A sheriff in New Mexico says a woman arrested in a raid on a compound and charged with child abuse has been turned over to federal immigration authorities.
Taos County Sheriff Jerry Hogrefe said Jany Leveille was transferred Tuesday to custody of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
The 35-year-old native of Haiti is the mother of six children taken into state custody in a raid this month on the ramshackle compound near the Colorado state line.
Leveille’s immigration status is unclear.
One of the four other adults arrested at the compound will not be released because an arrest warrant has been issued for him in Georgia.
Siraj Ibn Wahhaj (see-DAHJ’ wah-HAJ’) is accused of kidnapping his 3-year-old son in December. A young boy’s remains were found on the compound.
AA state judge on Monday cleared the way for the release of the adults to house arrest pending trial.
Golightley could not provide information about the citizenship or immigration status of the 35-year-old client.
The judge who allowed the four defendants to be on house arrest pending trial has received threats of violence in the days since her decision.
Administrative Office of the Courts Director Artie Pepin said Tuesday said that Judge Sarah Backus has come under attack through social media, emails and telephone calls in response to a pre-trial ruling that allows the release of two men and three women. One telephone caller threatened to slit the judge’s throat, while others made derogatory insults.
Backus says prosecutors presented troubling information Monday in court about the defendants but failed to articulate any specific danger to the community.
Pepin says a judge’s responsibility is to make impartial decisions based on evidence in court and not popular sentiment from other information.
Backus, a Democrat, set a $20,000 bond for each defendant and ordered them to wear ankle monitors when released. They are forbidden to hold firearms.
The decision came Monday evening after a lengthy hearing in Taos during which prosecutors said the five defendants were preparing for a dangerous anti-government mission.
They presented evidence of the firearms training done by Siraj Ibn Wahhaj (see-DAHJ’ wah-HAJ’) and described a compound fortified by old tires and wooden pallets.
Backus said although she was concerned by “troubling facts,” prosecutors failed to articulate any specific threats to the community.
She set a $20,000 bond for each and ordered that they wear ankle monitors and have weekly contact with their attorneys.
The father of the missing boy whose remains were found in the compound had performed rituals in an attempt to rid the disabled child of demons before the child died.
FBI Agent Travis Taylor testified Monday during a court hearing in Taos that one of the 11 children found at the makeshift compound and taken into custody said during an interview that the boy, Abdul-ghani Wahhaj (ahb-DOOL’ GAH’-nee wah-HAJ’), had died in February.
Public defenders argue Wahhaj was trying to heal the boy by reading passages from the Quran. Prosecutors argued that Wahhaj was denying the boy medication.
State prosecutors say children who were found at a ramshackle New Mexico compound were trained to use firearms and learned other tactical techniques as they prepared to get rid of teachers, law enforcement and other institutions that were considered corrupt.
Five defendants were arrested and 11 children were taken into custody during a raid Aug. 3 on the compound near the Colorado state line.
Wahhaj and the others were seated with their public defenders in a Taos courtroom as prosecutors presented books that were found at the compound, documents related to Wahhaj’s trip to Saudi Arabia and a handwritten notebook that appeared to be some kind of teaching manual.
They also pointed to evidence that Wahhaj had taken a series of firearms courses while in Georgia.
Public defenders argued that they didn’t have enough time to review the evidence, but the judge allowed the hearing to continue.
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