Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The End Of Justice As We Knew It

Since the AG has this taste for turning out U.S. Attorneys who aren't meeting standards of Gooperism, here's one that didn't make the cut. Next round, perhaps?

Poorly written Justice Department documents cost the federal government more than $100 million in what was supposed to have been the crowning moment of the biggest tax prosecution ever.

Walter Anderson, the telecommunications entrepreneur who admitted hiding hundreds of millions of dollars from the IRS and District of Columbia tax collectors, was sentenced Tuesday to nine years in prison and ordered to repay about $23 million to the city.

But U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman said he couldn't order Anderson to repay the federal government $100 million to $175 million because the Justice Department's binding plea agreement with Anderson listed the wrong statute.

Friedman said he could have worked around that problem by ordering Anderson to repay the money as part of his probation. But prosecutors omitted any discussion of probation -- a common element of plea deals -- from Anderson's paperwork.

"I've come to the conclusion, very reluctantly, that I have no authority to order restitution," Friedman said. "I hope the government will appeal me."

Channing Phillips, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office, which prosecuted the case in cooperation with Justice Department headquarters, said the government would bring civil charges against Anderson.

Seems the DoJ has too much on its mind what with calling up acting U.S. Attorneys to tell them not to enforce the laws. But at that level, to write court filings this poorly sure does seem to indicate that it's okay to be really dumb, as long as you leave the GOP criminals alone.

However, this Department of Justice flinging poo at any regulating of business is having its effect for sure;

European countries and Singapore have surpassed the United States in their ability to exploit information and communication technology, according to a new survey.

The United States, which topped the World Economic Forum's "networked readiness index" in 2006, slipped to seventh. The study, out Wednesday, largely blamed increased political and corporate interference in the judicial system.

We really, really need to get these people out of high places where they're doing too much harm to the (former) Rule of Law and the United States, in so many, many ways.

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Blogger Hecate said...


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