Judge Hanen orders KC Massey III to stand trial

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Brownsville – With the remark that “the facts as they unfolded on August 29, 2014, represent a true miracle in that no one was badlly hurt or killed,” U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen recounted how a Border Patrol Agent fired five shots at one of Rusty’s Rangers and missed.  In a memorandum opinion handed down on Tuesday, June 9, Hanen ruled that the evidence presented against KC Massey III should not be suppressed, and that his trial for being a felon in possession of a firearm should proceed.

A former Sergeant-At-Arms for the national organization of Cossacks Motorcycle Club, Massey led patrols of the border from the 21-acre family farm of Rusty Monsees, located on a horseshoe bend of the Rio Grande. He and his associates were able to prove that they could “discourage” illegal immigration, drug smuggling and human trafficking through their armed presence over a period of months during the height of the “surge” of illegal immigration encouraged by President Barack Obama’s Executive Order granting amnesty to the oppressed youth of Central America. Judge Hanen issued an order in response to a Writ of Mandamus from attorneys representing 28 states. The injunction stays all provisions of the Executive Order pending a legal judgment. The action of a single District Judge, it has withstood government appeal at the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals at New Orleans.

Hanen is an appointee of President George W. Bush. He was the valedictorian of his class at Baylor Law School. President George Herbert Walker Bush appointed him to the bench during his administration, but was unable to shepherd the appointment through the Senate.

Massey was leading a patrol of unorganized militiamen on a patrol of the Sabal Palm Sanctuary, an old plantation south of this city, when an armed member of the unit surprised a Border Patrolman who was pursuing an undocumented alien through a brushy area of the bird sanctuary, now owned by the Audobon Society. Massey and his men were there with the permission of the land owner.

Judge Hanen found no merit in the argument that federal agents seized the patrol’s firearms.

The fact that the federal agents confiscated the firearms involved after determining that Massey and a co-defendant are convicted felons was entirely proper, the judge ruled, rejecting the argument that the fact that the guns were never transported by Massey in interstate or international commerce. The judge’s holding is that has no bearing on the indictment and the propriety of the charges. He also ruled that because the interrogation that took place in the brushy area on the bank of the Rio Grande was not a custodial interview, there was no need for a Miranda warning. He further noted that there was no evidence that the agent was even aware when Massey and his companions left the scene of their detention after he returned their identification.

In denying Massey’s motion for dismissal of the indictment, Hanen remanded him to to the custody of the U.S. Marshal’s Service until the conclusion of his trial, which is slated to begin July 30. A co-defendant named John Foerster has opted to enter a guilty plea.

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