DID SUPPRESSION OF FREE SPEECH AT PUBLIC CORRUPTION HEARINGS INSULATE GOVERNMENT FROM ACCOUNTABILITY?

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THE ARREST OF NEW YORK’S TOP ASSEMBLY LEADER MAY BE THE TIP OF AN ICEBERG

Parental Advocate, Dr. Leon R. Koziol, was one of the fortunate few selected from the general public to speak before the Governor’s Moreland Commission on Public Corruption at New York’s Pace University on September 17, 2013 (Constitution Day). Meanwhile vast numbers were denied access altogether in the streets outside the building. If you recall our website posts at the time, public emotions erupted into spontaneous protests and arrests as a well scripted Commission deliberated ultimately to a point of impotence, achieving nothing in the months of its costly existence.

When evidence began to surface implicating the Governor himself and top state officials, the Commission was prematurely dissolved in March, 2014. Fortunately one of the speakers, federal prosecutor Preet Bharara, chastised the unexpected move during an interview in Buffalo, New York. He then secured Commission files progressively leading to the January 22, 2015 arrest of New York Assembly Speaker, Sheldon Silver, on bribery and corruption charges involving New York law firms and millions of dollars in public money. While the federal investigations were underway, Mr. Koziol was being targeted and punished for his own testimony at the same hearing by disciplinary agents of the state’s judiciary.

Only weeks after the Moreland Commission was disbanded, a report was issued on April 8, 2014 opposing reinstatement of Leon’s law license with a complete copy of his testimony. This report was not issued by an independent entity like Mr. Bharara’s office, it was prepared by attorneys hired and supervised by the very court being criticized and responsible for the licensing decisions. Only nine months earlier, the chief attorney and his associate engaged in the same targeting activity were fired for falsifying their time sheets, publicly financed time which was also misappropriated to violate Leon’s civil rights. No public charges were lodged against them.

The targeting of Leon’s speech and reform efforts after 23 unblemished years as a successful civil rights attorney was admitted in an unrecorded, confidential hearing held by the same licensing court in May, 2013. Clearly provocative but never alleged to be false, Leon’s Commission testimony cited extensive judicial misconduct including a Syracuse judge assigned to his custody case who was removed from the bench for sexual misconduct upon his handicapped five year old niece. He also asked for an investigation into the state’s Judicial Conduct Commission due to its political nature and failure over the years to hold judges properly accountable. Like Sheldon Silver, many were later arrested and convicted by federal authorities.

Federal mandamus and civil rights actions were accordingly filed by Mr. Koziol in lower Manhattan and the state’s capital, but indications are that the constitutional atrocities will be suppressed, dismissed and otherwise punished to assure business as usual in America’s divorce and family courts. Any logical observer must therefore conclude that our third branch of government is simply placing itself above the law, in this case our supreme laws entrusted to its care under the Constitution. Mr. Koziol sacrificed his career and family to promote a long overdue cause for the people against his own profession. So is that it? We simply walk away while our veterans and public safety officers return to alienated children, draconian enforcement practices and discriminatory treatment by the government they swore to protect?

As Americans, we are charged with a duty to do much more. Ominous signs are everywhere concerning the ongoing erosion of our most cherished rights and beliefs, from NSA surveillance to IRS targeting of conservative groups and more. We simply cannot ignore all this by returning to our couches and routines. After Mr. Koziol’s return from Paris on a mission to accord parenting rights international protection, a million people rallied in that city to support free speech. When will a similar rally emerge here in Washington to promote the same rights, equal treatment of fathers and support for truly struggling mothers?

Many thanks to three recent benefactors in Paris, New York and Tennessee for their major donations. A trip to Nashville is set for March as stated in an earlier post. Once again, we need everyone’s involvement to promote this vital cause. Help us with media contact and other potential donors. We also ask for personal contributions and purchase of our court program which has helped so many parents navigate their way successfully and economically through family court. Obtain it at http://www.parentingrightsinstitute.com. You may call our office, Parenting Rights Institute, at (315) 380-3420 or Dr. Koziol direct at (315) 796-4000.

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