Archive | Blind Justice

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Donald Trump's legal team tries to refute his 'under investigation' tweet

It’s widely believed Flynn is already cooperating, so who’s next?

A veteran federal prosecutor recruited onto special counsel Robert Mueller’s team is known for a skill that may come in handy in the investigation of potential ties between Russia and U.S. President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign team: persuading witnesses to turn on friends, colleagues and superiors.

Andrew Weissmann, who headed the U.S. Justice Department’s criminal fraud section before joining Mueller’s team last month, is best known for two assignments – the investigation of now-defunct energy company Enron and organized crime cases in Brooklyn, New York – that depended heavily on gaining witness cooperation.

Securing the cooperation of people close to Trump, many of whom have been retaining their own lawyers, could be important for Mueller, who was named by the Justice Department as special counsel on May 17 and is investigating, among other issues, whether Trump himself has sought to obstruct justice. Trump has denied allegations of both collusion and obstruction.

“Flipping” witnesses is a common, although not always successful, tactic in criminal prosecutions.

Robert Ray, who succeeded Kenneth Starr as the independent counsel examining former President Bill Clinton, noted that Trump’s fired former national security advisor, Michael Flynn, has already offered through his lawyer to testify before Congress in exchange for immunity, suggesting potential willingness to cooperate as a witness.

“It would seem to me the time is now to make some decisions about what you have and what leverage can be applied to get the things you don’t have,” Ray said, referring to Mueller’s team.

Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and others close to the president already have hired their own lawyers to help navigate Mueller’s expanding probe and ongoing congressional investigations.

Kathryn Ruemmler, who served as White House counsel under former President Barack Obama, said Weissmann is willing to take risks to secure witness testimony that other prosecutors might not. Ruemmler worked with Weissmann on the Justice Department’s Enron task force that investigated the massive corporate fraud that led to the company’s 2001 collapse.

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Secret Service: No White House tapes

Tribunal de apelaciones mantiene el bloqueo sobre el veto migratorio de Trump

Hmm. So that would mean Trump abused his position by claiming there were tapes? Abuse of power, maybe?

The Secret Service on Monday said it has no copies or transcripts of audio recordings made within the White House during President Donald Trump’s term so far, though Trump appeared to suggest a recording system may exist inside the Oval Office.

“It appears, from a review of Secret Service’s main indices, that there are no records pertaining to your request that are referenced in these indices,” the Secret Service wrote to the Wall Street Journal in response to a Freedom of Information Act request.

Preet Bharara: Enough evidence for obstruction case

Trump corre a fiscal de Nueva York que se negó a dimitir

Former New York U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara told ABC News on Sunday that there is “absolutely evidence” to begin an investigation into whether President Donald Trump obstructed justice. During an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Bharara said that evidence provided by former FBI Director James Comey’s suggested that Trump illegally tried to influence an investigation into… Continue Reading →

Stonewalling the Senate

160404-N-PX557-031e record, I would like a legal justification for your refusal to answer the question today because I think it’s a straightforward question. It’s not involving discussions with the president, and discussions with Mr. Comey. gentlemen, Director Coats and Admiral Rogers, I think you testified, Admiral Rogers that you did discuss today’s testimony… Continue Reading →

SCOTUS takes cellphone tracking case

The U.S. Supreme Court

This will be interesting. Is it search and seizure? We’ll see:

The Supreme Court has agreed to decide how much privacy Americans are entitled to in cellphone tracking data that can reflect their location and movement.

The justices announced Monday that they will rule on whether a search warrant should be required before authorities obtain information from mobile-phone companies that can reflect a user’s approximate movements in the past. The method traces which phone tower a device was connected to and which set of antennas on the tower were used.

The case was brought by a man convicted in a string of armed robberies in Michigan based on “cell site location information” the FBI obtained with a court order, but without a warrant requiring probable cause. The Trump administration had urged the justices not to hear the case, which will likely be argued in the fall, but civil liberties and privacy advocates encouraged the court to take up the issue.

Lower courts have generally ruled that a warrant is not required for such data because it is voluntarily shared by users with third parties, namely the telephone companies. Critics say the precedents behind those decisions are outdated in light of the realities of life in the digital age.

Trump asked intelligence chiefs to help fight FBI investigation

Trump no tendrá recibimiento solemne en el Vaticano; deberá entrar por la puerta trasera

No wonder he asked for loyalty oaths! We are so very shocked, right?

President Trump asked two of the nation’s top intelligence officials in March to help him push back against an FBI investigation into possible coordination between his campaign and the Russian government, according to current and former officials.

Trump made separate appeals to the director of national intelligence, Daniel Coats, and to Adm. Michael S. Rogers, the director of the National Security Agency, urging them to publicly deny the existence of any evidence of collusion during the 2016 election.

Coats and Rogers refused to comply with the requests, which they both deemed to be inappropriate, according to two current and two former officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss private communications with the president.

Trump sought the assistance of Coats and Rogers after FBI Director James B. Comey told the House Intelligence Committee on March 20 that the FBI was investigating “the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Trump campaign and the Russian government and whether there was any coordination between the campaign and Russia’s efforts.”

Trump’s conversation with Rogers was documented contemporaneously in an internal memo written by a senior NSA official, according to the officials. It is unclear if a similar memo was prepared by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence to document Trump’s conversation with Coats. Officials said such memos could be made available to both the special counsel now overseeing the Russia investigation and congressional investigators, who might explore whether Trump sought to impede the FBI’s work.

Breaking news: As soon as Trump leaves, the shit hits the fan

136th USCGA Commencement

Within minutes of Trump leaving on Air Force One this afternoon, we have two breaking stories in the race between the Washington Post and the New York Times to document the administration atrocities. First, the Washington Post has a real bombshell. They have just reported that according to their sources, the investigation into Russian collusion has… Continue Reading →

DOJ appoints special counsel in Russia investigation

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Here’s your breaking news for Wednesday, May 17, 2017. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein has appointed former FBI Director Robert Mueller as special counsel on the Trump-Russia investigation. In a written statement, Rosenstein said,”In my capacity as acting attorney general I determined that it is in the public interest for me to exercise my authority and… Continue Reading →

Some good news in Georgia

Rallies are the new Brunch

A judge has ordered the state to extend voter registration for the special election in GA-6:

A federal court on Thursday ordered Georgia officials to extend the voter registration deadline through at least May 21 to be eligible to vote in the special election runoff in Georgia’s sixth congressional district between Republican Karen Handel and Democrat Jon Ossoff.

Under Georgia law, only those people eligible to vote in the April 18 special election would be eligible to vote in the June 20 runoff.

The Georgia NAACP and others argued in a lawsuit that the rules violate the National Voter Registration Act of 1993, which bars states from having registration deadlines greater than 30 days before an election.

Georgia opposed the request, arguing that “[v]oter qualifications in elections are left to the states” and that the runoff was a “continuation” of the initial election.

On Thursday, US District Judge Timothy Batten held a hearing in the case — and sided with the challengers and against the state.

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