Sunday, July 16, 2006

A Culture of Corruption

An attitude of corruption seems to permeate the election process in Shelby County and it must be defeated, if we are to clean up our government. It seems almost every elected official is being paid by people who have spent time in prison, or have been granted diversion or had their records expunged. Even the county mayor’s main man for fund raising is a shadowy figure. How can we, as honest tax paying citizens, expect to have honest government when there is this constant underworld undercurrent? It is time to send a message to those politicians who not only take money from convicted felons, but aggressively seek it.

Now I understand why Mark took the money from convicts! It's the James Traficant strategy to interdict the underworld crime. I find it interesting that the same convicted felons in Shelby County have been giving to all the elected officials, just like in this case. Read on . . .

"When Sheriff Traficant was arrested by the FBI in 1982, he signed a confession after agents played for him excerpts from the Carabbia tapes. Traficant then hired one of the best attorneys in the business, Carmen Policy, Ed Flask’s partner, who is today the President of the Cleveland Browns professional football team. However, after Traficant went public with charges that just about every public official in Youngstown was involved with the Mafia, Policy dumped Traficant as his client. Traficant then made a bold – and some would say insane – decision to renounce his confession and stand trial, acting as his own attorney. Traficant explained to the jury that he only accepted the Mafia bribe money so he would know whom to arrest for corruption once elected Sheriff. After four days of deliberations, the jury returned a verdict that stunned the Prosecutors and journalists that covered the trial; Not Guilty. Traficant then turned the publicity over his acquittal to his advantage and was elected to Congress in 1984. However, three years later he was again in Court, facing civil charges that he owed taxes on the $163,000 in Mafia bribes. Representing him was attorney George Alexander, who has since been convicted of racketeering with the Mafia. As in the O. J. Simpson case, Traficant was convicted in his civil trial and ordered to pay back taxes, fines, and interest. "

Here's the link

During the 1920's and 30's, the appeal of a fast buck got the better of some of the county's law enforcement personnel. Illegal operations including gambling and bootlegging went unchecked, and one sheriff was indicted for working with a notorious crime figure.

Broward County Florida

This on a Sheriff who used intimidation - similar to the "whipping post" Mark Luttrell uses. I'm thinking the FBI needs to take a look at Mark too:

'As you read these affidavits, you will see a thread of intimidation ... and obstruction that cannot be tolerated for one more day,' Frank told the court.

Frank read aloud three affidavits in which deputies describe a Sept. 2 meeting at Randy's Restaurant on U.S. 64. There, they said, Hege said that several deputies were cooperating with the SBI in its inquiry of his office. The deputies quoted Hege as saying that employees who he finds giving incriminating statements against him 'are going to be gone.'

Hege and one of his sons, Gerald 'Keith' Hege Jr., are accused of making similar threats in other affidavits read by Frank. Once, Frank said, Hege made a throat-cutting motion with his hand while talking about a plan to 'get rid of anyone who's made statements about me.' Hege was also quoted as saying that no Superior Court judge would dare remove him from office.

Owens, who as chief deputy was next in line to be sheriff should Hege be removed, testified that retaliation might already have started. Owens was the only witness called yesterday, and he said that two captains, Christopher Coble and Jody Shoaf, informed him of a demotion just minutes after Hege's indictment was made public.

Here's the link


Anonymous said...

John, you know the Sheriff wouldn't try to punish officers for not doing his bidding. Well, except for transferring you to the midnight shift, and the inspector to the report center and Captain Simmons to the report center, and . . . .

Either do what they want, or you are gone. Ask Tony Terhune - ex deputy sheriff.

DC said...

I guess Shelby county deserves to be crime capital of the universe. With these thugs in control and the same bunch of crooks backing the incumbents, what do you expect. I still can't believe Luttrell's handlers were stupid enough to not tell him to give the money back to all the crooks. Maybe Lutrell is as crooked as them and that's why he kept the money. Anyway, I'm with you on this one. Screw Luttrell and French!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for having the courage to stand up to these criminals. Not many people have the backbone you have exhibited.

Anonymous said...

I heard you today on the Mike Fleming show. I agree, all these politicians are in the money folks pockets. I'm voting for you tomorrow and so is my family.