September 12, 2014
CBS 5
Adam Longo

PHOENIX (CBS5) - Arizona Congressman Matt Salmon, R-5th District, is leading the charge to free a U.S. Marine who has been locked up in a Mexican prison.

Salmon announced on Friday that he will lead a congressional hearing on the issue. Salmon chairs the Western Hemisphere Subcommittee of the Foreign Relations Committee. 

Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi was detained by Mexican officials way back in March when he crossed the border with weapons in his vehicle.

He said he entered the country accidentally when he took a wrong turn from the California side.

Salmon says a hearing on Capitol Hill lets Mexican officials know the time to act is now.

"What we want to do is send a strong message and a shot across the bow to them. We're giving you one last chance and if you don't do anything, you're going to wish you did," Rep. Salmon said. 

The congressional hearing is set for October 1. Tahmooressi has another court hearing scheduled at the end of this month.

Rep. Salmon released this statement on Friday:

"As Congress begins to contemplate once again committing our nation's servicemen and women to the fight against terrorism, it is incumbent on us to stand by our heroes when they return home.  As a direct result of his honorable service in Afghanistan, U.S. Marine Sergeant Andrew Tahmooressi now suffers from combat related PTSD.  Tragically, instead of receiving the treatment he needs, he is being held in a Mexican prison.  As a Member of Congress it is my obligation and duty to protect heroes like Andrew who have suffered the ravages of war in service to our nation.  I'm convening this hearing to honor his service and work to ensure his immediate release so that he can receive the treatment he needs." 

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