Ed Saucer Man Flies Again


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

I’m shocked, shocked at the latest revelations about Private Dick Ed Saucerman.

Well, not really.  Nothing he could do would shock me these days.  For background on why, check out:



What is actually shocking is that people continue to hire him, apparently without first simply “Googling” his name, which ought to be a pre-requisite for hiring a Private Investigator, an attorney, a doctor, or a contractor…….Not doing so can lead to many headaches.  One such headache could have been averted by the Claremont Unified School District (CUSD) and it’s attorneys if they’d bothered to check Saucerman out before utilizing his services:



So, let’s review what a school district or an attorney would have found out by conducting even a cursory search of the publicly available sources of knowledge on the internet about Ed Saucerman before hiring him:

  • Saucerman fabricated a testimonial letter purportedly written by a Deputy Attorney General and posted it on his website; the letter falsely claimed that he’d been hired by the California Department of Justice for an investigation
  • Saucerman fabricated a testimonial letter from another private investigator and falsely attributed its contents to the wrong investigator because he’d had a falling out with the real investigator who hired him on the case
  • Saucerman falsely claimed that he would not renew his membership in the California Association of Licensed Investigators (CALI) and then renewed that membership after his disastrous showing in the election for President of CALI’s rival, PICA (Professional Investigators of California)
  • Saucerman was sued for arresting and causing the incarceration of a student at Fontana High School on graduation day for suspicion of knowing who might have painted graffiti on school property
  • Saucerman has repeatedly made deceptive statements to other investigators and the public about his law enforcement experience in an attempt to lead people to believe he’d spent 16-17 years in the Los Angeles Police Department when in fact he didn’t even make it past probation
  • Saucerman was ordered off of the Fontana High School campus due to staff complaints

Now, even if Saucerman was the “Titan” of the investigative profession that he imagines himself to be, it would be extremely unwise for a school district, an attorney or any other client to hire Saucerman knowing this to be his record.  If he ever had to testify in court or any administrative hearing, he’d get beaten up with his reputation for dishonesty at the very least.  If Saucerman had been an employee rather than an independent contractor for the CUSD, he might very likely have gotten the district into a negligent hiring lawsuit, 79% of which are lost by employers according to a 2001 Public Personnel Management report (http://www.iso.com/Research-and-Analyses/ISO-Review/Negligent-Hiring-Employer-Risk.html).

If I was a taxpayer in the CUSD, I’d sure be thinking about filing a lawsuit pursuant to Section 526a of the California Code of Civil Procedure to insure that the district would never again squander public money by hiring either Ed Saucerman or the law firm that recommended him, Fagen Friedman & Fulfrost LLP, again.  Section 526a CCP provides that:

An action to obtain a judgment, restraining and preventing
any illegal expenditure of, waste of, or injury to, the estate,
funds, or other property of a county, town, city or city and county
of the state, may be maintained against any officer thereof, or any
agent, or other person, acting in its behalf, either by a citizen
resident therein, or by a corporation, who is assessed for and is
liable to pay, or, within one year before the commencement of the
action, has paid, a tax therein. This section does not affect any
right of action in favor of a county, city, town, or city and county,
or any public officer; provided, that no injunction shall be granted
restraining the offering for sale, sale, or issuance of any
municipal bonds for public improvements or public utilities.
   An action brought pursuant to this section to enjoin a public
improvement project shall take special precedence over all civil
matters on the calendar of the court except those matters to which
equal precedence on the calendar is granted by law.

The approximately $20,000.00 spent on Saucerman’s services according to the Claremont Courier was a waste of money.  Claremont taxpayers should do something about it.



Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Who I’m Voting For-President/US Senate


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

This may come as a shock to some people but I’m not now nor have I ever been a Democrat.  Nor am I a Liberal.  As Newspaper Guild founding President Heywood Campbell Broun once said, “A liberal is one who leaves the room when the fight begins.” I’m a second generation member of the California Peace & Freedom Party and I’m an unabashed, unapologetic radical.  That said, take my endorsements however you like them, or if you’re at the opposite end of the political spectrum, feel free to vote the opposite of my endorsements.

Rocky Anderson

President:  in the Peace & Freedom Party primary I’m voting for former Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson.  On his Facebook page he’s unafraid to openly declare himself a “Radical” and having seen his performance on MSNBC I’m impressed with the way he articulates a rational, radical program of change.

Fred Karger

Republican:  My Constitutional Conservative friends may very well want to make a statement about the state of affairs in their own party by voting for Fred Karger of Political Consulting Dolphin Group fame who is running a pro-LGBTI rights campaign for President.  Those issues are not trivial and Karger deserves a lot of credit for taking his fight to such an inherently hostile audience.

United States Senate:

Kabiruddin Karim Ali

Peace & Freedom Party:  First, I’m voting for KABIRUDDIN KARIM ALI.  Ali is not part of the Feiginite-Berkeley Bullshevik alliance that is the self-appointed leadership of the party and he is to be to be commended for his campaign that is dealing with serious issues and articulating them in a way that can be understood by normal people, unlike the person I’m voting AGAINST.  I’m dead set against Marsha Feinland.  Feinland was one of and still is a member of the Feiginite/Berkeley Bullshevik cabal which in 1994 took one of the most insane positions ever espoused by any American political party.  In response to my call for invoking the anti-boycott provisions of Federal law against Turkey and Azerbaijan for their total blockade of Armenia (and the Azeri pogrom of pillage, murder, and rape that drove 800,000 ethnic Armenians out of Azerbaijan) Feinland and her cohorts on the PFP State Executive Committee voted for a position of punishing Armenia with American sanctions under Section 901 of the Freedom Support Act to punish Armenia for the crime of having been blockaded by its neighbors.  This was a position far to the right of the Turkish Embassy and then Halliburton President and later Vice President of the United States Dick Cheney (who received the Azeri-United States Chamber of Commerce “Freedom Support” award).  One of Feinland’s claims to fame is her service as an elected Rent Control Commissioner for the City of Berkeley, during which her husband — the late and fellow Berkeley Bullshevik John Thomas “Tom” Condit” unlawfully sub-letted his own rent controlled apartment while living with Feinland.

Marsha Feinland

On top of everything else, the PFP leadership — almost exclusively white as it is — has a penchant for recruiting coconuts and oreos to its leadership when it actually engages in affirmative action outreach.  Case in point:  they ran a candidate for Congress in a special election who wanted to bring our troops home from Iraq so that they could secure the Mexican border against undocumented immigrants; they were proud of her because she had a Hispanic surname.  U.S. Senate candidate Ali is an immigrant, knows the issues of immigrants from personal experience, and can reach out to California’s burgeoning immigrant population.




Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wanda the Welder


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

USS Missouri, the "Mighty Mo," built by Wanda the Welders and Rosie the Riveters

As I ponder Memorial Day I think of the Veterans in my family, both military and civilian.  Two of my uncles and two of my aunts were Navy in World War II.  In World War I my grandfathers, both immigrants from Czarist Russia served.  My paternal grandfather was in the Army at the Battle of Belleau Wood; my maternal grandfather was in the Merchant Marine on the New York to Murmansk run dodging U-Boats with war supplies.

My father couldn’t enlist due to a heart murmur from childhood Rheumatic Fever and served as a civilian millwright – machinist for the Army Air Corps at Hickam Field in Hawaii.

My mother was a Wanda the Welder at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

She welded on the battleship USS Missouri, where the final surrender of the Japanese Empire would take place in 1945.  She had scars on her breasts which proved her patriotism.  Some women were there just for the money. Some were there for the war effort. The leather coverlets they wore over their breasts were inadequate. Hot metal would burn right through, but they were under orders not to stop in the middle of a weld because it could become like a “cold solder joint” (anybody who’s ever taken basic electronics knows what that’s like) and could sink a ship. The women who were there for the money stopped anyway; women like my mother let the metal burn right through until they finished the weld.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Banksters #2


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

For background on this series, go to:



Another practice of the banking industry that winds up being abused and misused is to require people—most often minorities and particularly Latinos—to document their income by depositing cash income into their bank accounts. The practice is not inherently unwarranted; it is a simple way to prevent people from inflating their reported income to defraud the bank when they run a cash business. But if one hand at the bank doesn’t know what the a hand at another bank is doing, it can lead to disaster.

According to HSI Trust it was solely to document his receiving rents from his tenants that Leonardo (who lives in California) deposited his cash in Farmers & Merchants Bank, since his tenants pay in cash by agreement. Leonardo needs the income from the rents he receives to qualify for a loan modification. Even though he can show leases and shows he receives rent on his income tax Bank of America in this case is requiring Leonardo to deposit the cash he receives for rent into a bank account to “prove he receives this income.” Leonardo has already provided notarized statements from his tenants and copies of the receipts he writes them (signed by him and the tenant) when they pay, along with tax returns. Bank of America insisted that either the tenants pay rent with checks that Leonardo would be required to copy and deposit and/or do the cash deposit he did.

Leonardo simply wanted to deposit the cash to do what is needed for the loan mod and then withdraw funds so he could pay bills and have spending money. If he simply deducted the cash he needed from the rental money Bank of America would then only count the amount of the deposit, not the full amount of the rents received.

So Leonardo is forced to deposit the full amount so there is a record on his bank statement and then withdraw what he needs. When he went to do his latest deposit though, Leonardo explained this to the teller and was told that she “would have to report him and that the bank would close his account.” The teller would not let him withdraw his own money either after he deposited it.  He was also threatened with a report under the BSA (Bank Security Act of 1970) which requires financial institutions to assist the government in detecting money laundering.

All of the mortgage servicers engage in this process of requiring rent or if any other cash transaction being deposited to “verify” income. This practice disproportionally impacts minorities and in particular Latinos. HSI Trust has also seen this handled differently when the bank’s client’s last name does not identify ethnicity, by having them provide leases or statements from tenants, along with payment receipt copies and tax returns with no requirement to deposit cash.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Banksters #1


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

HSITrust HomeSavers    a not-for-profit company

Getting Your House in Financial Order

 Office: 70 James St, Suite 276 Worcester MA  01603 Tel: 508-304-9992   Fax: 508-463-0528 or  508-691-3426  Email  info@hsitrust.org

 L to R: Andrea, Chris Cuomo (ABC Prime Time), and Bruce Boguslav at HSI Trust HQ

This will be the first of a series of horror stories emanating from the work of HSI Trust, a non-profit working out of Massachusetts on a national level attempting to ameliorate and protect the rights of people victimized by America’s financial crisis and the predatory actions of Banks and other financial institutions.  HSI Trust works in tandem with the a coalition of non-profit organization in California, including the California League of Latin American Citizens (CALLAC, I am state director).

Given the national scope of HSI Trust’s work, they are able to detect trends in the way that Banks are dealing with their customers.  One trend that is intuitively obvious to them is that minorities are getting treated differently than white Americans.  For example, one Bank’s employees, whether they are talking about Cambodians, Thais, Vietnamese and other East Asians, they refer to them as “Chinese.”  At the risk of obfuscating that which ought to be intuitively obvious, this is below the standard of ignorant.  The Cambodian language is Sanskrit based (from the Indian sub-continent) whereas the Vietnamese language is more related to Chinese.

One of the predatory techniques used by Banks to ripoff hard-working immigrant communities is to provide them with a translator to help them fill out their loan applications but then not give them a translator when they sign the actual mortgage documents.  This is precisely what Wells Fargo did to a Latino immigrant family in California that HSI is currently working with, and as HSI puts it “Wells Fargo continues to ask for extensive financial documents that we believe would not be necessary if they were not a minority borrower.”

As Bob Dylan once sang, “Money doesn’t talk, it swears.”


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Randy Munoz Gamez – Put up or Shut Up


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

The following is a letter I just sent off to the United For Education coalition:

May 20, 2012

Norma Ramirez, President, United For Education Coalition

To:   UFE by President Norma Ramirez:

 Please forgive this ultra-formal response to the allegations leveled against me by Randy Gamez, but unlike Mr. Gamez, who does not answer to a formal corporate structure imposed by law, I do. As you know, the California League of Latin American Citizens (CALLAC) is a California Corporation. At the outset, let me point out as a matter of principle, unincorporated coalitions of individuals and organizations such as UFE, as movimiento associations, generally espouse the ideal of being more democratic than the institutions of government and/or the structure of both for-profit and non-profit corporate American institutions that we criticize and attempt to influence for the better.

Poster created by rival Brown Beret Factions who have issues with Randy Munoz Gamez

 Certainly, as a purported revolutionary, Mr. Gamez would theoretically agree that institutions created by the people rather than the government or corporate America, should have internal procedures that provide more due process rights rather than less, than are provided by the laws of the State of California. As a minimum, I should be afforded at least as much as the due process rights I would be accorded by the California Corporations Code for members and officers of non-profit organizations accused of offenses for which disciplinary action may be taken.

 First, I am requesting that any allegations against me be made in writing and that these written charges specify:

 1.  The definition being used by my accusers of the term “conflict of interest” since that term was bandied about by people who have obviously never had an attorney explain what it means to them and have no idea what the implications of the concept are;

2. Since this whole issue obviously implicates my personal exercise of free speech rights outside of any organizational structure through my personal blog and my personal website, I am requesting that Mr. Gamez (and any other accuser or detractor) explain in writing why or how any coalition has any right to interfere with my rights under the United States Constitution, the California Constitution, and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights;

3. For any allegation that Mr. Gamez claims is false as to any person or organization that purports to constitute a “conflict of interest” or any other offense, he should specify:

(a) the specific language of the allegation I am purported to have made and where/how I made it (i.e., a citation as to the source);

(b) all the facts which demonstrate that the allegation(s) is/are untrue;

(c) the name and contact information for each person who Gamez purports to be a percipient witness to those facts;

(d) the writings as defined in California Evidence Code Section 250 which demonstrate that those facts are untrue;

(e) the name and contact information for each person and/or organization/entity who is in possession of those writings.1

Second, I am requesting that Mr. Gamez explain why he does not have a conflict of interest in representing whatever organization he purports to represent in UFE, based upon the following facts and criteria:

Jeronimo Blanco made accusations against Randy Gamez, not me.

  1. On December 26, 2011 I posted a letter from Jeronimo Blanco, a letter in which he discussed both Randy Gamez and his mother on my blog entitled “Communique from the Aztlan Civil War” [http://janbtucker.com/blog/2011/12/26/communique-from-the-aztlan-civil-war/].

  2. Following this posting, I received a polite request from Randy’s mother requesting removal of her real name (she did not want it publicly associated with her Nahuatl nom de guerre). I complied with that request for the reasons she stated in her request which were reasonable.

  3. I received a threat of a libel suit from Randy Gamez demanding that I remove the allegations being made by Jeronimo Blanco against him that I posted in the blog. I emailed Randy back explaining why he had no basis for a libel suit, why it would be thrown out of court on a motion pursuant to Section 425.16 of the California Code of Civil Procedure, and offered him an opportunity to post any rebuttal he wished to provide. I never heard back from him.

  4. It would appear to be a prima facie case that Randy is utilizing his position as representing some organization(s) to retaliate against me for posting Jeronimo Blanco’s allegations against him (It should be noted that I did not take any position in my blog supporting or opposing Blanco’s viewpoint; The fact that Randy did not avail himself of any opportunity to even deny those allegations that I offered him speaks for itself).

  5. By utilizing his position to retaliate against me based on these facts, Randy may be violating his duty of loyalty, his duty of care, and any fiduciary duties he might have to that organization, if his organization requires those duties of him.

People vs Randy Munoz Gamez? Did he do time? Was it for a frame-up or was it just domestic violence?

Third, it has been publicly alleged by another Brown Beret faction on its Myspace page that Randy spent seven (7) years in prison for attempted murder. Unsubstantiated rumors I have heard include (a) that this charge resulted from his stabbing his girlfriend and (b) his purported explanation that he was framed due to his political organizing activities. I have no idea what the truth of these through the proverbial “grapevine” allegations are.

That said, I do know, because last night I did my own reasonable inquiry and due diligence and determined that it is possible that Randy may have failure to appear and/or failure to pay fine bench warrants outstanding in San Bernardino, Riverside, and Ventura counties. He also may have had his California Driver License revoked because of these apparent FTA/FTP violations.

I bring this up because it is irresponsible for any organization in the UFE coalition to appoint somebody to represent it who is not legally squeaky clean. As we know well, the College Bureau of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department harassed UFE President Norma Ramirez precisely because of her official duties on behalf of UFE, i.e., appearances before the Board of Trustees. If she had not been innocent and squeaky clean, that could have had dire consequences. Even with Norma being clean and innocent, I had to personally expend a considerable amount of professional time to making sure that the matter did not get out of hand and that instead of Norma being under attack, the Sheriff’s detective wound up being thoroughly discredited as an imbecile. Additionally, Norma was subjected to extreme personal distress by being under attack.

 Randy Gamez, to clear the air, if it can be cleared, should:

1. Provide a copy of a valid California Driver License and a certified printout from DMV demonstrating that he has not been suspended or revoked;

2.  Confirm or deny that he spent time in prison as publicly alleged by a Brown Beret unit;

3.  If he confirms that he spent time in prison, he should provide a copy of his probation report (and any other documentation he desires to present) so that UFE can evaluate whether he was indeed framed for political activities or whether he engaged in a serious act of domestic violence.

 In conclusion, I am requesting that this letter be distributed to everybody who attended the meeting at Los Angeles Mission College on May 18, 2012, including but not limited to Randy Gamez, to all UFE participating organizations, to Xenaro, Ernesto, and Libertad Ayala, and to anybody else concerned. I reserve the right to publish this letter on my blog and/or website since it is quite obvious that Mr. Gamez and his allies have disseminated his accusations in a wider circle than within UFE.

 Sincerely submitted to UFE, I remain,

 Respectfully Yours,  Jan B. Tucker

1 I am particularly interested in receiving the facts, witnesses and documents that refute my publicly questioning whether the resources of “Partido Nacional de La Raza Unida” are NOT being used to promote felony wire fraud in violation of 18 USC 1343. I offered Ernesto Ayala during a Facebook chat exchange three (3) opportunities to deny this allegation and he declined to do so. If anybody dares to deny this allegation in writing, I offer, in any public place where I have internet access, in the presence of neutral witnesses, to produce my evidence as to why I am asking the question publicly in the presence of Xenaro Ayala, Ernesto Ayala, and Libertad Ayala to give them an opportunity to explain why my evidence does not mean that they are violating 18 USC 1343.


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Mount Kellett’s “Strikingly Similar” Behavior


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Strikingly Similar

In copyright and trademark litigation the argument is often over whether a graphic representation or music is “substantially similar” or “strikingly similar” to a pre-existing copyrighted or trademarked item.  In the continuing saga of Mount Kellett Capital Management, its behavior with its participation in Baja Mining is looking “strikingly similar” to its participation in Evoq Properties (formerly known as Meruelo Maddux Properties).

It has been reported and much discussed in Baja Mining stockholder discussions (such as at http://www.stockhouse.com, about how directors of Baja Mining that resigned may be brought back as directors as allies of Mount Kellett which narrowly lost a vote to get two directors seats and to depose two board members who were opposing Mount Kellett’s agenda.  In the case of the management of Evoq Properties, prior to the takeover certain higher level management had either quit under a cloud or were terminated.  They went to Mount Kellett and sold them a bill of goods about their purported knowledge and expertise about the company, made common cause with Mount Kellett and facilitated its takeover.

Mount Kellett brought these disloyal and disgruntled managers back with their own team to run Evoq.  What transpired was that (a) one of the managers brought back began initiating sexual relationships with female employees and insuring that they be paid more than women who didn’t accept his advances, (b) the new management team began a pattern and practice of canning minority employees and minority contractors, (c) one of the new management team began keeping two sets of books, (d) they fired and retaliated against the security director because he refused to commit criminal and civil offenses and blew the whistle on company criminality, and (e) they fired an employee for no reason other than that he was Gay.

More news to follow tomorrow, as I expect yet another lawsuit to hit Evoq and its other Mount Kellett affiliated entities with details of these and other juicy revelations.

So, Baja Mining shareholders may want to think very carefully if they see Mount Kellett bringing back disgruntled ex-directors in its effort to takeover the company.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Cinco de Mayo’s Legacy for Indigenous Peoples


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Benito Juarez

Cinco de Mayo went down in history as a great victory against imperialism.  The holiday commemorates the victory in the battle of Puebla of Mexican liberals under Benito Juarez–a full blooded Zapotec–over the Mexican conservatives and monarchists who had supported Emperor Ferdinand Maximilian Joseph, an Austrian liberal duke who was suckered into accepting the throne by French interventionists in Mexico.  But a victory over European imperialism in hindsight may have been a disaster for Mexico’s indigenous population.

Juarez and the liberals’ program known as “La Reforma” and the Mexican Constitution of 1857 defined Ejidos–the system of collective ownership of farmland by Mexican indigenous tribal villages–as “corporate holdings” along with the large haciendas owned by the rich.  It is important to understand (and people who automatically reject the notion that a “corporation” is not a “person” should heed the Latin origin of the terminology to understand why modern conservatives have a different point of view on the issue) why there was a controversy over the application of this law to Ejidos.  As Wikipedia puts it:  “The word ‘corporation’ derives from corpus, the Latin word for body, or a ‘body of people.'”

The rich latifundistas could bypass the law by simply dividing up their large landed estates with title granted to their families for lots of small portions of property.  If the ejiditarios divided up the land and gave individual title to each indigenous family, the danger was — as in the United States — that unscrupulous investors would buyout or rip-off through tax liens the real estate titles one by one.  Another problem of land reform in Mexico involved a question of gender discrimination and would surface during the Mexican Revolution:  should land be distributed to all “heads of households” or to all “male heads of households.”

Maximilian I

Maximilian — to the dismay of the Mexican conservatives who wanted to reverse land reform in its entirety — kept in place many of the liberals’ reforms, including freedom of the press, amnesty for political prisoners, and living wage laws.  While he pledged to respect the agrarian land ownership reform laws, the effect on the ejidos under Juarez and his liberal predecessors had already resulted in many indigenous people losing their land to the latifundistas, precisely the opposite of what was supposed to happen.  Consequently, many of the indigenous people sided with Maximilian’s forces.

One prominent full blooded indigenous leader who rallied to Maximilian’s cause was General Tomas Mejia.  The conservatives were not particularly pleased that Maximilian elevated Mejia to a generalship because of his indigenous heritage, but that did not deter Maximilian.  Mejia proved his worth in battle, personally leading cavalry charges including an effort to break through the Juarista siege lines to enable Maximilian to escape from Queretaro.

General Tomas Mejia

Following a court martial trial, Maximilian and Mejia were both sentenced to death.  As they were being shot by a firing squad, Mejia shouted his last words, “long live the Emperor.”

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Jury Nullification by Aram James


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

The original article can be found, along with comments, at:


Why a fundamental understanding of jury nullification is so critical to taking back our criminal justice system

May 1, 2012


On April 19, 2012 New York federal Judge Kimba Wood dismissed an indictment against 80-year old Julian P. Heicklen for alleged jury tampering in the case against him for handing out materials to members of the public regarding the right of jurors to apply the historic doctrine of jury nullification.

Nullification is the right of jurors to come back with a verdict of not-guilty even if the jurors believe that the defendant in fact technically violated the law, but the jurors conclude that the law in question is an immoral or bad law or a reasonable law applied in a discriminatory fashion.

In dismissing the case Judge Wood commented that a person violates the jury tampering law only when they try to influence a juror in a specific case pending before those same jurors– but not for merely handing out informational materials (protected First Amendment activity) to members of the public who come to the courthouse for a variety of reasons–not necessarily related to jury duty.

The right of jurors to veto or nullify an unjust law—or a law that may be fair on its face but is being applied in a discriminatory fashion–is critical to our democracy and to our ability to serve as citizen jurors while being fully informed of our rights and options as decision makers. These rights are essential when our government calls us to sit in judgment regarding the guilt or innocence of our fellow citizens and community members

In an era where our government is increasingly cracking down on dissent (consider the response of the government to the occupy movement or to high profile whistle blowers such as  Bradley Manning or Julian Assange) the decision by a federal judge to toss out an indictment against an 80-year-old citizen advocate for handing out materials to members of the public in front of a courthouse is a powerful rebuff to the U.S. government’s ongoing efforts to intimidate and steal from its citizens the right to think and speak freely and to exercise their independent judgment in the context of their jury service.

The judge’s decision to toss the indictment goes a long way to prevent—or at least to mitigate– jury tampering activity by judges and or prosecutors who – on occasion — purposely attempt to leave jurors with the wrong and intimidating impression: that to do anything other than to convict the person on trial is itself a criminal act.

Historically brave and courageous jurors refused to convict those charged with violating the Fugitive Slave Act and other immoral laws despite the best efforts of prosecutors and judges to steer jurors towards a conviction.

In the contemporary setting, if more jurors were fully informed of their right to disregard immoral or discriminatorily enforced laws—such as California’s “Jim Crow Drug Laws” and the racially motivated three-strike law—they would undoubtedly refuse to convict many defendants charged under these morally repugnant and frequently discriminatory laws.

The bottom line is that any grassroots organization attempting to reform or rebuild the criminal justice system from the ground up must understand and be willing to educate members of the public regarding their basic rights as jurors—including the right to veto or nullify bad laws.

Failure to educate the public in this regard is to assist and aid the state in wrongfully convicting members of our own communities. Knowledge is power and it’s time we go out into our communities and spread the word—we can just say no to bad laws.

Judge Kimba Wood’s action in dismissing the indictment in the Julian Heicklen case is cause for wide celebration-since we now know we are on solid legal ground when we decide to organize our communities around fundamental concepts of justice and our desire to take back our criminal justice system.

We can take back our criminal justice system from the forces that would prefer that justice be administered and understood for the benefit of the few to the detriment of the majority of  people.   The majority of people who must interact daily with the intentionally maintained mysterious and often baffling criminal justice system.

In California –pursuant to the holding in People v. Williams 25 Cal. 4th 441 (2001), jurors are explicitly precluded from exercising the doctrine of jury nullification. In fact, if a judge discovers that a juror is refusing to apply the law to a case–he or she may be discharged from the jury.

On the other hand, if the judge is unaware that the jury has engaged in nullifying what they perceive to be an unfair or bad law—the double jeopardy clause would prohibit retrial of an acquitted defendant. In Sparf v. U.S. 156 U.S. 51 (1894) the U.S. Supreme Court—in a 5 to 4 decision—held that federal judges are not required to instruct jurors on their right to nullify bad laws.

Understanding the power of jury nullification is one way to even the odds of obtaining justice for all. To learn more about the power of jury nullification check out the Fully Informed Jury Association (FIJA).

Aram James is a retired Santa Clara County deputy public defender—and a co-founder of the Albert Cobarrubias Justice Project (ACJP) –a grassroots legal advocacy organization—located in San Jose, CA.

*In a future article the author intends to discuss the provocative and controversial use of race-based jury nullification. The doctrine of race-based jury nullification has been popularized by Law Professor Paul Butler.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

This entry was posted on May 1, 2012 at 8:18 pm and is filed under Business, Community Posts, Featured, Fire and Police News, Legal. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Lawsuit Alleges Insurance Fraud by Mount Kellett Operatives


By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Case No. 12-3611, Zaldivar vs Keybank etc & et al has been filed in the United States District Court for the Central District of California which alleges, amongst other things, that Evoq Properties Inc. operatives put in place by Mount Kellett Capital Management engaged in violations of Section 1871.7 of the California Insurance Code.

According to the suit:

Defendants made a claim for insurance benefits for the repair of a property that had been damaged by rain. Defendants falsely misrepresented and exaggerated the amount and extent of the damage to the building on the property to receive a larger than necessary payment from an insurance company. When Plaintiff exposed this fraud to businesses that had been ejected from the property as part and parcel of Defendants’ fraud, Defendants retaliated against Plaintiff in a mixed motive scenario involving both discrimination and whistleblower retaliation, by cancelling Plaintiff’s agreement and withholding payments that Plaintiff was due under that agreement.

The inside word on the suit’s allegation is that rain damage to a wholesale produce mart with exclusively minority and immigrant businesses and employees was purportedly blown out of proportion in order to get a huge insurance settlement.  Instead of repairing the damage with the insurance funds, Evoq Properties instead kicked out all of their business tenants and kept most of the money received for repairs.

The suit also alleges that:

In doing the acts and omissions alleged herein, Defendants engaged in a pattern and practice of discriminating against immigrants, non-Caucasian ethnic persons, and most egregiously against individuals and entities who of Latino/Hispanic descent and/or ownership. Defendants Evoq and R7 violated the rights of Plaintiff and its owners and employees under Article I, Sections 1 and 7 of the California Constitution, and Sections 51 and 51.5 and of the California Civil Code.

Complaints are being prepared to the California Department of Insurance and the Los Angeles Building and Safety Department regarding these allegations.

To see the lawsuit:  http://www.janbtucker.com/files/Mario_Z-Federal_Suit_-_LA0001.pdf


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment