Political Assassinations, Prosecutions

Written by Andrew Kreig
Published on August 5, 2011

Murder of political leaders is a common problem, according to noted historian and human rights attorney William Pepper, who believes that a continuing cover-up ruins the legacy of his friends Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy.

William Pepper and Martin Luther King Jr."Assassinations didn't start in the 1960s," says Pepper, shown with King and the author of explosive investigations that include a new book published in June 2016, exposing King's murderers in detail. "They have been part of our society for a very long time."

Even more remarkable than Pepper's listing of political victims from Socrates, Julius Caesar and Jesus up to modern times, he has provided legal representation for both of his friends’ convicted killers.

Pepper believes the late James Earl Ray, King's convicted killer, and RFK's still-imprisoned convicted slayer Sirhan Sirhan have been patsies framed by authorities to take the blame for the real assassins hired by still-powerful entities.

Listed below are Readers Guides to three leading suspected political assassinations in the 1960s. Listed below that are several suspected political prosecutions that the Justice Integrity Project examined in its early years.

Justice Integrity Project "Readers Guide to the MLK Assassination"

  1. Martin Luther King at NPCReaders Guide To The MLK Assassination: Books, Videos, Archives, May 26, 2016. The Justice Integrity Project presents a "Readers Guide to the MLK Assassination" of key books, videos, documents, websites and other archives most relevant to the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s murder on April 4, 1968.
  2. Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Enhanced By Historic Discovery, Jan. 18, 2016. The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy is forever enhanced by discovery of a 24-minute recording of his first meeting with the national media, which occurred during a 1962 speech that was the first ever by an African American at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.
  3. William Pepper, Friend of MLK, RFK, Slams Murder Cover-ups, June 1, 2016. Murder of political leaders is a common problem, according to noted historian and human rights attorney William Pepper, who believes cover-up ruins the legacy of his friends Martin Luther King, Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy.

Other "Readers Guides"

Readers Guide To JFK Assassination: Books, Videos, Archives, April 3, 2016.

Readers Guide To The MLK Assassination: Books, Videos, Archives, May 26, 2016.

 
 
Political Prosecutions
 
The Justice Integrity Project has identified the following prosecutions as examples of case that authorities pursued in significant part because of political motivations. They are listed by the state of the defendant arranged in alphabetical order.
 
 
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A): 2006 (C). 7-year terms
Former Position & Political Party:
Governor (D) & HealthSouth CEO (R)
Basic Charges:
Honest Services
Status:
Supreme Court denied hearing. Siegelman reimprisoned Sept. 11, 2012, with scheduled release in mid-2017. Scrushy released following term
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Alaska
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A):2008 (C) at trial. Vacated in 2009
Former Position & Political Party:
U.S. Senator (R)
Basic Charges:
Corruption
Status:
Died in 2010 airplane crash; DOJ probe of prosecutors completed.
 
 
 
Connecticut
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A):2003 (C)at trial. 7 of 8 charges vacated, 2008
Former Position & Political Party:
Businssman (R). Co-defendant was former state treasurer
Basic Charges:
Bribery, obstruction
Status:
Major charges dismissed. Appealed denied and now released after serving sentence for remaining obstruction conviction for deleting computer files.
 
 
 
Georgia
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A):2005 (C). 10-year term
Former Position & Political Party:
State Senate Majority Leader (D)
Basic Charges:
Corruption
Status:
Released after serving 10-year term
 
 
 
Mississippi
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A):Acquitted in 2 trials
Former Position & Political Party:
Supreme Court Justice (R)
Basic Charges:
Corruption
Status:
Case over, acquitted after two trials
 
 
Mississippi
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A):2007 (C) in second trial
Former Position & Political Party:
Prominent Attorney & Donor (D)
Basic Charges:Honest services
Status:Imprisoned since 2006
 
 
Mississippi
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A):2007 (C) in second trial
Former Position & Political Party:State Circuit Court Judge
Basic Charges:Honest services
Status: Imprisoned since 2007
 
 
Mississippi
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A):2007 (C) in second trial
Former Position & Political Party:State Circuit Court Judge
Basic Charges:Honest services
Status: Imprisoned since 2007, since released.
 
 
Katheryn Shields
Missouri
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A): 2007 (A) at trial
Former Position & Political Party:Jackson County Chief Executive (D)
Basic Charges: Mortgage fraud
Status: Lost 2007 Kansas City mayoralty election
 
 
New Jersey
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A): 2009 Indictment. Charges dismissed
Former Position & Political Party: Jersey City Mayoral Candidate (D)
Basic Charges: Corruption
Status: Major charges dismissed by judges in several rulings
 
 
Bernard Kerik
New York
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A):2009 guilty plea after pressure.
Former Position & Political Party:NY City Police Commissioner (R)
Basic Charges:Corruption
Status: Reported May 17, 2010 for 4-year term begun in MD, and released following term.
 
 
Pennsylvania
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A): 2009, Charges dismissed after evidence thrown out by new judge before second trial
Former Position & Political Party: Allegheny County Coronor & County Democratic Chairman
Basic Charges: Mail, wire fraud
Status: Charges dismissed during second trial.
 
 
Anibal Acivedo Vila and Candido Negron
Puerto Rico
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A): 2008 indictments of governor and 12 others. Governor (A). Donor pled, finished term.
Former Position & Political Party: Former Governor (D) and Campaign Donor (D)
Basic Charges: Campaign financing
Status: Governor acquitted but lost re-election. Donor released after term.
 
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A): (C) after trial or pleas. Reviews pending.
Former Position & Political Party: Former Congressional Candidate (D)
Basic Charges: Corruption
Status: Pled guilty to reduced charges, with three months sentence begun March 15, 2012 and since released.
 
 
Virginia & Alabama
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A):2008 (C) at trial. Stayton: 5 years. Childree: 2.
Former Position & Political Party: Army Test & Evaluation official and Maverick Aviation Owner
Basic Charges: Corruption
Status: Stayton, seriously ill, finishing term. Childree serving rest of term at home.
 
 
Georgia Thompson
Wisconsin
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A): (C). Conviction dismissed by appeals court for lack of evidence, with criticism of prosecution
Former Position & Political Party: State Career Civil Servant
Basic Charges: Corruption
Status: Reinstated in state employment. Most attorneys fees reimbursed
 
 
 
Alabama
Date, Conviction (C) or Acquittal (A): 2007-2009 investigated, not charged
Former Position & Political Party:
Former DOJ Paralegal on Siegelman case
Basic Charges:
Suspicion of taping DOJ employees
Status:
Fired by Attorney Gen. Eric Holder in 2009
 

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