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Apr 28, 2012

Hundreds rally to back hard-line Arizona sheriff

FOUNTAIN HILLS, Arizona (Reuters) – As many as 200 activists, some chanting “go Joe, go Joe,” rallied in Arizona on Saturday to support Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who is facing a federal racial-profiling probe for his police sweeps against illegal immigrants.

“Sheriff Joe is one of the very few guys who will enforce the immigration laws across this nation,” said Randy Hatch, who used a megaphone to rally supporters of Arpaio at a park in this northeast Phoenix valley city.

Apr 27, 2012

Man jailed for smuggling iguana meat into United States

By Tim Gaynor

(Reuters) – A Las Vegas man who tried to sneak 115 oven-ready iguanas into the United States from Mexico has been sentenced to two years in prison for illegally importing the reptiles, authorities said on Thursday.

A federal judge ordered Eliodoro Soria Fonseca, 38, to serve 24 months in prison, the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of California said.

Apr 26, 2012

Lawyer says Arizona inmate shook violently during execution

PHOENIX (Reuters) – The lawyer for a convicted murderer executed in Arizona said on Thursday his client shook violently after a lethal injection drug was administered, and may call for an independent autopsy to determine if he experienced any pain.

A defiant Thomas Kemp, 63, was executed on Wednesday by lethal injection at the state prison in Florence, about 60 miles southeast of Phoenix, for kidnapping and killing a Hispanic college student in 1992. His last words were: “I regret nothing.”

Apr 26, 2012

Hundreds march against Arizona immigration law

PHOENIX (Reuters) – A few hundred protesters, some toting placards reading “no to racial profiling,” marched through downtown Phoenix on Wednesday to urge the U.S. Supreme Court to block Arizona’s two-year-old crackdown on illegal immigrants.

“My message to the Supreme Court is ‘don’t single out the Hispanic race,’” said Melanie Renteria, 38, who was among 200-300 mostly Hispanic protesters rallying in a park ahead of the march.

Apr 26, 2012

Hundreds march in Phoenix against Arizona immigration law

PHOENIX (Reuters) – A few hundred protesters, some toting placards reading “no to racial profiling,” marched through downtown Phoenix on Wednesday to urge the U.S. Supreme Court to block Arizona’s two-year-old crackdown on illegal immigrants.

“My message to the Supreme Court is ‘don’t single out the Hispanic race,’” said Melanie Renteria, 38, who was among 200-300 mostly Hispanic protesters rallying in a park ahead of the march.

Apr 25, 2012

Hurt by Arizona immigration law, Hispanics organize

PHOENIX (Reuters) – Arizona landscaper Jose Acosta says he has been pulled over by police in the Mexico border state three or four times for tailgating or driving with a chipped windshield. But really, he believes, it is because of the color of his skin.

“They see me brown. They’ll pull me over and ask me for documents. They’ll make up a lie about why,” said Acosta, 40, a naturalized U.S. citizen of Mexican origin.

Apr 24, 2012

Arizona sheriff locks down jail over racial tension

PHOENIX (Reuters) – A hard-line Arizona sheriff under federal investigation for alleged racial profiling of Hispanics placed parts of a Phoenix jail on indefinite lockdown on Tuesday over what he said were rising racial tensions between Latino and black detainees.

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio said tensions at the jail’s maximum security unit rose after the Mexican Mafia prison gang urged Hispanic inmates to refuse to be housed with black prisoners, and encouraged fights between them.

Apr 23, 2012

Mexican immigration to U.S. at a standstill: report

PHOENIX (Reuters) – The flow of immigrants into the United States from Mexico has come to a standstill and may have reversed, bringing a stunning end to a four-decade surge of newcomers from the country’s southern neighbor, according to a study released on Monday.

The report by the non-partisan Pew Hispanic Center found that an influx that brought 12 million immigrants to the United States since the 1970s, more than half of whom came illegally, began to slow five years ago and may have reversed in the past two years.

Apr 17, 2012

Court says Arizona can demand voter identification

PHOENIX (Reuters) – A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday ruled Arizona may require voters to show identification at the polls, a ruling likely to add fuel to the fiery debate about voting rights in a presidential election year.

But the court also ruled the state cannot demand that they show proof of U.S. citizenship to register to vote in federal elections, a decision the state’s attorney general said he would appeal.

Apr 16, 2012

Two more plead guilty in bungled gun-running sting

PHOENIX (Reuters) – Another two men have pleaded guilty to charges of running high-powered rifles and other guns to Mexico from Arizona under the bungled “Fast and Furious” federal sting operation linked to the murder of a U.S. federal agent.

Jose Angel Polanco and Dejan Hercegovac pleaded guilty before Magistrate Judge Lawrence Anderson in Phoenix on Monday. They were among a ring of 20 defendants charged with buying and running high-powered firearms including Kalashnikov-type assault rifles and Barrett sniper rifles to the Mexican cartels.

    • About Tim

      "I cover immigration and southwest border issues for Reuters. I am based in Phoenix and have been in my current role since 2006. I previously covered northern Mexico and worked as a general news reporter in Central America."
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