Friday, October 3, 2014

Holder defies federal court ruling and refuses to obey judge's order

In an action not seen in the U.S. Department of Justice in recent history, outgoing Attorney GeneralEric Holder on Thursday refused to comply with a court order to release a Vaughn Index ofOperation Fast and Furious documents. Members of a House committee are requesting the federal judge in the case to hold Attorney General Holder in contempt of court for failing to comply with a deadline a judge set to turn over documents related to Operation Fast and Furious, according to afederal court motion on Thursday.
What Obama promised -- transparency -- appears to have been hijacked by raw Chicago political corruption, say detractors.
NewswithViews/Paul Walker
As per a 1974 court ruling, a Vaughn Index must: (1) identify each document withheld; (2) state the statutory exemption claimed; and (3) explain how disclosure would damage the interests protected by the claimed exemption.
On July 18, Judge John Bates ordered Holder and the Department of Justice to produce the documents list by October 1. He denied a motion by the Holder's DOJ that the agency be given more than an extra month, until November 3, to produce the Vaughn index. According to attorneys, Judge Bates voiced his concern that the Justice Department’s request showed they were “at best... slow to react to this Court’s previous [July 18, 2014] Order. At worst, it means the Department has ignored that Order until now.”

"Here we have the nation's top law enforcement officer telling federal judges NO to their rulings. This is one more incident that displays the lawlessness of this administration," said former NYPD police detective Michael Snopes. "If a cop dared do what Holder's done he'd be cooling his heels in a jail cell."

Since Holder chose to ignore the judge's order, in a legal motion filed Thursday afternoon, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee asked U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson to fine Holder personally if he doesn’t comply with an order requiring him to turn over non-privileged documents responsive to a House committee subpoena by Oct. 1. Judge Bates may also be set to charge Holder with contempt of court for failing to release the Vaughn List to a watchdog group Judicial Watch, as well.