As you read through the links and text below, it becomes rather clear that Mr. Kahoe was involved in a major cover-up and participating in and ordering the concealment and ultimate destruction of Federal Records which were critical in the fact finding efforts of a trial to determine the validity of the actions of the FBI that resulted in the death of American Citizens.
And please understand, I'm not condoning the actions of those at Ruby Ridge or vilifying the FBI sniper for his actions, but justice to American citizens was denied because of the actions of this Federal employee.
The original article posted that has resulted in this lengthy exchange was intended to point out that FEDERAL EMPLOYEES, above all, should be held to the letter of the law when they are found guilty of destroying records, and that didn't happen.
Apologies in advance to those of you who view this as a "political discussion" rather than one related to Records Management, but it IS a RIM issue. I've stayed away from the politics of what the Ruby Ridge incident was all about, as I don't feel it's appropriate to discuss one's political beliefs in a forum such as this.
>If I recall this correctly, the individual directed someone to destroy their
>copy but did retain the one he had. Additionally, I think the individual
>spent several months in prison.
>Not exactly what I would call a slap on the hand.
The Information alleges that Kahoe supervised the production of these documents to the prosecution team. In order to ensure that the Ruby Ridge after action critique would not be available in the Weaver case, however, Kahoe allegedly withheld the critique from the documents to be delivered to the prosecution team, destroyed all of his copies of the critique, and ordered a subordinate FBI Headquarters official to destroy all copies of the critique and to make it appear as if the critique never existed. Under federal law, a violation of the obstruction of justice statute carries a maximum penalty of ten years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
19. Defendant E. MICHAEL KAHOE supervised the production of these documents to the prosecution team. In order to ensure that the Ruby Ridge after action critique would not be available in the Weaver case, however, defendant J. MICHAEL KAHOE withheld the Ruby Ridge after action critique from the documents to be delivered to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Idaho or the local FBI case agents.
20. To further ensure that the Ruby Ridge after action critique would not be available in the Weaver case, between on or about January 7, 1993 and early April, 1993, defendant E. MICHAEL KAHOE destroyed all of his copies of the Ruby Ridge after action critique.
21. To further ensure that the Ruby Ridge after action critique would not be available in the Weaver case, between on or about January 7, 1993 and early April, 1993, defendant E. MICHAEL KAHOE ordered a subordinate FBI Headquarters official, whose identity its known to the United States, to destroy all copies of the Ruby Ridge after action critique and to make it appear as if the Ruby Ridge after action critique never existed.
22. Between in or about January 7, 1993 and early April, 1993, in the District of Columbia and elsewhere, defendant E. MICHAEL KAHOE did knowingly and corruptly persuade another person, and attempt to do so, with intent to cause and induce another person to destroy, mutilate and conceal the Ruby Ridge after action critique with the intent to impair its availability for use in an official proceeding, that is United States v. Randall C. Weaver and Kevin L. Harris, D. Idaho Crim. No. 92- 080-N-EJL.
(Obstruction of Justice, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1512(b)(2)(B)).
MICHAEL R. STILES Acting United States Attorney
> The practice of returning basic rights of a citizen to felons is neither new
>or uncommon. Many are provided with that option as part of their sentence.
>Others petition the parole and/or pardon board to have the rights returned.
The lead federal prosecutor, U.S. Attorney Michael Stiles, said he has not promised Kahoe he will remain out of prison. Kahoe could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. However, the judge granted the prosecutor's request that no sentencing date be set, and that Kahoe be released without posting bond.
Kahoe was sentenced by Judge Ricardo Urbina, who could have given him 2 years. The judge also fined Kahoe $4,000 and ordered him placed on probation for two years after his release from federal prison.
Kahoe's lawyers said his 26 years of unblemished law enforcement experience should be taken into account. Federal prosecutors urged the maximum sentence.
>What is unusual is for someone to go to jail for destroying documents.
These are FEDERAL RECORDS, and the records in question were those that involved the investigation of Federal Agents killing 3 and wounding 2 other American citizens. As the article below points out, he was compensated while being investigated and allowed to remain on payroll and obtain a higher pension as a result of this.
>As far as I know, none of the officers or employees of the brokerage houses are
>going to jail. For that matter, I have not heard of any of them even losing
>their jobs over the failure to keep possibly millions of documents. I would
>be very surprised if any Enron or Anderson employees were sentenced to jail
>time for destruction of documents. (Note: I would not be surprised if some
>were sentenced for fraud or conspiracy.)
Well, suffice to say, it ain't over yet. But as I've said, the difference here is these are FEDERAL EMPLOYEES and FEDERAL RECORDS... and these people are being compensated for doing the citizen's business.
>>(at the cost of taxpayers, like you and I)<<
>Whose money will pay for all of those inflated energy billings that Enron
>submitted to California? I suspect that the cost to California taxpayers
>for that will be hundreds of thousands of times higher than the pension
>received by one disgraced FBI agent.
Apples and oranges, Bill. No one involved in this destroyed and/or ordered the destruction of reports that provided evidence which would shed light on Federal Agents actions which resulted in the death of American citizens. And as one of the Californians being forced to pay for the actions of ENRON, I'm not happy about it, but it didn't cost me my life. Keep in mind, this is the investigation that "one disgraced FBI Agent" was taken down by... and I guess if he gets the benefit of the doubt, this was the first time he ever did anything like this in his illustrious 26 year career.
Surprisingly, the investigation recommended no criminal prosecution of Kahoe's assistant, FBI Special Agent Gale R. Evans, even though the investigation found that "at Kahoe's direction, Evans destroyed copies of the FBI Ruby Ridge After Action Critique, as well as his computer disk containing the critique." Evans faced no charges for obstruction of justice; as the final report noted:
"The Investigative Team recommended against prosecution on the basis of Evans' significant cooperation, without any promises, from the outset of this investigation; the nature of his subordinate role in the criminal conduct; and the availability of administrative sanctions."
Thus, willfully destroying evidence does not lead to criminal charges - as long as you are following orders and as long as FBI superiors can deny you an "above average" job performance rating for your next evaluation.
Michael Kahoe was sentenced last fall for felony charges of obstruction of justice. He will serve 18 months in prison and pay a $4,000 fine. Kahoe could have received up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. But the real lesson of the Kahoe sentence is this: Cover up a killing, get a pension. Kahoe was permitted to stay on the FBI payroll (at $112,000 a year) for several months after he pled guilty so that he could qualify for a pension of $67,000 per year. If he had been fired at the time that he pled guilty to obstruction of justice, his pension would have been much less. What sort of Justice Department keeps people on its payroll after they plead guilty to obstruction of justice?
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