by David Safier
I'm not going to even give a run-up to this Phoenix New Times story. Here are some excerpts.
Paul Babeu's Mexican Ex-Lover Says Sheriff's Attorney Threatened Him With Deportation
Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu — who became the face of Arizona border security nationally after he started stridently opposing illegal immigration — threatened his Mexican ex-lover with deportation when the man refused to promise never to disclose their years-long relationship, the former boyfriend and his lawyer tell New Times.
The latest of the alleged threats were made through Babeu's personal attorney, who's also running the sheriff's campaign for Congress in District 4, the ex-lover says.
He says lawyer Chris DeRose demanded he sign an agreement that he would never breathe a word about the affair. But Jose (New Times is withholding his last name because Babeu and his attorney have challenged his legal status) refused.
The 34-year-old from central Mexico charges that the sheriff's lawyer warned against mentioning the affair with Babeu. DeRose said gossip about Babeu would focus attention on Jose, attention that could result in his deportation, Jose says.
Antonio Bustamante, a criminal defense attorney and immigration activist, tells New Times that if the allegations against Babeu are true, "To use a position of authority . . . and make legal threats opens a Pandora's box of ethics issues for any law enforcement person or any elected person. In this case, he's both."
Jose says he met Babeu in October 2006 on gay.com, a dating website. What started with an online invitation from Babeu for the two to get together, he says, turned into not only a personal relationship but a professional one.
Jose shared text messages between him and Babeu with New Times. A September 4, 2011, text from the sheriff reads: "You can never have business after this and you will harm me and many others in the process . . . including yourself & your family."
A couple of minutes later, Babeu followed with: "And you say you have loved me? Papi . . . this is no good."
There's much more in the article, including photos (the obligatory shorts shot) and text messages. Rep. Matt Heinz is mentioned toward the end, for being one of two Democrats who voted to send Babeu an extra $5 million for work on the border and for Babeu saying he had dinner with Heinz and his partner, then spent the night.