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Senator O'Neil Speaks Out

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  • jail4judges
    J.A.I.L. News Journal ____________________________________________________ Los Angeles, California May 12, 2002
    Message 1 of 1 , May 12, 2002
      J.A.I.L. News Journal
      Los Angeles, California                                                 May 12, 2002
      This evening, Sunday, May 12th at 8:30 pm PST, our very own Terri Lynn Day, CA. Assoc. JAILer-In-Chief, will be our guest on JAIL Night Internet Radio, with Allen Raymond, www.TruthRadio.com. She is a very proficient and outspoken activist for jail4judges.

      Senator O'Neil Speaks Out
      Dear Senator Jerry O'Neil (Montana) oneil@...:
      Sir, I see you have posted a message to our JAILers on our JAIL-SoundOff E-Groups. Noting that you are a State Senator, I deemed it appropriate to respond to your post as if it were directed to me as the National J.A.I.L. Commander-In-Chief.
      Your post deals with your proposed Bill to be submitted in Montana this coming legislative session that essentially guts the bogus criminal charge of "practicing law without a license," an established protection racket placed in law by the Bar Association. While your concern and proposed Bill does not deal directly with our issue of judicial accountability, you are certainly close enough for us to consider you in our ball field.
      I believe your Bill deserves more publicity than just being posted on our "SoundOff," group to our JAILers, and publicity is what is intended, as this communiqué will be forwarded from email list to email list, traveling the globe over.
      I have already taken the opportunity of adding you to our J.A.I.L. News Journal list. I would like to extend an offer that you become a Montana JAILer and our Representative of J.A.I.L. within the Montana Legislature.
      Your rewards will be that you will have a nationwide organization behind you, from which you will be hearing. Further, you will be joining our New Hampshire Legislator, Rep. Bob Giuda, giuda.family@... as the second, or possibly third, state representative to openly identify themselves with J.A.I.L. as a JAILer.
      J.A.I.L. will continue to expand, bringing in state representative after state representative from all political parties in every state until J.A.I.L. becomes the dominating political force within this nation with judicial accountability leading all other political issues. J.A.I.L. is on a roll that just cannot be stopped, and we want you to be a part of it. Please accept our offer.
                     -Ron Branson-
      National J.A.I.L. Commander-In-Chief
      PS - Folks, below is what Senator O'Neil has posted with J.A.I.L.  I encourage everyone of our readers to write and commend Senator O'Neil by writing him at oneil@....

      One Bill which I intend to introduce this coming legislative session is:
      Amend 37-61-210 as follows: 
      Penalty for practicing without license.
      • (a) If any person practices law in any court, except a justice's court or a city court, without having received a license as attorney and counselor, he is guilty of a contempt of court the unauthorized practice of law.
      • [new section] (b) In all suits and prosecutions for the unauthorized practice of law, the jury, under the direction of the court, shall determine the law and the facts.
      • [new section] (c) A person convicted of the offense of unauthorized practice of law shall be fined not to exceed $500 or be imprisoned in the county jail for a term not to exceed 6 days, or both.
      This would reestablish the defendant's constitutional right to have a jury trial. The reason for allowing the jury to determine the law is that it is real vague what constitutes practicing law in a court. Does this include a title company preparing deeds and title reports that will be used in court? Does it include a paralegal helping an attorney present a case to the court? Does it include a paralegal helping a pro se litigant present their case to the court? Does it include a paralegal drafting documents for a pro se litigant to present their case to the court? Until we have a clear definition of what constitutes practicing law in a court, it is imperative that we have the community decide the issue, not the court by itself.

      Senator Jerry O'Neil

      Hungry Horse News
      O'Neil ordered to stop practicing law
      By Richard Hanners
      The Montana Supreme Court's Commission on Unauthorized Practice has ordered Jerry O'Neil to "cease and desist" from illegally practicing law by Monday, May 6.
      Arguing the charges lack clarity, O'Neil said he will continue working as before.
      John Connor, the commission's chair, notified O'Neil in a letter that the commission met April 24 and determined, "based on the investigation to date, that there is probable cause to believe you have, and will continue to engage, in the unauthorized practice of law."
      The commission's action came after Flathead County district court judges Ted O. Lympus, Katherine R. Curtis, and Stewart E. Stadler sent a letter to the commission Feb. 13 describing activities by two "independent paralegals" who "routinely prepare and file pleadings" in their courts -- Connie Monroe and Jerry O'Neil.
      In their letter, the judges focused their attention on Monroe, "because her papers were very deficient in many respects," but pointed out that sanctioning Monroe and not O'Neil could not be justified.
      O'Neil, of Evergreen, the state senator representing Montana Senate District 42, which includes Columbia Falls, has said he provides a low-cost alternative for poor people who need legal assistance, but claimed he has not provided legal advice.
      In a May 2 reply to the commission, O'Neil criticized Chairman Connor's letter as "completely void of any allegations, facts, sworn statements or other statements that would form the basis for a finding of probable cause against me."
      O'Neil also criticized the absence of a jury in determining the outcome.
      "You apparently want to leave me at the mercy of your judges and justices who are politically motivated to defeat me, such as Justice Leaphart," O'Neil wrote.
      Claiming the commission did not clearly spell out the definition of "unauthorized practice of law," O'Neil said he didn't know which of his actions the commission wanted stopped.
      "Of course you know that I will refuse to discontinue my legislative functions and any other actions which are protected rights under the U.S. and Montana constitutions," he wrote, "and I don't believe that I am doing anything which is not thus protected."
      In a May 3 reply, Connor wrote O'Neil, "You are certainly aware of the fact that the business you maintain, and for which you charge persons receiving your services, constitutes the practice of law in our view." 
      Connor wrote the issue had been "discussed, examined and debated for years" and "has nothing to do with your legislative functions."
      "There is no point in extending or continuing the debate further," Connor concluded.

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