A Just Cause investigation reveals that Federal Appellate Judge Hartz completed review of IRP6 case and Tenth Circuit received case files in May 2013; why has Appellant Attorney not been notified and Pacer not updated, questions A Just Cause
Denver, Colorado (PRWEB) March 12, 2014
As part of an ongoing investigation of the IRP6 case, this week A Just Cause discovered that at least one appellate court judge reviewing the case returned case files to the Tenth Circuit in Denver, Colorado in May 2013. Court records show that the Appellate Court panel for the IRP6 case includes the Honorable Senior Judge Bobby R. Baldock, the Honorable Judge Harris L. Hartz, and the Honorable Judge Jerome A. Holmes (D. Ct. No. 1:09-CR-00266-CMA; Appellate Case Nos: NO. 11-1487, Case Nos. 11-1488, 11-1489, 11-1490, 11-1491 and 11-1492).
The IRP6 case concerns an African-American company (IRP Solutions Corporation) in Colorado that developed the Case Investigative Life Cycle (CILC) criminal investigations software for federal, state, and local law enforcement. The IRP6 (Kendrick Barnes, Gary L Walker, Demetrius K. Harper, Clinton A Stewart, David A Zirpolo and David A Banks) were convicted in 2011 after being accused of mail and wire fraud. (D. Ct. No. 1:09-CR-00266-CMA). The IRP6 have been incarcerated for 20 months in federal prison in Florence, Colorado while their case is under appeal.
“As part of our inquiry into the status of the appeal of the IRP6 case, two weeks ago I contacted the chambers of Judge Hartz (New Mexico) to which I later received a phone message from Judge Hartz acknowledging my call and instructing me to call back with additional information,” states Ethel Lopez, A Just Cause. “I spoke with the Judicial Assistant to Judge Hartz (Claudette – only first name provided), who informed me that, ‘Those cases (referring to IRP6) are sent back to Denver when they’re done,’” added Lopez. “In a response to my inquiry, Judge Hartz’s judicial assistant confirmed, ‘We (the appellate judge’s office) don’t keep any information on (cases) here in this office,” continued Lopez. “Judge Hartz’s judicial assistant provided me with the phone number to the Tenth Circuit in Denver where I could check the status of the appeal. According to the clerk’s office in Denver the case was still with the Appellate Court and that the case had not been decided,” Lopez recalls. “Another status from the court clerk was that the case was with the ‘writing judge.’”
“A Just Cause questioned the inconsistent feedback from the various court employees,” states Lopez. “If the Judicial Assistant to one of the Appellate Judges is stating that they are done with the case, but the court clerk is saying that it has not been decided, and yet another states that the case is with the ‘writing judge’, wouldn’t that raise a red flag,” ponders Lopez. “This week A Just Cause reached out again to Judge Hartz’s judicial assistant to inquire as to when the case files were returned to Denver and was again referred back to the Denver office,” explains Lopez. “Chief Clerk Doug Cressler, Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals - Denver, stated that the IRP6 case files were returned to the clerk’s office by Judge Hartz’s office in May 2013,” explains Lopez.
According to the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, the PACER service (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) is used which provides on-line access to U.S. Appellate, District, and Bankruptcy court records and documents nationwide (http://www.pacer.gov). Links to Appellate Court opinions are also posted on the Tenth Circuit website (https://www.ca10.uscourts.gov/). A Just Cause research found that neither the website for the Tenth Circuit, nor PACER showed that a court of appeals opinion had been issued in the IRP6 case.
“A Just Cause has intensified its call on the Department of Justice to investigate the matters of the IRP6 case,” exclaims Lopez. “There are too many shifts in the story related to the status of this appeal,” asserts Lopez. “Either the case is done or it is not, but in either situation, if a judge completed his review and the Chief Clerk in Denver shows that the clerk has had the files since May of 2013, doesn’t that beg the question of why is there a 10-month delay in issuing the opinion of the court,” asks Lopez. “One must question if there are grounds for an investigation based on misconduct. At the end of the day, there are six men who have been sitting in federal prison for 20 months, while their appellant files have been in Denver since May 2013,” Lopez concludes.
Court records show that the IRP6 case is currently under appeal based on Fifth Amendment Prohibition of Compulsory Testimony, Sixth Amendment Right to Present a Defense and Speedy Trial Act Violation. Records also show that Attorneys for A Just Cause are petitioning the courts for release of over 200 pages of transcripts that were omitted from court records of the IRP6 trial. (D. Ct. No. 1:09-CR-00266-CMA; Case Nos: NO. 11-1487, Case Nos. 11-1488, 11-1489, 11-1490, 11-1491 and 11-1492)
For more information about the story of the IRP6 or for copies of the legal filings go to http://www.freetheirp6.org. Appellate Court panel includes the Honorable Senior Judge Bobby R. Baldock, Honorable Judge Harris L. Hartz, and Honorable Judge Jerome A. Holmes
Related press releases: http://www.a-justcause.com/#!press-release/c21pq