Will President Obama Show Same Mercy Given to Drug Offenders for African-American Tech Execs Who Supported Law Enforcement? Asks A Just Cause
Denver, CO -- (ReleaseWire) -- 01/13/2017 --On January 5, 2017, A Just Cause posted a letter (http://bit.ly/2hYhKvW) to President Obama's Facebook account on behalf of wrongly-convicted IRP6 defendant David Banks who wrote to President Obama concerning clemency petitions for him and his codefendants (Kendrick Barnes, Clinton A. Stewart, Demetrius K. Harper, Gary L. Walker and David A. Zirpolo), which have been pending for 2 years. On January 10th, A Just Cause posted another letter to Obama from David Banks (http://bit.ly/2iDKZSA), in addition to letters from other IRP6 codefendants, Harper (http://bit.ly/2jBEioc), Zirpolo (http://bit.ly/2jsZc4M), and Stewart (http://bit.ly/2j6NvBF). In November 2015, former federal appeals judge H. Lee Sarokin (U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals), who exhaustively reviewed the case, sent a letter to President Obama, stating he felt a "grave injustice" had been done to the men and that there are a "series of events that cries out for clemency," which included a gross 5th Amendment violation where the trial judge forced the PRO SE defendants to testify against their will after threatening to terminate their defense (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/judge-h-lee-sarokin/the-case-of-the-missing-t_1_b_5340397.html). The transcript of the judicial coercion mysteriously disappeared and was unavailable for appeal and the men were sent to prison in violation of the law. Congressman Danny Davis (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) have sent letters to Obama concerning the IRP6's clemency. Within the last 6 months, Republican Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) initiated an investigation into the IRP6 case through the Inspector General's office after receiving information from A Just Cause.
Clemency petitions for the six technology executives of the IRP Solutions Corporation have been pending since February 2015 who have spent the past four and half years in prison after being wrongly-convicted on mail and wire fraud charges in Denver (Dist. Colo. case no. 09-cr-00266-CMA). The IRP6 have proclaimed their innocence from the beginning, making passionate statements about their innocence during sentencing which they have not wavered from, even after spending the last four and a half years at a prison camp in Florence, Colorado. In his letters7-, Banks discussed the sobering realities of being a victim of a wrongful-conviction and imprisonment, the disparities in compassion for the wrongly-convicted as related to other victims, former federal appeals Judge H. Lee Sarokin's advocacy and request to President Obama that the IRP6 be granted clemency, constitutional violations, undeniable facts and a substantial amount of objective evidence which belie government claims they were engaging in criminal activity, the pain suffered by his family and information published from other respected independent experts who say there was no crime. "The letters presents President Obama with the human costs of a wrongful conviction and compelling evidence of innocence overlooked by government officials that damaged families and a promising small business," says Lisa Stewart of A Just Cause.
"My life has never been and never will be one of criminal activity and I would never do anything to jeopardize my freedom or selfishly scheme to hurt others for some type of vain gain," Banks wrote. "It is inconceivable to me that my life has been taken from me because officials in our justice system were indifferent and just didn't care about proof of my innocence, didn't care about me receiving a fair trial and didn't care about my constitutional rights," added Banks. "I understand that these assertions may be shocking and inconceivable to you as they are to me, but I assure you they are 100% supported by the facts and evidence and confirmed by former federal appeals judge H. Lee Sarokin," Banks told President Obama.
Zirpolo, the only white defendant, discussed with Obama the significant financial and credit sacrifices made by him, the signing of personal guarantees and the racism he witnessed throughout the process, including when federal Judge Christine M. Arguello told him that if he wasn't with "those" [black] guys he wouldn't be in trouble with the law. Harper discussed the difficulties his young son and teenage daughter faced from him being wrongly-imprisoned. Stewart discussed his daughter Tiffany's struggles with depression and suicide and the new "Jim Crow" that now "extends to educated and articulate black businessmen." Tiffany, from the pain of losing her father, created a spoken word compilation titled "Dear God", where she cries out in a prayer to God about the injustice, violence and misfortune she has seen in America, including her Father and the men of the IRP6 (http://bit.ly/2iNVcvH).
"Clemency for the IRP6 is a defining moment for President Obama's as leader of this country, his character as a human being, his commitment to ending mass incarceration and as an African-American who sermonizes about My Brother's Keeper and the plight of young black men needing mentors and positive role models," says Lisa Stewart. "David Banks has participated in those mentoring programs in his community and has taught young black men and others about information technology and business, even in his own church," adds Lisa Stewart. "Now he and his codefendants, who are upstanding law-abiding citizens, have been removed from their community by a wrongful-conviction and given harsh sentences in the light overwhelming evidence showing they are innocent," asserts Lisa Stewart. According to Judge Sarokin, were indicted and prosecuted for "failing to pay corporate debts" and received harsh, racially-motivated sentences of 7 to 11 years. The men have been brought to life by professional actors in a short play written by Judge Sarokin which can be seen at (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v:Y94O5mMJqHU).
"I hope our letters and clemency petitions find their way to President Obama before his time in office expires," says David Banks. "President Obama has said that DOJ prosecutors are conflicted about clemency and given our refusal to feign guilt for a crime we didn't commit, and the indisputable misconduct by government officials, we have little to no faith that the pardon attorney will recommend clemency or provide all the pertinent information to the President," exclaims Banks.
"A failure by President Obama to correct this overt injustice would be another example why citizens, including African-Americans, are losing trust in our institutions and why Donald Trump got elected," concludes Lisa Stewart. #DoesObamaCare
For more information about the story of the IRP6 or for copies of legal filings go to http://freetheirp6.org