Bethlehem, PA: Who will pay for Burmese refugee’s murder trial?

That, readers, is a question we have been asking for months now as the number of trials for refugees committing violent crimes appear to be on the increase.

What did the Utah Burmese murder trial cost?  What did the Albany Iraqi rape trial cost?  What about the Somali terror trials in San Diego and Minneapolis?  And, that Iraqi sex trafficking case in South Dakota?  Interpreters alone cost the taxpayers a bundle!

Accused murderer, Win Min Htut, wants his kids to get his house. The taxpayers would then be responsible for his court costs.

From Lehigh Valley Live (Hat tip: the very busy ‘pungentpeppers’).  Emphasis below is mine:

With prosecutors seeking the death penalty against a Bethlehem man accused of shooting his wife in the street in front of their children, a Lehigh County judge said today the cost of defending the man at trial could hit six figures.

But in the case of Win Min Htut, there is a question of how those bills will be paid.

Htut is charged with homicide, burglary and criminal trespass in the Dec. 17 killing of his wife, 37-year-old Thida Myint. Prosecutors said Htut killed Myint in the street in front of their Bethlehem home on the day a permanent protection-from-abuse order was granted against him.

Htut is represented by the public defender’s office, court-ordered by Judge Robert Steinberg. The deed for the family’s home in Bethlehem is in Htut’s name only, officials sad, and Htut has said he wants the house to be given to his three children.

In court today, Chief Public Defender Kimberly Makoul said Htut told his attorneys he does not want to spend any money on experts necessary for a death penalty case.

“Our client does not want any of his assets spent,” Makoul said.

Steinberg said this is not a new situation, in terms of case law, and that while Htut may not want to spend his own money, “it doesn’t mean the county has to absorb the costs.”

Here is my suggestion:  The US State Department should be responsible for all of the refugee criminals that go before a court system.  I know, I know, that is taxpayer money too, but at least if someone (brave!) introduced such a bill in Congress it would get the public’s attention.

Then of course there is the much more intriguing idea of billing the resettlement contractors when their refugees break the law!

Note to “welcoming” communities—consider the case of Win Min Htut when you open your doors to more refugees.

Pennsylvania is in the top five preferred resettlement states in America.

How many Burmese in the US:

Here is one accounting of how many we have resettled over the last 12 years from Burma and camps in Thailand.  They are still coming.

*Burmese refugees resettled in the US since 2001: 97,713

*Chin Refugees resettled in the US since 2001: 30,453

*Karen Refugees resettled in the US since 2001: 57,962

*The rest ethnic groups from Burma in the US since 2001: 9297

This last number above would include Burmese Muslims/Rohingya

Dr.Taylor Haynes, a gubernatorial candidate in Wyoming, speaks out on refugees

We have been reporting since early February on the controversy in Wyoming about opening the state for the first time to refugee resettlement—a proposal from Republican Governor Matt Mead.   All of our previous coverage is here.

Dr. Taylor Haynes

The Casper Star Tribune has been the source of many stories on the growing political firestorm and here is one more article (mostly about Dr. Haynes’ primary challenge) in which the refugee proposal is discussed.

By the way, Casper, along with Gillette, are the two cities being considered by the US State Department and its contractor (Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains) as resettlement sites.

Just a reminder, opposition to formal (contractual) resettlement does not bar refugees from living in Wyoming.  Legal immigrants are permitted to move around and live wherever they wish in America.

Haynes speaking about refugees from the third world:

“To make them our problem doesn’t solve their problem.”

Haynes, a medical doctor, also raises an issue that is increasingly on peoples’ minds—fear of diseases entering the US with refugees. (See our ‘Health issues’ category).

From the Star Tribune (emphasis is mine):

Gov. Matt Mead and others are learning more about refugees and evaluating options to possibly create a plan in Wyoming for refugee resettlement. Wyoming is the only state without a formal resettlement program.

Haynes opposes the idea.

“First there is a cultural language problem, which is a barrier to them being self-sufficient,” he said. “Second, there are communicable diseases from central Africa,” which is where a lot of refugees who need to resettle are from.

Communicable diseases include HIV, Ebola, Rift Valley fever, he said.

Haynes acknowledged some Americans have HIV and AIDS, “so why would you risk importing any more?”  [Refugees with TB and with HIV/AIDS are being permitted entry into the US and taxpayers are responsible for the cost of their treatment.—ed]

While plenty of people from Central America move to the U.S., learn English and become successful, Haynes said, it’s easier for them because many American citizens are fluent in Spanish and can speak to them while they’re learning English. Culturally, they’re similar to Americans, Haynes said. That’s not the case with Africans, he said.

Haynes acknowledged that in engineering school he and his classmates had popular professors from India, China, Taiwan and Pakistan.

“We’re talking about individuals who have made an effort to get the degree, they’ve made the effort to get into our culture,” he said. “These people were Hindus, Sikhs and obviously Muslims, all on the same campus. It was not an issue.”

But many refugees are not educated or prepared culturally for the United States. A Wyoming community of 35,000 cannot support 2,000 refugees.

“We can’t solve their problem by bringing them here,” he said. “We have to help them with humanitarian aid, and my heart goes out to them. To make them our problem doesn’t solve their problem.”

Read the whole Casper Star Tribune article for more on the campaign.

Dr. Haynes website is here.

Columbus, OH: Somali sentenced in ‘No Child Left Behind’ scam

Apparently this is one of several cases of this particular scam being investigated in Columbus, Ohio because we posted on another one, here, back in February.

From the Norwalk Reflector (Hat tip: ‘pungentpeppers’).  Emphasis is mine:

A Somali man who ran a scam tutoring company for needy Franklin County students was sentenced to 13 months in prison Thursday on federal charges of falsifying invoices and stealing students’ identities.

Ashkir Ali, 46, of Balsam Lake Drive on the East Side, pleaded guilty in November to the charges. He faced as many as seven years in prison.

Ashkir Ali could be deported, and he might actually do Somalia more good than he does the US. But, don’t hold your breath!

“I’m not coming back here,” Ali told U.S. District Judge Edmund A. Sargus Jr. “I’ve learned my lesson.”

Sargus ordered Ali to pay $115,916 in restitution and to serve 13 months in a federal prison and five months in a half-way house. He said a mandatory two-year prison sentence for identity theft was reduced because of Ali’s “substantial assistance” in investigating tutoring fraud.

Ali was indicted more than a year ago after a two-year investigation of his company, WAISS Network Technologies, by the Ohio auditor’s office.

The probe revealed that WAISS made $100,000 from Columbus and $20,000 from South-Western city schools as part of the federal “supplemental educational services” tutoring program, mandated by the No Child Left Behind law.

The other day I mentioned that there is beginning to be some reporting by the mainstream media about the refugee program in negative news about refugees.  A few years ago there would not have been a line like the next one in a crime report, while fluffy puffy feel-good stories would always mention the ‘r’ word.

Ali came to the United States in 1997 as a political refugee and is a permanent U.S. resident, Sargus said. He could be deported to Somalia after his prison term because he has been convicted of an aggravated felony, according to his plea agreement.

He won’t be deported, not the way things are going now with ICE (see Senator Sessions).

By the way, Columbus is right behind Minneapolis with its rapidly expanding Somali population.