U.S. Rep. Matt Gaetz may be facing a lot of legal trouble after his ex-girlfriend was granted immunity. The Florida Republican who was convicted sex trafficker Joel Greenberg‘s “wingman” is reportedly being investigated by the Dept. of Justice for sex trafficking of a minor and obstruction of justice.
Last week Gaetz’s ex-girlfriend, whose name is not being released to the public, was granted immunity according to CBS News, and “full immunity” according to at least one legal expert, before she testified to a federal grand jury.
“She is viewed as a potential key witness, according to two sources familiar with the investigation,” CBS News reports. “One of the sources said she has information related to the investigation of both the sex trafficking and obstruction allegations.”
Former U.S. Attorney Harry Litman, now an LA Times columnist, writes: “This doesn’t happen casually to help further investigation. This rather happens when there is a target that the immunized witness has critical info to bring down. Very ominous development for Gaetz.”
He adds that even just requesting an immunity deal “is itself an elaborate process requiring sign off from Main Justice,” meaning top officials at the Dept. of Justice, up to or including the Attorney General. Gaetz’s former girlfriend “likely has significant information of Gaetz’s involvement in both the trafficking charge and the obstruction.”
“And further, only after elaborate Negotiations between the witness’s lawyer and the government designed to show the government just how much she can inculpate the target,” Litman adds, stressing how much worse this could be for Gaetz.
Another former federal prosecutor, now a law professor at George Washington University Law School also calls the immunity deal “ominous.”
This is correct. Granting immunity is not done lightly and it indicates the witness has something significant to offer. Ominous news for Gaetz. https://t.co/BWdK7wHsYS
— Randall Eliason (@RDEliason) January 18, 2022
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Seattle Police Didn’t Provide Access to Lawyers 96% of the Time: Report
The Seattle Police Department violated the law and didn’t give people under 18 access to a lawyer when it was supposed to 96% of the time, according to a new report released Friday by the city’s Office of the Inspector General.
The OIG audited the Seattle Police Department on its compliance with two laws, a city-level law called the MiChance Dunlap-Gittens Ordinance and a similar state law, RCW 13.40.740. The laws require police give those under 18 years old access to a public defender before the youth waives their right to remain silent. Police also must provide attorney access when requesting consent for a search, according to the OIG.
The OIG examined 89 arrests and found 50 cases where the laws applied. In those cases, access to an attorney was only provided twice. The OIG broke the interactions into four categories: Custodial Interrogation, which made up half of the cases; Consent to Search, 3 cases; Detained and Questioned, 7 cases; and Arrested, No Evidence of Questioning, 15 cases. Both of the instances where attorney access was provided were in this last category.
In an appendix, the OIG laid out eight recommendations, including updating the Seattle Police Department’s policy manual, requiring officers to “make a good faith effort” to check the age of the person detained, and to perform regular internal audits on whether or not the law is being followed by officers.
SPD’s chief operating officer, Brian Maxey, said it was sometimes difficult to determine if someone is legally a minor, according to the Times, but admitted that “in some instances there are clear gaps in officers’ understanding of the laws and inconsistencies in practice.”
The law is named for MiChance Dunlap-Gittens, a high school senior shot in 2017 following a botched sting operation. King County sheriff’s detectives investigating a homicide attempted to create a sting to catch a suspect. Dunlap-Gitten was killed when he attempted to flee. The suspect the detectives were after also fled, but was caught by a SWAT team that night, according to the Seattle Times. However, neither teenager was involved at all in the homicide under investigation.
Dunlap-Gittens’ death led to a $2.5 million ruling against King County in 2020. In addition to the victim’s family receiving the money, the sheriff at the time apologized and promised to make her officers wear body cameras and use dash cameras, according to the Times. Shortly following the settlement, the Seattle City Council passed the ordinance. A similar ordinance also went before the King County Council. A year later, RCW 13.40.740 passed the State Legislature.
Giuliani Booking Photo Released
Former Trump attorney and former Republican Mayor of New York City, Rudy Giuliani was booked in Fulton County, Georgia Wednesday afternoon on racketeering charges and charges related to attempts to overturn the 2020 election.
He was released on a $150,000 bond after being arraigned on 13 charges.
“Conditions include prohibitions against intimidating co-defendants or witnesses, and against communicating with co-defendants other than through their lawyers. Giuliani must check in with pretrial services every 30 days,” USA Today reports.
Former Trump attorneys Jenna Ellis and Sidney Powell were also booked and their photos have been made public as well.
See all three mug shots below or at this link.
Fulton County sheriff’s office releases Rudy Giuliani’s mugshot pic.twitter.com/NHoQdAuCT5
— Hugo Lowell (@hugolowell) August 23, 2023
Booking photos of Jenna Ellis and Sidney Powell. pic.twitter.com/isyWaGJupG
— Anna Bower (@AnnaBower) August 23, 2023
‘Moral Turpitude’: Bill Barr Hammers Donald Trump
“You know, you don’t get immunity for two years in the run-up to an election just by saying, ‘Hey, I’m a candidate,'” Barr told Fox News’ Neil Cavuto.
“These investigations have been going on for a while, everyone knew about them even before he announced his candidacy,” Barr continued. “So if there’s a chance to get it resolved before the election, it should be because the American people should know these are crimes involved – or potential crimes – involving moral turpitude.”
Cornell Law School’s Legal Information Institute says moral turpitude is “wicked, deviant behavior constituting an immoral, unethical, or unjust departure from ordinary social standards such that it would shock a community.”
Barr also talked about the two federal cases brought by Special Counsel Jack Smith, one for Trump’s efforts to overturn the election, and one for his refusal to return classified and other documents.
“I think the federal cases are legitimate,” Barr said. “At the end of the day, at the core of this thing he engaged in – in the case of the documents – in outrageous behavior where anyone would be prosecuted. I don’t know of any attorney general who could walk away from it.”
“He’s not being prosecuted for having the documents, he’s being prosecuted for obstruction, two egregious instances are alleged so I think that’s a very simple case.”
Barr also said for him, Trump “crossed the line” when “he used this device of impaneling imposter electors, swearing that they were the electors, but the key point there was, they were in tandem with a plan whereby the vice president would use that as a pretext for nullifying the legal and certified votes. So it was a calculated and deceitful plan to remain in office by nullifying and negating certified legal votes.”
Watch the videos below or at this link:
“You don’t get immunity for two years in the run-up to an election just by saying, ‘Hey, I’m a candidate’ … These investigations have been going on for a while. Everyone knew about them, even before he announced his candidacy.”
— Former Attorney General Bill Barr on Trump pic.twitter.com/yhDft2bZ7W
— The Recount (@therecount) August 17, 2023
Barr: The federal cases are legitimate. At the end of the day, the core of this, he engaged in (in the case of the documents) outrageous behavior that anybody would be prosecuted. I don’t know of any Attorney General who could walk away from it pic.twitter.com/8ijyPiDjLL
— Acyn (@Acyn) August 17, 2023
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