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Border roundup: Suspect pleads guilty to murder in Brian Terry killing

Elections

An official Maricopa County letter may be the solution for voters on a state "suspense" list because of Arizona's two-track registration system which lets new voters register without ID using a federal form but leaves them without a voter registration card to show at the polls. This system especially affects out-of-state students who live in university dorms and don't have a property-tax statement, a state-issued driver’s license or a utility bill.

Voters may also be inactivated or receive letters asking them to prove their citizenship as politicians work to clean up voter rolls, especially in battleground states.

A Los Angeles Times poll on how California voters see immigration shows that as a group they are still " tough on border security and enforcement" but have changed towards people who are in the state illegally and "overwhelmingly" support the new federal program granting work permits to qualifying applicants who were brought to the United States as children as well as driver's licenses for the same group.

Senate candidates Richard Carmona and Jeff Flake challenged each other on immigration during their final debate, both accusing each other of abandoning for comprehensive immigration reform. While Flake pointed to his work in 2006 and 2007 with Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (D-Illinois), Gutiérrez released a statement after the debate that said Flake abandoned their bipartisan work due to "pressure from the far right" and later voted against the DREAM Act.

Immigration and other Latino issues are also playing a role in the Maricopa County Sheriff race between candidates Joe Arpaio and Paul Penzone; Amanda J. Crawford takes a look at how each candidate's campaign is being affected by “an awakening of the Latino community in civic engagement."

Law and order

Manuel Osorio-Arellanes changed his plea to guilty in the murder of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and will face sentencing in January. He faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. Three other suspects are still being sought in the incident which killed Terry and also triggered an investigation of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives's Operation Fast and Furious

Did radio dead spots play a role in the shooting death of Border Patrol Agent Nicholas Ivie? Daniel González talks to law enforcement along the border about a chronic communications problem for The Arizona Republic.

Valeria Fernandez explores why undocumented crime victims who cooperate with law enforcement to catch criminals are often denied U-Visas in Maricopa County.

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Economy

After a drop that started in 2008, illegal immigration is rising again, an indication that the United States economy is recovering, according to a report by the Tomas Rivera Policy Institute at the University of Southern California. Immigration reform may actually be key to the country's economic growth according to Bloomberg News, with high-tech industries having "the most to gain." The number of young illegal immigrants applying for the new federal program granting work permits to qualifying applicants who were brought to the United States as children is about 3,000 - daily.

Horses seized during federal investigations into money laundering by Los Zetas cartel will be auctioned in Oklahoma over the first three days of November. The 379 horses "include mares, weanlings, yearlings, 2-year-olds, and other horses of racing age, and embryos," many of which are from prominent blood lines.

Across the border

The Mexican police arrested five members of a kidnapping ring including David Servín, son of a cartel leader, and the Mexican Army seized nearly 500,000 illegal cigarettes at a checkpoint in Sonora.

New data shows that drug use is on the rise in Mexico while the age of beginning users is dropping.

24,102. That's Victor Hugo Michel's conservative estimate for the number of unclaimed or unidentified bodies in Mexico over the last six years. While his work is based on extensive records requests and additional reporting, Michel noted that some officials were reluctant to release information or only had incomplete records and that many more bodies are never found. The dead include but are not limited to people who are victims of cartel violence, victims of other crimes, migrants, addicts and homeless.

Meanwhile Enrique Vargas Anaya, the president of Mexico's Asociación de Autoridades Locales de México A.C (AALMAC), Enrique Vargas Anaya, called Felipe Calderón's presidency "catastrophic" because of the 31 mayors killed and many more threatened over the last six years.

TucsonSentinel.com's original reporting and curation of border and immigration news is generously supported in part by a grant from the Ethics and Excellence in Journalism Foundation.

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U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Border Patrol agents working the State Route 80 checkpoint discovered marijuana concealed in a sedan on Friday, October 26.

Border Patrol Activity

As reported by U.S. Customs and Border Protection press releases:

Friday, Oct. 26

Agents working the State Route 80 checkpoint recovered 119 pounds of marijuana (82 bricks estimated value $59,500) from a sedan

Nogales Border Patrol agents arrested one passenger from a commercial shuttle at the Interstate 19 checkpoint for carrying 3.25 pounds of heroin (estimated value $45,500)

Saturday, Oct. 27

Nogales Border Patrol agents arrested one passenger from a commercial shuttle at for carrying 4.1 pounds of meth (estimated value $41,000)

Sunday, Oct. 28

Casa Grande Station agents working with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) recovered 678 pounds of marijuana (estimated value $339,000) in an abandoned vehicle

Tuesday, Oct. 30

Casa Grande Station agents working with HSI and the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office recovered 1,760 pounds of marijuana (estimated value $880,000) from a vehicle reported stolen and then abandoned south of Interstate 8 near Ventana

Yuma Station agents seized a Jeep SUV and ramps after suspects attempted to drive over the 14-foot border fence and fled when agents arrived as the vehicle got stuck at the top

Wednesday, Oct. 31

Ajo Station agents and Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Air and Marine arrested one suspect arrested and recovered 1,924 pounds of marijuana (80 bundles, estimated value $962,000) after the suspect fled from agents in a stolen Chevy truck

Sources