moment.”

For the next 52 seconds, the courtroom audio recorder was turned off, in violation of the District Court rules. At 2:51 p.m., the recorder was turned back on, and Joseph indicated her intent to release the defendant. According to the charging documents, the defense attorney asked to speak with the defendant downstairs and Joseph responded, “That’s fine. Of course.” When reminded by the clerk that an ICE Officer was in the courthouse, Joseph stated, “That’s fine. I’m not gonna allow them to come in here. But he’s been released on this.” Immediately following the proceeding, MacGregor allegedly escorted the defendant, his attorney and an interpreter downstairs to the lockup and used his security access card to open the rear sally-port exit and release the defendant at 3:01 p.m.

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