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A great deal more information is now emerging about the struggles between former Kansas City U.S. Attorney Tom Graves and main Justice, all of which leaves one puzzling about which side of the law enforcement divide is occupied by main Justice. It seems Graves had constant difficulties with the Civil Rights Division–Graves wanted to prosecute a cross-burning case (exactly the sort of thing that the Civil Rights Division was involved in, back in the old days when its concern was protecting, instead of suppressing, civil rights), but main Justice objected. Kansas City’s KMBC TV reports:
Graves told Mahoney that things got particularly bad after a cross-burning case. From the Graves interview and draft provided to Mahoney: “Graves wrote this memo after an angry phone call with the “acting head of the civil rights division, Alex Acosta.” Graves said he hung up on Acosta and 2 days later wrote him this memo:
“I am unwilling to negotiate (within Dept. of Justice) to eviscerate and weaken this agreement”. Graves said that friends in the department warned him at the time that kind of action could hurt his career. Graves said he also had trouble over Robert Courtney, a local pharmacist who was convicted diluting Cancer drugs. Graves said he wanted to sieze $10 million dollars from Courtney and give it to the victims. And when Washington balked, he said “I got angry.” Telling them, “I am not the US Attorney for Washington, I am the US Attorney for western Missouri.”
So main Justice intervened to stop civil rights enforcement actions, to support a medicare fraudster and to pressure Graves to bring a fraudulent voter fraud action – which he ultimately refused to sign. And after all this friction, Graves was dismissed and Acosta’s deputy, Bradley Schlozman, was sent to Kansas City in his place. This provides much more grist for the hearing with Mr. Schlozman, scheduled for May 15. Or at least it was . . .
Former Kansas City U.S. Attorney Bradley Schlozman writes to advise the Senate Judiciary Committee that he can’t appear at the hearing scheduled for May 15 because he will be on vacation. The obstruction continues.
More from Scott Horton:
Conversation — March 30, 2016, 3:44 pm
Joseph Hickman discusses his new book, The Burn Pits, which tells the story of thousands of U.S. soldiers who, after returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, have developed rare cancers and respiratory diseases.
Freddie Gray’s relatives arrived for the trial in the afternoon, after the prep-school kids had left. By their dress, they seemed to have just gotten off work in the medical and clerical fields. The family did not appear at ease in the courtroom. They winced and dropped their heads as William Porter and his fellow officer Zachary Novak testified to opening the doors of their police van last April and finding Freddie paralyzed, unresponsive, with mucus pooling at his mouth and nose. Four women and one man mournfully listened as the officers described needing to get gloves before they could touch him.
The first of six Baltimore police officers to be brought before the court for their treatment of Freddie Gray, a black twenty-five-year-old whose death in their custody was the immediate cause of the city’s uprising last spring, William Porter is young, black, and on trial. Here in this courtroom, in this city, in this nation, race and the future seem so intertwined as to be the same thing.
Number of Turkish college students detained in the last year for requesting Kurdish-language classes:
Turkey was funding a search for Suleiman the Magnificent’s heart.
A former prison in Philadelphia that has served as a horror-movie set was being prepared as a detention center for protesters arrested at the upcoming Democratic National Convention, and presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump fired his campaign manager.
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“Matt was happy enough to sustain himself on the detritus of a world he saw as careening toward self-destruction, and equally happy to scam a government he despised. 'I’m glad everyone’s so wasteful,' he told me. 'It supports my lifestyle.'”