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WWL>Topics>>2-18 6:45am Tommy, online blogging scandal

2-18 6:45am Tommy, online blogging scandal

Feb 18, 2014|

Tommy talks to WWL's News Director Dave Cohen about possible bombshells in the online commenting scandal from the US Attorney's office

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Daytona news director joins us right now serenely and good morning Davis story in the advocate. About the US attorney's office in the blogging scandal that rocked the it. A couple of things that surprised me I didn't know there were common knowledge in but that. One of the people I know -- it was proven to be blogging or not was an FBI agent. And also that the Justice Department doesn't really surprise me me today. As -- on Wednesday and a fast effort to get down -- -- so with that we welcome Dave -- -- well but the bottom line. Attorneys who have clients who have been prosecuted by the federal government. Under -- -- Latin Sarah. Are all very interested to find out if they can determine. Just how deep and how far this blogging scandal -- both within the US attorney's office here in Portland. Related to that any law enforcement. Federal law enforcement specifically here in New Orleans and what about in Washington in the Justice Department. In the Obama administration. And so there are a lot of questions and what we don't have as many answers what we do have a lot of speculation. Particularly by those. Attorneys who have clients predictive who say -- there in the Danziger. Case in the Nagin case in other prosecutions. And the real question -- -- that they feel but the real question is was Jim Latin himself. Blogging about cases. On social media on news web sites. Was the US attorney. Trying to influence public opinion may be allegedly trying to influence potential jury pool. Trying to swing things in the prosecutorial favor. And they believe that if they can find out. That Latin was blog and they don't have any evidence of it yet in the as a defense attorneys for rest. If they feel like if they can prove. They can find out if it was Latin they believe that could lead to some serious implications on many of the prosecution's. Now I've talked to other attorneys who are on the outside looking in legal scholars and experts. Who aren't so sure even -- and there's no by the way no evidence to this point. That Jim Latin or anyone out of DC who is supposed to be overseeing Clinton's office to make sure that they weren't making pressed to -- mistakes. Was blogging they're not sure that even if that was the case they would learn to lead to say overturning the -- convictions and or any others and just to go back. The DNC -- verdicts were overturned as a result. The blog that yet only case where we have a judge who found that. -- Prosecute prosecutions. Blogging. About it to misconduct. And -- led to by missing case and led to a verdict being tossed out. There have been many cases. Where attorneys have made this argument. Where they have sought to including -- -- in case. Including the no case including so many other federal prosecutions where they've gotten nowhere with the judges with -- judges have said they don't think. It led to a point where they had to overturn. Or drop a prosecution or anything else that matters so. You know that we're hearing words like nuclear. From defense attorneys Robert Jenkins used the word nuclear use Ray Nagin attorney. That if the allegations are true and by that he means it. Jim Latin was actually belong. That he believes he can get Megan's convictions overturned and he thinks that Latin may be others could face charges. There's already between alliance in the -- and publicly and lying to an FBI agent in is and of itself a felony is you know we don't know in the report would. The public has not seen the reports the Justice Department has prepared on the blogging scant -- along those lines judge Wilkinson is saying that. Justice Department investigators -- quote sufficient factual basis says the paper for more information about eleven specific Nolan dot com com Anders. But didn't do now what is happening now is that federal government has the Justice Department has done an investigation. Eight federal judge to set let me see. He's not giving it to the defense attorneys please read it right about he's he's reading it. And and evaluating it and didn't say give it to the defense attorneys and let them see but the judges looking at it to determine if there's anything in this report. That would. Mean that further action has to be taken in the judicial system they also subpoenaed records from the times Picayune -- dot com. Most of these comments were made to find out if they can identify through IP addresses and other information. Who some of these bloggers may have been and again the real question that a lot of people want answered now it was Jim -- while US attorney. Blogging about cases was there secret grand jury testimony -- that's the big key that I wanna talk about because. That would be a crime in and again in and of itself to revealed grand jury testimony. That is. How much of a crime that may or may not be is game really going to be up to a judge's discretion so far allegations. Of secret grand jury testimony being leaked. Have not led to an. Any prosecution of not let any charges has not let Danny contempt. Monetary index was put in terms of poisoning the jury pool winners a lot of things are there are a lot of things. That are allowed before grand jury that would never ever get -- correct and if that's out there on the public that raises the question. Was this an effort to taint potential jury pool and didn't actually taint the potential jury pool. And -- any of the jurors who heard any of these cases tainted. We saw Aaron Broussard trying to make these arguments and failed he's in federal prison that didn't work for him but. It was a hearing before the negative trial was well bunkers right it was a motion that was presented but it went very didn't going. But again the question is if Latin himself again it was -- If -- himself and some people claim that day that he was but again no evidence presented. Then that. Some say. Could dramatically change the prosecutions. That happened during that time but other legal experts and now won't change anything if the judges feel that the juries were picked. Properly the jurors were not biased by anything that was out there there's no reason to overturn. Convictions. And retry defendants how much this and -- and joining grand jury testimony because. It's one thing for a person -- put your opinion out there it's another thing to put out things. That nobody other than somebody in the inside would know that does it ultimately come down how many people. Read these comments and and from the IAEA -- act on it ultimately comes at it. One judge's opinion in the trial court initially. We've had judging a heart already throughout the Danziger convicted because of this blogging scandal because of -- prosecutors lead prosecutors under Jim Latin who we know were blogging. Who have now admitted it who have resigned Latin of course also resigned but never admitted to doing anything improper. Other than having this scandal in his office so do you get a judge. In the US district court who says yes this was happening. And yes it with prejudicial and yes it was misconduct and yes people should face conduct charges. Or yes Casey should be thrown out and an even if that happens you've got the fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and extort the district court where all of these decisions will undoubtedly -- To be appealed and then they can go to the US Supreme Court so. Lot of questions not many answers at this point. Debate among legal experts on whether or not it would matter if -- Latin war indeed blogging in fact. On its impact in cases will wait to find out. Was Latin allegedly blogging Willie judge. Find that through this report from the federal government or through the subpoena records from the time speaking of the time -- -- in May or may not turn over. They're alert system considering their options and may appeal to that this circuit and the US Supreme Court if you lied to a federal judge. Allow logging. Does that put the defendants in a better position get a new trial because it takes via. But he -- the help me data were dumping them the that legitimacy the credibility critically think that's essentially finished at the credibility. In question and is that a crime to -- to a -- I guess it would be perjury because of usually puts you under threat lying it's assumed they fear an attorney working in the court. And I judge asks you questions you light of that judge that judge can clearly hold you in contempt if they. I believe that you were not being completely truthful with them so you know did a judge ever asked him what did you blogs are. And you know it's it all -- It's it's a long and winding road where only a part of the way down it are their. You know nuclear bombs along the way as some defense attorney client -- sure believes though and they believe that they can get the proof that Jim Latin. And or some people from the Justice Department in DC you were supposed to be overseeing prosecutions of New Orleans if they can prove that. Either of those individuals were indeed. Blogging about cases and trying to influence potential jury pool and releasing secret grand jury information -- information only prosecutors had. They believe it'll lead to potential criminal charges and potentially case is being overturned. Which could mean new trials but others say now. Even -- every one was -- if it's found that the procedures for properly handled by that trial court that the juries were picked opera. That the jurors were properly white beard and proven to not. We practiced by any of this that it may have no impact on any case you know better than -- that we. Get a traffic because you'll often yell at me for not being on time and it. Tell me quickly a timeline on all of this well we could have something happened tomorrow in federal court in terms of the first revelations. Based on the report from the federal government and if -- dot com and at times BQ in turn over their subpoenaed documents we could see action tomorrow in terms of a lower court ruling. Or making some decisions on motions. But we're talking weeks months and years before the thing is actually settled I we don't want him. Be late for news otherwise target and off the air visit from -- -- let's get a -- traffic right.

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