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    California Man Charged in Shooting of U.S. Consular Officer in Mexico

    California Man Charged in Shooting of U.S. Consular Officer in Mexico
    JAN 10 2017, 5:08 PM ET
    by ALEX JOHNSON

    A California man is charged with attempted murder of “an internationally protected person” in last week’s broad-daylight shooting of a U.S. consular officer in Mexico, authorities said Tuesday.

    Zia Zafar, 31, of Chino Hills, California, was deported to the United States and charged Monday, the Justice Department said. He made his initial court appearance Tuesday and was ordered held pending a detention hearing Friday in federal court in Virginia.

    In an affidavit attached to the criminal complaint, filed in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Virginia, the FBI identified the victim as Christopher Ashcroft, a vice consul at the U.S. consular office in Guadalajara —although it was still unclear what motivated what Secretary of State John Kerry has called a “heinous attack.”

    Because he has diplomatic status, Ashcroft is considered an internationally protected person working as an agent of the U.S. government, which is why the case was transferred to the U.S. courts.

    Zia Zafar

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