The woke war on objectivity hits the federal judiciary by Jerome Marcus

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The woke war on objectivity hits the federal judiciary
by Jerome Marcus | July 24, 2020 04:25 PM

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/op-eds/the-woke-war-on-objectivity-hits-the-federal-judiciary

The Michael Flynn case has opened a new front in the woke war on objectivity: Within the federal judiciary, we now have judges taking sides in the cases before them. It’s a development directly at war with the political philosophy that animates our Constitution. It would, if left unchecked, destroy the neutrality of the federal courts. If that were to go, the judiciary’s legitimacy and public respect for its dictates would be destroyed.

When the Justice Department decided to agree with Flynn that his prosecution was unfounded and joined in his motion to dismiss the criminal charges against him, presiding Judge Emmet Sullivan refused. Instead, he appointed another lawyer, who had already gone on public record opposing dismissal, to “advise” the court whether Flynn should be prosecuted even after the prosecutor chose to end the case. The adviser later came through with a 70-page brief accusing the Justice Department of cronyism and corruption.

Flynn appealed, and the Court of Appeals held the judge had no authority to do anything other than what the prosecutor and the defendant had jointly agreed upon. He could not, the court held, take a side in the case or seek a resolution unwanted by either of the actual parties.

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Now, Sullivan has doubled down on his insistence that he need not be neutral: He has, as if he were a party to the case, filed a motion in the court of appeals asking that its decision be vacated and that the entire District of Columbia appellate bench rehears the matter. In so doing, he has dropped all pretense of neutrality and revealed his desire to steer the criminal case against Flynn, rather than presiding over it as a neutral figure who interprets and applies the law.

So why isn’t it the case that … if the government makes a considered but racist decision that it just does not want to have a white officer stand trial for excessive force on a black victim that the District Court can deny the motion and then the political chips can fall where they may, and perhaps under pressure from the public or Congress or whatever, the District Court may not be able itself to force government to prosecute the case that maybe through operation of the legislative branch or other pressures from the public and the media…a new prosecutor is appointed and the case proceeds?

Like Sullivan, the judge in Wilkins’s example is not a neutral decisor. He is on the political ramparts and inviting others to join him there.

How would this work in practice? A motion for dismissal of an indictment, under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 48(a), would be denied by a judge who distrusts the prosecutor and believes the decision to dismiss is animated by impermissible considerations. Many people now believe that virtually every decision made by the Trump administration is driven by racism. Perhaps the judge before whom our Rule 48(a) motion is pending is such a person. So the judge writes an opinion, denouncing the effort by the prosecution to dismiss the case and making whatever allegations about the prosecutor’s motivation the judge finds persuasive. The judge has life tenure after all; he can say whatever he wants. Such a ruling isn’t appealable. Then the fun starts.

“Pressure from the public” is brought to bear. “The media,” who may share the judge’s hostility to the prosecutor or the prosecutor’s boss (the president) do their part to amplify the judge’s allegations in newspaper stories, interviews, talk shows, and late-night monologues. Sympathetic members of Congress join the effort. Most importantly, an election is never too far away. Elections can produce a new president, and that’s how you get a new attorney general and then, as Wilkins says, “a new prosecutor.” According to this understanding of the federal courts’ role, the judge’s denunciation of the prosecutor is appropriately a part of that process, which will end when “the political chips fall where they may.” If the judge gets his way, “a new prosecutor is appointed, and the case proceeds.”

A judge who rules with the expectation that he can make “political chips fall” as a result of how he rules has crossed the clearest line there is distinguishing the federal courts from the other two branches.

It should hardly need explaining that judges don’t (they can’t) take sides from the bench in political disputes. They are neutral interpreters of the law; they aren’t parties to the case.

President Dwight Eisenhower was able to send the army to enforce Brown v. Board of Education, and so to integrate the schools in Little Rock, because the nation recognized that if the Supreme Court had decided the law required it, then the law required it. We had, and have, no choice as a country but to follow the law.

If the federal courts allow judges to become parties, no one will any longer believe that the judges are applying the law. They will be revealed as people trying to advance political goals. A nonelected body trying to advance political goals will not long be obeyed in a democracy.

There’s a simple way to put a stop to this: When the Court of Appeals denies (or better, dismisses) Sullivan’s petition for rehearing, it should reassign the case to a judge — an actual judge, who will be neutral. That would have to be someone other than Emmet Sullivan.

Jerome Marcus is an attorney in private practice and a former federal prosecutor.

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Looks like the rest of the country gets to become familiar with the way normal people have been treated by the federal courts, and state courts alike for going on more than 20 years now.

And what was it that was said around 100 years ago now? In 1960, the ruling was already 30 years old so, yes, around 100 years ago…

It was in ELKINS v. UNITED STATES, 364 U.S. 206 (1960) 364 U.S. 206?? No. 126.
Argued March 28-29, 1960.   Decided June 27, 1960.

The Court, discussing the use of evidence illegally obtained by State Police, by federal prosecutors, and the FBI, and the Rights violations are discussed pretty heavily. Hell nowadays, the Courts do not give a second thought to violations of our civil and constitutional rights:

Elkins v. United States, 364 U.S. 206, 222-23 (1960) (“These, then, are the considerations of reason and experience which point to the rejection of a doctrine that would freely admit in a federal criminal trial evidence seized by state agents in violation of the defendant’s constitutional rights. But there is another consideration — the imperative of judicial integrity. It was of this that Mr. Justice Holmes and Mr. Justice Brandeis so eloquently spoke in Olmstead v. United States, 277 U.S. 438, at 469, 471, more than 30 years ago.
“For those who agree with me,” said Mr. Justice Holmes, “no distinction can be taken between the Government as prosecutor and the Government as judge.” 277 U.S., at 470. (Dissenting opinion.) “In a government of laws,” said Mr. Justice Brandeis, “existence of the government will be imperiled if it fails to observe the law scrupulously. Our Government is the potent, the omnipresent teacher. For good or for ill, it teaches the whole people by its example. Crime is contagious. If the Government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy. To declare that in the administration of the criminal law the end justifies the means — to declare that the Government may commit crimes in order to secure the conviction of a private criminal — would bring terrible retribution. Against that pernicious doctrine this Court should resolutely set its face.” 277 U.S., at 485. (Dissenting opinion.)”)

This basic principle was accepted by the Court in McNabb v. United States, 318 U.S. 332. There it was held that “a conviction resting on evidence secured through such a flagrant disregard of the procedure which Congress has commanded cannot be allowed to stand without making the courts themselves accomplices in willful disobedience of law.” 318 U.S., at 345. Even less should the federal courts be accomplices in the willful disobedience of a Constitution they are sworn to uphold.

For these reasons we hold that evidence obtained by state officers during a search which, if conducted by federal officers, would have violated the defendant’s immunity from unreasonable searches and seizures under the Fourth Amendment is inadmissible over the defendant’s timely objection in a federal criminal trial. In determining whether there has been an unreasonable search and seizure by state officers, a federal court must make an independent inquiry, whether or not there has been such an inquiry by a state court, and irrespective of how any such inquiry may have turned out. The test is one of federal law, neither enlarged by what one state court may have countenanced, nor diminished by what another may have colorably suppressed.

Elkins v. United States, 364 U.S. 206, 223-24 (1960)

Now think about the Flynn case, and numerous other cases, where the last thing the Courts think about, is if the evidence was illegally obtained, or if someone’s rights were violated in the illegal obtaining of the evidence.

We have no rights, and the many Courts’ flagrant disregard of the procedure
which Congress had commanded cannot stand…

All I can wonder is what the fuck?

Prominent Baltimore defense lawyer indicted for allegedly aiding crimes of marijuana kingpin By Debra Cassens Weiss

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(Image Shutterstock)

Prominent Baltimore defense lawyer indicted for allegedly aiding crimes of marijuana kingpin
By Debra Cassens Weiss
September 20, 2019, 10:50 am CDT
https://www.abajournal.com/news/article/prominent-baltimore-defense-lawyer-indicted-for-allegedly-aiding-crimes-of-marijuana-kingpin

Prominent Baltimore defense lawyer Ken Ravenell has been indicted on federal charges based on allegations he helped a Jamaican marijuana kingpin and his crew members launder drug proceeds and avoid detection.

The indictment returned Wednesday charges Ravenell, 60, with racketeering conspiracy, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and narcotics conspiracy, according to the Baltimore Sun and a press release.

The indictment alleges Ravenell instructed crew members to “utilize certain drug couriers, to utilize specific modes of transportation and to transport shipments of drugs and money at particular times of day, all for the purpose of evading law enforcement.”

The indictment also claims Ravenell told crew members they should use payphones and prepaid phones, and should remove batteries from their phones when meeting to discuss illegal activities.

Prosecutors say Ravenell used the law firm where he was a partner in furtherance of the conspiracy, which took place between 2009 and 2014.

Some of the drug crew’s meetings were held at the law firm, and Ravenell used law firm bank accounts to launder drug money and pay lawyers representing other members of the conspiracy, according to the indictment.

Prosecutors also say Ravenell found lawyers who refused to represent cooperating witnesses to represent crew members, and required the crew members to sign retainer agreements that allowed their lawyers to withdraw from the case if the client tried to cooperate.

Ravenell obtained information about the status of the cases and whether the defendants were cooperating, and then relayed that information to other conspirators, prosecutors say. Ravenell also met with defendants in jail without permission of their lawyers and encouraged them to accept plea deals that did not include cooperation, according to the indictment.

The Baltimore Sun identified Ravenell’s former firm as the Murphy Law Firm. Since leaving the firm, Ravenell has emerged as a top defense lawyer who has handled high-profile murder cases, according to the Sun.

Judge is removed from bench after asking woman whether she closed her legs to prevent rape

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(judge and gavel Image from Shutterstock.com.)

Judge is removed from bench after asking woman whether she closed her legs to prevent rape
BY DEBRA CASSENS WEISS
https://www.abajournal.com/news/article/judge-is-removed-from-bench-after-asking-woman-whether-she-closed-her-legs-to-prevent-rape
MAY 28, 2020, 11:05 AM CDT

The New Jersey Supreme Court on Tuesday removed a judge from the bench who asked a woman whether she had tried to close her legs to stop a sexual assault.

The court ordered the removal of Judge John Russo in a May 26 decision.

The woman was in Russo’s Ocean County courtroom in 2016 to seek a final restraining order against her alleged assailant. Russo took over questioning after cross-examination by defense counsel. The judge asked the woman whether she had tried to block her body parts, close her legs, call police or leave.

The questions were unwarranted, inappropriate and discourteous, the supreme court said in an opinion by Chief Justice Stuart Rabner. “No witness, alleged victim or litigant should be treated that way in a court of law,” the court said.

Russo claimed the woman was a demoralized witness, and he was trying to help her get reengaged in the hearing. But that explanation “does not square with the record,” the court said. “The plaintiff plainly testified that defendant forced her to have sexual intercourse against her will. She also described other acts of alleged domestic violence. And she did so without needing any assistance from the trial judge to express herself.”

“Beyond that,” the court said, Russo’s “coarse questions about how the plaintiff responded during the alleged assault were not relevant.” Sexual assault in New Jersey turns on the use of physical force by the alleged assailant, not the victim’s state of mind or resistance.

Just as problematic were Russo’s comments to court staff after the hearing, the court said. Russo asked whether staffers heard “the sex stuff” and said he was the master of “being able to talk about sex acts with a straight face.”

“Judges set the tone for a courtroom,” the court said. “Especially when it comes to sensitive matters like domestic violence and sexual assault, that tone must be dignified, solemn and respectful, not demeaning or sophomoric. [Russo] failed in that regard.”

The court said Russo also committed misconduct in three instances.

• Russo ruled in a hearing even though he stated at the outset that he knew both the defendant and his wife since high school. The defendant was arrested after failing to comply with a judge’s order to pay. $10,000 out of nearly $145,000 in past-due child support. Russo vacated the arrest warrant and lowered the purge amount from $10,000 to $300 based on the defendant’s uncorroborated financial information.

• Russo made an ex parte call to a mother in a paternity matter who failed to appear in court. When Russo asked for the woman’s address, she said she didn’t want to disclose it because she was afraid. She said the putative father had molested her daughter, and she feared for her son’s safety. Russo threatened the woman with financial penalties and said she wouldn’t be able to keep her address secret. “He’s going to find you, ma’am,” Russo told the woman. “We’re all going to find you.”

• Russo asked the family division manager in his courthouse to intercede in another vicinage to reschedule a guardianship hearing in a personal matter involving himself, his ex-wife and his son. Russo should have worked through his lawyer rather than the manager, the court said.

“The series of ethical failures that [Russo] committed are not errors of law, innocent missteps or isolated words taken out of context,” the court said. “Viewed as a whole, they are flagrant and serious acts of misconduct.”

Russo is a former mayor of Toms River, New Jersey. Law360, Courthouse News Service, Law.com, NJ.com and the Legal Profession Blog had coverage of the decision.

California Throws The Books At Undercover Reporter Who Exposed Baby Body Trafficking

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California Throws the Books at Undercover Reporter Who Exposed Baby Body Trafficking

California Throws the Books at Undercover Reporter Who Exposed Baby Body Trafficking


Thomas BrejchaBy Thomas Brejcha
MARCH 10, 2020
From the time of its founding and fight for independence, America has been synonymous with the idea of freedom – freedom to speak your mind, pursue your own dreams, worship as you want. The American press has often been called the “Fourth Estate” or referred to as the fourth branch of government for its ability to hold leaders to transparency with the ability to expose wrongdoing. Today, that cherished Freedom of the Press is at risk. Why? Because of the power of the abortion lobby and its insistence that the rules are different when it comes to the business of selling death.

Federalist
The Federalist

Read The Federalist article by Tom Brejcha, president and chief counsel of the Thomas More Society, on how the rights of all journalists are at risk because a California federal court deemed David Daleiden’s undercover work – exposing baby body parts trafficking by abortion vendors – a crime.

“What does it tell you that the Daleiden case may have been the first time that any journalist has been criminally charged with violating the California recording law in the many years it has been on the books?” from California Throws The Books At Undercover Reporter Who Exposed Baby Body Trafficking by Tom Brejcha.

California Throws The Books At Undercover Reporter Who Exposed Baby Body Trafficking
Even those who disagree with David Daleiden and his techniques but care about how the legal actions against him could define press freedom need to follow this case.

Thomas BrejchaBy Thomas Brejcha
MARCH 10, 2020
https://thefederalist.com/2020/03/10/california-throws-the-books-at-undercover-reporter-who-exposed-baby-body-trafficking/

An undercover reporter has been arraigned in California and charged with ten felonies for secretly recording conversations, and it’s time to revisit how the judiciary and the law can stifle the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of the press.

The accused, David Daleiden, used standard media undercover techniques to investigate and expose Planned Parenthood’s sale of aborted fetus body parts. While the use of undercover techniques like Daleiden’s is a controversial practice even within journalism circles, Daleiden’s upcoming jury trial has far wider implications for journalists.

Namely, can and should government criminalize undercover reporting, which historically has revealed otherwise hidden wrongdoing of all kinds?

Being Pro-Life Is Not a Crime
Let’s first put aside that Daleiden, as director of the Center for Medical Progress, is a pro-life activist—which is not a crime. He should have the same right to penetrate the practices of America’s abortion providers and report his findings just as other reporters and publications investigate other matters.

Consider the multitude of covertly conducted investigations exposing threats to public health and safety, racism, and various other injustices, dating back to the dawn of our republic. To mention a few: In a classic case of disguised reporters using hidden cameras, ABC “Prime Time Live” outed Food Lion’s alleged unsanitary food handling practices. “Dateline” NBC deployed decoys and hidden cameras to expose men who solicited sex with minors on the Internet. Vanity Fair had a clandestine reporter join a tour group to the Holy Land to probe then-President George W. Bush’s alleged ties to religious right leaders.

Undercover Chicago Tribune reporters, working from the inside as employees, exposed life-threatening conditions in nursing homes. Another Tribune reporter worked undercover in the city’s election board to reveal widespread election fraud. Chicago Sun-Times reporters, working inside, turned up dangerous practices at abortion clinics. The paper also opened a bar, the Mirage, in a sting using hidden cameras to bare shakedowns by city inspectors.

Jerry Thompson of the Nashville Tennessean infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan to provide a first-person account of its racist practices and beliefs. BBC used clandestine students to describe a “sex for grades” scandal. In Los Angeles, CBSN’s David Goldstein regularly goes undercover.

The Washington Post captured a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service by disclosing disgusting and unsanitary conditions at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center. The reporters never identified themselves as such, which, according to Brooke Kroeger, a New York University law and journalism professor, defines their action as investigative reporting. It is, she argued, yet another demonstration of how deception in investigative reporting is not only permissible but a necessary tool regularly exposing wrongdoing that can’t be found any other way.

Attacking Whistleblowers Who Exposed Crime
Instead, Daleiden faces a legal system that has unleashed both criminal and civil actions against him for a variety of supposed violations of law, including criminal trespass, fraud, and breach of contract, even federal civil racketeering. A jury in the civil trial awarded the plaintiffs more than $2.2 million in damages, enough to permanently silence Daleiden’s small pro-life and nonprofit operation. We are appealing.

The criminal case, the one more likely to chill undercover work, was the product of then-California Attorney General Kamala Harris. A judge threw out six of 15 criminal charges against Daleiden and co-investigator Sandra Merritt but ruled that the other counts can go to a criminal trial. Thus, the arraignment. Never mind that Harris violated shield laws protecting reporters by raiding Daleiden’s home and capturing previously unpublished raw journalism materials.

How ironic, because about the time that Daleiden published his findings, animal rights activists were praised for ­documenting abuse in the poultry industry. Unlike in Daleiden’s case, Harris launched probes of the poultry industry and didn’t charge the reporters.

That Harris received campaign donations from, and touted her support for, pro-choice groups suggests she was motivated by political bias. Same for the judge in the civil case, who was affiliated with an organization that had a joint venture with a Planned Parenthood affiliate whose successor is now one of the entities suing Daleiden.

No one can be blamed for thinking that the legal actions were inspired and carried out by pro-choice organizations to punish and silence their opponents. What does it tell you that the Daleiden case may have been the first time that any journalist has been criminally charged with violating the California recording law in the many years it has been on the books?

Putting Reporting Under Government Threat
Even if the government’s action were bias-free, Daleiden’s pursuit still jeopardizes quality journalism. The California accusations are based on the claim his targets had an expectation of privacy even when the conversations were conducted in a public place, like a restaurant or hotel convention hall, where bystanders could hear them. It’s a ludicrous assertion, a gross misinterpretation, and an undue and overbroad extension of the law.

I refer to two pro-choice law professors, Sherry F. Colb and Michael C. Dorf, who support Planned Parenthood’s work but warned that the criminal pursuit of Daleiden “follows a troubling pattern in American constitutional jurisprudence” to cripple investigative journalism. In a CNN opinion article, they wrote, “Whatever the precise facts of this case prove to be, the prosecution has broader implications, and not just for abortion and anti-abortion speech. Undercover exposés play a vital role in informing the American public of important facts that would otherwise remain hidden.” The Los Angeles Times deemed the prosecution “disturbingly aggressive” and an “overreach.”

Possible prison sentences and burdensome fines attached to criminal conduct cannot be ignored in this debate. They are more than a disincentive to expose wrongdoing; they give the upper hand to criminal enterprises, powerful corporations, avenging politicians, ideologues, and special interests to protect themselves from public condemnation and costly penalties for misconduct. This is not a loophole that the Founding Fathers had in mind when they crafted the constitutional protection of freedom of the press.

Even those who disagree with Daleiden and his techniques but care about how the precedent-setting legal actions against him that could define press freedom in the future need to follow this case as it winds through the legal system, possibly all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Thomas Brejcha is founder, president and chief counsel of the Thomas More Society, a national public interest law firm defending life, family and religious liberty. It represents David Daleiden.
Photo kambodza / Flickr

Fact, Not Advice!

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Too, whenever you file a case, you need to do everything, as if you plan to appeal. Every case goes to appeal, unless it is so shitty a case that it don’t warrant an appeal. Everything you do in your case should prepare for an easy appeal, you have to be diligent, as if you are the one being sued, and you have to do plenty of discovery if you want anything from the opposing party, and the most important thing, is you have to follow the Rules of Civil Procedure, Uniform Superior Court Rules, the Court’s Rules and all Orders.
If any of the above things have not been followed to a “t” then you have made it hard for yourself, and will most likely loose the case. If you have planned to appeal, which should always be done, then it will be easier and less costly to appeal.

Damn, that’s good, I am going to post.

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Duty To Warn: Drug-Induced Iatrogenic Disorders – The Third Leading Cause Of Death In The US And Britain

Dr-Peter-Goetzsche

Duty To Warn: Drug-Induced Iatrogenic Disorders – The Third Leading Cause Of Death In The US And Britain
January 16, 2018
Duty to Warn

Drug-Induced Iatrogenic Disorders – The Third Leading Cause of Death in the US and Britain

By Gary G. Kohls, MD
https://www.geoengineeringwatch.org/duty-to-warn-drug-induced-iatrogenic-disorders-the-third-leading-cause-of-death-in-the-us-and-britain/

Definition of an “iatrogenic” disorder: A disorder inadvertently induced by a health caregiver because of a surgical, medical, drug or vaccine treatment or by a diagnostic procedure.

In last week’s column I wrote that iatrogenic disorders (a doctor-, drug-, vaccine-, surgery- or other medical treatment-caused disorder) were the third leading cause of death in the US. That revelation may have ruffled the feathers of some readers, particularly if they were employed in the medical professions, so I am enlarging on that statement in this week’s column.

In 2000, a commentary article was written by Dr Barbara Stanfield, MD, MPH. It was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA, July 26, 2000—Vol 284, No. 4).

The article was titled “Is US Health Really the Best in the World? It has been posted at https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/article-abstract/192908?redirect=true.

Statins
In the article, Stanfield included the following statistics from her research about iatrogenic deaths. (Note: these numbers do not include out-patient iatrogenic deaths):

• 12,000 deaths/year from unnecessary surgery in hospitals
• 7,000 deaths/year from medication errors in hospitals
• 20,000 deaths/year from other errors in hospitals
• 80,000 deaths/year from nosocomial infections in hospitals
• 106,000 deaths/year from non-error, adverse effects of medications in hospitals

Combining these five groups gives us a total of 225,000 in-patient deaths. The 225,000 number does not include out-patient deaths or disabilities. In any case, this number easily constitutes the third leading cause of death in the United States, behind heart disease and cancer (see the official list for 2015 below).

The CDC’s Mortality and Morbidity Report for 2000, said that cancer caused 710,701 US deaths in 2000 and heart disease caused 553,080. For comparison purposes, the CDC’s report said that heart disease caused 606,401 deaths in 2017 and cancer caused 594,707.

Below are the US death statistics for 2015 (apparently the last year that the CDC has published the complete list).

1 Heart Disease . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 633,842

2 Cancer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 595,930

3 Chronic lower respiratory diseases . . . . . . . 155,041

4 Unintentional injuries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 146,571

5 Cerebrovascular diseases . . . . . . . . . . . . . .140,323

6 Alzheimer’s disease . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110,561

7 Diabetes mellitus . . . . . . . . . . . . . . …. . . . . .79,535

8 Influenza and pneumonia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .57,062

9 Nephrosis, nephrotic syndrome . . . . . . . . . . . 49,959

10 Suicide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .44,193

It is obvious that “Inpatient Iatrogenic Deaths” of 225,000 would easily come in 3rd, if the CDC would ever start collecting such data and publishing it as a separate category. Something fishy is going on, particularly in view of the fact that there have numerous requests that the CDC change its traditional data collection methods.

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One also wonders – if more accurate figures were available – if combining in-patient and out-patient iatrogenic deaths together (a rational approach) would cause heart and cancer deaths to drop to # 2 and # 3.

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One only has to consider tabulating psychiatric drug-induced suicides and homicides as iatrogenic; or logically regarding deaths from neuroleptic drug-induced diabetes and obesity to be classed as iatrogenic; or regarding the deaths from the aluminum-adjuvanted, vaccine-induced autoimmune diseases that cause so much morbidity and mortality as iatrogenic; or regarding a portion of the SIDS deaths at 2, 4 and 6 month of age, when infants are routinely injected with dangerous, untested-for-safety cocktails of mercury-containing, aluminum-adjuvanted and live virus-containing intramuscular vaccines as iatrogenic.

Or one could add in last year’s 50,000 opioid overdose deaths – most of which were prescribed by health caregivers but which were probably added to the “Accidental Death” category; or adding in the 50,000 heart attack deaths from Merck’s arthritis drug Vioxx (also iatrogenic deaths, but included in the “Heart Disease” category); or the premature chemotherapy drug-induced deaths that are invariably included in the “Cancer Death” category.

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And the list of potential iatrogenic deaths goes on and on.

A decade after her article was published (in a December 2009 interview), Dr Stanfield re-affirmed the veracity of her earlier data by saying:

“106,000 people die (annually, in US hospitals) as a result of CORRECTLY prescribed medicines…Overuse of a drug or inappropriate use of a drug would not fall under the category of ‘correctly’ prescribed. Therefore, people who die after ‘overuse’ or ‘inappropriate use’ would be IN ADDITION TO the 106,000 (these numbers do not count out-patients killed by prescription drugs!) and would fall into another or other categories.” – (https://therefusers.com/is-us-health-really-the-best-in-the-world-barbara-starfield-md-mph/)

And then there is the research done by Dr Peter Goetzsche.

Dr Peter Goetzsche

Dr Stanfield’s 2000 and 2009 statistics holds true for the UK and for Europe as well, according to the co-founder of The Cochrane Collaboration, Dr Peter Goetzsche. In his powerful 2013 book “Deadly Medicines and Organised Crime: How Big Pharma has Corrupted Healthcare.”

Dr Goetzsche boldly states that iatrogenic deaths should be listed as # 3 in both Europe and the US. In his 2015 companion book, Deadly Psychiatry and Organised Denial, Goetzsche makes the same points about psychiatric drug-induced deaths. Below are some quotes from his 2013 book, where he points out the many similarities between Big Pharma and the mob:

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“It is scary how many similarities there are between the drug industry and the mob. The mob makes obscene amounts of money…The side effects of organized crime are killings and deaths, and the side effects are the same in this industry. The mob bribes politicians and others, and so does this industry…

“Otherwise good citizens, when they are part of a corporate group, do things they otherwise wouldn’t do because the group…validate(s) what there’re doing as OK…

“The difference is that all these people in the drug industry look upon themselves as law-abiding citizens, not as citizens who would ever rob a bank. However, when they get together as a group and manage these corporations, something seems to happen. It’s almost like when soldiers commit war crime atrocities. When you’re in a group, it’s easy to do things you otherwise wouldn’t do.” – An unnamed whistle-blowing ex-vice president for Pfizer’s global marketing department.

“In contrast to the drug industry, doctors don’t harm their patients deliberately. And when they do cause harm, either accidentally, or because of the lack of knowledge, or by negligence, they harm only one patient at a time.”

“In the drug industry, bribery is routine and involves large amounts of money. Almost every type of person who can affect the interests of the industry has been bribed: doctors, hospital administrators, cabinet ministers, health inspectors, customs officers, tax assessors, drug registration officials, factory inspectors, pricing officials and political parties.”

“There seems to be no study too fragmented, no hypothesis too trivial, no literature citation too biased or too egoistical, no design too warped, no methodology too bungled, no presentation of results too inaccurate, too obscure, and too contradictory, no analysis too self-serving, no argument too circular, no conclusions too trifling or too unjustified, and no grammar and syntax too offensive for a paper to end up in print.” – Drummond Rennie, deputy editor of JAMA.

“What makes Big Pharma unique in the US is that it outspends all others in laying down cold hard cash into its lobbying efforts (another word for bribing governments that includes not only US Congress but its US federal regulator, the bought and sold Food and Drug Administration).” – Joachim Hagopian

“(As a drug rep) “it’s my job to figure out what a physician’s price is. For some it’s dinner at the finest restaurants, for others it’s enough convincing data to let them prescribe confidently and for others it’s my attention and friendship…but at the most basic level, everything is for sale and everything is an exchange.” – Retired Drug Sales Rep Shahram Ahari

“Before the approval process, the (Big Pharma-connected) sponsor sets up the clinical trial – the drug selected, and the dose and route of administration of the comparison drug (or placebo). Since the trial is designed to have one outcome, is it surprising that the comparison drug may be hobbled – given in the wrong dose, by the wrong method?

“The sponsor pays those who collect the evidence, doctors, and nurses, so is it surprising that in a dozen ways they influence results? All the results flow in to the sponsor, who analyses the evidence, drops what is inconvenient, and keeps it all secret – even from the trial physicians. The manufacturer deals out to the FDA bits of evidence, and pays the FDA (the judge) to keep it secret. Panels (the jury), usually paid consultant fees by the sponsors, decide on FDA approval, often lobbied for by paid grass-roots patient organizations who pack the court (the trick is called ‘astro-turfing’).

“If the trial, under these conditions, shows the drug works, the sponsors pay sub-contractors to write up the research and impart whatever spin they may; they pay ‘distinguished’ academics to add their names as ‘authors’ to give the enterprise credibility, and often publish in journals dependent on the sponsors for their existence.

“If the drug seems no good or harmful, the trial is buried and everyone is reminded of their confidentiality agreements. Unless the trial is set up in this way, the sponsor will refuse to back the trial, but even if it is set up as they wish, those same sponsors may suddenly walk away from it, leaving patients and their physicians high and dry.”

“We have a system where defendant, developers of evidence, police, judge, jury, and even court reporters are all induced to arrive at one conclusion in favour of the new drug.”

“More than 80 million prescriptions for psychiatric drugs are written in the UK every year. Not only are these drugs often entirely unnecessary and ineffective, but they can also turn patients into addicts, cause crippling side-effects – and kill.”

If any reader has any doubt about the veracity of the Stanfield and Goetzsche claims, below are a couple of other courageous researchers that have delved into the issue. In 2016, a group of Johns Hopkins medical school researchers, led by Dr Martin Makary, published supporting information in the British Medical Journal. (BMJ 2016; 353).

In the introduction of the publication, Makary and his co-authors wrote about how flawed is the CDC system of data collection and analysis:

“The annual list of the most common causes of death in the United States, compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), informs public awareness and national research priorities each year. The list is created using death certificates filled out by physicians, funeral directors, medical examiners, and coroners.

“However, a major limitation of the death certificate is that it relies on assigning an International Classification of Disease (ICD) code to the cause of death. As a result, causes of death not associated with an ICD code (including many iatrogenic disorders), such as human and system factors, are not captured.

“…communication breakdowns, diagnostic errors, poor judgment, and inadequate skill can directly result in patient harm and death. We analyzed the scientific literature on medical error to identify its contribution to US deaths in relation to causes listed by the CDC.

Death From Medical Care Itself

“Medical error has been defined as an unintended act (either of omission or commission) or one that does not achieve its intended outcome, the failure of a planned action to be completed as intended (an error of execution), the use of a wrong plan to achieve an aim (an error of planning), or a deviation from the process of care that may or may not cause harm to the patient. Patient harm from medical error can occur at the individual or system level. The taxonomy of errors is expanding to better categorize preventable factors and events. We focus on preventable lethal events to highlight the scale of potential for improvement.”

Makary’s group published data that supports iatrogenic deaths as the # 3 cause of death.

In a 2016 open letter to the CDC, Makary’s group urged the agency to add medical errors to its annual list of common causes of death.

The letter said, in part:
“We are writing this letter to respectfully ask the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to change the way it collects our country’s national vital health statistics each year. The list of most common causes of death published is very important – it informs our country’s research and public health priorities each year. The current methodology used to generate the list has what we believe to be a serious limitation. As a result, the list has neglected to identify the third leading cause of death in the U.S. – medical error.”

As a partial defense of over-busy, over-booked, sometimes mentally and physically exhausted health caregivers in the US, another researcher, Dr John James, has published an article in the Journal of Patient Safety. Dr James makes similar claims urging the CDC to evaluate death statistics more logically.

The title of his 2013 article is “A New, Evidence-based Estimate of Patient Harms Associated with Hospital Care”. (Journal of Patient Safety: September 2013 – Volume 9 – Issue 3 – p 122–128)

Below are excerpts from that article:
Objectives

Based on 1984 data developed from reviews of medical records of patients treated in New York hospitals, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) estimated that up to 98,000 Americans die each year from medical errors. The basis of this estimate is nearly 3 decades old; herein, an updated estimate is developed from modern studies published from 2008 to 2011.

Results

Using a weighted average of the 4 studies, a lower limit of 210,000 deaths per year was associated with preventable harm in hospitals…the true number of premature deaths associated with preventable harm to patients was estimated at more than 400,000 per year. Serious (but non-lethal) harm seems to be 10- to 20-fold more common than lethal harm.

Conclusions

The epidemic of patient harm in hospitals must be taken more seriously if it is to be curtailed. Fully engaging patients and their advocates during hospital care, systematically seeking the patients’ voice in identifying harms, transparent accountability for harm, and intentional correction of root causes of harm will be necessary to accomplish this goal.

“Medical care in the United States is technically complex at the individual provider level, at the system level, and at the national level. The amount of new knowledge generated each year by clinical research that applies directly to patient care can easily overwhelm the individual physician trying to optimize the care of his patients.”

“Because of increased production demands, providers may be expected to give care in suboptimal working conditions, with decreased staff, and a shortage of physicians, which leads to fatigue and burnout. It should be no surprise that preventable adverse events that harm patients are frighteningly common in this highly technical, rapidly changing, and poorly integrated industry. The picture is further complicated by a lack of transparency and limited accountability for errors that harm patients.”

“There are at least 3 time-based categories of preventable adverse events recognized in patients that are or have been hospitalized. The broadest definition encompasses all unexpected and harmful experience that a patient encounters as a result of being in the care of a medical professional or system because high quality, evidence-based medical care was not delivered during hospitalization. The harmful outcomes may be realized immediately, delayed for days or months, or even delayed many years.”

“There was much debate after the Institute of Medicine (IOM) report about the accuracy of its estimates. In a sense, it does not matter whether the deaths of 100,000, 200,000 or 400,000 Americans each year are associated with PAEs in hospitals….one must hope that the present, evidence-based estimate of 400,000+ deaths per year will foster an outcry for overdue changes and increased vigilance in medical care to address the problem of harm to patients who come to a hospital seeking only to be healed.”

Dr. Kohls is a retired physician who practiced holistic, non-drug, mental health care for the last decade of his forty-year family practice career. He is a contributor to and an endorser of the efforts of the Citizens Commission on Human Rights and was a member of Mind Freedom International, the International Center for the Study of Psychiatry and Psychology, and the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies.

While running his independent clinic, he published over 400 issues of his Preventive Psychiatry E-Newsletter, which was emailed to a variety of subscribers. (They have not been archived at any website.) In the early 2000s, Dr Kohls taught a graduate level psychology course at the University of Minnesota Duluth. Itwas titled “The Science and Psychology of the Mind-Body Connection”.

Since his retirement, Dr Kohls has been writing a weekly column (titled “Duty to Warn”) for the Duluth Reader, an alternative newsweekly published in Duluth, Minnesota. He offers teaching seminars to the public and to healthcare professionals.

Many of Dr Kohls’ columns are archived at http://duluthreader.com/search?search_term=Duty+to+Warn&p=2; http://www.globalresearch.ca/author/gary-g-kohls; or https://www.transcend.org/tms/search/?q=gary+kohls+articles

Florida Judge Takes Child From Parents and Decides the Best Treatment for Leukemia. How Long Before the Courts Decides Everyone’s Treatments for What Ails Them?

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(image from: https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/leukemia/symptoms-causes/syc-20374373)

State Takes Child from Parents for Treating Cancer With Cannabis, Forces Him to Take Chemo
Saturday, December 7, 2019 16:19

Jack Burns, The Free Thought Project
Waking Times

Parents of a 4-year-old Florida boy had their child taken away last month because they sought to treat his cancer in a holistic manner. A judge ruled the couple had placed their son in harm’s way after ceasing chemotherapy treatments for his leukemia.

Taylor Bland-Ball and Joshua McAdams had their parental rights taken away from them following the couple’s decision to seek a second opinion out of state. That decision led to the parents giving their son CBD and THC oil along with traditional chemotherapy treatments.

NBC News reports:

A Hillsborough County judge ordered that 3-year-old Noah McAdams continue to receive chemotherapy treatment at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital within the next 28 days, NBC affiliate WFLA in Tampa reports.

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Bland-Ball responded to the judges decision outside the Florida courtroom. She said, “we’re disappointed with the fact that they are moving forward with chemotherapy considering all the side effects that were brought up in court today, including death.”

It turns out, she’s right. A landmark study published in the United Kingdom detailed just how deadly chemotherapy can be, even within 30 days after its initial use. As TFTP reported, the chemotherapy often turned out to be deadlier than the patients’ cancers. In fact, some hospitals had a higher mortality rate than those in other cities, leading the researchers to question why such mortality discrepancies with chemotherapy existed.

Bland-ball and McAdams wanted to do more for their child and include cannabis as an alternative to chemotherapy and radiation, the universal standard treatments for cancer. It’s unclear precisely which cannabis medicine they wanted to give their son. Currently, the only FDA approved cannabis-based medicine is produced by GW Pharmaceuticals whose researchers are attacking some of the world’s deadliest cancers such as glioblastoma, a brain cancer which is almost always fatal and of which chemotherapy and radiation have little to no effect.

GW Pharmaceuticals’ 1:1 THC/CBD medicine was used in conjunction with a traditional chemotheraphy. The test results, according to GW Pharm hold promise. According to one of their recent studies conducted in the United Kingdom:

The study showed that patients with documented recurrent GBM treated with THC:CBD had an 83 percent one year survival rate compared with 53 percent for patients in the placebo cohort (p=0.042). Median survival for the THC:CBD group was greater than 550 days compared with 369 days in the placebo group.

FINAL WARNING! Try THIS and You Might Never See a Doctor Again! (Must See Doctor Video)
Patients given cannabis lived nearly twice as long as those who were not given cannabis as an alternative treatment. But the choice to give cannabis to Bland-Ball and McAdams’ child was taken from the parents and given to the State of Florida which has usurped not only the parents’ wishes but the current research being conducted using cannabis in conjunction with standard chemotherapy. Florida has now ordered the son to be given chemotherapy completely against the parents’ wishes.

In addition to being used to help kill cancer cells, cannabis also helps to mitigate nausea and pain while taking chemotherapy. Unfortunately, Bland-Ball and McAdams’ child will now have to take his chances with chemotherapy and wonder whether or not it will even work. With legal decisions being made by the state one must logically ask the serious question as to whether or not a day is coming when all decisions about one’s health can be taken away from the citizenry?

As an example of humans losing rights to states, take for example the subject of vaccinations in the State of New York. As TFTP has reported, parents are no longer allowed to even decide when, if, or which vaccines will be given to their children, making such universal declarations akin to 1984, George Orwell’s work on a dystopian future where people give up all rights to the government. The forced vaccination program may be eerily reminiscent to Nazi Germany with the government controlling all procreation/birthing/parenting/child-rearing decisions.

Enough is enough. The Police State in America has to be replaced with logical, common sense approaches to health and wellness. Fascist Big Pharma is now allowing the state to force feed its chemotherapy onto little children whose parents do not want the drug to be given to their kids. Shouldn’t an oncologist refuse to be an agent of the state in this matter? Where are the courageous physicians who will refuse to administer drugs to children whose parents object? Likewise, should parents be allowed to keep their children if they neglect life-saving medical treatment?

About the Author
Jack Burns writes for TheFreeThoughtProject.com, where this article first appeared.

Try This Sec

Michael Flynn’s Lawyers Claim Lisa Page Altered FBI Interview Record to Frame Him

Michael Flynn’s Lawyers Claim Lisa Page Altered FBI Interview Record to Frame Him

Lisa-Page-after-meeeting-lawmakers-Capitol-Hill-ap-640x480
(AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2019/10/25/michael-flynn-lawyers-accuse-fbi-of-laying-trap-withholding-evidence/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_term=daily&utm_campaign=20191025&utm_content=Final

Former FBI lawyer Lisa Page leaves following an interview with lawmakers behind closed doors on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, July 13, 2018.
JOEL B. POLLAK
25 Oct 2019

Lawyers for former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn reportedly filed a motion on Thursday in which they allege that the Department of Justice manipulated a document to frame their client and is withholding exculpatory evidence.
The apparent “sealed” filing, dated October 24, 2019, was posted to social media on Thursday evening.

US v Flynn; DE 129-2 by Techno Fog on Scribd

The filing by Flynn’s new legal team, which took over the case several weeks ago, argues that the Federal Bureau of Investigation conducted an “ambush-interview” of Flynn in the White House not to discover any evidence of criminal activity, but to coax him into making false statements.

When Flynn’s new lawyer Sidney Powell first made those allegations in September, prosecutors replied that she was indulging in “conspiracy theories” and noted his client had already pleaded guilty to the crime of lying to the FBI in 2017. Flynn has been awaiting sentencing since then, and even told the sentencing judge in 2018 that he would not claim FBI misconduct, despite growing evidence that they had departed from normal practice in interviewing him and had only completed their “302” — the report of their meeting — after he had already been forced to resign from his position in the administration over the allegations.

The new defense filing alleges that the government is refusing to turn over a mountain of potentially exculpatory evidence, some of which has begun to emerge in the media — either through leaks or through ongoing inquiries into the origins of the probe into alleged Russia “collusion” with the Trump campaign, later found not to exist.

That evidence, Flynn’s legal team alleges, includes an apparent admission by former FBI lawyer Lisa Page — who resigned after being discovered having an affair with agent Peter Strzok, with whom she shared anti-trump texts — that she had edited the 302 — something that she allegedly told FBI investigators she did not recall, the filing states.

The edits, the filing alleges, were substantive: they included a claim that Flynn said he did not discuss any sanctions with the Russian ambassador. Flynn’s lawyers allege he merely told the FBI he did not recall, and that the claim he said otherwise was added only after a transcript of his discussion with the ambassador had been leaked to the media.

In a footnote, the filing adds that former FBI general counsel James Baker “is believed to be the person who illegally leaked the transcript of Mr. Flynn’s calls to [Washington Post reporter David] Ignatius.” It also alleges that former National Intelligence Director James Clapper told Ignatius to “take the kill shot on Flynn.”

The filing emerged hours after reports that the Department of Justice had shifted its investigation of the origins of the Russia probe to become a criminal investigation under the supervision of prosecutor John H. Durham.

Flynn was subject to surveillance — allegedly in response to claims that he might have violated the Logan Act, an archaic and rarely-enforced law barring private citizens from diplomacy — during President-elect Donald Trump’s transition to office. Flynn’s name was then unmasked in the transcript of his telephone conversation with then-Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, which was then leaked illegally.

Flynn’s subsequent prosecution for lying to the FBI was key to the “Russia collusion” theory, later found to have no substance after a lengthy investigation by Special Counsel Robert Mueller that took nearly two years to complete.

Critics have alleged that Mueller may have induced Flynn to plead guilty by suggesting that the government had more evidence of “Russia collusion” than it actually did.

This story is developing.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He earned an A.B. in Social Studies and Environmental Science and Public Policy from Harvard College, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.

I Don’t Think They Ever Even Looked for Richard Merritt, While the Victims That Testified Against Him Remain in Fear

Richard-Merritt-via-Fox-5-Atlanta

Ex-Lawyer Supposed to Be In Prison for Cheating Clients, But Now He’s Wanted in His Mom’s Murder
by Alberto Luperon | 5:51 pm, February 3rd, 2019

Disbarred lawyer Richard Merritt, 44, was due in prison Friday for swindling his clients. Yet it’s two days later and he’s now wanted for allegedly killing his mother. Cops in Dekalb County, Georgia said that officers responded to a local home on Saturday morning regarding a dead person, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. They found Shirley Merritt was fatally stabbed. Cops blame this on her son.

Cops said Richard Merritt might be driving his mom’s brown 2009 Lexus RX350. It features the Georgia license plate CBV6004.

The suspect shouldn’t even be out, whether or not there was a murder. The suspect was convicted of settling lawsuits without clients’ knowledge, and keeping the cash. He was sentenced last month to 15 years in prison, to be followed by an equally long stint on probation. Prosecutors say he took advantage of the elderly, and those alleging medical malpractice. This scheme affected 17 former clients. He’d lie to them about the settlements, and claim their cases were ongoing, authorities said. Prosecutors claim he forged their signatures and checks, and notary seals.

Merritt surrendered his law license last year. From the Supreme Court of Georgia in a filing dated January 29, 2018:

In his petition, Merritt, who has been a member of the Bar since 2000, admits that in February 2017 he settled a client’s personal injury matter for $75,000, but failed to promptly disburse those funds to his client or her medical providers and failed to render a full accounting of the funds to his client.

The judge in his sentencing gave him time to prepare for prison, and turn himself in by 5 p.m. on February 1. The defendant had to deal with what was described as family medical issues before serving his sentence, according to a Fox 5 Atlanta story.

9b13335e-7797-4ef3-9e0d-f54a723ab33b_750x422
Georgia: Disbarred Lawyer Richard Merritt Jailed on Theft, Elder Abuse Charges
http://www.barcomplaint.com/attorney-theft/georgia-disbarred-lawyer-richard-merritt-jailed-on-theft-elder-abuse-charges/

The problems of Richard Merritt have come to a head with his arrest. This has been long coming has his behavior has been in question for several years.
Georgia: Disbarred Lawyer Richard Merritt Jailed on Theft, Elder Abuse Charges
Attorney Richard Merritt was disbarred Monday for pocketing a client’s $75,000 settlement and jailed Wednesday on multiple felonies.

Richard Vinson Merritt

Former Smyrna attorney Richard V. Merritt, who was disbarred Monday after admitting to settling a client’s suit for $75,000 and then pocketing the money, woke up in the Cobb County Jail Thursday after being arrested on separate felony elder abuse, theft, exploitation and check fraud charges.

The spokesperson for the Cobb County Sheriff’s Office said he had no further information on the charges, which were apparently filed by the Smyrna Police Department. The booking report includes a notation that Merritt is to be held for the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office, where a press liaison said they received a bench warrant for “indirect criminal attempt.”

He provided no further information, and there was no immediate response from Smyrna police.

On Friday, Cobb County District Attorney Vic Reynolds said there was little he could offer concerning Merritt’s case so far.

“We have yet to receive the complete investigative file from the Cobb Sheriff’s Department,” said Reynolds via email. “When we do, our White Collar Unit will begin the process of determining what charges we will proceed to the grand jury with. In addition, our Investigators will begin reviewing the file upon receipt to see if there are any additional victims or charges which need to be pursued.”

Merritt remained in jail on Friday afternoon.

Merritt is the subject of multiple civil suits in Cobb County, including one filed by a woman who claims he forged her name on a $150,000 settlement agreement and check without her knowledge. She claims Merritt never turned over any funds.

He also faces several legal malpractice and fraud lawsuits in Cobb County from clients claiming he agreed to handle their cases and then never filed them and never pursued any actions.

Merritt has represented himself in each of the lawsuits.

The attorney for a plaintiff in one case, Sapp & Moriarty partner Daniel Moriarty—interviewed before word of Merritt’s arrest was known—said he was surprised at the mild tone in the state Supreme Court’s disbarment opinion, which only said Merritt “settled a client’s personal injury matter for $75,000 but failed to promptly disburse those funds to his client or her medical providers and failed to render a full accounting of the funds to his client.”

“That’s a euphemism for stealing money,” said Moriarty. “I talked to an investigator who has seen his bank records and determined that he had stolen hundreds of thousands of dollars. It just blows my mind what he’s gotten away with.”

According the bar complaint reviewed by the Daily Report, Merritt was retained to handle a personal injury matter in December 2016 and settled it last February, cashing the forged check Feb.7. On Feb. 10, he filed a lawsuit “and continued to lead me on until late May 2017 when I learned what he had done,” the confidential complaint said.

“I have never seen a dime of the $75,000,” said Merritt’s former client.

Another civil suit filed in Cobb County State Court last year said Merritt forged a husband and wife’s signature on a settlement and check in a medical malpractice case and never told them.

Another complaint said Merritt accepted a med-mal case and continually told his client that he was investigating it. Merritt sent emails saying “All is well and we are moving forward on your case,” and “No worries I’m on it!”

Then he stopped accepting the woman’s calls, and the filing deadline passed.

In that case, Judge Maria Golick struck Merritt’s answers and ordered a damages-only trial after finding he “willfully failed to respond” to hearing notices. Golick scheduled a show-cause criminal contempt hearing, and the decision is apparently still under advisement, according to court records.

In the case Moriarty is handling, Merritt also allegedly claimed to be conducting discovery and searching for experts, even scheduling bogus depositions for his clients, only to cancel them at the last minute.

Merritt was the principal for the Smyrna-based Merritt Firm, whose offices were the subject of several dispossessory actions between 2015 and 2017, according to court records.

Last August, Merritt sued two attorneys on behalf of spine surgeon and frequent medical expert James Chappuis. At the time, Merritt said he vice president and general counsel of Chappuis’ Orthopaedic & Spine Surgery of Atlanta.

That case settled confidentially shortly after it was filed.

Source: Professional Legal Blog
Doctor Claims Patient, Lawyers Stiffed Him After Winning $700K at Trial
The doctor, who claims he’s owed more than $200,000, also testified as an expert witness at his patient’s trial.

An Atlanta spine surgeon who sometimes works as an expert witness in personal injury cases has sued a former patient and his lawyers, claiming they stiffed him on $200,000 in medical bills after netting a $700,000 jury award.

The complaint filed Monday by Dr. James Chappuis, founder and CEO of Orthopaedic & Spine Surgery of Atlanta, said he’s owed $205,323 for more than two years of treatment provided to Shin Cho. Chappuis also testified as an expert witness at Cho’s trial.

The complaint was filed by the surgery’s vice president and general counsel, Richard Merritt, and named Cho as well as his attorneys in the personal injury action, James Rice Jr. and Thomas Schaefer.

It accuses Cho of using “pressure and misrepresentation” to convince a clinic staffer to accept just $7,500 as full payment of the debt and said the lawyers paid themselves and disbursed Cho’s net award from their trust account despite knowing Chappuis was still owed.

Even the debt Cho purportedly satisfied was “erroneous” and allegedly constituted less than a quarter of the actual sum owed to the doctor, according to the complaint.

Rice denied the suit’s allegations, pointing to a May 31 letter from Chappuis’ practice, saying Cho’s $7,500 payment satisfied his “current outstanding patient balance of $43,871.01.”

“Shortly after they sent that, they contacted us to say there was a ‘bookkeeping error’ and that Mr. Cho owed more than $205,000,” Rice said. “I retained outside counsel to get advice on what to do, and we told their office we were going to disburse the funds in two weeks, and that’s what we did.”

“I also contacted the Georgia bar, and they confirmed that that was the proper way to handle it, so we did all our due diligence before we distributed the money,” Rice said.

Rice said the doctor and his practice were already paid more than $100,000 by Cho’s insurer, and “Mr. Cho candidly feels that he doesn’t owe them anything.”

Schaefer said he was out of town and had not had a chance to review the complaint but was “not really sure why I’ve been named as a party.”

“Our official quote is that we stand by the complaint as drafted,” said Merritt, declining to discuss the case further.

On May 22, Cho was awarded $700,000 for claims that he developed back pain following a minor car wreck in Gwinnett County.

Rice told the Daily Report at the time that Cho drove away from the scene. He argued Cho, who already suffered at least three previous back injuries, was an “eggshell plaintiff” for whom even a low-impact wreck was dangerous.

Last year, Cho signed a “letter of protection” with Chappuis and his practice, agreeing to pay or have his attorneys pay “all outstanding medical bills” from funds accruing from the legal action, the complaint said.

The lawyers had previously worked with Chappuis on other cases and “knew the critical importance of the medical care being provided by [Chappuis], as it related to satisfying the burden of proof in proving causation and damages, and in the effectiveness of Plaintiff Chappuis’ testimony, as both a treating physician and a medical expert,” according to the complaint.

In fact, Rice sent Chappuis a congratulatory text message after the trial, saying the jury “liked you a lot and coming across as objective helped,” while they did not “buy” the defense expert’s “nonsense.”

But on May 31, Cho went to Orthopaedic & Spine Surgery’s main office and “through deliberate pressure and misrepresentation of the facts, convinced a clerical employee to accept $7,500 in satisfaction and payment in full of an alleged $43,871.01, which was erroneous, as the amount due and owing is $205,323.70,” according to the complaint.

The complaint said that, on June 17, Chappuis’ attorney sent a cease-and-desist letter to Rice “specifically instructing him not to disburse any funds” until he and his practice had been paid. On June 30 a satisfaction of judgment was filed with the court, but Rice and Schaefer “intentionally disregarded their obligation to compensate” the plaintiffs.

The suit, filed Aug. 21, names Cho, Rice, Schaefer and the lawyers’ practices as defendants, and includes counts for fraud, negligent misrepresentation and breach of contract.

Rice said it is “unfortunate that the plaintiffs have chosen to bring both my firm and Mr. Shaefer’s firm into a matter that is moot,” and is also moot regarding Cho.

“To say the least, the lawsuit is disappointing, but in any event we will vigorously defend it, including seeking fees and costs,” Rice said.

Source: Daily Report

Name Of The Attorney: Attorney Richard Merritt
Name Of The Law Firm: Cobb County District Attorney Vic Reynolds
State: Georgia
xyz_fbap: 1

Ex-wife of Georgia lawyer fears for her safety after he allegedly killed his mother

190211-jenine-merritt-richard-merritt-cs-259p-949dfa65a7dfe1c5b8
“We’re tired of looking over our shoulder and we’re looking for closure and to move on with our lives,” Jenine Merritt says of herself and their two children.
Feb. 11, 2019, 4:56 PM EST
By Janelle Griffith
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/after-georgia-lawyer-allegedly-killed-his-mother-ex-wife-fears-n970281

The former wife of a disbarred Georgia attorney who allegedly stabbed his mother to death said she is scared for her and her children’s safety.

A nationwide manhunt is underway for Richard Merritt, who police said removed his court-ordered ankle monitor before allegedly killing his mother Feb. 2 and stealing her 2009 silver Lexus. He has been on the run since, according to DeKalb County police.
Image: Richard Merritt and his ex-wife, Jenine.
Richard Merritt and his ex-wife, Jenine.Courtesy of Jenine Merritt

“We’re terrified,” Jenine Merritt told NBC News on Monday, referring to herself and their two children, who are 12 and 14. “We’re terrified because of what we know he’s capable of now.”

Richard Merritt, 44, was scheduled to surrender to authorities Feb. 1 in Cobb County, after he was sentenced to 15 years behind bars and 15 years on probation for stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from elderly clients between 2014 and 2017. After the conviction, he had been given until Feb. 1 to “get his affairs in order.”

On the eve of the date he was supposed to report to jail, Jenine Merritt said he threatened her life in a late-night phone call.

He was “clearly drunk,” she said, saying her ex-husband “is a serious alcoholic.”

Richard Merritt was verbally abusive on a regular basis, but had never before physically threatened her, she said.

The Merritts divorced in 2018 after 19 years of marriage.

Jenine Merritt added that she is “horrified” by the death of her former mother-in-law, Shirley Merritt, describing her as “a good mother and grandmother.”

“That part does not feel real to us,” she said. “And maybe, once we move on to the point where we’re not scared for our safety, we can really begin the grieving process, which we need to do.”
190211-shirley-merritt-cs-301p-949dfa65a7dfe1c5b80a4a16a46f2e6e
Image: Shirley Merritt
Shirley Merritt Courtesy of Jenine Merritt

Richard Merritt is now the subject of a nationwide search, Frank Lempka, an inspector with the U.S. Marshals Service, said.
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He may have shaved his head in an attempt to change his appearance and should be considered armed and dangerous, the Marshals Service said. The agency is offering a $5,000 reward for information that leads to his arrest.

Richard Merritt filed multiple medical malpractice claims for his clients and later admitted in court that he pocketed much of what they had won. He used the settlements on personal expenses including vacations, authorities said.

“We lost our home, we lost everything we had,” Jenine Merritt said of her ex-husband’s conviction. “I had no idea that he had done these things to these poor people that trusted him and needed him.”

She also said she had no idea her then-husband was paying for their vacations with stolen money and would not have participated if she had known.

She believes it is only a matter of time before he is caught.

“We’re tired of looking over our shoulder, and we’re looking for closure and to move on with our lives,” she said.

I have a problem with all this. He and his wife divorced to tie up the money Rich had been stealing. She still has money from the people Rich stole the money from.
And since when does someone go and cut off the ankle monitor? The story that I heard was that after he killed his mom, he went to Cartersville and cut the ankle monitor off and hopped on a plane at the Cartersville airport (very small airport). That’s just what I heard.
I also can’t imagine why he was still out walking around anyway.
The other thing that I heard was that Rich and the Cobb County DA were really good friends.
One thing that is fact for sure, Rich Merritt was asst attorney general in GA for about 15 years, thus why he had so many friends in the legal world. The victims were afraid that he would get no time for his crimes. Everyone was shocked at the stiff sentence he got. They give murderers that length of time.
No matter, they obviously had not planned on Rich killing his Mama…