Patterico's Pontifications

3/22/2007

DRJ Pores Through the Border Patrol Trial Transcripts – Rene Sanchez, Recalled (Volume XIII)

Filed under: General — DRJ @ 9:00 am



Ignacio Ramos’ 2nd defense witness was Rene Sanchez. Sanchez testified earlier as the first prosecution witness.

This might be a good time to review the official report from the Department of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General, on the Ramos and Compean case. The portion that pertains to Rene Sanchez starts at page 10 of the linked PDF.

From Transcript XIII:

Ramos Witness #2 – Rene Sanchez:

Ramos direct examination (by Mary Stillinger):

108-109 – R. Sanchez denied that he discussed any of the following subjects with Aldrete-Davila:

— OAD’s claim for damages against the Border patrol.
— How to get immunity from prosecution.
— Help finding a lawyer to make his claim against the Border Patrol.
— Advice on how to tell his story.

109-110 – R. Sanchez does not recall meeting Aldrete-Davila in Mexico sometime after February 17, 2005.

110-111 – Aldrete-Davila has not given R. Sanchez information about activities in the Fabens area that might help him in his work.

111 – R. Sanchez’s first knowledge about this case was from his mother-in-law. He advised his supervisor and his supervisor ordered him to investigate. R. Sanchez looked in BPETS, the BP computer, that shows the “number of apprehensions by station, sector, area, any seizures, any agents assigned to a particular area.” The BPETS was not limited to Arizona but also covered the Fabens area.

111-112 – A significant incident report (SIR) should be in BPETS. [The Court sustained a government objection to a question regarding how BPETS’ searches are done after defense offered to move on.]

112 – In an effort to find out what happened in Fabens, R. Sanchez also contacted Agent Nolan Blanchette who was on detail to the Fabens station. R. Sanchez contacted Blanchette within a week or two of the shooting.

112-113 – Blanchette told R. Sanchez about the dope load on February 17, but R. Sanchez already knew about it from BPETS. R. Sanchez saw it on BPETS before Aldrete-Davila told him [he was smuggling drugs].

113-115 – R. Sanchez knew about the dope load before March 3. Defense counsel asked why he did not include this information in his March 3 report. [Bench conference in which the prosecutor requested that the Court instruct the jury that during R. Sanchez’s first testimony, he had been instructed under a motion in limine that he could not discuss the fact that he had seen a drug report. Defense counsel responded that she was not trying to impeach R. Sanchez regarding his earlier testimony regarding drugs – defense counsel understands that was subject to a motion in limine. Stillinger’s point was that R. Sanchez “wrote a memo on March 3rd and said this guy was shot in the back when he was trying to return after an illegal entry, and he knew that wasn’t true.” The prosecutor disputed that R. Sanchez meant to say that and stated she would clarify that on redirect. The Court withheld ruling until the need for an instruction became apparent from the testimony.]

115-116 – R. Sanchez did not tell anyone who the smuggler was when he found out about the seizure of marijuana in the computer.

116 – R. Sanchez thought it was important to find out whether the shooting had been reported. He agreed it might be a good lawsuit if the shooting wasn’t reported, but he denied that he was investigating the viability of a lawsuit.

116-117 – R. Sanchez looked at the computer because he knew Aldrete-Davila was involved in an incident but he didn’t realize at first that the shooting was connected to the drug seizure. R. Sanchez never connected the drug seizure and Aldrete-Davila’s shooting until Aldrete-Davila confessed to R. Sanchez that he had been smuggling drugs.

117 – Aside from telling his supervisor about Aldrete-Davila, knowing it would be passed on to OIG, R. Sanchez didn’t do anything to help Aldrete-Davila in this case.

Government cross-examination (by Debra Kanof):

117-118 – When he first testified, R. Sanchez was subject to a motion in limine that prevented him from telling that he learned about the drug seizure when he first looked on BPETS.

118-119 – R. Sanchez first heard about a shooting from his mother-in-law on February 28, 2005. He told his supervisor, Mr. Karhoff, who told R. Sanchez to get more specific information. R. Sanchez did not know then that Aldrete-Davila had marijuana. [The Court sustained 2 defense objections to leading questions.]

119-120 – R. Sanchez looked in BPETS to see what incidents happened on February 17, 2005. He found a drug seizure on that day reported in an I-44, a report of an apprehension or seizure. The I-44 did not have text, just the fact that it existed. R. Sanchez did not find any evidence there had been a shooting on February 17, 2005.

120-121 – R. Sanchez did not take that information back to his supervisor. Instead he contacted Blanchette and asked “if he had heard of a shooting in the Fabens area.” [The Court sustained a defense objection to a leading question.] At that time, R. Sanchez did not relate the shooting incident to the I-44 drug seizure.

121 – BPETS did not have the name of the drug transporter.

121-122 – Before R. Sanchez wrote the March 3 memo, Blanchette told R. Sanchez that he hadn’t heard about a shooting in the Fabens area. R. Sanchez’s memo was dated March 3 and that’s the date he wrote it. R. Sanchez did not know that Aldrete-Davila had marijuana with him when he wrote that memo and gave it to his supervisor. R. Sanchez found out about a week later that Aldrete-Davila had drugs that day.

Ramos redirect examination (by Mary Stillinger):

122-123 – R. Sanchez’s memo reflects he thought the shooting occurred in the San Elizario area so he looked for that area in BPETS. R. Sanchez said he found the Fabens drug seizure because San Elizario is in the Fabens area. R. Sanchez had full access to information about drug seizures in every Border Patrol station in the country.

123 – R. Sanchez was/is not aware that San Elizario is in the Ysleta station.

123-124 – R. Sanchez didn’t tell his supervisor that he found out about a drug seizure in BPETS. The supervisor told R. Sanchez to investigate the subject and get more information, so R. Sanchez took that as permission to look in BPETS. He assumed it was all right even though he realizes he is not supposed to investigate things for friends or family members.

Government cross-examination (by Debra Kanof):

124 – R. Sanchez was not looking in BPETS for a friend or family member.

125 – [Witness excused.]

30 Responses to “DRJ Pores Through the Border Patrol Trial Transcripts – Rene Sanchez, Recalled (Volume XIII)”

  1. i have this new kool blog,,,please everyone visit it…www.slickblog.wordpress.com
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    heyhey (712601)

  2. Check this out. Earlier this month, the DEA went to arrest the guy at the october load house and he wasn’t there but there was 300+ lbs of marijuana there and two illegal aliens.

    I find it extremely interesting that they finally moved in to arrest the guy on March 5. If that guy is wanted in connection with the October load then I have to assume there is a warrant out for Davila’s arrest.

    J Curtis (d21251)

  3. J. Curtis,

    Thanks for the link. Here’s more detail from the Western District of Texas criminal complaint provided with the article you linked. I’m glad the DEA isn’t ignoring these smugglers but it will be interesting to see who Johnny Sutton assigns to prosecute this case and how thorough the investigation will be.

    DRJ (6984d0)

  4. I’m not sure why JCurtis thinks this is of significance. Frankly, I think it works against him.

    The agents went to the house with an arrest warrant for Cipriano Ortiz-Hernandez. My reading of the affidavit doesn’t include what it was that Ortiz-Hernandez was being arrested for, as the Affidavit is in support of charging the three guys found at the house on March 5 based on the discovery of MJ in the house on March 5, and the warrant for Cipiriano was issued before they discovered that MJ, so he was being arrested for something else.

    Lets assume that the arrest warrant for Ortiz-Hernandez arises out of the Oct. 2005 siezure of a van loaded with 700 lbs of MJ found at the house.

    As I recall the earlier reporting on this episode, it was C. Ortiz-Hernandez who told the police that OAD was the driver of the van and had left it at the house the previous day due to some unspecified mechanical troubles thinking that Cipriano’s brother would be able to fix it — essentially denying that he had anything to do with the van or the MJ inside.

    The fact that DEA is now charging him with a crime in connection with that load — assuming that’s what the warrant concerned — suggests that DEA doesn’t believe his story. The presence of 370 lbs of MJ inside the house on March 5 tends to support the idea that Cipriano Ortiz-Hernandez was, in fact, involved in the trafficking of the 700 lbs of MJ in the load van in Oct. 2005, as does the fact that DEA knew his residence to be a “stash house.”

    As I also recall from the earlier reporting, the ONLY evidence that OAD had anything to do with the Oct. 2005 load was the statement from CIPRIANO ORTIZ-HERNANDEZ that OAD was the driver who dropped off the van the previous evening. OAD wasn’t arrested dropping off the van, OAD wasn’t at the house when DEA did the knock and talk and found the MJ in the van, and I’ve seen no report of any physical evidence that linked OAD to the van found at Cipriano’s house.

    What we do know from the transcripts of the pre-trial proceedings is that when the the case was continued on Oct. 12, 2005, the government made clear that the continuance would need to stretch into Jan. or Feb., because OAD was scheduled to have surgery to reattach his urethra to his bladder at Brooks Army Medical Center on October 25, 2005. He was scheduled to travel to San Antonio on October 23, 2005, be admitted and prepped on Oct. 24, and have surgery on Oct. 25.

    See Vol I, p. 7.

    The medical testimony at trial was that he underwent the surgery — but I don’t know if the date of the surgery was confirmed in the testimony or not.

    Re the link to the WND article, I’m curious about this passage:

    “Ortiz-Hernandez’s address was identified in a Nov. 21, 2005, Department of Homeland Security memo written by DHS Special Agent Christopher Sanchez, as the place where Aldrete-Davila dropped off 752.8 pounds of marijuana in a 1990 Chevy Astro van Oct. 23, 2005.”

    To me that is very dishonest reporting — and its interesting that Corsi doesn’t provide a link to this particular report — because my recollection is that C.Sanchez only recorded in his report that Cipriano CLAIMED OAD was the driver.

    It seems to me that given all the publicity the trial generated in Oct. 2005 in the Fabens area, its kind of convenient that Cipriano — when trying to explain to DEA how a van with 700 lbs of MJ happened to turn up in his yard — just happens to pull OAD’s name out while disclaiming any knowledge himself.

    Does that suggest that OAD had anything to do with it, or that Cipriano simply knew that OAD would be a convenient scape goat based on all the attention he had been getting connected to the upcoming trial.

    Does anyone have a link to this specific report by Hernandez referred by by Corsi?

    The discussion of the Oct 2005 load and the claim thta OAD was involved was sealed by the Court. I’m certain that the government’s position was that there was no evidence of OAD’s involvement other than the statement of Cipriano, and that the medical records show that OAD was in a San Antonio hospital the next day.

    Now, that doesn’t rule out the possibility that OAD crossed a van into the US on 10/23 before heading to San Antonio on 10/24. But I doubt he was alone at the hospital — he may have even been met by someone working for DHS. There may be a paper trail of evidence showing where he crossed the border and what vehicle he was in. Trust me, when someone crosses at a border crossing, evidence is generated to show who they were, when they crossed, and what vehicle they were in.

    I don’t recall seeing the Defense Lawyers at anytime since Feb. 2006 complaining that they were denied the opportunity to prove that OAD was involved in the Oct. 2005 load. Why is that? Maybe its because that after the issue was raised in court — the discussions that are now sealed — the gov’t submitted info/evid. to the defense and the court establishing that OAD could not have been involved in that load because he was in a hotel in San Antonio.

    I’m just speculating, but that’s no different that what the BP advocates are engaged in.

    wls (077d0d)

  5. 4

    wls, actually IIRC the testimony at the Ramos/Compean trial was that OAD had chosen to delay the surgery to attempt to fix his urinary problems and had not had it as of the time of his testimony.

    James B. Shearer (fc887e)

  6. JBS — well then, I guess he did do it. %^)

    wls (077d0d)

  7. wls,

    You just put a few pieces of the puzzle in place for me.

    When I read through the transcripts, there was nothing in vol 1 that had any relevance at the time because I wouldn’t have known about the evidence.

    With that information you provided, now I’m thinking Davila came into the US legally for his surgery and:

    when someone crosses at a border crossing, evidence is generated to show who they were, when they crossed, and what vehicle they were in

    The vehicle was at the Cipriano house with the dope in it. They had proof that Davila crossed into the US with that van.

    This is why the surgery was cancelled. Davila ran for the border again believing that he was about to be arrested.

    he may have even been met by someone working for DHS.

    From DRJ’s summary vol 8

    57-58 – He was scheduled for surgery but it was cancelled. [Defense counsel suggested it was scheduled for October 2005, about 6 months prior to the trial.]

    58-59 – The last time Aldrete-Davila saw R. Sanchez was around 6 months ago.

    J Curtis (d21251)

  8. WLS,

    I think this may be the article you requested in your comment 4.

    DRJ (6984d0)

  9. I’ve seen that article before — and yes, that’s where I read the part about the info concerning OAD being the driver having come from Cipriano.

    I guess if I told a DHS agent that J Curtis was an Al Queda terrorist, that would make it true.

    That’s the same evidence there is that OAD was the driver of the van.

    WLS (b67953)

  10. I guess if I told a DHS agent that J Curtis was an Al Queda terrorist, that would make it true.

    That’s the same evidence there is that OAD was the driver of the van.

    Comment by WLS

    Does that seem like a rational and logical analogy to you? Is this the sort of logic and rationality we can assume that all of Bush’s US Attorneys and Ass.US Attorneys bring to their jobs?

    J Curtis (d21251)

  11. J Curtis — its the same level of evidentiary value that exists for the claim that OAD was the driver of the van on Oct. 23.

    One guy, caught with a van full of MJ parked in the yard of his house, says to the cops “OAD drove the van here last night.”

    Do you think that is “proof” of anything?

    How is it any more persuasive than me telling a DHS employee that you are a terrorist, and having him write it down in a report?

    Does the fact that a DHS investigator puts it in a report somehow confer accuracy on the statement? What if the comment was made to a reporter, and it was put in bold type across the top of the New York Times?

    Why would that make it any more likely to be true rather than false?

    Its what one person SUPPOSEDLY said, since no one seems to be able to link to the actual report of Nov. 21, 2005, that Corsi refers to in his story.

    Maybe the next paragraph of the Report says “Further DHS investigation reveals that OAD was in San Antonio, having checked into a hotel 2 hours prior to the time that Ortiz-Hernandez claims OAD arrived in Fabens driving the van. A surveillance camera in the hotel recorded OAD getting ice from the ice machine at the same time Ortiz-Hernandez claimed OAD was delivering the load vehicle.”

    Does the report say this??? I have no idea, I haven’t seen the report, and no one other than Corsi even claims that it exists.

    I’ll withhold judgment on the value of Ortiz-Hernandez’s ID of OAD on Oct. 23, 2005, until I can read for myself what it is he said.

    wls (077d0d)

  12. WLS,

    I agree it’s wise to withhold judgment until you have the facts but it’s not like Cipriano Ortiz-Hernandez plucked Aldrete-Davila’s name out of thin air. He provided specific information about Aldrete-Davila, including the type of catheter he had. I doubt that specificity was readily available to people who had never met Aldrete-Davila.

    The supporting affidavit alleges that Ortiz-Hernandez had resided for 2 years in a suspected (and then proven) stash house. The fact that Aldrete-Davila and Ortiz-Hernandez may know each other is a reasonable basis for concern.

    DRJ (6984d0)

  13. I think the article also says that Cipriano’s brother knew OAD, as they grew up in the same village across the border.

    So, its entirely likely that Cipriano did know OAD, and knew that OAD was involved in this episode involving the BP agents, and that OAD was wearing a catheter.

    And OAD was the perfect guy for Cipriano to use to deflect suspicion from himself.

    wls (077d0d)

  14. Ortiz-Hernandez picked the one guy who he knew was in bed with the feds and you believe that’s the “perfect guy” to incriminate? That’s something out of John Grisham’s playbook.

    DRJ (6984d0)

  15. WLS

    Another tactic, just another one, disgusting that the defense of the BP agents has gone into obstruction of justice (Ramos havings Tourettes disease) to purjory claims that OAD was running drugs, crippled from a serious gunshot wound through his hip.

    Just like the breathlessly reported racial slurs and accusations that Kanoff was allegedly to have made to 4 representatives interfering in the sentencing phase of the case by speaking of it and demanding that Sutton’s staff appear before congress DURING THE TRIAL, nothing has been spared into the stampede into ignorance.

    Look, I’m pro law enforcement, I’m pro border patrol, I also realize that the Fabens group deserved some serious jail time and some of them got it.

    EricPWJohnson (695c44)

  16. DRJ — of course Cipriano would want to give the feds someone they knew to suspect for a crime that he might be on the hook for.

    If he picks someone for whom there is NO reason to suspect, or a name he just makes up, he doesn’t do much to deflect attention from himself.

    AND, you forget that its VERY likely that the DEA agents are not onboard with the prosecution of the BP guys on the back of testimony from a drug dealer. I’m confident that local DEA agents, who have probably worked closely and regularly with Ramos and Compean, were more than happy to hear OAD’s name from Cipriano, and made every effort to convince the US Attorney to charge in an effort to derail the trial.

    Its nothing more than fed agents sticking together.

    WLS (b67953)

  17. wls,

    Would you care to respond to comment 7?

    What makes you believe that Davila’s October involvement is even in dispute?

    J Curtis (d21251)

  18. J Curtis

    Please state you evidence….. it was a snitch caught dealing and gave them a name is what I heard please enlighten us

    but this has no bearing on the case OAD was not identified, tried to surrender ran from a brutal beating and had 15 shots fired at him to kill him

    And don’t forget Compean wrote a written confession with legal counsel’s approval and supervision.

    what part of “I tried to kill him” didn’t you understand?

    the “him” actually being just an hispanic unidentified and all that was suspicious was that he speed down the road.

    On Country roads in Texas this is hardly a unique event.

    EricPWJohnson (695c44)

  19. Please state you evidence….. it was a snitch caught dealing and gave them a name is what I heard please enlighten us

    I already have. Here’s more:

    I don’t believe Davila’s involvement is even in dispute. Judge Cardone let slip that Davila lied about his involvement in the October incident which means that he was questioned about the incident and the investigation determined that he lied.

    Stillinger stated that Davila was discovered at the scene of the incident and Davila’s advocates ( Cardone and Kanof ) couldn’t refute that even if it was exaggerated. Their rebuttal?: He’ll take the Fifth.

    The topic is relevant to the agents’ case in that that case was a contest of credibility. Davila’s lies hurt his credibility and the Bush Team, including Cardone, hid evidence that was detrimental to Davila’s credibility.

    You continue to imply that Compean confessed to trying to kill a suspect that he knew to be unarmed but you still haven’t provided evidence of that. Your “evidence” seems to be that only 3 jurors, from a jury stacked to be sympathetic towards Mexican drug smugglers, decided that the agents were innocent.

    Aside from how it may or may not help the border agents, Davila’s involvement in this crime is relevant regarding his attempts to swindle 5 million dollars from my wallet with his civil suit. If he faces a warrant for his arrest and a trial that could put him in jail for 40 years, he might not want to show up.

    This recent incident is amazing aside from everything else just for the fact that the house was identified in a national story and also in the big El Paso newspaper as a place where a famous smuggling incident occurred. This story was reported just 4 days prior to the bust. How stupid is that?

    Anyone know if there’s a list of federal warrants on the internet?

    J Curtis (d21251)

  20. J curtis

    I meant EVIDENCE not World Net Daily innuendo

    J Curtis let me point you to his written statement and the words “I tried to kill him” written in his own hand.

    That may have been all the evidence they needed

    EricPWJohnson (695c44)

  21. WLS,

    It’s hard to read this transcript and accept your premise that federal agents stick together. Apparently most won’t even cross a deep ditch to help a fellow agent.

    Eric,

    The jury found both defendants not guilty on the attempted murder charge so apparently they didn’t take Compean’s statement that he intended to kill Aldrete-Davila the same way you do.

    DRJ (6984d0)

  22. DRJ

    They dropped the attempted murder charge passively Kanoff never pursued them during the trial for attempted murder.

    Also, let me point you back to the very beginning of all this that was reported as facts:

    These two were railroaded and given a swift trial

    that the judge was in cohoots with the prosecutor

    That Kanoff had used racial trigger language and it was and all hispanic jury

    A career criminal was let go and was given blanket immunity.

    Then it was a secret federal coverup and the transcripts were deliberately not being published and yada yada yada.

    All of this was NOT true

    The only stunts that I saw, the only shameless grandstanding I witnessed is the blatent lies from most of their fellow officers, the brush there did not restrict the view, there was no 11 ft deep ditch, they all were chasing down something illegally but they all knew exactly what they were doing and they all witnessed it and saw the bullets flying and OAD get shot.
    Thats why they asked for immunity themselves, personally they all should be getting a couple of years as accomplices.

    then the Stupidity of using Tourettes Syndrome….

    Notice that no appeals have been filed, because they will be facing life in prison if they were that stupid to face trial again.

    Kanoff if anything backed off reading the transcripts she gave them ample time, ample time to admit mistakes but they refused.

    Ramos even said, I don’t do illegals I go after Drug loads which threw everyone off.

    Ramos was a criminal before the trial, he was suspended for not reporting his arrests for beating a child and a senior citizen.

    Also, WLS and I have served in law enforcement, believe me, both sides stick together the criminals and the law enforcement WLS’s statement was perfectly valid, I can give you dozens, dozens of situations where the DEA had charges refused as well as other agencies.

    You will find disturbing reading the inspector general reports on investigations and see that nearly 4% of the Border Patrol Force is under criminal investigation

    I appreciate your comments and allowing me to respond

    EricPWJohnson (695c44)

  23. J Curtis let me point you to his written statement and the words “I tried to kill him” written in his own hand.

    That may have been all the evidence they needed

    Comment by EricPWJohnson

    They are issued guns for the purpose of killing people when the need arises so what’s your point?

    Obviously the agents didn’t want to kill Davila for the fun of it or he’d be dead, wouldn’t you agree?

    You always assert their guilt for a good part of the thread but then you always get scared and punt it over to the nine jurors, why is that?

    None of those nine jurors nor the other three jurors who concluded that the agents were innocent are of any use to me because I can’t question them.

    J Curtis (d21251)

  24. 21

    “It’s hard to read this transcript and accept your premise that federal agents stick together. Apparently most won’t even cross a deep ditch to help a fellow agent.”

    They didn’t cross the ditch because they didn’t think Compean was in any danger. They did help cover up the bad shoot and several lost their jobs as a result.

    James B. Shearer (fc887e)

  25. 23

    “None of those nine jurors nor the other three jurors who concluded that the agents were innocent are of any use to me because I can’t question them.”

    Strangely enough all 12 jurors answered yes when asked if the guilty verdict was their verdict.

    As to why the jury reached guilty verdicts, the fact that the agents knew they were supposed to report discharging their weapons and didn’t is about all I would need as a juror for a guilty verdict. It is hard for me to understand why the agents didn’t take pleas, the case against them was overwhelming.

    James B. Shearer (fc887e)

  26. They didn’t cross the ditch because they didn’t think Compean was in any danger.

    Comment by James B. Shearer

    Is it your theory that border patrol agents shoot to kill people, for no particular reason, quite often and this was just “another day, another attempted murder”?

    J Curtis (d21251)

  27. 26

    It is my theory that border patrol agents deal with people like OAD all the time and that they knew OAD was unlikely to pose a threat once he was past Compean and heading for Mexico. I don’t know why Compean and Ramos shot (although I could speculate) but I don’t think their explanation was at all plausible. If I recall correctly you don’t believe it yourself.

    James B. Shearer (fc887e)

  28. If I recall correctly you don’t believe it yourself.

    Comment by James B. Shearer

    I believe Compean was shooting at the ground but I don’t think it’s a common thing because the incident that caused it is rare.

    The high speed chase was rare. The desperation of the suspect was rare ( fleeing from many drawn weapons ). It was rare that the Mexican military wasn’t camped out there across the border and I don’t think agents would be firing their weapons when those armed troops are there. They might think they are being shot at return fire.

    I think the Mexican troops weren’t there because they used to clear out when a smuggling operation was scheduled. They can’t get caught allowing it to happen under their noses and they can’t be there to protect the smuggler when he’s escaping back to Mexico. However, all that changed after this incident and the Mexican military stood at the border to scare back the BP agents that were in pursuit when it happened the next time.

    Most of the drug smuggling operations back then were overseen by the Mexican government. It is possible that Calderon is cleaning it up a bit. Not probable but possible.

    J Curtis (d21251)

  29. J Curtis

    Guns are given issued for self defense, no LEO may use his weapon unless there is a clear and present danger.

    That was the whole point of the trial

    EricPWJohnson (695c44)

  30. Guns are given issued for self defense, no LEO may use his weapon unless there is a clear and present danger.

    That was the whole point of the trial

    Comment by EricPWJohnson

    Yes, yes, you believe the smuggler, we known that already.

    You’ve brought us back to square one.

    J Curtis (d21251)


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