9.Complaints of the Former Independent Counsel Document Manager [b9]
In November 1991 the Office of Independent Counsel hired a document manager. Since I have not been able to contact such person recently, for the moment I shall refer to him simply as the document manager or former document manager.There is probably little purpose in my not disclosing his name since the Independent Counsel attorneys who are the subject of this page certainly know his identity and copies of the Shaheen transmittal (discussed below) I secured from the Department of Justice and the Office of Independent Counsel also disclosed his name.Nevertheless, at present, I remain disinclined to include his name in this document.
Soon after joining the Office of Independent Counsel, the document manager grew concerned about some of its practices.Initially, the concerns involved problems with document handling procedures.After a time, however, the document manager also grew concerned about a variety of issues involving leave practices, the hiring of friends, the steering of a lucrative contract to a friend, the use of government vehicles and travel, and what he perceived to be the general misuse of government resources.In the view of the document manager, personnel in the Office of Independent Counsel were engaging in the same sort of conduct for which the Independent Counsel was prosecuting people.Other concerns involved the use of government resources to compile chronologies of the putative sexual partners of a subject of the investigation (as it happens, Deborah Gore Dean), as well as certain practices involving the questionable editing of witness interview reports.After exploring various avenues to bring his concern to the attention of appropriate governmental entities, the document manager decided to broach certain concerns directly with Independent Counsel Arlin M. Adams.
The document manager met with Judge Adams on November 8, 1993, raising with Adams several issues concerning what the document manager perceived to be improper conduct.These included Deputy Independent Counsel Swartz’s use of his former law firm for Office of Independent Counsel business and Jo Ann Harris’s steering of a contract for the analysis of the handwriting of Deborah Gore Dean to a friend of Harris’s, when in other cases the Office of Independent Counsel had relied on the FBI (which, in the view of the document manager, was recognized to be the best in the world).A week later, Adams advised the document manager that he (Adams) believed most issues could be addressed with a memorandum to the file though he might have more trouble with certain items like the handwriting contract.Adams also informed the document manager that due to the need to make staffing cuts, the document manager was being terminated, effective 60 days from November 15, 1993.
Over the next few years the document manager filed a number of complaints with government agencies raising issues of improper conduct by the Office of Independent Counsel, the first of which was submitted to the Office of Special Counsel for Whistleblowers on November 17, 1993.At the end of December 1993, having learned of certain of the document managers’ efforts to bring these matters to the attention of governmental authorities or the press, the Independent Counsel terminated the document manager immediately for allegedly disclosing grand jury information and violating a nondisclosure agreement and thereafter caused the Department of Justice to investigate the document manager for such disclosures.In early 1994, when the Office of Special Counsel started to investigate the allegations (which included the allegation that Jo Ann Harris steered a contract to a friend), the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice (then headed by Harris) requested that the Office of Special Counsel to hold its investigation in abeyance until the Department of Justice concluded its investigation of the former document.The request was made with Harris’s knowledge, but without knowledge of the Public Integrity Section trial attorney handling the document manager’s case.At least for a time, the Office of Special Counsel acceded to that request.
The Department of Justice’s investigation then lasted until September 1996.Though the Department apparently led the document manager to believe it might very well prosecute him, ultimately, by letter dated by letter dated September 9, 1996, the Public Integrity Section informed the document manager that it would not prosecute.
On November 15, 1996, the document manager then filed a complaint with the Department of Justice’s Office of Professional Responsibility.By letter dated February 25, 1997, Michael E. Shaheen, Jr. forwarded the letter to Independent Counsel Larry D. Thompson, “for investigation and appropriate action.”The transmittal added:“Of course, if your investigation should determine that any criminal prosecutions were tainted by misconduct, we expect you will take appropriate steps to inform the affected courts.”
The document manager’s November 15, 1996 letter is short enough to speak for itself.But I list below just four of the nine items identified by the document manager:
(1) The Independent Counsel Arlin Adams and his Deputy, Bruce Swartz destroyed dozens of FBI 302s.The reason offered for the collection (and shredding) of all copies (and the originals) was that the interview did not further the case.
(2) The Independent Counsel Arlin Adams, Deputy Bruce Swartz and the Office Administrator, Terry Dugan, edited hundreds of FBI 302s.Special Agent Matthew Kelleher expressed to me his uneasiness with 302s (the final version of an interview) being edited at all, much less edited by personnel who were not present at the actual interview.
(3) Deputy Independent Counsel Bruce Swartz knowingly and willfully suppressed evidence, and violated discovery rules, including Brady and Jencks.
(4) Federal Prosecutor Paula Sweeney directed Office of Independent Counsel employees [names redacted in my copy] to create a chronology of bed partners whom Deborah Gore Dean (Office of Independent Counsel Target) allegedly slept with while employed at HUD.The FBI agents used their reports of interview (302s) and Federal Prosecutors [name redacted on my copy] to solicit information about Dean’s romantic trysts.The chart that was created was known as the “The Dean Sex Chronology”.The chart (created at the taxpayer’s expense) had no relevance to the charges the government brought against Dean or to the Office of Independent Counsel’s Mandate.
I set out the first three items because they raise issues closely related to the issues discussed in the December 1, 1994 materials and other materials referenced here.I set out the fourth item because it suggests an attitude toward Deborah Gore Dean within the Office of Independent Counsel, and certainly of Paula Sweeney, one of the trial counsel in the case, that may have had some role in causing the seemingly exceptional actions catalogued in the December 1, 1994 materials and elsewhere.SeePaula A. Sweeney profile.
The document manager is the former Independent Counsel employee mentioned in Section B.1 who informed me of the circumstances observed in the offices of the Independent Counsel regarding the securing of Agent Cain’s testimony and the reaction to the fact that the coaching of Agent Cain had not been revealed in cross-examination.Section B.9b discusses, in light of the document managers allegations that Independent Counsel Arlin M. Adams and Deputy Independent Counsel Bruce C. Swartz altered or destroyed by interview reports, (a) the fabrication of Government Exhibit 25, (b) the apparently missing part of Government Exhibit 25 as provided to me by Larry D. Thompson, (c) the reason to believe that the interview report of Aristides Martinez was altered, and d) my efforts to examine a copy of the Martinez interview (matters that are also summarized in Section B of my March 2, 1998 letter to Attorney General Janet Reno).
At this point, however, I address only two issue related to the document manager’s complaint.First, the Department of Justice’s handling of the document manager’s complaint must be evaluated in light of the Department’s also having the materials I submitted to it concerning like issues.Similarly, an evaluation of the Department of Justice’s handling of my complaints, as well as the Department’s actions in the continued prosecution of the Dean case while aware of the matters I brought to its attention, must also take into account the Department’s awareness of the document manager’s complaint.
Second, my January 5, 1998 letter to Deputy Independent Counsel Dianne J. Smith summarizes the situation to that point regarding my efforts to secure by way of the Freedom of Information Act all documents not filed in court alleging prosecutorial misconduct by the Office of Independent Counsel.The letter discusses the representations by the Office of Independent Counsel that no documents meeting the description of the document manager’s complaint existed.In the letter I also advised the Office of Independent Counsel for the first time that I was aware of the Office of Professional Responsibility’s February 25, 1997 transmittal of the document manager’s complaint, attaching a copy of said transmittal.
By letter of February 2, 1998, Deputy Independent Counsel Smith provided a copy of the Shaheen transmittal.Somehow reading my request to be solely for a copy of the same document I had sent to her, Smith did not provide the underlying, more detailed complaint or say anything about it.In explanation for the previous representations that no document of the description of the document manager’s complaint existed, Smith stated that my letter of January 5, 1998 had caused the Independent Counsel to search again for the letter and that the “Office of Independent Counsel found a copy of the letter in a location not ordinarily containing correspondence of the nature you requested.”Deputy Independent Counsel Smith did not state whether the underlying complaint had been found there as well.
If Deputy Independent Counsel Smith had originally misrepresented her knowledge of the document manager’s complaint, there exists the possibility that complaints of other persons were never revealed.If Smith’s responses were truthful, the fact that Smith, who ran the office on a day-to-day basis and had signed the Independent Counsel’s motion to strike Dean’s February 1997 motion, was not even aware of the document managers complaint is itself revealing of the of the manner in which the Independent Counsel complied with Michael E. Shaheen’s instruction to investigate the allegations and take appropriate action.