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Abbott's murder pardon raises questions

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South Texas Democratic Congressman Henry Cuellar and his wife are facing federal charges of corruption and money laundering.

They are accused of accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars in foreign money in exchange for performing Washington D.C. favors.

Cuellar says he’s innocent and is seeking re-election.

But the case has reporters digging and finding surprising information about this shadowy world of Azerbaijani money and D.C. influence.

The Daily Beast has discovered previously unreported details behind the clandestine network that prosecutors say funneled bribes to Cuellar. The network’s sprawling roots stretch from a consulate at the edge of Los Angeles to the glittering capital of a despotic ex-Soviet regime, and from the D.C. foreign aid complex near Foggy Bottom to a hydroponic farm in Maryland that supplied Georgetown’s leading bipartisan hangouts.


Will Bredderman is a researcher at The Daily Beast. He previously covered politics for Crain's New York Business and the New York Observer, where he utilized public records and social media to score scoops.

Who is responsible for the Juarez INM Fire?

Forty people died in a fire at a Ciudad Juarez immigration detention center March 27, 2023. Activists say the incident was foreseeable and preventable.

Current U.S. immigration policy uses Mexico to contain migrants and prevent them from crossing into the United States. But holding these people in Mexico along its northern border is putting them at great risk.

Is the United States complicit in the deaths of migrants when they are ensnared by policy that is designed to keep them from setting foot on U.S. soil and declaring asylum?


Perla Trevizo is a reporter for ProPublica/Texas Tribune Investigative Unit.

Abbot’s pardon raises questions

Daniel Perry was sentenced to 25 years in prison for murdering Garrett Foster at a Black Lives Matter protest in 2020.

But Texas Governor Greg Abbott just pardoned Perry claiming that the shooting was justified under the state’s “Stand Your Ground” law.

Abbott claims there is evidence that should have been presented at the trial that would have cleared Perry, but it was covered up by the Travis County District Attorney Jose Garza. But Abbott has not revealed that evidence.

Foster was legally openly carrying an AK-47 semi-automatic assault rifle at the time of the confrontation. He was pointing the gun at the ground. But Perry claimed he was afraid Foster would raise the weapon at him, so he fired first.


Steven Monacelli writes about the pardon for the Texas Observer. He is a freelance investigative journalist in Dallas.

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*This interview will be recorded on Tuesday, May 21, 2024.

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David Martin Davies can be reached at dmdavies@tpr.org and on Twitter at @DavidMartinDavi