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U.S. Marine From South Florida Shackled In Mexican Prison

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — A U.S. Marine who grew up in South Florida is shackled in a Mexican prison.

Marine reservist Andrew Tahmooressi, 25, from Weston faces three fire arm charges in Mexico.

“This is a marine who bravely served his country and has always been courageous full of hope and optimism, but he’s now in a foreign prison without any hope being provided to him that he’s going to secure a release,” said  Jill Tahmooressi, his mother.

Tahmooressi served two tours of duty in Afghanistan and now suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and depression. He moved to San Diego for treatment.

His mom said while driving to meet up with a friend, his nightmare began, when he made a wrong turn and ended up crossing the border, with all his belongings, including legally purchased U.S. guns, in his pick up.

Jill Tahmooressi told CBS4’s Ted Scouten, “He called me when he reached the border and said, ‘Mom, I want you to know where I’m at because I made a wrong turn, I ended up in Mexico and the Mexican officials are encompassing the truck.'”

Andrew was taken to La Mesa prison in Tijuana, Mexico. Shortly after his arrival, Jill got a heart stopping phone call  from him.

“He called me one night and he said in a panicked voice, he said, ‘Mom I’m not going to make it through the night.  There’s hit men in here, they have told me they are going to kill me.  They’re going to rape and then torture and murder me and they’re going to send me out in a body bag,'” said Jill Tahmooressi.

Jill said Andrew escaped that section of the prison by scaling a wall, but has now been chained to his cot for nearly a month.  She went to visit him. Jill said what she saw crushed her.

“They arrested him and have given him no hope for a trial or release.  I’ve never seen him in this condition of defeat,” said Jill Tahmooressi.

Andrew’s mother is starting a petition to get the White House involved.  Click here for more information on the petition.

Officials told his mother he is supposed to be moved to a maximum security prison soon.

Border officials in Mexico plan on giving a statement regarding his appearance and condition on May 28th.

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