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Eye On Boise

Labrador: ‘He accused me of a crime’

Rep. Walt Minnick’s new ad about a drug case that rival Raul Labrador handled in 2001 has led to a heated clash between the two at the Boise City Cloub debate. “This is the biggest example of the lies that Mr. Minnick has said about my record,” Labrador declared, saying that after today’s debate, he’ll hold a press conference with the INS agent who handled the case who will “talk to the press about how this ad is false.” Labrador said, “The court released him and he went into the custody of immigration. Immigration deported him. In the ad, Mr. Minnick states that iIhelped my client escape. So apparently I helped my client escape by having him go into the custody of immigration.”

Minnick responded that he was quoting the U.S. Attorney in the case who said Labrador had a “specific and pre-existing plan to have his client released … and then have him deported to Mexico so as to avoid the federal charges.” Labrador, Minnick said, was accused of “simply standing by doing nothing and allowing him to be deported to Mexico, and that that was part of a pre-existing plan.”

“He just questioned my ethics and he accused me of a crime,” Labrador declared, to which Minnick responded, “I did neither, Mr. Labrador.” Labrador said, “The facts of this case are that my client was a low-level defendant. He was not accused of running a meth lab. He was accused of being present when money was exchanged for drugs.”

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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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