- Speaking of ethical violations, why didn't Greenlee's office submit a review of Tom Dawson's book writing deal to the IG's office?
Time that someone write to the IG's office about Dawson, Greenlee, and the secret six-month (book writing?) contract.
Santa Clara County District Attorney Dolores Carr on Tuesday offered her most vigorous defense to date of her office's boycott of Superior Court Judge Andrea Bryan, even as criticism mounted in the legal community of what some are likening to a retaliatory nuclear strike. In an e-mail to the newspaper, Carr called it "not unheard of" for prosecutors to disqualify a judge from all criminal cases, citing actions by prosecutors in San Diego, Ventura and Mendocino counties, as well as efforts by public defenders to boycott judges in Santa Clara, Napa and San Bernardino counties.
But experts in criminal law and ethics said the blanket boycott that Carr initiated last week is an abusive tactic that can damage the court system. "Most DAs realize it's like the atomic bomb," said Laurie L. Levenson, who teaches criminal law and ethics at Loyola Law School. "Inappropriate" and "a threat to judicial independence" were the terms used by Gerald F. Uelmen, a Santa Clara University law professor and former dean.
Carr instructed her staff Friday to stop bringing all criminal cases before Bryan, who recently angered prosecutors by finding that a trial prosecutor in her office committed numerous acts of misconduct, including giving false testimony. Carr, who is running for re-election and facing stiff criticism for the boycott, insisted in an e-mail that her decision was based on a pattern of rulings by Bryan. She declined to elaborate further.
The state's disciplinary board pointed to complaints Rucker was involved in obtaining state medical files under false pretenses, misleading court officials to retain possession of records, dispatching staff to record license plates of women entering the Wichita office of physician George Tiller and securing records from a motel where some of Tiller's patients stayed. Specifically, Rucker is accused of misleading the Kansas Supreme Court when he said the state attorney general's office wasn't pursuing the identity of any adult women who had obtained medical services at Tiller's clinic. The ethics board indicated there was evidence of an effort to obtain names of adult clients.
Morrison owes Russell's family and the thousands of other investors answers. Morrison dismissed a civil lawsuit in November that let Durham keep his cash and assets.Willie Pearl quilted on Mondays for missionaries and loved her flowers. She worked at Yoder Brother Flowers in Barberton for 20 years and was the mother of five children, and grandmother to 11 grandchildren. "She was salt of the earth, is what she was," Don Russell [her son] said. "A fine neighbor, a fine friend."
She was admitted to the hospital two days after Fair Finance's Akron headquarters was raided by the FBI. Doctors said it might be congestive heart failure, Don Russell said. When they asked if she knew why she was in the hospital, Don Russell said his mother told them her money was due. She was due a $100,000 interest payment Dec. 6. She died Dec. 23.
Now, Don Russell, along with his wife, Lori, want answers. They're frustrated with what has happened and the lack of information about the investigation of Fair Finance. Now they've made it their mission to figure out what's going on. "I don't think about anything other than this, 24 hours a day," he said.
"I can't believe they are letting them do that," Don Russell said of the dismissal. "That is such a slap in the face."The slap in the face is also at the legal process for Morrison has a history of protecting Republicans in trouble.
But why was Neilson REALLY indicted? According to Mississippi journalist Patsy Brumfield:According to the indictment, Neilson was involved in both the site selection, the lease, and an increase in the lease spaces. The building was constructed by C&G Partnership which later incorporated as C&G Properties, LLC; while its principals are not identified in the indictment other than by initials (JC, DG, and their lawyer BW), a quick look at the Secretary of State’s web page discloses that C&G Properties was incorporated by member managers John Covington and Dino Grisanti, along with their lawyer Brad Walsh. ....There is no suggestion in the indictment that any of the three did anything wrong, and paragraph 21 alleges “NEILSON falsely assured JC, DG, and BW that he had checked with an FBI agent and had received approval to own an interest in the Oxford FBI building.” There is a puzzling lack of allegations about what Neilson actually did to get an interest in the building.
We note again that the other partners were not indicted in this property scheme and their names were hidden with initials on the indictment. Although Greenlee was not directly involved in the indictment (he recused himself and had it transferred to Louisiana), we smell his involvement indirectly which eventually led to the indictment.Neilson reportedly sought whistleblower protection from DOJ a few years ago when he questioned the U.S. Attorney’s Office and U.S. Attorney Jim Greenlee for allegedly seeking information on Muslims throughout the region after the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and accused the agency of falsifying evidence in some cases and in entrapment and coercion of witnesses.
Neilson also reportedly raised ethics questions about former assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Dawson’s participation in a book about the office’s investigation and prosecution of then-Oxford attorney Richard “Dickie” Scruggs, who was sentenced to prison on two guilty pleas related to judicial bribery indictments. Before the book was released several weeks ago, a DOJ spokesman said Dawson had retired before he worked on it. Tension between Neilson and the U.S. Attorney’s Office first became public when it was mentioned in the book, although reasons for the problems were not given.
The drug charges were the centerpiece of a well-orchestrated plan to smear Nicholas. As his lawyer's told Miller last fall:
But [two weeks ago] federal prosecutors asked judge Cormac J. Carney to dismiss a 4-count indictment that charges Nicholas with drug conspiracy. This request for dismissal came a few weeks after judge Carney threw out charges on 21 counts of options backdating and securities fraud against Nicholas and former Broadcom chief financial officer William Ruehle.
Nicholas and his lawyers were emphatic that the drug indictment, which suggested Nicholas enjoyed plying Broadcom customers with drinks spiked with Ecstasy and built a series of secret rooms underneath his Laguna Hills mansion to party in, was filed only to stir up attention on a weaker options indictment. "The prosecutors have borrowed a page from the plaintiff's attorneys' playbook and have peppered the indictment with inflammatory, untrue and irrelevant allegations," John Potter, Nicholas' lead attorney on the drug case told us in September.
So why did Morrison ignore Congressman Boccieri? Why has Morrison ignored the pleas of hundreds of concerned investors? Why has Morrison let Durham and Cochran move, reorganize, and sell their personal assets? Why is Morrison just sitting there scratching his nose as the alleged Ponzi principals laugh at investors?A key partner in the embattled financial empire of Indianapolis investor Timothy S. Durham sold off furnishings in his Florida vacation home Friday, a day after a congressman urged a federal prosecutor to block the sale. James F. Cochran, who sold the furnishings in an estate sale at his $3.5 million home in Naples, Fla., and Durham own Fair Finance, an Ohio lender the FBI raided Nov. 24. Cochran, part of a group of insiders close to Durham, has never been identified as a target by Morrison, has not been charged with a crime and was not barred from selling his property. U.S. Rep. John Boccieri, D-Ohio, had urged federal authorities to stop the sale by freezing Cochran's assets out of concern that a sale of personal property might deprive Ohio investors of cash to defray possible losses.
A federal judge has opted not to impose a finding of prosecutorial misconduct on Justice Department lawyers for their handling of a case against Blackwater security guards involved in a 2007 shooting in Baghdad. In Federal District Court here last month, Judge Ricardo M. Urbina threw out all charges against the five involved in the shootings, which left 17 Iraqis dead and about 20 wounded.
In that decision, Judge Urbina wrote that in a “reckless violation of the defendants’ constitutional rights,” investigators, prosecutors and government witnesses had inappropriately relied on statements the guards had been compelled to make in debriefings by the State Department shortly after the shootings. The State Department had hired the guards to protect its officials.
But in a ruling on Tuesday, Judge Urbina said he would not take what he called the “extreme” step of prohibiting prosecutors from reviving the case. Had Judge Urbina ruled that prosecutors committed misconduct, it could have set off an internal Justice Department investigation and led to sanctions against the prosecutors.
Lange is a hypocrite.Evers was quoted as saying, “All he (DeLaughter) did was lie . . . What man can tell me he hasn't lied? You're telling me he should spend 18 months in prison for that?" In fact, Mr. DeLaughter lied about his own involvement in a scheme to improperly influence a proceeding over which he presided. And yes, Mr. Evers, I am telling you that he should spend 18 months in prison for that. As a judge, as a lawyer, and as a smart person, he knew better, which is precisely why he pleaded guilty to the crime.
The limited comments on the conflict, scandal, and retaliation between Neilson and Greenlee are just the tip of the iceberg as this Titanic sinks.Greenlee’s departure has been rumored for months, amid various reports that made his Oxford-based office seem something of a soap opera.
The latest: Mississippi journalist Patsy Brumfield reports that an FBI agent who was indicted last week for failing to disclose a personal financial interest in the FBI building in Oxford had sought whistle blower status a couple of years ago after reporting concerns that Greenlee’s office had improperly targeted area Muslims for investigation after the 9/11 attacks.
The so-called Convenience Store Initiative didn’t find any terrorist links, but prosecutors did end up charging some 60 people with selling excessive amounts of pseudoephedrine, used to make methamphetamine, an illegal drug.
The agent, Hal Neilson, also reportedly raised ethics concerns about a book that a former Assistant U.S. Attorney in the district, Tom Dawson, wrote about his prosecution of billionaire Mississippi trial lawyer Richard “Dickie” Scruggs in a judicial bribery scandal, Brumfield wrote.
WARWICK, R.I. -- The drunk-driving charge against federal prosecutor Gerard B. Sullivan was dismissed in District Court on Monday morning. In a quick procedure, as the judge called the calendar for the day, Sullivan and his lawyer, Kevin J. Bristow, stood before Judge Frank J. Cenerini as the judge said the state was submitting a request for dismissal.
Cenerini mentioned that after Sullivan was charged with driving under the influence of alcohol, Sullivan had admitted in Traffic Tribunal last week that he refused to take a chemical breath test. "As is the customary disposition in these matters, the DWI -- if there is a refusal submission -- is dismissed," Cenerini said.
In the hallway after the brief proceeding, Sullivan said he was "not at liberty to speak" about the matter. Sullivan, 50, was one of eight people charged by the Warwick police during Thanksgiving weekend with refusing to submit to a chemical breath test for suspected drunken driving. He was the only one of those eight who was not also charged with driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, a misdemeanor. He was later charged with driving under the influence after Warwick Police Chief Stephen M. McCartney and The Journal reviewed the arrest reports for all eight drivers.
The Florida Supreme Court today threw out the death sentence of convicted cop killer Paul Beasley Johnson because “the record here is so rife with evidence of previously undisclosed prosecutorial misconduct that we have no choice but to grant relief.”
In October, Gov. Charlie Crist ordered Johnson to be put to death by lethal injection in November.
The high court stayed the execution and heard oral arguments on the case in which Johnson was convicted of going on a drug-induced killing spree in Polk County in 1981. Johnson was convicted of murdering three men, including a Polk County Sheriff’s deputy.
In its ruling today, the court found that prosecutors intentionally got a jailhouse informer to get information from Johnson, take notes and give the notes to investigators. Prosecutors then lied about their role in soliciting the information at Johnson’s trial in 1981.
At a later trial in 1988, a different prosecutor used the same testimony that helped persuade the jury to hand down a 7-5 vote in favor of the death penalty, the court ruled today.
About 14 prosecutors listened Wednesday morning in stunned silence as [Judge Andrea Y.] Bryan — a former prosecutor and San Jose deputy city attorney appointed by Republican Gov. Pete Wilson — took the rare step of rebuking the District Attorney's Office and dismissing the charges. [Deputy District Attorney Troy] Benson did not attend the hearing. "Mr. Benson's numerous acts of misconduct, culminating in his false testimony in this proceeding, strikes at the foundation of our legal system and is so grossly shocking and outrageous that it offends the universal sense of justice to allow prosecution in this matter to proceed,'' Bryan said. "As such, defendant's motion to dismiss on due process grounds is granted.''
In a stunning rebuke to the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office, a county judge on Wednesday ordered a man who had been sentenced to 38 years to life freed on the grounds the trial prosecutor in the child molestation case committed "numerous acts of misconduct,'' including giving false testimony.
The ruling by Superior Court Judge Andrea Y. Bryan means Augustin Uribe, 66, will be released within several days after spending four years behind bars for a crime that even the alleged victim says he did not commit.
The decision casts a shadow over the career of Deputy District Attorney Troy Benson and further tarnishes the reputation of the District Attorney's Office, which has come under fire in recent years for alleged prosecutorial misconduct.
Uribe's conviction on charges he sexually assaulted a young relative was overturned by an appellate court in 2008, after a finding that the District Attorney's Office had improperly withheld a videotape of the purported victim's physical exam, which was turned over only after Uribe had been sentenced. A defense expert then reviewed the videotape and said it contradicted the prosecution witnesses' testimony that the child had been assaulted.
Prosecutors have since acknowledged the existence of about 3,300 of those videotapes dating back to 1991 that were never provided to trial attorneys, as required by law.
Prosecutors who mishandled the investigation into a deadly 2007 Blackwater Worldwide shooting face a possible misconduct citation from a judge who says they withheld evidence and violated the guards' constitutional rights.
U.S. District Judge Ricardo Urbina admonished the Justice Department last week for its "reckless" handling of the investigation into a shooting that left 17 Iraqis dead. He threw out manslaughter and weapons charges against five security guards and, in a footnote, said he was also considering whether the repeated government missteps amounted to misconduct.
Such a ruling would be an embarrassing cap to a politically sensitive investigation and a black eye to a department that is still dealing with the fallout from last year's botched corruption case against former Sen. Ted Stevens. In that case, a judge wiped away the senator's conviction and appointed a lawyer to investigate prosecutors for withholding evidence from defense attorneys.