Tuesday, September 29, 2009

U.S. Attorney Should Resign or be Fired

U. S. Attorney of the Northern District of Mississippi Jim Greenlee has done it again and topped them all!

As you may recall, this same prosecutor recently dropped the ball 27 times in a high-profile criminal case. Greenlee also authorized the ridiculous immunity deal for Pied Piper Ed Peters, a corrupt former DA from Mississippi who has taken everyone for a ride.

Now, today, comes breaking news that Greenlee targeted Middle Eastern business operators in the post 9/11 hysteria even though there were no links to terrorism.

According to the Clarion Ledger:

The U.S. attorney's office in Oxford targeted convenience store operators in north Mississippi, many of Middle Eastern descent, despite a lack of any connection to terrorism, according to documents obtained by The Clarion-Ledger. The Convenience Store Initiative arose from meetings with local law enforcement officers in the years following 9-11 - when Middle Eastern terrorists flew hijacked planes into the Pentagon and World Trade Center Twin Towers.

U.S. Attorney Jim Greenlee of Oxford said the government was "looking to see any links to terrorism, but what we found was criminal conduct." Instead of arrests for alleged terrorist plots, state and federal officials since 2006 have charged more than 60 people in Mississippi with such illegal acts as the sale of excessive amounts of pseudoephedrine - used to make meth. Those who ran the Convenience Store Initiative say the FBI found nothing wrong with the initiative, which arose from tips from local law enforcement. In fact, they say the Justice Department in the Bush administration praised the concept.

Those involved in the initiative say the money from the illegal activity was being sent back overseas, where it couldn't be traced and possibly could have gone to funding terrorism. But they acknowledged the money could have gone to relatives instead. Greenlee denied the suggestion those of Middle Eastern descent were targeted. "Did we look at it from an improper purpose? No," he said.

Improper purpose? Absolutely! These business operators had no links whatsoever to terrorism except being , as they say in backwards Mississippi, "colored."

Instead of finding any problems or links with terrorism, Greenlee busted eight store operators who sold too much cold medicine in an entrapment scheme the feds set up.

This is typical of hillbilly Mississippi: target the "coloreds and foreigners" on a cooked up hysteria terrorism charge and then throw the book at them on something else since you couldn't find anything to begin with.

Greenlee, who probably thought of this "brilliant" idea while buying a cup of coffee from a Middle Eastern looking-fellow at a Kangaroo Express in Oxford, should immediately resign or be fired by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.
Read the full story here.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Fired by Rove, U.S. Attorney Gets Old Job Back

From the Associated Press:

Daniel Bogden never really got a good answer why President George W. Bush fired him from his post as U.S. attorney for Nevada in 2006. But it doesn't matter to Bogden anymore. He's got his old job back.

"It's my decision to move forward as U.S. attorney and not dwell in the past," Bogden said as he prepares to become the only one of nine federal prosecutors ousted in 2006 to return to his appointed post. He expects to begin before Oct. 10.

"I did not do anything wrong that merited my firing without notice," said Bogden, a 53-year-old career criminal prosecutor who measures words and their meaning and calls himself politically nonpartisan. Bush nominated him in 2001 at the suggestion of Republican U.S. Sen. John Ensign of Nevada.

U.S. Sen. Harry Reid, the Democratic majority leader, wanted Bodgen to return to his old post to "right the wrong" of his dismissal, said Reid's spokesman, Jon Summers. President Obama gave his blessing, and the Senate confirmed Bodgen on Sept. 15.

A Justice Department inspector general's investigation concluded that the 2006 purge of Bogden and top federal prosecutors in Arkansas, Michigan, Missouri, New Mexico, Phoenix, Seattle, San Diego and San Francisco was "unsystematic and arbitrary."

Friday, September 25, 2009

Rove's Goal: Staying in Power

Wayne Slater, political columnist of the Dallas Morning News, (pictured) writes an interesting analysis of Karl Rove based on the book by Matt Latimer.

Slater writes, "There is a view that Rove's politics were never about advancing conservatism, but staying in power. He was about winning – every dispute, every point, every difference, even if it meant dividing your own team."

With the take-over of the U.S. Department of Justice in 2006, Rove was able to gain political power by using criminal charges to go after political operatives in Alaska, Wisconsin, Alabama, California, Mississippi, Maine, and elsewhere.

Using the DOJ for political purposes was not a conservative position. It was shamefully about staying in power.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Truthful, but Inaccurate

Now it looks like Fitzgerald's office is defending their own, claiming in a new filing that "no finding of misconduct is justified" and that the witness who allegedly lied was being "truthful, but inaccurate."

Law.com writes:

Federal prosecutors in Chicago have asked a judge to reconsider her ruling last month that four convicted drug traffickers deserve a new trial because prosecutors engaged in misconduct. The prosecutors from U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald's office on Sept. 18 filed a motion for reconsideration in the case, telling U.S. District Judge Joan Lefkow that the government witness who she determined gave false testimony at the trial actually "was truthful, but inaccurate." When taking into account additional evidence not cited in Lefkow's decision and viewing the case as a whole, no finding of misconduct is justified, the prosecutors argued.
How many times have federal prosecutors been "truthful, but inaccurate" when they go after innocent victims who eventually plead out?

How many members of the Rove Republican Racket created "truthful, but inaccurate" accusations against prominent Democrats in an attempt to silence their political activism?

"Truthful, but inaccurate" is lawyerspeak for justifying a lie or falsehood and prosecutorial misconduct. A lie is a lie is a lie.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Rove's Hiring Practices

Matt Latimer, the former speechwriter to President George W. Bush, has made political headlines recently with excerpts from a new book he has written about his days in the Rove-Bush-Cheney Administration.

But tonight, in a an op-ed written for the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Latimer gives insight into the incompetent hiring practices by the Rove Republican Racket.

Appropriately titled "GOP Succumbed to Unchecked Power," Latimer writes:

Every administration politicizes hiring to a degree, but some in the Bush administration went beyond the pale. Much is known about the political firings of U.S. attorneys and the party-line enforcers who removed or intimidated qualified personnel at the Justice Department. Less well known is what happened outside Justice. For nearly three years at the Defense Department, I saw young, inexperienced political operatives enjoy nearly unrestrained power. Like schoolyard bullies who picked on people because they could, these operatives pursued personal vendettas, blocked hirings, delayed promotions and pressured high-ranking officials. Backed by the White House political shop, some operatives refused to hire experienced communicators to help the president and the defense secretary work effectively on Afghanistan and Iraq. They insisted on hiring friends or mediocre candidates from a White House-approved list.

And we wonder why DOJ or DOD went to hell during the Bush years?

Read the full op-ed here.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Explicit, Unequivocal Evidence Against the Rove Racket

The ethical lapses of the Rove's brigade of politically-charged U.S. Attorneys are coming out in the open and providing a black-eye to our system of justice.

We have written about the remnants left over by the Bush Administration, Assistant U.S. Attorneys, and their lack of ethics, temperance, and fairness.

Today, new developments from Alabama highlight these problems.

The Queen of the Rove Republican Racket, former U.S. Attorney Alice H. Martin of the Northern District of Alabama, and her subordinates (Assistant U.S. Attorneys) allegedly "failed to disclose exculpatory information about a government contractor who stood trial in 2007 on arms control charges, defense lawyers said in a court filing last week, citing newly disclosed emails," according to a post today on the Main Justice website.

Main Justice writes:

Lawyers for Alex Latifi wrote...that former U.S. Attorney Alice Martin and two Assistant U.S. Attorneys violated their Brady obligations by withholding information from the defense. Latifi was acquitted in October 2007 of charges that he violated the Arms Export Control Act. Prosecutors alleged that Latifi falsified a report to the Defense Department and sent a drawing of a Black Hawk helicopter part to China. He is CEO of Axion Corp., which manufactured military equipment, including Humvee machine-gun mounts. The defense team ... said they have “explicit, unequivocal evidence” that Assistant U.S. Attorneys David Estes and Angela Debro and Army investigators David Balwinski and Marcus Mills allegedly conspired with trial witness James Oglesby to conceal evidence and defraud the court.“All of these individuals sought to present false evidence to the court with the hope of convicting defendants of a crime they knew defendants had not committed,” the defense filing says.

Now, every case that Assistant U.S. Attorneys David Estes and Angela Debro have been involved with are now suspect. What other evidence in the the past has been concealed? How many times has the court been defrauded?

The Rove-Bush-Cheney legacy is a legal nightmare ready to implode.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Hide and Seek on Immunity Deal

The soap opera surrounding the ridiculous immunity deal given to the corrupt former DA from Mississippi, Ed "Pied Piper" Peters took a more interesting turn yesterday.

The Mississippi Litigation Review run by Philip Thomas wrote and posted the following:

A few weeks ago I made a Freedom of Information Act request to the Department of Justice seeking a copy of the government's immunity agreement with Ed Peters. DOJ refused my request. Here is a copy of DOJ's refusal letter. According to the DOJ, I am not entitled to the information because Peters did not consent and there was no showing that the public disclosure outweighs Peters' privacy interests. My request letter to the DOJ did not identify a public interest for the disclosure. My limited research on the topic, however, suggests that this is not the type of private information that the privacy act was designed to protect. In addition, it's my understanding that the government should produce the information with the private information redacted. The suggestion that the public in not interested in the Peters immunity deal is a joke. I suspect that the DOJ does not want to produce the agreement because it is embarrassed that DOJ granted Peters immunity. My informal reading of public opinion both in and outside the bar is that Peters should have been prosecuted.

A joke it is!

As we said in an earlier post, U.S. Attorney Jim Greenlee made a monstrous, Mississippi mistake. Greenlee, the same sloppy prosecutor who recently dropped the ball 27 times in a highly-publicized criminal case, is an agent of the Rove Republican Racket and gave Peters a free ride: 100-percent immunity in a judicial bribery scandal and partial reimbursement of $1 million in proceeds from the same bribe.

Now Greenlee and his staff are hiding their tracks. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder should force the DOJ to release the documents related to this half-baked deal. Read more about the Pied Piper Peters here.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Round Two in LA

In June, the Rove Republican Racket suffered an enormous setback in Los Angeles. A U.S. District judge tossed out the two most serious charges against a Democratic political operative indicted on three charges of violating federal campaign finance laws. Read the story here. A third charge was dropped later.

Bush-appointed U.S. Attorney Thomas P. O'Brien suffered an embarrassing legal blow. He's since resigned, but the leftovers of the Rove-Bush-Cheney machine are marching on.

On Monday, according to Main Justice, the U.S. Attorney's office in Los Angeles filed an appeal alleging that that Pierce O'Donnell (pictured) violated the "spirit" of campaign financing laws.

In summary, the Republicans want to put a prominent Democrat, O'Donnell, who also happens to be a respected lawyer, behind bars like they've done to many Democrats across the country by stretching the law, spirit or no spirit.

This second round is a waste of U.S. taxpayer money. The appeal should be withdrawn and O'Donnell like all Americans should be left to engage in political activity without fear of legal retaliation by any political racket.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Looking in the Mirror

Many U.S. Attorneys of the Rove Republican Racket love to charge and prosecute political enemies using the "Honest Services Fraud" Statute.

In Georgia, an Acting U.S. Attorney stated the following Friday regarding a judge who was prosecuted under that charge:

"The essence of the honest services fraud charge was that the defendant allowed his judicial decisions to be manipulated by outside influences from improper sources, such as the requests of particular individuals who had his ear regarding special treatment for some of those who appeared or had cases before him," said Acting United States Attorney G. F. "Pete" Peterman, III. "Our goal throughout this and related prosecutions has been to ensure that judicial and law enforcement decisions made in the Alapaha Judicial Circuit are properly based on the dictates of the law and basic fairness, in an open and public proceeding, rather than through favoritism and improper influence in private chambers."

With that, we ask, will U.S. Attorneys from the Rove-Bush era look in the mirror?

How many U.S. Attorneys and Assistant U.S. Attorneys have been influenced through favoritism to prosecute the innocent, to improperly influence grand jury indictments on meritless cases, to throw political prisoners in jail because of manipulation by outside influences, including the media?

Friday, September 11, 2009

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Weak on Sexual Misconduct by Prison Staff

In a new report issued this week, The Washington Post reports that "sexual misconduct by prison staff members with federal inmates doubled over the past eight years."

Under the Rove-Bush-Cheney Administration, sexual misconduct in federal prisons truly increased. But what about convictions?

The Post writes, "After studying hundreds of cases of alleged sexual assault, Justice Department Inspector General Glenn A. Fine concluded that the response of the Federal Bureau of Prisons has been 'mixed' despite changes in the law and vocal efforts to crack down on misconduct. "

The Rove Republican Racket let these prison officials that engaged in sexual misconduct off the hook with a slight slap on the wrist.

The Post states, "Since a change in the law in 2006, the percentage of cases that assistant U.S. attorneys accepted for prosecution has risen by more than 12 percent. In the cases in which criminal charges were filed, 83 out of 90 resulted in convictions. The vast majority of the penalties, however, resulted in sentences of less than one year of prison time under both the older and newer laws. "

Less than one year! What an injustice! The staff of the Bureau of Prisons that engaged in the sexual abuse all should have been treated as rapists and obligated to register as sex offenders.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Prosecutorial Misconduct and Assistant U.S. Attorneys

U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald of the Northern District of Illinois is admired for his integrity and independence. He gained recent national fame in the Valarie Plame CIA Leak Affair. Fitzgerald (pictured) has served almost eight years as U.S. Attorney and the Obama Administration indicates they're keeping him on board.

It's a surprise the Rove Republican Racket didn't fire him especially after Fitzgerald indicted Vice President Dick Cheney's Chief of Staff for lying.

Now, sadly, comes revelations that a prosecutor in Fitzgerald's office engaged in prosecutorial misconduct.

The Chicago Tribune wrote recently:

"A federal judge has found that a prosecutor in U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald's office committed prosecutorial misconduct by allowing a government witness to testify falsely in a drug conspiracy trial that resulted in the convictions of four defendants in March. In a 27-page ruling issued Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Joan Lefkow ordered a new trial for the four on some counts, including the key conspiracy charge. But she refused to dismiss multiple other counts, meaning each faces sentencing for those convictions."

What does this REALLY show?

It shows the Rove Republican Racket has left many subordinates in positions of power: Assistant U.S. Attorneys who totally disregard good ethics, temperance, and fairness.

The Obama Administration is cleaning house at the top of each U.S. Attorney Office. Maybe it's time Eric Holder and friends take an intricate look at the transgressions of subordinates and Assistant U.S. Attorneys who appear to be more wicked than their Bush-appointed bosses.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

U.S. Attorney Drops the Ball 27 Times

The Rove Republican Racket's esteemed member, U.S. Attorney Jim Greenlee of Northern Mississippi, has dropped the ball twenty-seven times. Greenlee failed to provide defense counsel in a high-profile criminal case with cell phone records and other vital information that had been requested 27 separate times!

Greenlee's actions are as bad as his New Jersey colleague, U.S. Attorney Ralph Marra, who is under scrutiny for opening his big mouth to the media.

Greenlee, who successfully politically prosecuted several top Democrats in Mississippi for the Rove-Bush-Cheney Administration, suffered this ugly legal black eye last week.

According to the Clarksdale Press Register:

U.S. District Court Judge Neil Biggers Jr. issued a stern warning that prosecutors had until Friday to produce cell phone records and other information which had previously been requested by...defense counsel. Biggers also asked the government to explain the reasons behind their delays. On Friday, prosecutors filed their response. According to the response filed by U.S Attorney Jim Greenlee and assistant U.S. Attorney Paul Roberts, prosecutors and [defense] attorneys had informally agreed upon an August 31 deadline for producing the information. “The government mistakenly did not seek an order from the Court formalizing the August 31st deadline agreement with counsel opposite,” reads a section of the prosecutors response. “The government apologizes for any inconvenience to the Court and respectfully requests that the Court impose no sanction upon the case due to the government’s failure to request an extension of discovery deadline and states that it will keep the Court informed of any problems related to timely discovery in the future.” Defense attorney’s had issued 27 separate requests for detailed information related to the extensive undercover FBI investigation....

Greenlee made a big mistake, 27 times.

If defense counsel had done so once, Greenlee would have sought sanctions. Greenlee apologizes blaming a procedural failure while protecting his apparently sloppy or intentionally contemptuous criminal division.

Like Marra, Greenlee and staff should be under the scrutiny of the Office of Professional Responsibility of the U.S. Department of Justice.

Read the full article here.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Rove Victim Talks Reform

Former U.S. Attorney David Iglesias of New Mexico was fired by the Rove Republican Racket in 2006. This past Friday before Labor Day Weekend, Iglesias (pictured) spoke about reform and directed it at the cancer that almost killed justice: Karl Rove's political conversion of the U.S. Department of Justice.

From the Associated Press:

David Iglesisas says U.S. attorneys should be appointed for six-year terms that overlap administrations to minimize the influence of politics on what should be an independent federal office.

The former U.S. attorney for New Mexico—one of nine federal prosecutors fired in a series of politically tinged dismissals in 2006—spoke Friday at the Hispanic National Bar Association's annual conference in Albuquerque. "When you talk or think about prosecutors, there should be two adjectives that are attached: independent and integrity. If you don't have those two, you don't have a legitimate prosecutor," he said.

In addition to advocating longer terms for U.S. Attorneys, Iglesias said in an interview they should only be removed for misconduct to insure that politics stay out of federal prosecutions. "I think one very practical thing to do would be to change the term because, right now, there is a four-year appointment. Maybe make it a six-year term so there's an automatic overlap into the next administration," he said.

Iglesias spoke about phone calls he received in 2006 from former Rep. Heather Wilson and former Sen. Pete Domenici, both New Mexico Republicans. He claimed the two pressured him to bring an indictment in a public corruption case before Election Day in November 2006.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Pied Piper Peters Entangles Eaton Even Further

Remember that corrupt ex-DA from Mississippi named Ed Peters? He's the Pied Piper who plays a beautiful tune that lures lawyers, U.S. Attorneys, and fools of the Rove Republican Racket into a drowning river of deception.

A quick review:

Now, this week, the Pied Piper Peters caused an expanding legal fight in the Eaton vs. Frisby case.

From the Jackson Clarion Ledger:

Frisby attorneys allege DeLaughter's rulings favored Eaton once Peters, a former Hinds County district attorney, entered the case on behalf of Eaton. Peters' alleged influence on DeLaughter in the Eaton vs. Frisby case has come up in DeLaughter's unrelated criminal case involving former lawyer Dickie Scruggs. DeLaughter pleaded guilty to a federal obstruction of justice charge in that case. Peters was granted immunity. In motions filed Tuesday, Frisby's legal team asks the judge overseeing DeLaughter's criminal case to release all statements or grand jury testimony made by Peters regarding Eaton vs. Frisby.

"The Frisby litigants are now trying to determine exactly who was involved, along with Peters, in the (alleged) successful attempt to influence Judge DeLaughter's rulings in Eaton v. Frisby," according to court documents. Assistant U.S. Attorney Bob Norman said he wouldn't turn over the information without a court order because grand jury information is kept secret by law. He wouldn't comment further. No ruling has been made on the motions.

Read the full article here.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Federal Judge Refuses Criminal Cases

The Rove Republican Racket, which primarily targeted Democrats, successfully prosecuted state and local political leaders using federal statutes.
The federalization and creation of new political crimes to politically prosecute prominent Democrats has been an absolute disgrace and a page taken out of George Orwell's novel 1984.

Now, with the scary federalization of petty street crime, a federal judge in Milwaukee, J.P. Stadtmueller (pictured), is refusing to take any more criminal cases.

According to a report today on NPR:

A federal judge in Milwaukee has taken the unusual step of refusing to accept new criminal cases and recusing himself from existing ones, in a move observers say is about politics, impropriety and, possibly, hurt feelings....it all started after a ruling in July by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. Prosecutors thought Stadtmueller showed bias in a gun case and took the rare move of asking the appeals court to remove him, which it did. Stadtmueller accused the U.S. Attorney's office of judge-shopping.Before Stadtmueller was given a lifetime appointment to the federal bench in 1987, he ran the U.S. Attorney's office in Milwaukee. Over the years, he has criticized the type of cases his successors have brought to federal court. When Stadtmueller was a prosecutor, most federal cases involved white-collar crimes. Now, there are many more gun and drug cases, and the judge's frustration is apparent in court documents. In taking Stadtmueller off the gun case, the appeals court ruled that he broke judicial rules by suggesting a plea bargain. Stadtmueller had questioned the government's decision to bring the case to federal court, calling it "an embarrassment to the justice system." Documents also show Stadtmueller sought to avoid a conviction that would have sent the defendant to prison for at least 15 years.