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Honduras Ex-Prez JOH Sentenced to 45 Years Insists Obama Trump & Biden Praised Him

by Matthew Russell Lee, Substack

SDNY COURTHOUSE, June 26 – In the closing arguments on March 6, 2024 AUSA Tarlow said that narco trafficking had grown under Juan Orlando Hernandez. On March 7, out of the hearing of the jury and for then the Press, JOH's lawyer Stabile said he'd heard different overnight.

  From who?

  The defendant's wife he said.

  Was this just a play for a mistrial?

Judge Castel concluded it was, and denied Stabile's motion, Order on Patreon here.

Later on March 8, the verdict, here- then the book Narco Drama in English then Spanish.

On May 9, Judge Castel denied JOH's motion for a new trial. Order on Patreon here.

On June 10, JOH's lawyer asked for delay. Letter on Patreon here.

On June 21 JOH's lawyer Stabile near midnight asked for a 40 year sentence, saying it is the minimum and "Mr. Hernandez is 55 years old, so a 40 year sentence equals a life sentence for Mr. Hernandez."

  Early on June 22, letters were filed including Ana Hernandez, trashing the trial, full letter on Patreon here.

  Late on June 24, the US Attorney's Office wrote in requesting on Juan Orlando Hernandez "that the Court should impose a sentence of life imprisonment, order the defendant to forfeit $15,525,000 and pay a $10 million fine."

On June 25, JOH's lawyer wrote in asking that Juan Orlando Hernandez remain in MDC Brooklyn for his own safety, and so he can best work on his appeal, citing the example of SBF. Proposed order on Patreon here.

On June 26, JOH got 45 years and 180 days in the MDC. Inner City Press thread here:

All rise! Stabile: Mr. Hernandez maintains his innocence. We object to Paragraph 36 about 5 murders. Judge Castel: I propose adding, "Fuentes Ramirez engaged in 5 murders." Stabile: OK. Paragraph 74 implies the brothers solicited the murder of Sanabria. We object  Judge Castel: I believe the murder was related to the use of the drug ledgers. But I don't attribute that murder to this defendant.

Stabile: Paragraph 107, threat against Byron Ruiz, GX 404-T. Judge: I won't use that enhancement.

Stabile: Paragraph 111. He denies  AUSA: He had a leadership role in the drug trafficking conspiracy. He partnered with Giovani Fuentes Ramirez: he arranged for the $1 million bribe from El Chapo. He told Ardon not to run for mayor. Stabile: Those were political orders Judge: The enhancement stands 

Judge: I will also apply the obstruction of justice enhancement. I believe that the defendant testified falsely. He claimed he never even met Giovani Fuentes Ramirez, or Arnulfo Valle. But there was the World Cup photo.

 Judge: So offense level is 50, maxing out at 43. The verdict stands. Today is sentencing. Stabile: We are asking for the 40 year mandatory minimum. JOH: This is my only chance, most likely I will be in jail for life. Judge: You may issue a statement from prison  Judge: The US is seeking life and thirty. You are not welcome to make a speech.

JOH: I am innocent. Information was omitted. As president of congress, I asked to meet the US State Dept to tell them we were ready for the law on extradition  Judge: This is not for you to express your views on the process. There is no motion before me for a new trial. If you want to express remorse, fine. But this is not to discuss guilt or innocence.

Stabile: I have not read his statement. He worked with the US 

Judge: Is this any different than what's in your letter?

JOH: There are some subjects not in there. Judge: Why did you hold them back? JOH: I want you to know...Giovani Fuentes Ramirez said he didn't know me. I don't know him. On his phone, we don't use WAZE

  JOH: I didn't know Arnulfo Valle... This request for $25 million? We don't even have $3 million. This is selective justice. The Mexican defense minister was let off by Attorney General Barr. The maras? They knew they were being recorded 

JOH: The criminals listen to the news then sell stories to the prosecutors. This will come out and will harm the alliance. The DEA, and Presidents, Obama, Donald Trump and Biden, they all praised me and my work. Were they lying? They said, JOH is a man of his word 

JOH: Today is the International Day against drug trafficking, but the criminals have prevailed. My first attorney was sick. You appointed Stabile, who said he needed more time. I was thrown into a deep river with my hands tied.  JOH: Politicians here called mine a narco dictatorship. But the SFRC said different.

Judge Castel: Please wrap it up.

JOH: MLK said an injustice anywhere is an injustice everywhere. Dante, too. Today an innocent person is being sentenced

 JOH: Thanks to my wife and children. Please protect them. I saved lives in the US. This is a lynching, but later the truth will be known. The US is responsible for what happens to me here. Please leave me in MDC. I hope you do. Stop political persecutions.  JOH: Some in the DEA didn't like what I did. They just let things go on... I met General Kelly- Judge Castel: Bring it to a close. 3 minutes more, that's it. JOH: We took down planes, Congress was told. But this evidence was excluded. Drug traffickers are believed

 JOH: Gracias senor juez.

 AUSA: The verdict was unanimous. He corrupted Honduran instututions to preserve his power by drug trafficking. There were drug ledgers with his name, JOH. He continues to profess falsely his innocence. The trial showed what happened 

AUSA: There were murders. Traffickers became politicians, and politicians became traffickers. He made it a Narco State. He wanted money and power through cocaine. He wanted to shove the drugs up the noses of the gringos. He deserves life in prison 

Judge Castel: I am sentencing Juan Orlando Hernandez. He first appeared here in May 2022. I adjourned the trial repeatedly. He hired 2 lawyers: I gave him a 3d at public expense, and put one of his on public funding. He had 10 strikes of jurors without explanation  Judge Castel: He testified at trial and was unanimously convicted of 3 crimes. He is not being sentenced for corruption in Honduras, that is up to the people of Honduras. He thwarted efforts to stop drug traffickers; he used acting skills. 

Judge Castel: Pepe Lobo sought $2 million from Ardon, who trafficked drugs with JOH's brother Tony. JOH took money to provide protection. He met Maradiaga... El Chapo paid $1 million, through Tony Hernandez. In 2014 there were some seizures, after an OFAC listing  Judge Castel: He is 53, has a degree from SUNY Albany. His daughter's letter is moving. The sentence in this case is a message to elegant drug traffickers. The jury saw through him, as a two faced politician. 

Judge Castel: I sentence Juan Orlando Hernandez to 45 years in prison. Any objection? Stabile: Only on forfeiture. AUSA: No your Honor. 

Judge Castel: Please rise, Mr Hernandez. I sentence you to 45 years in prison, then 5 years of supervised release. You must comply with US immigration laws.  [JOH is standing, in MDC tan jail uniform]

Judge Castel: On forfeiture, defense is to respond in 14 days. You may appeal. JOH: Can I continue with Mr Stabile? Judge: He can move to withdraw. As to remaining in MDC, this is unusual. AUSA: It cites SBF...  Judge Castel: I will recommend it, with a sunset of 180 days in light of previous manipulation of the schedule in this case. Adjourned.

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