Thursday, November 9, 2006

The Advocate
Richard Blassberg

Federal Investigation of Pirro Must Press Forward

Now that the elections are behind us, and Mrs. Pirro can no longer complain that the United States Attorney’s Office, or any other investigative agency is on a “witch hunt,” or pursuing a political agenda, it is time that the federal government begins to turn its attention to the more serious instances of her criminal conduct, particularly that which involved prosecutorial misconduct, and the denial of Constitutional rights “under the color of law.”

There are those sophisticated observers who might say that most prosecutors cut corners if they can get away with it, and do not always protect the rights of innocent individuals with the same zeal that they apply to prosecution. The truth is, even under that jaundiced perception of present day jurisprudence, Jeanine Pirro’s abuse of process, and official misconduct are each without peer.

From very early on, in her twelve-year regime, Pirro’s consistent objective involved manipulation of victims, and those accused, for primarily self-promotional purposes. She understood, and mastered, control of the media, particularly The Journal News, whose president and publisher, Gary Sherlock, was a business partner of her spouse, and NEWS 12, whose news director Janine Rose gave Pirro virtual carte blanche whenever she wanted to publicly hang someone, or needed damage control. Yes, the media, New York Magazine, with its front cover hype of her unlawful, so-called, Internet Sting, and all the fluffy Westchester magazines with their coverage of the “Power Couple,” played into her hand, never questioning the Constitutionality of her activities, or their own role in perpetuating her myth, and her crimes.

It is imperative that the United States Attorney’s Office move forward with their investigation of Jeanine Pirro, a chief law enforcement officer who carries on, both in her private, and public lives as though she is above the law.

Much of what she has been guilty of, particularly with regard to the malicious and unlawful prosecutions of innocent persons may no longer be prosecutable under the Statute of Limitations. For example, her activities in the Richard DiGuglielmo case, and the Anthony DiSimone case, goes back ten years. Her cover-up of her husband’s theft from the Hudson Valley Hospital Center occurred fifteen years ago.

Nevertheless, it is essential that all of her criminal conduct be investigated, prosecuted where possible, and punished as a clear signal to other prosecutors who might abuse their awesome powers, and the trust vested in them. It is equally important that federal investigators uncover the “patterns and practices” that defined her control of the Westchester District Attorney’s Office for twelve years, wreaking havoc and grave injustice in the lives of scores of innocent individuals and their families. For it is only upon exposure of those repeated unlawful practices that the criminal pattern will emerge, helping not only to exonerate the innocent, but also to provide for their compensation.

Furthermore, it is essential that United States Attorney, Michael Garcia press on with his office’s investigation of Jeanine Pirro, because, as accurately pointed out by former Yonkers Mayor John Spencer, in his 14-page letter, three years ago, the County of Westchester has been run by a cabal, of which DA Pirro was the central figure.

Most of those individuals who conspired with Mrs. Pirro to rig and fix election outcomes are still in office, still controlling the purse strings, still influencing the daily lives of nearly one million residents. Only a thorough investigation, not only of Jeanine Pirro’s prosecutorial misconduct and unlawful violation of the Constitutional
rights of innocent citizens, but also, as importantly, her key role in the corruption and criminality that runs all through County Government, and much of the State Judiciary, will bring down the cabal, and ultimately restore justice to the Westchester Community.

To be sure, it will be necessary, in some instances, to grant immunity to police officers, prosecutors, and attorneys, to finally unearth all of the criminality and corruption cultivated during the Pirro years. However, it is essential that we restore integrity and lawful operation to the more than forty police agencies in Westchester
that have suffered and deteriorated under her unlawful, oppressive hand.

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