Presumption of Corruption

Earlier today a New Jersey state appeals court ruled that a former county prosecutor who has accused Governor Chris Christie’s administration of corruption after his firing on September 15, 2010 will not be given access to grand jury transcripts that he says will help confirm his accusations.  State officials argued that grand jury records are usually kept secret to protect witnesses and others involved in criminal cases.

Another report has the Christie administration saying Ben Barlyn’s claims are false. “No one in the administration had a close relationship with Trout and claims of political interference were misguided”, Christie spokesman Michael Drewniak said previously.

I am not a lawyer and have not read much on this case but four questions strike me that maybe some of you out there can help with:

  1. A firing in 2010 with a lawsuit in 2012 and we are still in the early stages of discovery?  What redress is this legal system capable of really?
  2. If grand jury records are supposed to be secret except in special cases than why even keep most of them?
  3. Is Michael Drewniak saying that if there were someone in the administration who did have a close relationship with Trout then a political-payback firing would have been perfectly understandable?
  4. Why would an administration that is not corrupt not want the full truth out there?




3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Maceo on May 7, 2014 at 8:45 pm

    Michael Drewniak? Seriously?


  2. Posted by Jim on May 9, 2014 at 10:30 am

    In New Jersey politics a presumption of corruption is the default hypothesis.


  3. Oh john you should read the new York times article on this case.

    Forget that the appellate court won’t order the release of the grand jury testimony.

    Sheriff Trout was indicted, and the extremely unusual (rare) result was that the prosecution motioned to dismiss the indictment after chisties appointies got involved and the case records were sent to Trenton … Out of the county the case was in … This story reeks of corrupt politics.

    The new jersey courts are just as corrupt as the other two branches based on my personal experience.

    It’s not even shocking that our judicial system is corrupted given that

    1) our governor nominates judges as political favors…

    2) judges can’t get tenure (their pension & job for life) without governors nomination.

    3)Our corrupted legislature approves nominies…

    Put all that in the context of the fact that 4 of our last 8 governors have been indicted and the resulting corruption appears inevitable.


    Worse the best friend of the mob is a corrupted judge… They are above the law and can ensure crimes aren’t succesfully prosecuted


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