By: Donald V. Watkins
Copyrighted and Published on August 11, 2022
Mr. Trump, welcome to what you have repeatedly called a "rigged" federal criminal justice system!
I am a political Independent who was dragged into this system after I attained the record in American jurisprudence as the only criminal defense attorney in history who defeated 85 felony charges in a single-defendant case in USA v Richard Scrushy (2005). My work in this case is featured in the May 2020 Netflix documentary, "Trial by Media;" Episode 4, "King Richard."
The federal law enforcement officials who came after me after I won this stunning courtroom victory are the same two U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) attorneys whom a federal judge called out by name for flagrantly violating Mr. Scrushy's constitutional rights in his companion SEC proceeding. The SEC first pitched my criminal case to federal prosecutors in New Jersey, who reviewed various allegations of "fraudulent" conduct against me in 2015 in connection with investor transactions that were subject to AAA arbitration that I initiated. After a thorough grand jury review and cooperation on my part, these New Jersey federal prosecutors cleared me of all wrongdoing and congratulated me on my substantial achievements in business.
In October 2017, a disappointed crowd in the SEC's Atlanta office pitched this same case to the new U.S. Attorney and his handpicked First Assistant in Birmingham, Alabama. Both of these men were political hacks and both of them had checkered pasts.
These prosecutors immediately made me the "target" of their investigation. They also added my innocent son as a "target" of their probe to exert maximum pressure on me.
These prosecutors shopped my case to a friendly Birmingham federal judge. Despite my objection, certain aspects of my case remain cloaked in secrecy even though my trial ended three years ago. These matters evidence disparate judicial action taken against me that has never been taken against any other federal criminal defendant.
On July 15, 2022, my March 2019 conviction for mail, wire, and bank fraud was upheld on appeal in an Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals opinion authored by Judge Gerald Tjoflat, a 93-year-old appellate judge whose conduct as Acting Chief Judge of the 11th Circuit Court was the subject of a complaint I filed with Chief U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Roberts in August 2014. My complaint asked that Chief U.S. District Court Judge Mark E. Fuller in Montgomery, Alabama be removed from the bench after he savagely beat his wife in an Atlanta hotel room and was arrested for spousal battery. Judge Tjoflat publicly advocated that Fuller "deal with these serious issues so when he returns there is as little disruption to his cases as possible."
My dogged persistence in writing and publishing articles about Fuller's serial history of wife-beating conduct, his sexual escapades with courthouse employees, and his "pill-popping" conduct while presiding over trials, eventually forced Fuller's resignation in 2015.
The Search of Mar-a-Lago
Searching your Mar-a-Lago home in Florida is just the beginning of a very long ordeal in this "rigged" system. My home and office were never searched. My records were subpoenaed and I provided prosecutors more than four million pages of documents relating to my business, financial, and personal affairs for a 12-year period.
I also provided Birmingham federal prosecutors with a copy of the pre-indictment factual memo that was submitted to the New Jersey prosecutors to answer questions raised during the course of their investigation. I prepared and submitted a separate pre-indictment factual memo for the Birmingham prosecutors to answer their questions.
Twice, I voluntarily testified before the Birmingham federal grand jury that eventually indicted my son and me. In the end, all of these proactive cooperative gestures did not matter to the Birmingham federal prosecutors. Their sole goal was to indict me, railroad me in court, and imprison me.
They thought their Blitzkrieg with the SEC, IRS, and other federal and state agencies would silence my independent political voice and stop my advocacy for the fair administration of justice. They were wrong.
Your home was searched to send you, your family, and the world a powerful message -- you are the "target" of a federal criminal investigation. Now your international peers, President Vladimir Putin of Russia and President Xi Jinping of China, know you have lost much of your political juice inside the American government.
You are entitled to a copy of the audiotape and/or written transcript of the ex parte hearing between the FBI agent who requested the search warrant and the magistrate judge who approved it. The magistrate judge is required to file this transcript with the clerk of the court in your case. Get this transcript immediately. It will show you exactly what questions were asked by the magistrate, what answers were given by the FBI agent, and how long this colloquy lasted.
It is clear that your knowledge of the federal criminal justice system is limited. This fact is evidenced by your selection of Chris Wray as FBI Director and Jeff Sessions as your first Attorney General.
You had the power to reform the federal criminal justice system when Special Counsel Robert Mueller was investigating you during the first two years of your presidency. For reasons I will never understand, you did not do so. Now, you are forced to learn and experience this "rigged" criminal justice system first-hand.
Brace yourself for the likelihood that Donald, Jr., Eric, and Ivanka may face criminal charges in this "rigged" criminal justice system. Placing the children of a "target" in harms way is a favorite Department of Justice (DOJ) tactic.
You will find the federal prosecutors in your case to be arrogant and cocky. This is because federal judges routinely indulge them, afford them preferential treatment in court proceedings, and bend over backwards to grant their prosecutorial requests.
Do not expect fairness anywhere along this road. Fairness was taken out of the federal criminal justice system more than five decades ago. The railroading you will experience in this "rigged" system is comparable to what WNBA star Brittany Griner is currently experiencing in the Russian criminal justice system.
Important Lessons to Learn and Remember
The first lesson you must learn and remember is this: While you have various constitutional and statutory rights on paper, very few federal judges will enforce them. In this "rigged" system, federal prosecutors are the kings. It will take a Herculean defense effort for you to defeat them on an unlevel playing field where prosecutorial cheating is a built-in feature of the system.
Ever since Richard Nixon assumed the presidency in 1969, your fellow Republican presidents have consistently appointed ultra-conservative judges to the federal bench who only pay "lip-service" to the basic constitutional rights of criminal defendants. The federal judiciary is now saturated with these judges.
Ironically, you appointed nearly 200 of these "lip-service" judges to the federal bench during your single term as president. Unfortunately, these judges view the fair administration of justice as some sort of detestable liberal agenda that must be quashed.
Based on your 60 or so election contests following the 2020 election (all of which you lost), you should expect to get royally "f--ked" in the federal criminal justice system. Serving up healthy doses of injustice is all that many of these federal judges know how to do.
Second, you will learn all about the awesome powers of the FBI, IRS, and federal prosecutors. They often work in concert with state law enforcement agencies that are investigating the same subject-matter. You do not have to break the law to come within the crosshairs of these state and federal agencies. If they dislike you for any reason, these agencies have the power to make you a "criminal," and nobody will stop them.
Very few "targeted" Americans have the support system necessary to withstand this kind of organized Blitzkrieg. I did. Perhaps, you do, too.
Below are two high-profile, documented examples of the DOJ's corrupt and politically-motivated persecution of distinguished Americans:
In 1915, Callie House was a widow, mother of five, laundry woman, and black social justice activist who sued the U.S. Treasury Department for $68,073,388.99 in compensation for ex-slaves. She also lobbied Congress for land grants, pensions, and health care for ex-slaves.
In 1916, southerners in President Woodrow Wilson's cabinet urged the DOJ to indict Callie House on bogus mail fraud charges. House was tried in an all-white, all-male federal courtroom in Nashville, Tennessee, and convicted. She was sentenced to one year in prison. House's grassroots political action organization collapsed after her conviction and imprisonment.
White House and DOJ records from the era show that House was investigated and prosecuted for the sole purpose of destroying her national grassroots movement and its push for land grants, pensions, and compensation for ex-slaves.
The cabinet members who pushed for House's prosecution and conviction stated that her fight for economic security for ex-slaves was "setting Negroes wild" and that she was meddling in "white folks things." They called House "defiant" because she would not back down from seeking pensions, life insurance, health insurance, land grants, agricultural assistance, educational assistance, reparations for slavery, and burial assistance for ex-slaves and their families.
Interestingly, House's request for land grants was modeled after the U.S. government's grant of 160 acres of free land per awardee to three million white peasants who were openly recruited from Europe to America under the Homestead Act of 1862. This "whites only" land giveaway program ran for 124 years (1862 to 1986) and was the largest wealth transfer program in American history. In total, 270 million acres of the 1.5 billion acres of land that was forcefully taken from Native-American tribes between 1830 and 1906, and given to white immigrants for free.
House's request for slavery reparations was modeled after the Compensation Emancipation Act of April 16, 1862, which ended slavery in Washington, D.C. and paid white slaveowners $1 million for the loss of 3,185 slaves who were set free under the Act. House's request for pensions for ex-slaves was modeled after the pension money paid to Union soldiers.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was my childhood pastor, Sunday School teacher, and Baptist Training Union instructor at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama (USA). Dr. King is America's best-known victim of FBI/DOJ law enforcement abuse.
In 1963, FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover signed off on a FBI plan to pressure Dr. King into committing suicide. At the time, Dr. King had been announced as the recipient of the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize. The FBI wrote fake letters and sent them to Dr. King's wife, along with doctored audiotapes that implied that Dr. King engaged in adultery.
The FBI encouraged Alabama state prosecutors to indict Dr. King on felony income tax evasion charges, which were eventually dismissed. The FBI's campaign of character assassination against Dr. King worked for a while. When he died on April 4, 1968, Dr. King was disliked by 75% of white Americans.
Dr. King withstood all of the FBI's abuse during the agency's infamous COINTELPRO counter-intelligence program against thousands of civil rights activists. He went on to become the only non-U.S. president with a Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.
I personally do not hold many FBI agents, federal prosecutors, and federal judges in high esteem. For nearly five decades as a trial lawyer who holds several national records in American jurisprudence, I have seen too many FBI agents and prosecutors lie, cheat, and perjure themselves with impunity. I have also seen how federal judges railroad poor and black defendants in their courtrooms because they could.
I also know of this crowd's participation in the "Good 'Ol Boys Roundup," which ran from 1980 to 1995. You can read about the "Roundup" and the documented misconduct of its participants in my January 29, 2020 article titled, "Good 'Ol Boys Roundup."
Your case may present the best chance for reforming this "rigged" criminal justice system.