Despite the Obama administration having a new Attorney General, there are still questions about the timing and the role former Attorney General Eric Holder played in the appointment of, and successive promotions of John Walsh on the Attorney General’s Advisory Council (AGAC), according to a press statement released on Friday.
During Walsh’s initial two-year term, which started in early 2011 after selection by Holder, he served as the chair of the Medical Marijuana Working Group and co-chair of the White Collar/Fraud Subcommittee. In June 2013, after completing his initial term, Walsh was appointed again “to serve as co-chair of Holder’s White Collar/Fraud Subcommittee. The subcommittee is part of the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee (AGAC), which is comprised of U.S. Attorneys from across the country to provide the Attorney General with guidance on a variety of critical issues for the Department of Justice.”
Just prior to leaving office, in January of 2015, Eric Holder then appointed Walsh to serve as Chair of the AGAC. “Traditionally, each appointed US Attorney rolls off the AGAC after two years. Mr. Walsh has seemingly rolled into higher and higher positions since his appointment as US Attorney. Is this coincidence or a preemptive strategy to ensure Walsh is cast in the most favorable light possible? Why didn’t Eric Holder have Walsh look into the IRP6 case? Due to a controversial case in Colorado, Holder’s office was called daily by volunteers of A Just Cause and concerned citizens questioning and requesting an investigation into the 200 pages of missing transcript, expert witnesses denied the right to testify, and speedy trial violations. Why wasn’t this case big enough to warrant some type of investigation?” ponders Cliff Stewart, an executive of A Just Cause.
“A lot of questions continue to surface as A Just Cause investigates the wrongful conviction of the IRP6 case. Our organization called, faxed, and wrote countless letters to Attorney General Eric Holder, none of which received so much as an acknowledgement after over two and a half years of persistent cries for justice,” says Lamont Banks, Executive Director of A Just Cause. “Eric Holder was aware of the IRP6 case, so why did the promotion to power continue? Is it happenstance that Holder promoted US Attorney John Walsh who broke federal law to convict the IRP6, refused to read the proffer of the IRP6’s account of events that took place, worked with the IRS to illegally access church financial records of the Colorado Springs Fellowship Church without subpoena or court order in violation of federal law, and who violated the law to secure a wrongful conviction? With seventeen attorneys on the advisory committee from all over the United States qualified to be chair of that committee, why was John Walsh chosen amidst such serious violation of law and corruption allegations?” ponders Banks.
“The timing of the actions of Eric Holder raises serious ethical questions. It’s very troubling that at the height of our outreach to his office for an investigation into the Denver US Attorney’s office and the IRP6 case, he never gave us the common courtesy of a response in the form of a letter, phone call, email, or any other form of correspondence; instead, he successively promotes John Walsh, the US Attorney in question,” remarks Stewart. “The fact that Holder appointed Walsh to chair the committee of the incoming Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, just three months prior to leaving office, leads to many questions about his motives and Walsh’s qualifications for such a role,” concludes Stewart.
“On more than one occasion, AG Holder’s assistant who answered the phones admitted that Mr. Holder was aware of the IRP6 case and the inquiries being made to his office, but Holder never gave a response or put forth an effort to question the abuse in the IRP6 case. What are citizens supposed to do? The public deserves to be taken seriously by those who are in position to address our concerns. If Holder didn’t want to look into the case himself, he could have ordered Walsh to investigate since the case was in his jurisdiction of Colorado. However, it appears Holder never asked Walsh neither did he take up the case himself. What was the motive behind that? What was going on behind closed doors that AJC & IRP6 didn’t know about? What is the connection between Holder and Walsh? After daily calls to Holder’s office and acknowledgment of the IRP6 case by his staff, he never took action? If positions of power are used for personal gain or cover-up, then a disservice has been done to the American people. An investigation needs to take place concerning the overall culture of DOJ and how Mr. Holder was allowed to conduct business on his watch,” remarks Stewart.
“Did Eric Holder owe John Walsh some favor? If you look at the timeline of events and how things happened, it makes you wonder. Why should someone that convicted six innocent men deserve a promotion? People get promotions for doing a good job, not breaking the law or trampling the Constitution under their feet,” affirms Banks.
“What is baffling to AJC and the supporters of the IRP6 is that Walsh never responded to the IRP6 proffer or sat down to meet with them when they went to his office to discuss the case. Then, on the first day and final day of the IRP6 case, Walsh came to the courtroom, sitting on the side of the US government in the gallery. He never spoke, but we were told that his presence spoke volumes to the Court,” recalls Stewart. “We were told when a US Attorney shows up in court, he is telling the judge, ‘I want [to win] this case,'” concludes Stewart.
“We know that someone pushed to make the IRP6 case criminal despite the fact that the FBI stated it was a matter to be handled in Civil Court. We know that Greg Golberg hand delivered the IRP6 case to the US Attorney’s office in Denver, detailing the charges to file and how to make them stick. We don’t know who Goldberg represented or who was behind criminalizing corporate debts in the IRP6 case. But we know that both Eric Holder and John Walsh remained unresponsive despite repeated attempts to reach out to their offices. We also know that, during the same time, Eric Holder repeatedly appointed John Walsh to the AGAC and continually promoted him despite the controversial case. We’re just left with many questions when we observe the timing of the IRP6 case and John Walsh’s rise to chairmen of the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee,” concludes Banks.
For more information about the story of the IRP6 or for copies of the legal filings go to http://www.freetheirp6.org.