Hearing Set Monday for Marine Jailed in Mexico

Sunday, 03 Aug 2014 09:43 PM

By Greg Richter

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Tthe U.S. Marine being held in a Mexican prison on weapons charges will get his second evidentiary hearing Monday before a federal judge in Tijuana, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi has been held since April 1 when he says he unintentionally crossed the border after making a wrong turn. He had guns in his truck, which he legally possessed in the United States, and says he told Mexican border guards they were there.

Tahmooressi's defense is relying partly on his claim that his rights were denied by border agents the night he was arrested.

His mother, Jill Tahmooressi of Florida, told the Times she does not expect her son to be set free Monday, but that the hearing brings him "one step closer to his inevitable release."

Noting that the case is now in its fifth month, Jill Tahmooressi said, "It has gone on exceedingly long but he’s hanging in there — like a good Marine."

The 26-year-old Tahmooressi suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder after serving two tours in Afghanistan. He currently is a Marine reservist and was in Southern California to receive VA treatment for his PTSD when he took a wrong turn and entered Mexico in his truck and couldn't turn around.

He had spent the previous day in Tijuana, but had parked his truck containing his weapons on the American side of the border.

The Veterans of Foreign Wars and other groups have urged a boycott of Mexico and Mexican products until Tahmooressi is released, and a petition at WhiteHouse.org  has garnered more than 133,000 signatures requesting the Obama administration take action on the Marine's behalf.

A Facebook page that describes itself as the official page of the Tahmooressi's family called for a day of fasting and prayer on Sunday to help secure the Marine's release.

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