Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief
Recently Chicago immigration attorney Robert W. DeKelaita was arrested for committing numerous felonies over the course of 11 years
Now, thanks to Barbara Hollingsworth of CNSNews.com we know that federal authorities have known for over a decade that DeKelaita was committing asylum fraud.
Hollingsworth uncovered documents that reveal that DeKelaita's acts of fraud were exposed in federal court in 2003.
Why wasn't he arrested then?
Immigration Lawyer Indicted 11 Years After Iraqi Client Admitted Asylum Fraud
By Barbara Hollingsworth
(CNSNews.com) – A prominent Chicago-area immigration lawyer was indicted last month for immigration fraud , 11 years after an illegal alien from Iraq who entered the U.S. via Mexico told federal authorities that he had advised his former client to lie on his asylum application.
Robert DeKelaita, of Glenview, Illinois, described in 2008 as one of a “handful of immigration lawyers who specialize in representing Iraqi Christians,” was accused of “submitting falsely created affidavits, baptismal certificates, [and] identity documents” on asylum forms he submitted to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) between 2000 and 2011.
He also allegedly coached his clients to lie about their past when they were interviewed by federal immigration officials.
The phony identity information included “false names, false religions, false dates of travel, false dates of entry into the United States, false dates of birth, and false family history,” according to the Sept. 23 indictment.
DeKelaita also allegedly “wrote and created false asylum statements detailing non-existent accounts of purported religious persecution, including fictitious accounts of rape and murder, and attached these statements to the [CIS] Form I-589 he submitted on behalf of his clients,” the indictment further charged.
U.S. Attorney Zachary Fardon of the Northern District of Illinois charged DeKelaita with one count of conspiracy to commit immigration and naturalization fraud, three counts of immigration fraud, and three counts of suborning perjury.
His translator, Adam Benjamin, was also indicted for allegedly “mistranslat[ing] answers given by the clients and add[ing] testimony not actually stated by the clients during the course of the asylum interviews.”
CNSNews.com asked Assistant U.S. Attorney for Public Information Randall Samborn whether any of DeKelaita’s clients who submitted falsified asylum applications have also been arrested or indicted for immigration fraud.
“Not to my knowledge, no,” he replied, adding that there were currently no plans to do so.
CNSNews.com asked Samborn if one of the individuals identified in the indictment only as “Y.L.” was Yousif Lazar, a native of Iraq and resident of Farmington Hills, Michigan, who entered the U.S. illegally via Mexico “on May 20, 1999 without being admitted or paroled by an immigration officer,” according to an August 14, 2007 ruling by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.
“No comment,” he replied.
CNSNews.com asked why it took 11 years to arrest DeKelaita when, according to court documents, Lazar testified at his 2003 asylum hearing that “he lied upon the advice of his former counsel, DeKelaita.”
“You’re asking questions beyond the four corners of the indictment and I’m not going to comment on anything that’s not in the public record,” Samborn replied.
CNSNews.com asked if DeKelaita had been creating false identities for his clients.
“He used various false information, but did not specifically create false identities,” Samborn replied. “The indictment itself refers to individuals by initials on whose behalf he submitted false information, but not necessarily to create a fictitious person, as opposed to giving false information on actual individuals,” he explained.
Under federal law, foreigners seeking asylum in the United States must provide proof that they suffered persecution “on account of race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group, or had a well-founded fear of persecution” if they returned to their home country. After asylum is granted, they are eligible to seek lawful permanent residency or naturalized U.S. citizenship.
In 2007, the appellate court denied Lazar’s petition to reverse a Board of Immigration Appeals’ decision that he was ineligible for asylum because he had falsely claimed he was detained and beaten by officials loyal to former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein.
“What he did not know is the Government had evidence that would demonstrate that his application was fake, phony and fraudulent,” the appellate court noted.
Confronted by evidence that he had lied on his asylum application, Lazar admitted that “he was in Greece for at least a part of the period in which he claimed to have been in Baghdad,” where he applied for refugee status in 1992. He also admitted that upon advice of his former counsel, DeKelaita, he lied that he had been arrested and detained in Baghdad in 1997 to “improve his chances for obtaining asylum.”
Another client, identified only as “M.J.”, was also allegedly coached by DeKelaita to commit perjury during an asylum interview. She falsely told federal immigration officers that Islamic extremists had threatened to kidnap and kill her husband and daughter, according to the indictment.
“Client H.A.” also falsely claimed that his father had been executed, his house in Iraq had been burned down by Muslim extremists, and his brother’s name had been “put on an elimination list,” the government charged.
Each count carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The indictment also seeks an additional $60,000 forfeiture of attorney’s fees from DeKelaita if he is convicted.
Now that we know the feds were fully aware of DeKelaita's criminal activity way back in 2003, we have to ask:
Why did the feds allow DeKelaita to continue to break U.S. immigration laws?
Why arrest him now after turning a blind eye for 11 years?
And why are there "no plans" to arrest any of DeKelaita’s clients who submitted falsified asylum applications?
We hope to bring you the answers to those and many other related questions very soon.
Did I mention that Robert DeKelaita is a close associate of Tony Rezko's pal, Dr. Ronald Michael?
More to come...
Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-chief
Was former U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald displaying his intellectual shortcomings or was he just being duplicitous when he was given the opportunity to deny that he was the one who ultimately warned Governor Rod Blagojevich that he was recording Blago's phone conversations?
In a recent phone call Fitzgerald was asked directly:
"Do you deny that the U.S. Attorney's Office had communications with the Chicago Tribune about the Blagojevich case on Dec. 4, 2008?"
Fitzgerald's response: "I'm not denying it and I'm not not denying it."
Really, Patrick? "Not not denying it"?
You either deny it or you don't.
And for the record, you did "not deny" communicating with the Chicago Tribune before you decided to "not not deny" communicating with them.
What's next, Patrick? Are you and former White House counsel Greg Craig, who is now your law partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, going to do Abbott and Costello's "Who's on first" routine for us?
And by the way is "not not" the kind of nonsense you teach the students at the University of Chicago Law School in your capacity as a Feirson Distinguished Lecturer?
If so, they will never be able to practice law anywhere but Chicago.
To: Sarah Galer
Cc: amgardn, andaws
Sent: March 29, 2013 at 10:59 AM
Subject: Feirson Distinguished Lecturer
Ms. Sarah Galer
Please inform Patrick Fitzgerald that the Office of Professional Responsibility and the U.S. Inspector Generals Office would be who conducts an investigation of a U.S. Attorney.
I would have thought a "Feirson Distinguished Lecturer" would know that.
< name redacted >
p.s. Perhaps Mr. Fitzgerald's 1st lecture could be on this very subject.
To: Patrick Fitzgerald
Cc: Aaron Goldstein , Sheldon Sorosky
Sent: 2013-03-29 02:46:11 +0000
Subject: Fwd: Media inquiry/Patrick Fitzgerald
Mr. Patrick Fitzgerald
You are on the record claiming that you do not know who would investigate the U.S. Attorney's Office regarding the leaks to John Chase and the Chicago Tribune.
Do you agree, there should be an investigation?
< name redacted >
Sent: 2013-03-27 09:34:58 GMT
Subject: Media inquiry/Patrick Fitzgerald
Ms. Sarah Galer
The fact that the University of Chicago Law School is welcoming former U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald to be part of your schools program. And, that your showering him with accolades at a time that he is embroiled in controversy. Leads me to believe that you might not be aware of just how serious this may ultimately be for your institutions reputation.
Are you aware of the following?
And, if so, have you done due diligence?
U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald “Most Dangerous Man”
Why no Grand Jury? Chicago Tribune reporter John Chase involved in a crime. AGAIN!
< name redacted >
Former U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald named Feirson Distinguished Lecturer
In Fitzgerald's defense, there is the distinct possibility that he really is this stupid. And let's face it, if he truly is mentally challenged, how would he know unless someone told him?
After all, the media does nothing but tell Fitzgerald how wonderfully smart he is.
In fact, the fawning Chicago media actually remained silent as Fitzgerald declared during a press conference about the Blagojevich case that the leaks to the Tribune "might have come from his office so he could not investigate them," and that he "had no idea who would investigate".
Wow! Can you believe that?
Amazingly, no one in the adoring mainstream media insisted that Fitzgerald explain those ridiculously stupid statements.
Well, Patrick, IP2P has news for you: you're not as bright as the media has led you to believe.
And now that it appears that Blagojevich will get out of prison soon, we insist that you explain your asinine statements about the leaks from your office to the Chicago Tribune.
And while you're at it, Fitz, you also need to explain to the public why you buried irrefutable evidence that:
(A) Sibel Edmonds gave you in the Plamegate scandal;
(B) John A. Shaw gave you in the Nadhmi Auchi scandal; and
(C) I, Ernie Souchak, gave you in the Blagojevich scandal.
Not to mention the well-documented burying of evidence you did in the Southern District of New York.
To be continued...
Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief
The Chicago Tribune is at it again - reporting what it knows to be a blatant lie for the U.S. Attorney's Office in Chicago.
The lie this time involves the Tribune's reporting on habitual criminal and former Rezko mole John Thomas' most recent arrest for fraud. And the underreported story of the premature termination of his probation for a previous fraud conviction.
The Tribune was fully aware that in 2010, John Thomas was sentenced to three years probation for crimes he committed in New York. And the Trib also knew that in 2011, Thomas petitioned the court to terminate his probation after only one year.
Here's the catch: Thomas' probation was officially "terminated without objection".
In other words, the U.S. Attorney's Office was perfectly fine with Thomas being released from probation after serving only one year of his three-year sentence.
However, now the Tribune and the U.S. Attorney's Office want you to believe his probation "expired":
"Federal prosecutors alleged that Thomas began scheming in the Riverdale deal just months after his probation for the New York conviction expired." read more...
So after virtually ignoring the fact that Thomas was given a gift of three years probation instead of five years in prison for his crimes...
And then completely ignoring the fact that the feds gave Thomas another gift by allowing his probation to be "terminated without objection" after only one year...
Enabling the Village of Riverdale to gift Thomas hundreds of thousands of taxpayer's dollars...
The Tribune now wants to sell us the blatant lie that Thomas' probation "expired".
Wow! That's brass.
And let's not forget that the U.S. Attorney's Office and the Tribune have a well documented history of telling lies when it comes to John Thomas.
----- Forwarded Message -----
To: "jskass" <email@example.com>
Sent: Friday, December 18, 2009 6:42:03 PM
Subject: Chicago Tribune - John Thomas
To whom it may concern
John Thomas was a mole for the FBI in the case in Illinois against Tony Rezko and others. The Chicago Tribune was aware of the fact and chose not to write a story about him at the behest of Patrick Fitzgerald (U.S Attorney Northern Dist IL). The Tribune eventually wrote a story about John Thomas, however the story they wrote was not accurate. My source at the Chicago Tribune claims that when Patrick Fiztgerald asked the Chicago Tribune to sit on the Thomas story, claiming it could put his life in danger, the Chicago Tribune refused. The Chicago Tribune told Mr Fitzgerald that they were going to run the story anyway. It was only when Patrick Fitzgerald told the Chicago Tribune that if they ran the story that it would affect the Presidential election did the Chicago Tribune agree not to run the story. My source at the Chicago Tribune confirmed this meant Obama. My source also informed me of other information that would be of interest to the people of Illinois that was not being reported in the Chicago Tribune.
The source at the Tribune referred to in the email has since been revealed to have been John Chase.
Truth is - the Tribune and the U.S. Attorney's Office are working their own con.
Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief
Question: What is the American Thinker trying to hide by taking down articles it published years ago?
Answer: The truth about former U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald.
Recently, former FBI mole and convicted felon John Thomas was arrested for stealing money from Illinois taxpayers.
The only reason that Thomas was able to abscond with taxpayer money this time was because he was no longer on probation.
And the reason he was no longer on probation was because the U.S. Attorneys Office allowed his three-year probation for previous financial crimes to be abruptly terminated after just one year.
As luck would have it for Thomas, the premature termination of his probation came just in time for him to be awarded a multi-million dollar taxpayer funded development contract from the Village of Riverdale, Illinois.
And as anyone with a brain could have predicted, Thomas stole that money too.
Let's hear it for Fitzgerald and his crack team of crime fighters at the U.S. Attorney's Office Northern Dist. Illinois for that brilliant bit of law enforcement.
So now ask yourself this:
Question: Why would the American Thinker remove the following article from its website after two years just right after it became known why Thomas' probation was terminated two years early?
January 12, 2012
Patrick Fitzgerald's Rezko Mole Probation Sentence Terminated Early
By Lee Cary & Marty Watters
The New York felon who U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald wired against Chicago's Tony Rezko got three years probation that ended two years early.
To refresh your memory concerning the mole named John Thomas: in the late 1990s, Bernard T. Barton, Jr. had a billboard business in New York where he rented space on billboards he didn't own or operate. That's illegal.
He defrauded customers out of $350,000, and he used his father's Social Security number to get an American Express business account, where he charged $140,000. Facing a significant jail sentence, he offered to work for the feds. They agreed. His sentence was delayed for about a decade while he cooperated with the FBI.
In 2000, he moved to Chicago, where he became "John Thomas," working undercover for U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald's office.
He eventually became a close business associate of Tony Rezko.
On May 4, 2007, Thomas' undercover identity was revealed by Thomas A. Corfman, a former reporter for the Chicago Tribune, in an article in Crain's ChicagoBusiness.com.Corfman, who had recently rejoined Crain's, wrote:
"A former New Yorker has been conducting an undercover sting investigation for federal prosecutors while working in the Chicago commercial real estate industry, according to sources familiar with the investigation and documents in the man's own federal criminal fraud case."
The next day, May 5, 2007, Tribune staff reporter David Jackson followed up with an article that reported further on Thomas' undercover activities. Wonder how the Trib could be so quick to follow up on Corfman's outing of Thomas? Here's how:
The Trib had known of Thomas' mole role for a year. In his May 5 piece, Jackson reported:
"When a Tribune reporter discovered that Thomas was acting as a federal operative in May 2006, U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald took the unusual step of asking senior editors at the paper to refrain from publishing a report that would expose the ongoing probe. Fitzgerald offered no specifics but said an article would derail an important investigation and put people in serious danger of harm."
By the way, there's no indication that Fitzgerald, who knew the identity of the leaker of Valerie Plame's alleged identity as a CIA operative before he began his investigation, ever went after the leaker who outed Thomas to the Trib in 2006. If breaking Thomas' cover in 2006 could have put people in "serious danger," why wouldn't it have done so in 2007?
Back to the narrative:
On February 8, 2008, the Chicago Sun Times reported (emphasis in original):
"For the first time, the FBI "mole" who's expected to be a key prosecution witness against indicted developer and political fund-raiser Tony Rezko is talking. ...
Sources said Thomas also logged frequent visits to Rezko from Gov. Blagojevich and U.S. Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.). Blagojevich and Obama were among the many politicians for whom Rezko raised campaign cash. Neither has been charged with any wrongdoing. ...
Sources said Thomas helped investigators build a record of repeat visits to the old offices of Rezko and former business partner Daniel Mahru's Rezmar Corp., at 853 N. Elston, by Blagojevich and Obama during 2004 and 2005. ...
Sources said the government had him wear a hidden wire to record conversations with a Chicago alderman -- but that he did not record Blagojevich or Obama."
Despite the Sun-Times' prediction, Thomas was not called to testify at Tony Rezko's trial. He was the Silent Mole.
On June 23, 2010, writing for ChicagoRealEstateDaily.com, Corfman, still keeping tabs on Thomas-Barton, reported:
"U.S. District Court Judge Elaine Bucklo on Monday gave three years probation to Mr. Thomas, who was indicted under the name Bernard T. Barton Jr., court records show.
Mr. Thomas pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge, which carried a maximum sentence of five years in prison."
In a January 3, 2012 email, Randall Samborn, spokesperson for Fitzgerald's office, stated that Thomas' three-year probation was terminated in June 2011, after one year. The silent Mole is now completely free.
Today, John Thomas is a commercial real estate broker in Chicago.
Meanwhile, a government motion that describes Thomas' undercover activities is sealed. According to Samborn, that's not unusual when records contain "information about non-public law enforcement matters."
There's no indication that the Trib, which went to great lengths to get the sealed divorce records of Jack and Jeri Ryan opened in 2004, against both Ryans' wishes, shows any interest in getting Thomas' sealed file opened.
Ryan was the initial GOP candidate in the race against Barack Obama for a U.S. Senate seat representing Illinois -- that is, until his divorce file was pried opened by efforts led by the Trib, where David Axelrod was once the youngest political editor ever.
Here's a final head-scratcher:
Way back on February 22, 2002, Corfman, then a reporter for the Tribune, in an article focused on Donald Trump's efforts to retain a firm to "handle leasing for his proposed mixed-use skyscraper on the riverfront site of the Chicago Sun Times," wrote:
"John Thomas, a partner in Chicago-based Carnegie Realty Partners, and a Carnegie employee, Louis Giordano of New York, were arrested last year in connection with an alleged fraud scheme that took place over five years in New York[.] ...
Thomas and Giordano are free on bond, according to court records. The U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York would not comment on the case."
What? Rezko let someone whom the Trib had reported as having been arrested in New York in the early 2000s, who then resurfaced in Chicago, get close to him? Didn't Tony read the papers? And where is there any mention of Thomas's real name -- Bernard T. Barton, Jr.? Wouldn't that name, and not "John Thomas," have been in his New York criminal records?
The more we know about the Rezko Mole, the more we realize that there's a lot we don't know.
Answer: Because influential friends of the American Thinker now fear that articles like that will lead to the public knowing what Fitzgerald was really doing in Chicago. And just how cozy his relationship with the George W. Bush administration really was.
Much more to come...
Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief
Chicago Tribune reporter John Chase went on record saying that the reason he made the late night phone call warning Rod Blagojevich that federal agents were recording him was because he "did not want to get scooped on the story".
Chase's ridiculous statement made it very clear that he was not expecting to be asked any common sense follow-up questions.
Big mistake, John!
Keep in mind that the Tribune had been cooperating for 2 months with U.S Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald's office and had agreed not to run a story about the wiretap on Blagojevich.
But when Chase was asked what happened on Dec. 4, 2008 for the Tribune to abruptly change from cooperating with the feds to exposing their wiretap, he was at a loss to give a coherent answer.
Chase was then asked if he or anyone else at the Tribune called Patrick Fitzgerald or anyone else at the U.S. Attorney's Office to let them know that the Tribune was going to expose their wiretap that night?
He was stumped, and refused to answer this simple yes or no question.
Here is why Chase could not answer that particular question.
If Chase had called Patrick Fitzgerald and informed him that the Tribune was now going to expose the feds' wiretap on Blago, wouldn't Fitz try to convince the Trib to wait just one more day?
After all, Blagojevich's brother, Robert, was scheduled to meet with Raghuveer Nayak, Jesse Jackson Jr's money man, to discuss the terms of Jackson's purchase of Barack Obama's U.S Senate seat the very next day.
Blagojevich and Jackson would both have been caught red-handed if Chase had not made that call warning Blago.
On the other hand, if Chase had not called the prosecutors office Fitzgerald would have been justifiably furious at the Tribune for derailing the biggest case of his career.
Instead, Fitzgerald thanked the Tribune for its cooperation, and later gave Chase and Jeff Coen access to the sealed wiretap tapes and transcripts even though the two Trib reporters blew his wiretap out of the water.
All indications are that Fitzgerald was quite OK with Chase warning Blago that night. But obviously Chase can't tell us that.
Even more telling: Chase did not deny that he knew Robert Blagojevich and Nayak were going to meet the next day before he made that late night phone call.
It is becoming increasingly clear that Chase is having a difficult time keeping track of his lies. In his book, "Golden", he contradicts himself by saying that he was chosen by Tribune editors to make the phone call to Blago.
So which is it, John?
(A) make the call to inform Blago that the feds' were recording him because you wanted to be remembered as the reporter who blew Fitzgerald's case?
(B) make the call because your editors who had been cooperating with Fitzgerald told you to?
It's the simple questions that often prove to be the most difficult for liars to answer.
When Chicago Sun Times reporter Natasha Korecki was asked why she was not asking these questions, she replied: "No reporter wants to make another reporter look bad."
Even when it means not reporting the truth.
Wow! "Only in Chicago."
Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief
We all know that giving convicted felon and "FBI informant" John Thomas tax increment financing (TIF) funds was a colossally stupid thing to do.
But the real question is: was it legal?
John Thomas, who is best known for wearing a wire for the feds in the cases against Tony Rezko and Ald. Ike Carothers, is in federal custody for stealing 370K of TIF money from the village of Riverdale IL.
Feds arrest former mole in Rezko, Carothers cases
BY NATASHA KORECKI AND KIM JANSSEN Staff Reporters April 18, 20
Smooth-talking felon John Thomas once said the thing he loved about Chicago was, it was “the most forgiving” place for a convicted crook.
He’d better hope so.
The 51-year-old real estate developer — who got a second chance at life and dodged a prison term by wearing a wire against disgraced political fundraiser Tony Rezko as well as former Ald. Ike Carothers — has been up to his old tricks, federal prosecutors say.
Arrested at dawn on Good Friday at his downtown condo, Thomas stole $370,000 from the south suburban village of Riverdale that was meant for the development of Riverdale Marina, a federal indictment alleges.
Continue reading .... Feds arrest former mole in Rezko, Carothers cases
OK. It's no real surprise that a habitual criminal like Thomas would steal a pile of money put right in front of him.
But who in their right mind would put a pile of taxpayer money in front of a convicted felon knowing full well that he would steal it?
That kind of stupidity can't be legal!
After initially pleading not guilty to all charges against him, Thomas has abruptly changed his mind and will plead guilty on May 16.
So what's up? Did Thomas make another deal with the feds? Are there more arrests to follow in the Riverdale Marina scam?
But when feds were asked these questions, they refused to comment.
The U.S. Attorney's office also refuses to explain why it allowed John Thomas' three-year probation from his previous felony conviction to be terminated after only one year.
Is it just a coincidence that Thomas had his probation terminated two years early, which allowed him the opportunity to steal taxpayer money in the Riverdale Marina deal?
Why would the feds allow this?
One thing is for sure. If Thomas' sentence of probation was not prematurely terminated in 2011, his problems today would be exponentially greater.
To start, he would be facing much longer prison time.
Clearly there is more going on here than meets the eye....
Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief
We told you in September 2012 that Obama associate Daniel S. Mahru would receive a sentence of probation instead of jail time for his silence.
After delaying the inevitable for 18 months, the U.S. Department of Justice has proven IP2P right once again by sentencing Mahru to probation.
Like we said in 2012:
DoJ silences Obama associate Daniel S. Mahru with his freedom
Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief, Illinois PayToPlay
Illinoispaytoplay.com (IP2P) has learned that Daniel S. Mahru, former business partner of Antoin "Tony" Rezko, made a deal with the Department of Justice (DoJ) for his silence.
IP2P is the first to report that on, October 4 2012, Daniel S. Mahru will receive probation at his sentencing hearing. IP2P has also learned that this is being done to insure Mahru will not speak of crimes, of which he has knowledge, that implicate Barack Obama, Valerie Jarrett, Allison Davis, Tony Rezko and others. (Remember Tony recently saying he committed crimes for which Fitzgerald did not charge him.)
IP2P is also investigating the circumstances surrounding meetings that took place where Daniel T Frawley and Daniel S Mahru (both convicted felons) met with author Jerome Corsi in Chicago to discuss secret meetings between Barack Obama, Nadhmi Auchi, Tony Rezko, (now Governor) Pat Quinn, and others.
Mahru is unwilling to talk about what was discussed at those meetings. Could that have anything to do with his probation deal?
The DoJ and (now former) U.S Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald protected Eric Holder, Barack Obama and a host of other criminals that occupy high offices in our state and federal government.
Brenda J Elliot at rbo2.com recently posted an article suggesting how important Mahru’s silence is to the DoJ.
Where's that special prosecutor when you need him?
The real question is why announce Mahru's probation now?
Well, because it's time to tie up all those loose ends.
So, the only announcement left that Eric Holder's Dept. of Justice needs to make is Rod Blagojevich will be released early from prison.
In other words, it's time to complete the "deal" that will insure Blago's continued silence.
It's the Chicago way.
And remember, the Chicago way is not just "who you know". It's also "what you know about who".
Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief
The Blagojevich legal team just can't get their story straight. Most notably, they're having a difficult time coming up with a reasonable explanation for why they did not make Chicago Tribune reporter John Chase tell a jury how he knew that the FBI had a wiretap on Blago.
Such a difficult time, in fact, veteran attorney Sheldon Sorosky actually said that if he had called Chase to testify, "They would have just blamed an FBI agent" for leaking the information about the wiretap.
Let's take a minute to fully appreciate what a truly remarkable statement that is for a defense attorney to make.
Clearly Sorosky is at a loss to explain why he did not call the one witness whose testimony could discredit the very people that Blago needed to discredit, namely the FBI.
Good thing you chose not to discredit the FBI, Shelly. Otherwise the prosecutors would have regretted calling FBI agent Dan Cain as their first witness to testify against your client in BOTH of Blagojevich's trials.
Remarkable, Shelly, truly remarkable! Can anyone spell malpractice?
Blago's other legal eagles, Sam Adam and Sam Adam, Jr., have been contacted by IP2P but have not responded. If they have anything to add to Sorosky's explanation just let us know?
As for Robert Blagojevich's attorney, Michael Ettinger, his previous position was that they would have put Chase on the witness stand had they thought of it. But that has now become "I don't recall who John Chase is."
Apparently Ettinger has now decided to rejoin the rest of the Blagojevich legal team in their silence on the subject of John Chase knowing about the FBI wiretap and receiving copies of the sealed tapes from the feds.
When you add all of the above to the fact that the media in Chicago is completely ignoring everything while posting "poor Patti Blagojevich" stories, you can only come to one conclusion:
The feds and Blago have finalized their deal, and you can expect the announcement of his early release from prison very soon.
Oh, and don't be surprised if you hear that WLS Radio has a job waiting for Blago when he gets out.
More to come......
Ernie Souchak, Editor-in-Chief
This may come as no surprise, but Rod Blagojevich's get-out-of-jail deal not only involves the federal prosecutors and his defense team, it also included the direct involvement of the Chicago Tribune.
That's because, as part of his deal to get out of prison, Rod Blagojevich agreed to let Chicago Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen lie to the public about the wiretap tapes that put him there.
Due to some excellent investigative reporting by Barbara Hollingsworth, who now writes for CNS News, we know that the feds gave Chase and Coen copies of court-sealed tapes and transcripts from the Blagojevich case.
Gee, why would the FEDS do that?
Simple. Chase and Coen were instructed to tell the public that they listened to all the sealed tapes and found nothing interesting on them.
We know differently because Blago was caught on tape talking to some of the top power brokers in the country, including Obama and his chief-of-staff Rahm Emanuel.
So the real question you must ask is:
Why would Rod Blagojevich and his lawyers, who knew very well the explosive contents of the conversations caught on those tapes, allow Chase and Coen to lie about them?
Facing 14 years in federal prison, Blagojevich should have dragged Chase and Coen in front of Judge Zagel and made them tell the court who gave them tapes and transcripts that he had placed under seal. But Blago didn't.
The $64k question is why?
Blago's attorney, Sheldon Sorosky, has confirmed that there is and never was anything stopping Blago from telling the public what is on the tapes, which he insist to this day prove his innocence.
So why did Blago and his attorneys let Chase and Coen's public proclamation that the contents of the sealed tapes confirm his guilt go unchallenged?
And why is Blago pretending he wants the tapes to be unsealed when he is completely ignoring the fact that the Chicago Tribune claims to have copies?
More importantly, why are the feds insisting the tapes stay sealed nearly 2 years after they gave copies to the two Chicago Tribune reporters-who have refused to make them public?
What possible reason could Chase and Coen have not to release the transcripts?
The answer is that Chicago Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen are lying to the public, the feds put them up to it, and Blago agreed to go along with the deception as part of his get-out-of-jail deal.
Hugo Floriani, Investigative Reporter
Rod Blagojevich continues to insult the people of Illinois. He obviously thinks we are stupid.
That is the only way to explain Blago's ridiculous behavior when it comes to the subject of federal wiretap recordings in his case.
Here's the latest:
Rod Blagojevich's attorney's recently filed a motion objecting to prosecutors' request to have the tapes continue to remain under seal.
No kidding, Blago apparently thinks that the people of Illinois will believe the fairytale that he actually wants the tapes and transcript to be made public.
Rod, let me try to put this delicately for you.
In a pigs eye! We already know that there is not a snowball's chance in hell that you want those tapes in the public domain.
Because if you did, your lawyers would be filing motions to drag Chicago Tribune reporters John Chase and Jeff Coen into court to explain who gave them copies of tapes and transcripts that were under court seal.
And Rod, you and your attorneys sure as hell would not have just sat there silently as Chase and Coen told your potential jury pool that the contents of the "sealed tapes and transcripts" prove your guilt rather than your innocence.
Which is exactly what they did while touring Illinois promoting their book, Golden.
In addition, Blagojevich's attorney, Sheldon Sorosky, has admitted that there is nothing legally stopping the former governor from revealing to the public the full details of conversations that were captured on tape. But so far Blago has chosen not to do so.
However, we know for a fact that he has been using the tapes to blackmail his way out of prison.
We also know that Blago, the prosecutors, and an untold number of other miscreants want the tapes to remain sealed forever.
So Rod, contrary to what you think, we are not that stupid. Either drag Chase and Coen into court and start telling us what is on those tapes, or shut the hell up about them!