After a lengthy 214 days in a Mexican jail, a drawn-out trial and Congressional hearing, Sgt Andrew Tahmooressi has returned to U.S. soil. A Mexican judge ordered his release on Friday, ultimately part of a humanitarian gesture.
The marine was imprisoned after crossing into Tijuana with three weapons in his truck. He admits it was a mistake, and oversight on his part. The Mexican government was unforgiving and imprisoned him immediately.
For the past several weeks, three officials, family of Tahmooressi and his defense team have been in Tijuana pushing for his release. The defense made a strong argument that Tahmooressi was held by customs agents illegally and that he required treatment for his PTSD resulting from two tours in Afghanistan. The treatment is unavailable in Mexico.
Tahmooressi’s release came after much intervention and diplomatic push from former Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico and Reps. Ed Roys (R-CA) and Matt Salmon (R-CA). Ultimately, getting Tahmooressi treated for PTSD was deemed a neccesity, and is what likely pressed the judge to acquit.
Tahmooressi boarded a plane to Florida on Friday evening. WItnesses say he was looking good and his spirits were bright.