Los Angeles - February 27,
Listen to HotSeat4Judges daily on
Internet Radio M-Th, 6-7 pm
For a beautiful
navy blue T-shirt with "J.A.I.L." on the back and www.jail4judges.org large and visible over
the pocket, imprinted in a bright yellow-gold lettering, send your check payable
to J.A.I.L. for $11.95 plus $4 S&H. (Discounts on volume quantities.) Wear
them to your next courthouse function and watch the reaction.
Last night, I walked into a 7-Eleven store to
purchase a cup of hot chocolate, and laid eyes upon the front page headlines of
the day's Daily News which said in large print, "Gilding the gavel?" Noting it
was on the Los Angeles Superior Court's slush fund, I immediately purchased a
copy, knowing that those involved with J.A.I.L. in some manner had a part in
it. I'm very pleased that this story has finally hit the big time
In 1996 Marve Bryer called me and shared with me his
findings and the checks he had in hand. He was very worked up and told me that
he was going to the District Attorney with his evidence that the judges in Los
Angeles were involved in a money laundering scheme in which they personally
receive gifts under the table.
I responded, "Marve, don't turn loose of your evidence
to the D.A. because you will likely find that he is involved in it too, and you
can be sure he will do absolutely nothing about it." Marve followed my
instructions, and he found that my advice was correct.
Marve has been at this for years, and everywhere he has
gone with this documentation before government, he received lip service. At
times the media threaten that they were going to blow the lid on this story.
Now, five years later, he is rewarded with the below article in yesterday's
Irene Jensen mentioned in this article is among our
first involved in JRA, (Judicial Reform Act) the former name of J.A.I.L. Adelle
Clarke has recently attended our JAIL business meetings, and is currently on the
KCAL Channel 9 website via video production.
Monday, February 26, 2001
by Troy Anderson
Los Angeles Superior Court judges have used an
obscure fund supported by lawyer contributions, court monitors and legal seminar
fees for nearly 40 years to cash personal checks and to pay for retirement
parties and other nonjudicial functions.
Throughout most of the four decades, what judges call
the "coffee and flower" fund operated under the county's tax number, and its
records were kept by county employees....
Details of the fund -- which carried six-figures
balances at times -- have emerged out of a running legal battle between the Los
Angeles Superior Court Judges Association and a group of parents who claim they
were victimized by the family court system because of the financial interests of
The parents allege in a lawsuit that the "coffee and
flowers" fund is really part of a multimillion-dollar "money-making web," a
slush fund operated improperly for the benefit of judges without independent
"It is a cause for concern when money that attorneys
thought what was going to pay for training or classes went into a private fund
that was used for any kind of personal expenditures for judges," said state Sen.
Sheila Kuehl, D-Encino.
".... I think if those allegations are true it's
definitely a matter that should be the subject of an audit or brought to the
attention of the attorney general." ....
Jerrianne Hayslett, Superior Court Spokeswoman, said it
would be premature to place credence in criticism of the fund because the
disgruntled litigants have not proved their claims.
"The allegations are full of misrepresentations," she
said. "It's an attempt to discredit the court." ....
Still Superior Court presiding Judge James Bascue has
responded to new questions being raised about the fund by asking the judges
association to arrange for an independent audit.
Controversy over the fund has been stirred by several
dozen families involved in lengthy custody fights....
La Crescenta resident Marvin Bryer, 62, a retired
computer analyst, has spearheaded the effort, spending more than $100,000 and
years of effort trying to help his daughter Karen, 32, in her custody battle
over her 12-year-old son Nicholas Van Meter.
Bryer, former San Fernando resident Irene Jensen and
Sierra Madre resident Idelle Clarke have filed various motions in their family
law cases and lawsuits in recent years attacking the judges' fund because of the
contributions from lawyers and court-appointed visitation monitors who profit
from child-custody battles.
Along with several dozen others involved in custody
fights, they claim court-approved visitation monitors who oversee child visits
qualify for the job by paying fees for certification courses taught by judges,
with the proceeds going into the fund.
Through discovery processes and in direct dealing with
court officials, they have gained access to documents that shed some light on
Two months' worth of the association's canceled checks
showed $7,000 in checks made payable to the court for official court business
found their way into the "coffee and flowers" fund. The checks were written by
the Los Angeles County Bar Association and monitors. Bryer has attempted to
obtain more canceled checks from the judges association, but his requests have
Two checks Bryer obtained show visitation monitors
wrote checks to the court, but the checks were deposited into the judges'
association fund. ....
Checks drawn on the account were written by judges and
made out, among other things, to a Tarzana country club, a Los Angeles jewelry
store and to cash. ....
The county Auditor-Controller's Office investigated the
issue in 1996, finding ....two Los Angeles County Bar Association checks,
totaling $6,750, that should have been deposited with the court rather than the
judges association fund, Auditor-Controller J. Tyler McCauley wrote in a
confidential March 27, 1996, memo to the court clerk.
Bryer and Jensen went to the Board of Supervisors in
August and asked for a more thorough investigation, but McCauley told them the county did not have the authority to investigate a
private judges association. ....
A 1999 IRS 990-EZ tax return for the association showed
.... The association directors were listed as Judges James Bascue, Victor E.
Chavez and Aviva Bobb. ....
Jensen's attorney, Richard A. Mata of Downey, has
challenged the system, claiming that the judges supervise the monitors list,
take the fees from a training and certification course and deposit the fees into
accounts controlled by the judges association.
"The process by which the above checks were being
collected and deposited in the judges' accounts raises not only more questions
about the Los Angeles Superior Court Judges Association but a perceived conflict
of interest between the judges' financial relationship to other
child-custody professionals who work for the court," Mata wrote in court
documents filed in August to challenge the system. ....
"The money is supposed to support the functions of the
family court," said Syrus Devers, an attorney and senior consultant to Kuehl.
"However, checks written out to various titles all went into this same fund, the
judges' miscellaneous fund. It may have said Family Court Services, but it was
deposited into the miscellaneous fund. That looks odd.
"There is one name on the check and then you flip it
over and the account name stamped by the back is the judges' miscellaneous
Judges started the fund in 1962 to pay for coffee in
the judges' lounge and for flowers for the spouses of sick or deceased judges,
according to court spokeswoman Hayslett. ....
Later, judges used the fund to by gifts for
Documents obtained by the Daily News show the judges
association did not file tax returns or file as a tax-exempt organization with
the State Franchise Tax Board or the Internal Revenue Service until
Before filing for federal tax-exempt status, the
association had used the federal identification number of Los Angeles County
Taxpayer advocate and Los Angeles attorney Richard I.
Fine said the fund "boggles the mind."
"It's incredulous that something like this could be
going on and nobody would pick up on it," Fine said. "They are running an
operation out of the courthouse that people are paying money into. It literally
boggles the mind that this could exist."
J.A.I.L. is an acronym for (Judicial
Accountability Initiative Law)
JAIL's very informative website is found at www.jail4judges.org
JAIL proposes a
unique new addition to our form of government.
JAIL is powerful! JAIL is
dynamic! JAIL is America's ONLY hope!
JAIL's is spreading across America like
a fast moving wildfire!
JAIL is making inroads into Congress for federal
JAIL may be supported at P.O. Box 207, N. Hollywood, CA
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"..it does not require a majority to prevail,
but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people's
minds.." - Samuel Adams
"There are a thousand hacking at the branches of
evil to one who is
striking at the
-- Henry David Thoreau