Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Siegelman lawyers claim that U.S. Magistrate Charles Coody lied about reviewing Leura Canary documents

Don Siegelman
The federal judge who claims he reviewed documents in the Don Siegelman case related to the recusal of U.S. Attorney Leura Canary never actually saw any such documents, according to a court filing.

U.S. Magistrate Charles S. Coody, from the Middle District of Alabama, states in an order dated June 27, 2012, that he reviewed in camera (in private, in his chambers) all documents that Siegelman sought and found they contained "no exculpatory matter" that would "further" the former governor's claims. Coody proceeded to deny Siegelman's request for discovery, just as he had earlier denied a similar motion from codefendant Richard Scrushy, the former CEO of HealthSouth.

By our unofficial count, Coody became the first of at least six federal judges to deny discovery on the Canary-recusal issue--the others being trial judge Mark Fuller; a three-judge panel of the U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals; and, most recently, U.S. District Judge Clay Land, who was appointed to hear the case in the wake of Fuller's wife-beating scandal.

All six judges to consider the matter have denied discovery by essentially following Coody's lead--and his claim that he had privately reviewed all relevant material that Siegelman requested. But Siegelman's lawyers state, in a brief dated August 26, 2013, that Coody never reviewed any documents related to Canary's recusal. (The brief is embedded at the end of this post.) In fact, the Siegelman team states that Coody only reviewed documents related to primary government witness Nick Bailey and never even ordered documents about Canary.

In essence, Siegelman's lawyers are calling Coody a liar--and they are saying that Coody's lies have tainted the defendants' cases for roughly 2 1/2 years now. Do they have a point? Let's consider Coody's words from the second paragraph of his order:

After reviewing the submissions and hearing argument of the parties, the court ordered the United States to produce for an in camera review all documents that would be responsive to the defendant's discovery requests. The court has carefully and thoroughly reviewed all material provided by the United States. The material does not further the defendant's claims, does not contain exculpatory material, and contains nothing justifying an evidentiary hearing. Accordingly, for the more detailed reasons that follow, the court concludes that Siegelman's motion for discovery (doc. # 960) is due to be denied.

Near the end of his order, Coody returns to the issue:

The court has thoroughly reviewed in camera the documents that Siegelman seeks. . . . They do not support his hypothesis that other evidence exists to support his claim, nor is there anything in the material provided by the United States that is contrary to the evidence already in the hands of the defense.

Coody twice makes it clear that his denial of discovery is based largely on the fact that he has "thoroughly reviewed" all of the documents that Siegelman requests. And Coody's order makes clear that the most important of those documents likely are the ones involving Canary.

But in a brief filed a little more than one year later, Siegelman's lawyers state that Coody is mistaken--that he is, for lack of a more delicate term, a con man. In fact, defense lawyers point to specific documents, and cite precise language, that seems to prove Coody lied. From pp. 17-18 of the Siegelman brief:

The Magistrate Judge, however, did not order any Canary-related discovery. Instead, he entered two discovery orders, neither of which asked the government to turn over any documents related to Canary’s continued involvement in the prosecution. The two discovery orders required the government to turn over notes and documents “related to or developed from interviews of or meetings with Nick Bailey by any agent of the government.” Doc. 1042; see also Doc. 1040 (ordering Case: 12-14373 Date Filed: 08/26/2013 Page: 28 of 65 - 18 - production of “the binder provided to [an attorney] by his former client Nick Bailey”). Bailey had been a government witness who claimed that prosecutors had improperly shaped and scripted his testimony; his claims of testimony-shaping had nothing to do with Canary’s continued involvement in the Siegelman prosecution. Doc. 1096 at 5.

Having granted only Bailey-related discovery, the Magistrate Judge denied Siegelman’s request for materials relevant to Canary’s disqualification.

In a footnote on pp. 18-19, Siegelman's lawyers show that Coody offered pretty much the same language to deny Scrushy's request for discovery:

In denying co-defendant Scrushy’s similar discovery request, the magistrate judge wrote that “the court has laboriously reviewed the documents provided to it by the government related to this issue. . . . This is not a matter of withholding any documents; there are no documents.” Doc. 1070 at 19-20. Yet the magistrate judge failed to acknowledge that the “documents provided to it by the government” included nothing related Canary’s ongoing involvement. Indeed, the government was not ordered to turn over any Canary-related documents.

Coody, it appears, engaged in blatant subterfuge; Siegelman's lawyers caught him at it, but Coody's fellow jurists mindlessly followed his bogus lead.

What would genuine discovery regarding Leura Canary reveal about the Siegelman case? Why are federal judges resorting to deceit and chicanery to make sure it remains hidden from the public?


Anonymous said...

coody e discovery

Anonymous said...

Governor of Missouri and Missouri School of Journalism,

Karen Hudes, Jan 6, 2015 cc: Missouri School of Journalism, National Governors Association, National Press Club, SOMETHING called Metro 1313 ~

The journalism school at the University of Missouri has been implicated in the cover-up because Sonja Hillgren, one of their graduates who became President of the National Press Club, tried to end the cover - up

Anonymous said...

Chief Magistrate Coody retired and got to be the title he is now.

He did what he was paid to do, and more likely than not he got lots of silver, gold, or some real compensation for his crime.

Judges in the USA, for the majority, are bound to the secrecy system.

The secrecy that made America into a failed rogue nation state.

Secrecy that has destroyed the real law.

In other words, judges in America for almost all, the majority, agents for the counterfeit system of debt-based-credit.

Money has been made from computers since the first World War, and that drive to get bigger and bigger worked, for the western power brokers.

Why world earth says to the judges that are corrupt in "government USA", get the real deal as honest power brokers.

Coody is a Power Broker and he brokers the power of the racket called the Neoconservatives.

Scary he is a member of the Bush Cabal, and that is all those that have profited from the rape of America, Don Siegelman obviously vetted USA and not the NeoCon.

legalschnauzer said...

My apologies for being slow getting comments up. Been having technical difficulties for past fews days. Hope to have them sorted out soon.

Anonymous said...

Good research here, LS. This should be a very important part of the Siegelman story. Will be interesting to see how 11th Circuit tries to cover this up.

legalschnauzer said...

I agree that it's a big story, @6:51, maybe bigger in terms of the federal judiciary than the Mark Fuller wife-beating story. I've got more coming on this story. Technical difficulties have kept me from getting it out and about like I want to this week.

Anonymous said...

Lying by omission, one of the most committed frauds in the American justice system. Performed by an officer of the court it is extrinsic fraud and vitiates all judgments, actions and orders of the court.

Anonymous said...

IT isn't our friend when we get the information to the people.

Your IT is being put into a place where slow works for the HIGH CABAL that is losing the global control of the "networks".

Legal Schnauzer the consistency with exposing the corruption at your work genius site is the light in humanity that the Founders of the US Constitution called the BRUSH-FIRE.

Lite up the world, and thank you so very much!

Anonymous said...

“The biggest problem is not to get people to accept new ideas, but to get them to forget the old ones.”—Nassau Senior

SHOCKING: SWAT Team Kills Deaf And Blind 107-Year-Old Man >>

In Arkansas a SWAT team, more heavily armed that the troops that landed on the beaches of Normandy in 1944, killed a 107 year old man it was called upon to help. The special prosecutor hired to investigate the incident exonerated the squad, saying the killing was justified because the members of the squad feared for their lives. Sure they did!

It all began in England. (So many of the world’s wrongs began in England!) Known as the Common Law, it began sometime after William conquered Harold in the Battle of Hastings. Before then, disputes were settled by local bishops and sheriffs in ecclesiastic courts. Ecclesiastical courts had scholastic philosophy and the Bible to guide decisions. Then Henry II began sending judges from his court throughout the country to adjudicate disputes according to their own notions of right and wrong. They had no principles of justice to guide their judgments; nor were they especially upright men. Many were openly corrupt, and judgments to benefit the monarchy were common. When these judges returned to the king’s court, they discussed their cases with each other. In time, a practice, known as precedent, was developed by which judges agreed to follow the decisions of other judges. When judges began to respect each other’s decisions, a system of law common throughout the whole of England, the common law, came into being. Much of this practice exists in America today.

Common law judges were the primary source of law until Parliament acquired legislative powers. This kind of legislating from the bench was asserted to be the primary source of law in the U.S. by the Supreme Court in 1803 under John Marshall.

John Marshall did two things in Marbury v. Madison that fundamentally changed the newly created nation. First he assumed the court’s power to overrule acts of Congress by asserting the common law principle that “It is emphatically the province and duty of the judicial department to say what the law is.” While true in common law, that principle was lost when Parliament acquired legislative power in 1649. The American Constitution gives the Congress alone, not the judiciary, the power to say what the law is. The responsibility of the court is only to say if the law has been broken. This assumption of power by the Court from which there is no appeal possible by the Congress, the President, or even the people made the nation into an oligarchy of judges with absolute authority. The United States of America was no longer an incipient, enlightenment democracy although it retained democratic trappings.

The second thing Marshall did was provide the legal system with a paradigm for promoting injustice. Marshall writes that Marbury was entitled to his commission but refused to grant it saying the Court lacked jurisdiction just after having said the Court had the duty to say what the law is. He could have merely claimed jurisdiction.

American courts have been promulgating unjust decisions ever since. They merely assert that the law says something it doesn’t say, as, for instance, that the Bill of Rights applies to corporations. The faults of this system have become evident and their disastrous consequences indisputable.

In the absence of any commonly recognized standards of justice, the legal system has become replete with bad (unjust) decisions. Except for errors made by jurors in jury trials, these decisions serve as precedents which means that they propagate themselves spreading injustice everywhere.

By John Kozy, Dec 20, 2013,