Jeff Skilling

The Department of Justice and Jeff Skilling have inked a deal that may shorten the time he will serve in prison, but most importantly from the government’s perspective, the deal allows the Department of Justice to continue to cover up the gross misconduct of the lawyers who prosecuted Skilling in the case already partially reversed by the Supreme Court for the failure of its overarching and over-reaching “honest services” conspiracy charge and criticized by the Fifth Circuit as “troubling.”  As  John Emshwiller reports for the Wall Street Journal:

“The alleged misconduct, according to a previous defense filing, includes failing to turn over evidence regarding some of the interviews the government had with Andrew Fastow, Enron’s former chief financial officer and a key prosecution witness.

The filing contended that the additional interview material would have contradicted and undermined Mr. Fastow’s trial testimony.

A Justice Department court filing denied any wrongdoing and said that prosecutors turned over all the material required by law.

The Fifth Circuit appeals court, in its initial 2009 decision upholding Mr.Skilling’s conviction, said it was “troubling” that the government failed to turn over one potentially key statement from the Fastow interview notes to the defense.

“Perhaps even more troubling is that the government never disclosed” that same information to Judge Lake.”

The government to whom John referred above-the person no one wants to name-is  CHIEF WHITE HOUSE COUNSEL KATHRYN RUEMMLER. This isn’t the first time she hid evidence.

With Skilling’s Deal, which he has little choice but to take unless he wants to die in prison, we will probably never know how calculated and deliberate Ruemmler and her team of  prosecutors were in hiding evidence that was favorable to the defense or how much they hid.  No court has ever held an evidentiary hearing on any of these allegations.  The prosecutors have never been questioned under oath or otherwise. But we should not be surprised-only hugely disappointed.  Why has the government has fought so hard to protect these prosecutors?  And to continue hiding the evidence that they hid?

Well, the lead prosecutor of Skilling — White House Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler -is the primary lawyer whispering legal advice in the President’s ear every day on all matters such as Fast ‘n Furious, how to respond to Congress, and on any and all political and legal issues.

In addition, the government hopes to hide the ethical charges still pending against Ruemmler with the Bar in D.C. for her role in yellow-highlighting evidence favorable to four Merrill Lynch executives and hiding it from them despite a Court Order.   Four men served as long as a year in prison while she hid the evidence that directly contradicted the government’s case and proved the defense was true.  The Fifth Circuit held that she had “plainly suppressed” evidence favorable to the defense.  The “summaries” she provided were misleading.  Yet, no federal court has even insisted on a hearing on the matter.  

Where have all the judges gone?  Is anyone paying attention?  Why is Ruemmler above the law?  Does anyone remember former White House counsel John Dean?

Ruemmler’s and her teams’  offenses were not just against the men wrongly convicted.  They were against the Courts, their own oaths of office, the jurors to whom they lied, and against the district and appellate judges to whom they lied.  They corrupted the very essence of our system of justice.  In truth, there is no system of Justice unless prosecutors are held to the same standards as the people they prosecute, and prosecutors must be held accountable when they abuse the power of the sovereign and the trust of the people.