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Friday, October 10, 2008

Inside the Ugly World of Alice Martin and the Bush Justice Department

If I were granted one early Christmas wish for 2008, it would be this: That all Americans read "The Curious Case of Alex Latifi," the superb article written by Lynda Edwards in the October issue of the Journal of the American Bar Association (ABA).

What would happen if, between now and November 4, all Americans read, and grasped the importance of, the article:

* Democrat Barack Obama would be elected president in a landslide; and

* An Obama administration, in conjunction with Congress, would move quickly and decisively to ensure that the criminals who infiltrated our Justice Department over the past eight years are held accountable.

For the sake of our country, both of those things desperately need to happen. And Edwards' story is the kind of behind-the-scenes reporting that shows just how bad things have really been in the Bush DOJ.

(By the way, many Democrats are filled with angst that an Obama administration would let Bush criminals off the hook. In a recent op-ed piece for The Wall Street Journal, famed Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz actually endorses the idea of a "get out of jail free" card for corrupt Bushies. For a well-reasoned counter to Dershowitz' nonsense, check out Lawrence Velvel's blog.)

Not surprisingly for those of us who live in or near Birmingham, Edwards' poster child for corruption is Alice Martin, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Alabama.

Edwards' story is about a man, Alex Latifi, who sees his flourishing business intentionally ruined by federal officials, largely because he is a Democrat of Iranian descent.

It's a grim, ugly story. But Edwards still manages to find moments of hilarity. You have the star government witness who stole more than $12,000 from Latifi and admitted to altering and sabotaging company files and computer records. And my favorite is the DOJ official, who when asked for comment, tells Edwards she should not be writing about the case because "it's weird! It's an anomaly! It's a weird anomaly!"

Regular readers know I've had my own unfortunate encounters with Alice Martin, and my research indicates she or people close to her are behind my termination at UAB. (Much more on that coming soon.) So a number of scenes from the ABA Journal story cut close to the bone here at Legal Schnauzer:

*Consider this quote from Martin: "If KBR or Halliburton committed an illegal act in my jurisdiction in Alabama, I would have prosecuted them." This implies that Martin pursues cases regardless of the political implications. I've written numerous posts based on firsthand experience, including this one, that show this statement is pure, unadulterated rubbish.

* And get this gem from Martin: "This is actually more painful than a root canal because at least the dentist gives you Novocain. I don't know Jill Simpson, I have never met Karl Rove or been in the same building with him, to my knowledge. When I ran for elective office, I got some names of consultants from Bill Canary. I couldn't afford Bill."

And who did our gal Alice wind up with as a campaign manager when she ran for a seat on the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals in 2000? Why, none other than Dax Swatek, one of Canary's right-hand compadres and a central character in our Legal Schnauzer story because his father, Bill Swatek, filed the bogus lawsuit in Shelby County that started my "road to legal perdition."

And get this: I wrote in detail about the Alice Martin/Dax Swatek connection on this post, dated February 18, 2008.

Notice the first comment on that post: "Nut case yours is comong (sic)."

Obviously, this individual has a slight problem with grammar and spelling. It's also obvious that he's not happy with the content of my post, and he intends to do something about it. In short, he shows signs of being a sociopath.

And here's an interesting note: According to testimony at my UAB grievance hearing, my former boss (Pam Powell) initiated an investigation of my computer usage at work on Jan. 21. (An investigation, by the way, that showed I had never once used my computer to work on my blog.)

Less than a month after that, a helpful correspondent tells me mine "is coming." Sounds like somebody knew something was up, doesn't it? And gee, given that the post in question was about Dax Swatek and his ties to Alice Martin, I wonder who my "helpful correspondent" might have been.

Is there reason to believe that Alice Martin and Dax Swatek had something to do with my termination at UAB? Is there reason to believe they enlisted the help of one or more influential people at UAB to get the dirty deed done? Do I have some evidence that suggests the identity of said influential people? Will Legal Schnauzer readers find out who those folks are and what really went down with my firing?

The answer to all of these questions is, to quote Sarah Palin, "You betcha."

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