Mexico Arrests

This brief letter was written as a response to an August 11, 1998 article in the Arizona Republic (circ: 500,000).

BACKGROUND: Scottsdale businessman James Brunen crossed the Mexican border at Nogales, a popular tourist town, to buy some gifts. Remembering that he had a few boxes of ammunition in his trunk, he declared these to the authorities on the Mexican side. They noted his diligence by arresting him. He was placed in a holding cell with 20 cots, 46 other men, dozens of rats and a single backed up toilet, months away from a hearing or any possible release. Arizona's Senators, Congressmen, and the Governor are working for his release, while his wife drives to Mexico constantly (a five-hour ride) to bring him water and food, and pay the guards for his protection. More than two dozen Americans share a similar fate, victims of Mexico's stringent gun laws.

by Alan Korwin - Bloomfield Press
4848 E. Cactus, #505-440
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
602-996-4020; Fax 602-494-0679;
For Publication; 329 Words; Aug. 30, 1998;
One-Time North American Serial Rights;
If you use this material please provide
a copy of your edition after publication.

To: Alexa Hauser, Arizona Republic

Re: MEXICO'S LAWS TRAP UNWARY (published on 8/11/98 in The Arizona Republic)

Dear Ms. Hauser,

Your recent article on Mexico's arrest of hapless Americans, for possession of firearms or ammo, is the perfect segue for a much bigger story. A story key to America's survival as a free country.

Many American politicians would like to duplicate Mexico's policy for U.S. citizens in America. In fact, it is already the law for Arizona's border with California. It seems to me that the consternation aimed at Mexico should go double for local politicos whose values are the same or worse toward their own citizens. If the Mexican policy is bad, it's identical twin in the states is horrendous.

If you have a perfectly legal gun in your car in Arizona and drive across our border to the west, police there will lock you up if they find out. Even if they find out by your own humble admission, as was the recent event in Mexico. This has been the case for years.

Why raise all the fuss over our Third World friends to the south, when our compatriots to the west have the same agenda (well, maybe the jails are a little nicer than the horror you described, but I wouldn't know first hand, and rumor suggests you really don't want to get caught in an American jail or in the California legal system). And when you're arrested domestically for mere possession of property, the Governor and Congress don't spring to your aid.

If you want to do the public a service, followup your story by getting the stats, a picture of some poor slob unknowingly snagged, and the phenomenal cost incurred in dollars and hardship, and permanent criminal record, perpetrated by the great state of California. All for doing something that, until recently, was fully protected by our cherished Bill of Rights.

How can California--and so many other states--get away with that? Hold them up to as seering scrutiny as you would give our close NAFTA ally and pal!

Such an article would make us proud of the work The Arizona Republic is doing, and for your efforts as a reporter.

Alan Korwin - Author
The Arizona Gun Owner's Guide
The California Gun Owner's Guide
(No current plan for Mexican Gun Owner's Guide)

Three weeks have passed. No response has been received. Brunen is still in jail. I spoke with Governor Hull recently, she says she's working on it.

P.S. - Brunen was finally released, and is working on getting the other Americans out.

Alan Korwin is a full-time free-lance writer and author of seven books on gun law, including Gun Laws of America Every Federal Gun Law on the Books with Plain English Summaries. Permission to reprint this article is granted to non-profit organizations, provided credit is given to Alan Korwin, Bloomfield Press, Phoenix, AZ. All others, just call us.

Alan Korwin
Bloomfield Press
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