Austin man sentenced for lawful ftf sale

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Austin man sentenced for lawful ftf sale

Postby Tim Nunan » Fri Sep 03, 2010 3:45 pm ... -sale.html

In a trial before Federal Judge Sam Sparks, government lawyers conceded Texas resident Paul Copeland did not know his buyer was an illegal alien, but the jury they should convict him anyway because he “had reasonable cause to believe” he was selling to an illegal alien because the two men and a boy who were present at his table at the time of the sale: 1) were Hispanic, 2) spoke Spanish, and 3) wore cowboy clothing. And the jury did as asked. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Freel acted as lead prosecutor in the case.
The firearm transaction at issue occurred on January 16, 2010, at a gunshow at the North Austin Events Center, at 10601 N. Lamar Blvd., in Austin, Texas. Undercover ATF agents followed Mr. Huerta, his son, and another Hispanic male, Hipolito Aviles, around the “Texas Gunshow” that day, and claimed to observe Huerta’s transaction. Austin P.D. used Copeland’s case as the reason to close down the gunshow, leading to a protest by Austin residents in front of APD headquarters on January 25.
Mr. Copeland is a 56 year old Cedar Creek resident and Vietnam veteran who liked to buy, sell, and trade firearms as a hobby. On January 16, however, he had the misfortune to sell a handgun to Leonel Huerta Sr., who spoke both English and Spanish. Huerta Sr. negotiated his purchase from Copeland in English, showing Copeland his Texas Driver’s License. At Copeland’s trial Huerta admitted on the witness stand, that he is in the country illegally, (Huerta Sr. had previously admitted this fact to Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) Special Agent Leo Buentello). ATF Agent Shawn Kang claimed he saw Huerta later hand off the gun to Aviles. Despite these admissions, Huerta Sr. was never arrested, charged, or deported. Instead, his presence at the gunshow was used to entrap an American citizen into an unwitting violation of a federal gun control law. Huerta Sr., who is a resident of the City of Austin, appeared as a witness at the trial, admitted he was in the country illegally before federal prosecutors and a federal judge, yet he was allowed to leave the courtroom under his own power. To date Huerta Sr. has not been prosecuted for his purchase, possession, or disposition of the handgun he bought from Copeland, while Copeland is now a convicted felon.
“Instead of busting the illegal alien for buying, they bust the citizen for selling,” commented Paul Velte, attorney and founder of Peaceable Texans for Firearms Rights, a gun-owners rights advocacy group from Austin. Velte asked, “who was in a better position to know the buyer’s immigration status, the buyer or the seller?” He also said, “What happened to Paul Copeland should enrage all Americans. The Federal Government is using illegal aliens to entrap citizens lawfully exercising their right to sell firearms. The illegal alien walks free, but the citizen gets convicted. The same government charged with controlling immigration is the one using illegal immigrants to attack its own citizens. Does this make any sense? It makes no sense unless the purpose is to discourage attendance at gunshows and frighten citizens from selling their firearms to other citizens.”
Velte pointed out that “There is no way for a citizen to know who is here legally or not. In fact, under Austin’s ‘sanctuary city’ policy, not even the police officer at the door of the gunshow was allowed to ask a person’s immigration status, yet the average Texan inside the show is expected to assume that a person standing before them with a Texas driver’s license is in the country illegally just because they look Mexican and speak Spanish.”
Velte noted that the federal government’s lawsuit against Arizona was based on that very type of conduct: Concluding someone could be here illegally based on their looks or their language. Velte said gun owners in his group are outraged, and they want to know:
• Why is the illegal alien who purchased the gun, Leonel Huerta Sr., still living in Austin?
• Why does he still have a Texas Driver’s license?
• Why is ATF using illegal aliens to set up and convict American citizens?
• What has he been promised for his cooperation?
• Why has he not been prosecuted? He committed three distinct crimes: he purchased a firearm knowing he was an illegal alien, he possessed the firearm, and he transferred the handgun to another illegal alien (Hippolito Aviles, who was convicted and given time served on June 30, 2010).
• Why has Huerta Sr. not been deported?
Contact: Paul Velte, 512-296-5563
Peaceable Texans for Firearms Rights
website: Peaceable Texans
Tim Nunan
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Re: Austin man sentenced for lawful ftf sale

Postby fl0at » Fri Sep 03, 2010 5:55 pm

Ridiculous. How does a jury convict on that? An activist judge making a bad ruling, sure, I can see that happening... but a jury?
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Re: Austin man sentenced for lawful ftf sale

Postby David Lewis » Fri Sep 03, 2010 6:26 pm

fl0at wrote:Ridiculous. How does a jury convict on that?

Bunch of sheeple on the jury...

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Re: Austin man sentenced for lawful ftf sale

Postby RichardAHamblen » Mon Sep 06, 2010 1:53 pm

Until you've been on the receiving end of a trial by jury (I have, thank you very much), you have no idea what a farce a jury trial really is, and that in truth it is a rubber stamp for the prosecution.

Every one of us should read and become familiar with this essay by Lysander Spooner, Trial By Jury

A jury is supposed to judge the offence, the law and the manner in which the law is applied.

Until jurors know their rights, these travesties will continue to occur regularly.
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Re: Austin man sentenced for lawful ftf sale

Postby David Lewis » Mon Sep 06, 2010 4:26 pm

RichardAHamblen wrote:Until jurors know their rights, these travesties will continue to occur regularly.

The concept is called "jury nullification", and is, I think, a good one.

What juries do not generally realize is that they are the true power in a courtroom--not the judge, not the attorneys, but the jury.

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Re: Austin man sentenced for lawful ftf sale

Postby tnxdshooter » Wed Sep 21, 2011 1:38 pm

Most jurors dont really care about what happens. This is obvious. They get in there. They dont like to be sequestered and feel well we have things to do. Thus the reason they let casey anthony go. They had spent so much time in court already they were just tired and wanted it over with and didnt care what verdict they hand down they just want it done and over with.
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Re: Austin man sentenced for lawful ftf sale

Postby 1gewehr » Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:56 am

Also, it was in Austin, TX. It would have been a simple matter for the prosecution to find a liberal, complacent jury there. The fact is, Mr. Copeland committed no crime. He did as the law requires. He even asked for and received the buyer's valid TX Driver's License as proof of identity. I fear that Mr. Copeland had poor legal representation as well.
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