Posts tagged ‘Moral Values’

The Cause – What To Do?

The Cause – What To Do?

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
June 12, 2017

I have been writing about the Bundy Affair since April 12, 2014 and the Burns Chronicles since February 2, 2016.  Both evolved out of a common grievance, Public Lands, and the rights that are inherent in them.  There are other commonalities, such as some of the players involved in both events and the fact that both had left behind the concept of Civil Disobedience and had entered the realm of Civil Defiance.  Those players, unlike most other patriots, had moved along “The Other (not so) Thin Line” to a point where their actions were intended to speak louder than their words.

The first event, in Nevada, the Bundy Affair, was an evolution from an event back in 1993 when Cliven Bundy, supported by hundreds of patriots who went to his ranch to side with him, defied the federal government and first stood for his right to continue both grazing and water permits necessary to continue his ranching business.  Cliven Bundy’s right to his historical use of the public lands culminated on April 12, 2014, or so we thought, in the “Unrustling” of the cattle that had been rustled by agents of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).

In 2015, in Oregon, Dwight and Steven Hammond had been “resentenced” for a “crime”, though they had already served their time.  Their “crime” was the use of controlled burn and backfire to do what ranchers and the BLM have done for over a century.  The first is to destroy unwanted vegetation, the second, to control an existing fire in order to protect property.

This was not the beginning of their ordeal with the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS).  Their ordeal began almost a decade before Cliven Bundy’s first confrontation with an out of control federal government.  The FWS had been trying to restrict the Hammond’s ranching by cutting of water supply, fencing public corridors, and requiring annual licensing for what were perpetual rights to Public Land Usage.  “The Harassment of the Hammonds” dates back to October 1986.

For all intents, the Hammonds were tried, sentenced, served their time, and left prison as free men.  The government waited until all of this was done before filing an appeal to the Appellate Court, contending that they should have been sentenced according to the Sentencing Guidelines.  Funny, the word guidelines isn’t mandatory, simply a guide.  But, more on that in a future article.

The resentencing of the Hammonds raised the indignation of some of those players from the Bundy Affair, and others who had, possibly a result of what they witnessed in April 2014, moved further along that “Thin Line”.  Unable to convince the Hammonds that they should not turn themselves in for the additional 4+ years they would now have to serve, the objective changed to the FWS, the aggressors against the Hammonds.

There had been a planned demonstration in support of the Hammonds scheduled for January 2, 2016, just two days before they were to turn themselves over to the US Marshal Service to begin their second punishment for the first crime.  This demonstration, like many others, was Civil Disobedience.  However, behind the scenes, a plan of Civil Defiance had been hatched.  It was left to those who either went to Burns, Oregon, before or after the January 2 event to decide just how far along that “Thin Line” they had moved.  Unfortunately, many who claim that they are “fed up with the Feds” are not fully committed to action.  Instead, they chose to act big and criticize what was acted out by those who were more committed and chose to occupy the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge (MNWR), an FWS facility about thirty miles south of Burns, and the adversary of the Hammonds rights for three decades.

For nearly a month, the Civil Defiance brought attention to the country, and the world, that the historical rights of Public Land usage were being trampled upon by the government.  The government, possibly absent any legal standing to deal with the occupation of the MNWR, chose to ambush a two vehicle, eight-person convoy going to a public event in John Day, Grant County, north of Burns.

Lying to the Oregon State Police (OSP), the FBI claimed that they were making a “felony stop” (legally, to stop the completion of a felony) and/or to serve an arrest warrant.  The warrant, however, was not issued until after seven were arrested and one murdered, while in transit to the event in John Day.

. Continue reading ‘The Cause – What To Do?’ »

Memorial Day 2017

Memorial Day 2017

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
May 29, 2017 (Memorial Day)

 

Memorial Day began as a day of honoring and remembering those soldiers that died in the Civil War.  It was practiced beginning in the South in 1866 and the North in 1868.  It was a day in which the graves of those soldiers were decorated with flowers, in honor of their sacrifice, and was called Decoration Day.

Recognition as Memorial Day began as early as 1872, though it wasn’t commonly used until after World War II.  In 1967, it was officially changed to Memorial Day by the government.

It now honors all dead American Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, and Airmen, who died in service to their country, including those who fought for the South.

So, what is a holiday; what does it mean?  Well, we can look at the Ten Commandments and get an idea of just what led our Judeo-Christian values to recognize a special day.  The Fourth Commandment says, “Thou shalt keep the Sabbath Day holy.”  That means that the designated day is above all other consideration, on the day so designated.

Whether you hold Saturday or Sunday as the Sabbath is a choice that each of us makes.  However, we commonly recognize the last Monday in May to be Memorial Day, and on that day we recognize of the sacrifice of those soldiers; it is to be held above all other considerations.

There is little doubt that those in power have moved our country away from the Constitution that created that government.  They have moved the government away from the very reason for those who served, and those who gave their lives for what was intended — and what we fought for.

There are two soldiers that I have particular memories of.  First is William “Billy” Prescott.  We went through nearly our entire schooling together.  Bill was quiet and intelligent, and perhaps the least likely to consider to be a soldier.  I found out about Billy’s death, Killed in Action, on my first and only visit to the Wall in Washington, D. C. One-hundred and twenty-six of us, the “Prodigy Vets”, went to see the Wall, most for the first time, in 1992.  Walking down, along the wall, to the apex, then back up the other side, was probably the most emotional event in my life.  The magnitude of waste of those lives was beyond my comprehension.  Considering that the Vietnam War was nothing that we should have been involved in, rather a consequence of our government gone astray from the principles upon which this country was founded.  However, we were naive, and simply did our Country’s bidding.

. Continue reading ‘Memorial Day 2017’ »

Freedom of the Press #17 – Is This Legal?

Freedom of the Press #17
Is This Legal?

Pamala R. Holsinger, (OregonLive)

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
May 25, 2017

In a previous article, “Freedom of the Press #13 – Sojourn to Sacramento“, I explained that Federal Magistrate Brennan (Sacramento) intended for me to receive diesel therapy, and that I would provide insight into just why he chose that route.  It was an expected response based upon the information that he had been provided, regarding the Sealed Order Granting Government’s Request for Arrest Warrant as to Gary Hunt and Order Sealing Arrest Warrant (ECF #2017).

This Sealed Order was obviously prepared by the US Shyster’s Office.  Their intention was to punish me, as they have most of the others in the Oregon and Nevada indictments, based upon contrived accusations.

The most oft-repeated contrived accusations that we are all familiar with are:

  • To justify shooting someone, “I feared for my life and/or the life of a fellow officer”.
  • Though some have homes, family, and jobs, “They are a flight risk and should be detained in jail until trial”.

Well, now we get another one to add to the list.  I have been writing for 24 years.  I have never carried a firearm during that period.  Though my words may be inciteful, they are simply words (The Pen can be mightier than the Sword).  There is no reason to believe that I would avoid arrest, as I had continued the dialogue regarding Freedom of the Press for nearly three months, and met, willingly, with FBI Special Agent Catalano, whenever requested.  However, the wording in the Sealed Order states:

The Court, however, finds good cause to file under seal both this Order and the arrest warrant. Throughout this case and in the factually-related matters that took place in Bunkerville, Nevada, in April 2014 that are the subject of ongoing criminal proceedings in the District of Nevada, there have been instances of individuals avoiding the execution of court orders and/or arrest by engaging in armed confrontations with law enforcement. The Court issues under seal this Order and the warrant for Hunt’s arrest in an effort to permit the orderly execution of the arrest warrant.

Well, I wrote about Bunkerville (The Bundy Affair series), and I continue to do so.  However, I was not present at that armed, yet peaceful, protest of the government’s effort at the semi-legal rustling of cattle by the BLM, including their intended violation of numerous state and federal laws regarding branding and cattle health certifications.  I was at Burns for a few days.  However, I was there to get a story on the treatment of the Hammonds, prior to the fires (See “The Harassment of the Hammonds“), that got them imprisoned for five years.  There has been no effort on my part  to avoid arrest by engaging in an armed confrontation with law enforcement.  There was no arrest warrant in the possession of the FBI or the Oregon State Police during the stop, roadblock, and murder of LaVoy Finicum.  Finicum, as the government has admitted, expressed to those who had no warrant, that he was going to a law enforcement officer, Sherriff Glenn Palmer of Grant County, Oregon.

This fiction was probably simply glossed over by Judge Brown.  However, she “rubber-stamp” signed the Sealed Order and the Arrest Warrant.  This was the documentation that was presented to Eastern District of California Magistrate Brennan, who had to decide if I should be detained and diesel transported back to Oregon.  And, of course, with that as the only information that he had before him, the demonization of me was such that he curtly denied any alternative.

The case that Magistrate Brennan ruled on is United States of America v. Gary Hunt, Case No. 2:17-mj-00058.  The records transferred from California to the Oregon case, United States v. Ammon Bundy, et al, case, in Oregon (which my matter still falls within), and the Booking Report, list the only charge as a violation of 18 U. S. Code §3146, “failure to appear”.

. Continue reading ‘Freedom of the Press #17 – Is This Legal?’ »

Burns Chronicles No 58 – “Twice Put in Jeopardy”

Burns Chronicles No 58
“Twice Put in Jeopardy”

 

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
March 23, 2017

Of course, we must start with the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution, as it is the “supreme Law of the Land.  The pertinent part reads:

“No person… shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb.”

Now, that phrase, “twice put in jeopardy” is also referred to as “Double Jeopardy”, though whichever way we choose to phrase it, the meaning is quite simple.  If you are charged with a crime, absent a mistrial or some other legitimate cause, you can only stand trial one time.

It used to be that a crime was simply stated.  If you murdered someone, then you were charged with murder.  If you murdered more than one person, then additional counts of murder were added to the charge.  You would not be charged with, say, unlawful discharge of a firearm within the limits of the city, destruction of private property if the bullet damaged something, assault, illegal possession of a weapon, or any other crimes that you may have committed while also committing murder.  You simply stood trial for murder.

If you were acquitted, that was it.  If they found additional evidence that proved that you had really committed the murder, that was too bad.  They had their chance, and they blew it.

This protection, afforded by the Bill of Rights was a prohibition against the government trying and then retrying, you until they could get a conviction.  It also precluded your being tried by one court, found not guilty, and then tried by another court in different jurisdiction, for the same crime.

. Continue reading ‘Burns Chronicles No 58 – “Twice Put in Jeopardy”’ »

Freedom of the Press #11 – Aiding, But Not Abetting

Freedom of the Press #11
Aiding, But Not Abetting

Gary Hunt,
Outpost of Freedom
March 3, 2017   (Coincidental to the presumed authority of Judge Brown’s assumption that she could Order me to answer by this date.)

The government has persistently suggested that I have “aided and abetted” the defendants by exposing informants that were paid by the government to spy on the occupiers of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge during January 2016.  That is only one of the elements that needs to exist before the Court can find me in contempt of court for non-compliance with the Order to remove all prohibited material from my website and any other website.

The other elements include whether I am subject to the Court’s Protective Order, and, if so, do I fall within the jurisdiction of the Court.  Currently, the Court has an outstanding Order that I appear and show cause why I should not be held in contempt of court.

Well, as explained in Freedom of the Press #3 – “Contemptuous Postings”, aiding and abetting has a legal definition.  That definition can be found in case law as well as legal dictionaries, such as Black’s Law Dictionary, 5th Edition, which states:

Help, assist, or facilitate the commission of a crime, promote the accomplishment thereof, help in advancing or bringing it about, or encourage, counsel, or incite as to its commission.

The case law cited by the government shysters also includes criminal activity as a necessary element.  One of the reasons for the Supreme Court decision in New York Times Co. v. United States (Pentagon Papers) was that there was no crime resulting from the disclosure of the classified documents.  The Court then upheld, in rather strong terms, the right, even the responsibility, of the press to publish such information.

Key to that decision was an absence of aiding and abetting, since though the exposure of the information was in good faith and brought to light some misdeeds of government, the publication of that material was not criminal, nor did it lead to a criminal act.  The person (Daniel Ellsberg) who violated his signed agreement not to disclose the information, committed the only criminal act.  The New York Times aided and abetted no one.  (See Freedom of the Press #9 – “Prior Restraint”.)

In the Court’s Order (ECF #1691) of January 11, 2017, Judge Brown states:

On this record, therefore, the Court concludes the government has sufficiently demonstrated that Hunt has aided and abetted the dissemination of materials covered by the Protective Order, and, therefore, the Court GRANTS in part the government’s Motion (#1680) to Enforce Protective Order as follows:

Using her judicial discretion (See Freedom of the Press #7 – “Judicial Discretion” and Tyranny), she has determined that there is no party that I aided, since that party is unnamed.  She has also made the dissemination of materials a criminal act, though I, similar to the New York Times, am not subject to the Protective Order.

Continue reading ‘Freedom of the Press #11 – Aiding, But Not Abetting’ »

Freedom of the Press #10 – Not Served, Again

Freedom of the Press #10
Not Served, Again

Gary Hunt,
Outpost of Freedom
February 27, 2017

As has been reported by Maxine Bernstein’s Tweets (my primary source for keeping track of the doings in the Portland Group 2 trial), I have finally been served with the Order to Show Cause (ECF No. 1901). I say “finally” since the first notice had come from Maxine. Next, I received a FedEx delivery.  However, that doesn’t satisfy initial service. So, On Wednesday, February 22, I received a call from my favorite FBI personality. SA Matthew Catalano. He is good natured, diligent in his duties, and appears to have not taken a side in this ongoing battle between Judge Anna J. Brown and the United States’ chief Shyster, Billy J. Williams, on the one side, and yours truly on the other. I had already made plans for Thursday, and he seemed quite busy with other matters, so we agreed to meet on Friday. When we met, he handed me some paperwork, specifically the Order to Show Cause.

Now, as required, he reported to Portland that it had been delivered (note, I didn’t say served), and the Certificate of Service was duly recorded in the Ammon Bundy, et al, trial docket, that afternoon. The text of that Certificate of Service reads as follows:

Pursuant to this Court’s February 16, 2017, Order (ECF No. 1900) the government certifies that on February 24, 2017, FBI Special Agent Matthew Catalano met with third party Gary Hunt and personally served Hunt with a copy of the Order to Show Cause (ECF No. 1901). Agent Catalano had previously sent the Order to Hunt by FedEx. Hunt acknowledged that he had already seen and read the Order. Hunt stated that the Order included a time for him to respond to the Order, which he understood to be for civil contempt. Agent Catalano showed Hunt that there was an option for Hunt to call and request a defense attorney, and Hunt acknowledged this. Although Hunt took the copy of the Order to Show Cause, he stated that he was refusing service of the Order.

Now, they did get it right when they stated that I had refused service, though they pointed out that I had taken the Order to Show Cause. I simply want to set the record straight with my notes, taken shortly after the meeting:

Continue reading ‘Freedom of the Press #10 – Not Served, Again’ »

Burns Chronicles No 57 – Collusion or Conspiracy?

Burns Chronicles No 57
Collusion or Conspiracy?

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
February 4, 2017

On October 27, 2016, shortly after the very just verdict of “Not Guilty” was announced in the Ammon Bundy, et al, Group 1 trial, a meeting was held in the Mark O. Hatfield Federal District Courthouse.  The 12 jurors, Judge Anna Brown, and a court reporter, attended the meeting.  It lasted about one and a half hours.

It is my understanding that such a meeting is not unusual.  However, circumstances surrounding this particular meeting are, to say the least, quite unusual, considering context.  That is exactly what we are going to do.

The first irregularity occurred when the Prosecutor moved to have the trial declared “complex”, which allowed the Court to circumvent the right to a speedy trial and to break the defendants up into two groups.  The first Group (mostly leaders) was tried in September and October 2016, and the second Group to be tried beginning in February 2017.  While the delayed trial date was agreeable, as the Defendants needed the additional time to prepare their defense, one drawback is that many of the Defendants were held in custody until the verdict was reached, in the first trial.  The latter trial date made the government’s case easier, as they had smaller groups to try, and it gave time to elicit plea bargains, thereby reducing the number who would be prosecuted at trial.

Next, during the pre-trial “paper chase”, with hundreds of motions filed, answered, and finally ruled on, there is no doubt that bias existed on the part of Judge Anna Brown.  Behind the scenes, many of us followed this legal maneuvering for months.  It seemed that even when the arguments presented by the defense were well supported, Judge Brown would still rule against the defense and in favor the Prosecution.

During the trial, there were rather strict rules imposed on the defense, especially when they sought to call additional witnesses to testify.  Judge Brown ruled that to allow that would be “repetitive”.  However, the prosecution showed a 1-minute video of approximately twenty of the occupiers firing across a canal.  The fact that the Prosecution showed that footage four times, however, was not considered “repetitive”.

Finally, and here we get to the meeting, Judge Brown called all of the participating jurors into the meeting, after dismissing the alternate jurors.  In that meeting, she explained that she would answer their questions, if they had any.  She also asks some questions, and explained that the answers would help the prosecution and the defense.  So, just how could it help the defense?  The Defense prevailed.  It could only help the Prosecution gain insight into the jurors’ minds in order to determine what they would need to overcome to obtain guilty verdicts in the Group 2 trial.

Some jurors indicated that had the charges been less serious, like simple “misdemeanor trespass”, it would have been much easier to render a guilty verdict.

Let me interrupt, for a moment, and point out that the Judge holds office under Article III (Judicial Branch of Government), and is, in essence, an impartial referee.  Her job is to “administer law in a court of justice”, “to control the proceedings”, and to make “decisions of questions of law or discretion”.  Her job is not to favor one side over the other, but rather to stand aside, interjecting only to the extent necessary to assure a fair trial.

. Continue reading ‘Burns Chronicles No 57 – Collusion or Conspiracy?’ »

The Bundy Affair #20 – The Invisible Witness

The Bundy Affair #20
The Invisible Witness

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
February 2, 2017

I have been so busy writing about the goings on in Oregon that I haven’t had much opportunity to consider the situation in Nevada.  As I have told those that I been working with regarding the Group 1 trial in Oregon, who have all started concentrating their efforts in Nevada.  I told those who I had been working with in Oregon, “You all get to work down where it is warm and sunny, while I’m still stuck up here where there is snow on the ground, and it is cold.”  Seriously, however, I am in Northern California, about halfway between the two.  But, I was spending my time primarily on the Oregon, Ammon Bundy, et al, case.

Then, the government filed a Motion.  Upon reading the Motion, I found that the US Attorney has decided to invite me down to Nevada, an offer I couldn’t refuse.

On January 27, 2017, the government filed “Government’s Motion for Protective Order Regarding Undercover Employee“.  It is their effort to hide from the defense the identification of an Undercover Employee (UCE).

The invitation is found, beginning on page 9 of that Motion, to wit:

Events subsequently in the courtroom and in the United States v. Ammon Bundy, et al. case in Oregon have shown that the danger to the lone UCE witness in the government’s case is particularly great. Although the discovery information in United States v. Bundy was restricted due to a protective order, an associate of the defendants (including some of the seven common defendants in the Nevada case), Gary Hunt, posted discovery material to “out” confidential human sources to his webpage. Litigation is ongoing in the District of Oregon to remove the information from the web. See, e.g., Order Granting in Part Government’s Motion to Enforce Protective Order, United States v. Bundy, Case No. 3:16-cr-00051-BR (D. Or. Jan. 11, 2017).

Now, some might think that this doesn’t look like an invitation, but, after all, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  I see that the United States Government Railroad (USGRR) is in full operation, and flying down the tracks at breakneck speed.

So, getting started in catching up with the USGRR, you will note that they imply a threat when they state that the events in Oregon “have shown that the danger to the lone UCE witness in the government’s case is particularly great.”  On the contrary, they have shown that there is no risk, at all, to the informants in the Oregon occupation — unless you consider that most of the informants have abandoned their old phone numbers, and are not accessible by phone, anymore.

Let’s look at some facts about this alleged “danger”.  On September 21, 2016, AUSA Gabriel, in questioning OSP officer Jeremiah Beckert, asked, “And did you have information about whether the driver [Mark McConnell] was cooperating with the Government?”  Beckert answered in the affirmative, and of its own volition, the government hung one of its informants out to face, what, serious bodily harm?  Death?  Well, that did not happen.  And, the government put this informant at risk.  That very act disputes the government’s entire argument regarding the potential threat to any of the informants.

. Continue reading ‘The Bundy Affair #20 – The Invisible Witness’ »

Liberty or Laws? – Natural Rights versus Civil Rights

Liberty or Laws?
Natural Rights versus Civil Rights

Gary Hunt

Outpost of Freedom
January 22, 2017

We must understand the difference between Natural Rights, those inherent in the people, and Civil Rights, those given to the People.  If we fail to do so, we participate in our own demise.

The concept of rule by those chosen by God, as claimed by the royalty of the past, where the royalty of Europe claimed to be descendants from God, and ruled by virtue of that sovereign nature.  When the United States of America declared their Independence from that concept, to the philosophical concept of the right of man to rule himself evolved, they moved into a Great Experiment.  Though this political philosophy had existed for hundreds of years, our Founders were the first to put this new form of government into practice.

Natural Rights are based on the concept that every man has a right to the fundamental necessities of life; those being Life, Liberty, and Property.  Thomas Jefferson, in writing the Declaration of Independence, chose to be poetic, substituting “pursuit of Happiness” for Property, though the many declarations that preceded the eventual Declaration of Independence were based upon Property, as defined by Locke and other early political philosophers.  Happiness is a consequence of possessing Life, Liberty, and Property.  It is not a tangible right, rather, a derivative, of those Natural Rights.  Jefferson, as Locke, had recognized that the purpose of government was to secure those rights.  It was no longer the rights of the king, From July 4, 1776 on, those rights became, truly, the Rights of the People.

The Constitution began the process of securing those rights, though few are mentioned in that Document.  Let’s look at those so secured:

  • “Authors and Inventors [have] the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries.”  {I:8:8}
  • An Accused has the right to the “Trial of all Crimes…  [which] shall be by Jury”.  {III:2:3}
  • Finally, “The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it.”  {I:9:2}

Now, some might question whether the third, Habeas Corpus, is a right.  The word “Privilege”, as used in the Constitution, is a right that can, under certain circumstances, by revoked.  Those circumstances are clearly stated, being “Cases of Rebellion or Invasion”, and no other.

Many of the Founders felt that it was insufficient not to protect those Rights, further.  Two states, North Carolina and Massachusetts, did not ratify the Constitution until after the Bill of Rights was submitted to the States for ratification.  Massachusetts would not ratify the Constitution until after the Bill of Rights was ratified.

In fact, the protection of those Natural Rights was so important that it was presented to the States for ratification complete with a Preamble, indicating the reason why the proposed amendments were being presented to the States:

The Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution.

So, let’s look at the Rights secured by that document intended to “prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers“:

. Continue reading ‘Liberty or Laws? – Natural Rights versus Civil Rights’ »

Freedom of the Press #4 – The Order

Freedom of the Press #4
The Order

Gary Hunt
Outpost of Freedom
January 12, 2017

I got a call from FBI Special Agent Matthew Catalano, earlier today, January 11, 2017.  He told me that he had an Order to serve.  We made the same arrangements to meet at the restaurant in Los Molinos.  The restaurant only serves breakfast and lunch, so it was closed, but I figured that this wouldn’t take very long.

I arrived at about 4:15 pm, and he said that he had to serve me.  He handed me the Order, I looked at it and said, “I refuse this service, it is for the District of Oregon, and I am not within that jurisdiction.”  I held the paperwork out toward him, but he did not take it, so, I said, “I will keep this, but I want you to tell Judge Anna Brown that I refuse service, as I am not subject to the Oregon District’s jurisdiction.”  He agreed to convey the message, and then he proceeded to read certain portions of the Order to me.  When he was finished, I reminded him that I wanted Brown to receive my message, and he assured me that he would pass it on.  I feel certain that he will.  After all, that is his job.  We shook hands, and we departed.

Though I had already received two copies of the Order from other sources, I hadn’t read it.  The news traveled so rapidly that my phone was in near constant use.  However, between calls, I read portions of the Order.  As I did so, a smile crept across my face.  Now, you may wonder why I would smile after receiving the Order, but my first thought was that Judge Brown had not had an opportunity to read my article, that had gone out just a few hours before.  The Order had been docketed, and I received copies just minutes after posting my article.  Judge Brown had not had the opportunity to read my response to the Memorandum that had refuted most, if not all, of what she was provided by the US Attorney in the form of the Memorandum to prepare the Order.

Quite frankly, when Brown filed the Minute Order (See Freedom of the Press Update – A Grateful Thank You), there were two possibilities.  First, that she really was holding the government’s feet to the fire, seeking real legal justification for issuing an Order.  The other, that she simply wanted the government to give her the paperwork she needed, in the form of a Memorandum, to provide justification to issue such an Order.  I decided to act on the former.  I had said many things about Anna Brown in the past, few of them complimentary, but if she had turned to the right side, she was deserving of the benefit of the doubt.  Her actions, in the past, had been nigh onto dictatorial, and had no foundation in law or justice.

So, let’s look at her Order, and I will comment, as we go.  It is dated January 11, 2017.

This matter comes before the Court on the government’s Motion (#1680) to Enforce Protective Order in which the government seeks to enjoin a third party, Gary Hunt, from further dissemination of discovery materials that are protected by the Court’s Protective Order (#342) issued March 24, 2016.

Through the Affidavits (#1681, #1690) of FBI Special Agent Ronnie Walker, the government asserts Hunt published excerpts from protected discovery materials on his website beginning on November 15, 2016, and continuing through the present. In particular, the government contends the postings on Hunt’s website identify some of the confidential human sources (CHSs) that the government used during the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. This information is not only protected by the Protective Order (#342), but the Court also found in its Order (#1453) issued October 18, 2016, that the government had provided to Defendants all information regarding CHSs that was relevant and helpful to the defense and, in particular, that the government was not obligated to disclose to Defendants the identities of the CHSs. Thus, the information in Hunt’s postings should not be publicly available.

Well, that is cute.  Have I not said, from the beginning, that I was not subject to the Protective Order?  Now, she says that the “information is protected by the Protective Order.”  That means that those subject to the Protective Order have an obligation to protect the information.  She is right in line with my thinking.  But, that will change a little later.

Then, she finds that “the government had provided to Defendants all information regarding CHSs that was relevant and helpful to the defense.”  That information was relayed to the defense on October 18, about ten days before the jury returned the not guilty verdict.  She also stated, “that the government was not obligated to disclose to Defendants the identities of the CHSs.”

So, let’s get real.  The government gave out redacted copies of the 1023 forms.  The defense could not call any witnesses who had been informants.  Obviously the information the government, and Judge Anna Brown, were willing to allow the defense to have was totally insufficient for them to prepare their defenses, especially with regard to possible exculpatory testimony those informants might have provided.  The Judge, well let’s just go with Brown, from this point on, disregarded the fact that two of the government’s informants testified.  Terri Linnell came forward voluntarily, against the wishes of the Prosecution, and testified for the defense. A diligent effort by the defense teams in tracking down Fabio Monoggio, another informant, whose testimony also was beneficial to the defense.  Both gave testimony, which may well have turned the tide on the jury’s verdict.  This testimony would have been denied the defense under the enforcement of the Protective Order and the subsequent statement on October 18.

This is absolutely contrary to the right protected by the Sixth Amendment to the Constitution, which says that the accused has the right, “to be confronted by the witnesses against him“.  Now, some have claimed that informants, unless they testify, are not witness.  However, that is not what the Protective Order (March 24, 2016) says.  That Protective Order clearly states what the prohibitions are, to wit:

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that this Protective Order applies only to:

(1) Statements by witnesses and defendants to government officials;

(2) Sealed documents; and

(3) Evidence received from searches of electronic media.

Now, there are only two human objects in the Protective Order.  It applies to “witnesses” and “defendants”.  Well, I am not exposing defendants, so if the informants are not witnesses, then I am not in violation of the Protective Order.  Ergo, the informants are witnesses, so saith Brown.

Therefore, Brown has denied the constitutionally protected right of the defendants to confront those witnesses.

The record reflects FBI Special Agent Matthew Catalano met Hunt, who resides in Los Molinos, California, on January 5, 2017, and personally served him with a cease-and-desist letter from the government that demanded Hunt remove all discovery materials from his website. Special Agent Catalano also provided Hunt with a copy of this Court’s Protective Order (#342). According to SA Walker, Hunt stated he did not intend to comply with the cease- and-desist letter and did not believe that the Protective Order applied to him. It appears Hunt has not removed the protected discovery materials from his website.

. Continue reading ‘Freedom of the Press #4 – The Order’ »