Fast and Furious: Suspected Triggerman in Border Agent Brian Terry's Murder Arrested

A cache of seized weapons displayed in Phoenix. The ATF is under fire over a gun-trafficking investigation called "Fast and Furious," in which agents allowed hundreds of guns into the hands of straw purchasers in hopes of making a bigger case. (AP Photo/Matt York)

It’s been seven long years, but the alleged triggerman suspected of shooting and killing Border Patrol agent Brian Terry in December 2010 with a U.S. government-supplied gun was apprehended in Mexico Wednesday.


The suspect, Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes, allegedly used a gun from Operation Fast and Furious, the gun-running scheme set up under then-Attorney General Eric Holder. Under Operation Fast and Furious, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) allowed criminals to buy guns in Phoenix-area gun shops with the purported intention of tracking them once they made their way into Mexico.

Instead, the ATF managed to “lose track” of more than 1,400 out of the 2,000 guns they allowed smugglers to buy, leading to deadly consequences on both sides of the border. Coincidentally, the firearms that Holder’s Department of Justice allowed to walk into Mexico were the very same types of guns Obama, Holder, and Clinton publicly spoke about wanting to ban.

Two Fast and Furious guns were found at the scene after Terry was killed in a gunfight between Border Patrol agents and members of a five-man cartel “rip crew.”


Rip crews are bandits, aka “bajadores,” who roam the desert canyons along the U.S./Mexico border and “rob drug smugglers of their loads, relieve illegal immigrants of their cash, and sexually assault undocumented women.”

Osorio-Arellanes was arrested by “a joint U.S.-Mexico law enforcement task force that included the Drug Enforcement Administration, U.S. Marshals and the Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC),” Fox News’ William La Jeunesse reported.

The operation set off a political firestorm, and then-Attorney General Eric Holder was held in contempt of Congress after he refused to divulge documents for a congressional investigation.

Four members of the “rip crew” already been sentenced to jail time in the U.S. Manual Osorio-Arellanes was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to first-degree murder in February 2014.

In October 2015, Ivan Soto-Barraza and Jesus Sanchez-Meza were convicted by a federal jury of nine different charges, including first-degree murder and attempted armed robbery.

Rosario Rafael Burboa-Alvarez, accused of assembling the “rip crew,” was sentenced to 27 years in prison after striking a plea agreement with prosecutors.

The last remaining member of the “rip crew,” Jesus Rosario Favela-Astorga, is believed to still be at large.


In June of 2012, the House voted to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress over his refusal to hand over documents related to the scandal. The vote was 255-67, with 17 Democrats voting in support of the resolution authorizing Republican leaders to seek criminal charges against Holder.

No ATF agents were ever criminally charged for their role in the gun-running fiasco. No government officials were fired, even though their malfeasance led to hundreds of people — including law enforcement officers and children — being slaughtered.

Perhaps Fast and Furious is another DOJ scandal Attorney General Jeff Sessions should be taking another look at.


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