Pro-Legal Immigration Coalition Reponds to Defamatory Accusations

The following statement was issued to the media today in response to false accusations against me, Ron Mortensen, chairman of Citizens for Tax Fairness and other leaders of Utah’s Coalition On Illegal Immigration.  This comes on the heels of several interviews recently in which we have requested Utah’s Attorney General Mark Shurtleff to enforce the law on Utah’s books, to support Arizona’s new law and to get behind Utah Representative Steve Sandstrom’s Arizona-like immigration bill.

Our coalition represents thousands of Utah citizens and is confident that the vast majority of Utahns want to stop the flood of illegal immigrants who are taking advantage of our social entitlements, who are bringing drugs across the border and who are stealing children’s social security numbers.  We have been successful at the state legislature in passing good laws to reduce illegal immigration and to protect our children from identity theft.  We will be meeting with Utah’s Governor Gary Herbert later in July to discuss necessary solutions.

SALT LAKE CITY—July 13, 2010—Tony Yapias, director of Proyecto Latino de Utah, a pro-illegal immigrant activist group, has wrongfully accused citizen members of the Utah Coalition on Illegal Immigration and its spokesman Ronald Mortensen of disclosing an allegedly proprietary government list of individuals who are in Utah illegally.

Mortensen said, “To my personal knowledge our coalition knew nothing of this list and had nothing to do with its disclosure. I believe this act goes over the line. Our entire focus is on protecting the personal information of individuals against improper use and disclosure. We denounce whoever compiled and released this list, and ask them to respect and uphold Utah’s privacy laws.”

Mortensen accused Mr. Yapias of slander and libel, and demanded an immediate, public retraction by Mr. Yapias on threat of potential legal action.

Former U.S. Senate Candidate Cherilyn Eagar said, “Mr. Yapias is out of line to hold Mr. Mortensen responsible. The coalition is a group of citizen volunteers who have successfully worked to put solid legislation in place. We want our elected officials to enforce those laws and to work within our legislative system to enact laws that will keep our children and families safe.  This is the duty of our government and this is the message we will take with us to the Governor’s meeting later this month.”

 Mortensen added, “From the County Sherriff, to the City Police Chief, to the state legislature and our governor, we are about promoting the safety of our children and families from illegal alien driven identity theft and other serious crimes.”


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