People smuggling case names Betancourt

DMZ · December 13, 2006 at 4:13 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

CNNSI link.

Seattle Mariners shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt and the family of Chicago White Sox pitcher Jose Contreras were among the Cubans allegedly smuggled into the United States by an agent and others accused of immigration violations, federal prosecutors say.

Betancourt and another Cuban baseball player, Zaydel Beltran, were among a group of Cubans smuggled to the United States by boat on Dec. 4, 2003, and then driven to Los Angeles, according to documents filed this week in the case against agent Gustavo “Gus” Dominguez and five other defendants.

It gets weirder:

Betancourt was driven from Los Angeles to Mexico to obtain a visa to legitimize his entry into the United States but his Mexican passport was “determined to be fraudulent,” prosecutors said. He was arrested by Mexican authorities but later released and entered the U.S. again on Oct. 10, 2004, as a Cuban seeking asylum.

Some strange stuff afoot.


15 Responses to “People smuggling case names Betancourt”

  1. darrylzero on December 13th, 2006 4:22 pm

    Weird indeed, but if MLB fails to make sure this case goes their way, I’ll be pretty surprised.

  2. Sparhawk2k on December 13th, 2006 4:27 pm

    Very strange… But what does this actual mean for Betancourt? If it doesn’t all go away?

  3. David J. Corcoran I on December 13th, 2006 4:45 pm

    “Betancourt shipped back to Cuba” would be the worst possible news.

  4. revbill on December 13th, 2006 4:48 pm

    They won’t send him, or anyone else who manages to make it to dry land, back to Cuba.

    From the State Department’s web site:

    Although the government has no formal mechanism to process asylum for foreign nationals, in practice it provided protection against refoulement, the return of persons to a country where they feared persecution.

  5. Thingray on December 13th, 2006 4:50 pm

    I doubt this ends up affecting Betancourt at all legally. He may have to go testify or something, but I doubt any charges will be filed against him.

    He is here legally now as a Cuban refugee, and I’d be very surprised if the feds had the balls to deport a major league ballplayer.

    Besides, he wasn’t the smuggler, he was the one being smuggled!

  6. Thingray on December 13th, 2006 4:52 pm

    I’ve heard that they deport you if you commit a felony, but I don;t think this applies to Betancourt.

  7. David J. Corcoran I on December 13th, 2006 4:59 pm

    with all george’s policies he may be regarded as a terrorist or a threat to homeland security

  8. wabbles on December 13th, 2006 5:00 pm

    I thought he risked his life to get to Mexico from Cuba, but then got here legally from there based upon his baseball potential. Or was that propaganda? ‘shrug’ Instead of sending Bentacourt back, can we trade Sexson to the Cubans for a couple more Bentacourt-types? Maybe a pitcher or two?

  9. wabbles on December 13th, 2006 5:02 pm

    I think 4 and 5 have a good point. Clinton turned people back but that was at sea. Once you hit dry land as a Cuban refugee, regardless of what the laws say, you have a special status.

  10. Thingray on December 13th, 2006 5:02 pm

    That was at least the cover story, but know it seems like the truth is coming out.

  11. Thingray on December 13th, 2006 5:05 pm

    “Now” it seems like the truth, not “know”.. Long day at work…

  12. bradderup on December 13th, 2006 5:17 pm

    is this a sick joke

  13. DMZ on December 13th, 2006 5:18 pm

    The Vidro rumor has its own thread. Stop posting here, please.

  14. jordan on December 13th, 2006 8:33 pm

    If you are getting smuggled to America, and touch american shore, you can not be shipped back. He just went to Mexico to recieve a VISA to make the whole process alot easier. it is in the constitution!

    just a little legel bit for all you!

  15. DMZ on December 13th, 2006 8:36 pm

    It’s not in the Constitution.

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