Archive for August 2017

Freedom of the Press #18 – The Big Guns

Freedom of the Press #18
The Big Guns

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
August 10, 2017

August 8, 2017, was the date set for the government to file their response.  They did so in the Government’s Reply to Respondent’s Opposition to Government’s Memorandum in Support of Civil Contempt.  That will be the subject of this article, however the recent background, since the May 9, 2017, Jurisdiction Hearing.

As a result of that Hearing, the government first filed the Government’s Memorandum in Support of Civil Contempt (June 12, 2017).  That was the subject “Freedom of the Press #16 – Jurisdiction Hearing“.  It appears that since January, when the government sought to have me held in Contempt of Court, they have yet to come up with a case citation that supports their position.

My response was filed as Memorandum of Law in Opposition to the Government’s Memorandum in Support of Civil Contempt (July 21, 2017).  This Memorandum increases the burden on the government, separating articles published before the “Supplemental Protective Order” and the one article published after that Order.  The government has yet to meet any standard of proof with regard to their legal responsibility to do so.

So, the current government Reply endeavors to regurgitate some of the same arguments that the government has relied upon, through the course of this ordeal.  For example, they have, from the beginning, relied upon Roviaro v. United States, 353 U.S. 53 (1957), when they state, “The substantial government interest in protecting confidential sources is long established.”  Where they fail in Roviaro, is that the protection is afforded by allowing the government to protect the identity of the informant.  In the words of the Roviaro decision, “What is usually referred to as the informer’s privilege is, in reality, the Government’s privilege to withhold from disclosure the identity of persons…”  What it does not do is to extend any criminal liability to those that disclose an informant’s identity.  It simply gives the government the right to try to protect the identity.

In the current matter, that was done to the extent that the law allows, the Protective Order that sanctioned those who were given certain information from disclosing that information.  It is only that person, whether a defendant, defendant’s counsel, or even government employee, was subject to the Court’s order not to divulge the identity of the informants.

The government did so even prior to the Discovery being given to the defendants, when they redacted what they believed to be any information that would tend to expose the informants.  The informant’s names were redacted as where many hundreds of words that the government felt would identify the informants.  The government keeping that information away from the defendants (the identification of informants) was their exercise of the protection of the informants, as per Roviaro.

The government continues to persist in stating, rightfully, “this Court had the authority to issue the orders and that it continues to have the authority to enforce the orders.”  However, they have yet to address the relevant aspect of jurisdiction.  To put this in context, if a judge in Mexico issues an order, he has such authority.  He also has the right to enforce that order.  However, does he have the jurisdiction to first, apply that order to someone not within his jurisdiction?  And, second, the authority to enforce the order against someone not within his jurisdiction?

The government wants to spin the context of what I said into a confession that is very, very far from my belief and honest admission as to the authority of the judge.

As the government continues, they make this rather curious assertion:

“When Hunt complains that this Court’s orders “prohibit” him from publishing “certain investigative pieces,” his factual premise is simply inaccurate.  Second, the justification for the original Protective Order continues because there is an ongoing need to protect cooperating witnesses regardless of the status of the trial.”

So, let’s break this down.  I have never complained about anything, except the fact that I was arrested by the government, similar to this current contempt situation, wrongfully applying a statute that did not apply to me, resulting in my spending a week in the Sacramento County Jail.  It would have been substantially longer had not Judge Brown seen through the deceitful tactic of the government in attempting to punish me, by simply lying to have a warrant issued for my arrest.  See Freedom of the Press #17 – Is This Legal?

Then, the government shysters endeavored to make a point:

“We are not asking this Court to restrain Hunt’s ability generally to write about the case — or even the informants — we only want him to observe this Court’s Order, which means that he cannot publish the discovery material subject to the Court’s Order.”

How nice of them to say that they don’t have a problem with me writing “about the case — or even the informants.”  How gracious.  However, these shysters are supposed to present facts.  My reputation as a journalist (not a blogger) is based on presenting facts.  Let’s suppose that I wrote about the informants, but failed to justify my conclusions without facts to back up those conclusions.  Well, then, I might just be a blogger.  However, as facts are a requisite in our judicial system, they are also a matter of principle to a good journalist.  To make accusations without presenting the facts makes a mockery of journalism, as it would of the judicial system.

Besides, such accusations are prolific in the patriot community.  They tend to lack any substance and are often made over a simple disagreement between two people.  Should some rely upon simply my word that so and so is an informant, the informant would simply accuse the accuser of being an informant.  And, the louder voice would probably prevail.  Surely, the government shysters would love to see an expansion of the “he said; she said” sort of rhetoric in the community.

As we continue through the Reply, we find this rather subjective statement of ‘facts’:

“[T]he government’s interests far outweigh any First Amendment interest Hunt may assert.  First, we need to protect our confidential sources for all of the valid reasons identified in Roviaro.  Second, the Court has a significant interest in enforcing the terms of its own Protective Orders.  Without enforcement, Hunt’s defiance threatens to undermine our ability to exchange discovery in future criminal cases.”

Now, the first point has already been addressed, with regard to the government’s right to endeavor to protect their sources — which they did by denying the defendants the right to call the witnesses against them (6th Amendment).  Second, the Court wrote the Protective Order and subjected those identified as subject to that Protective Order.  Daniel Ellsberg was the criminal in the “Pentagon Papers”.  The New York Times was not.  Finally, and the most laughable, is that the government feels that the exchange of discovery might be undermined.  Well, there is little doubt that the shysters want to keep as many secrets as they can from the defense.  However, in an effort to attempt to maintain their unscrupulous cadre of spies amongst us, they would willingly subvert the Constitution.

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