• Scam Diego alerts

The U.S. Attorney's office today (Jan. 5) answered Poway contractor Brent Wilkes's motion for a new trial for his role in the scandal that put former Congressman Randy (Duke) Cunningham in prison. Wilkes was convicted in 2007 of money laundering, wire fraud, conspiracy, and bribery for his dealings with Cunningham. Wilkes was sentenced to 12 years but remains free as he appeals his conviction. The government uses colorful language in its negative response to Wilkes's bid for a new trial: "The sun is shining. The Chargers are talking about moving to Los Angeles. The Padres are giving away their best players. And Brent Wilkes and Duke Cunningham are trying to put one over on the rest of us. Yes, life in San Diego is back to normal."

The U.S. attorney's office goes on to point out numerous reasons why Wilkes does not deserve a new trial. One of the main ones: on Nov 23, 2005, "Cunningham signed a plea agreement in which he swore under penalty of perjury to having been bribed by Brent Wilkes" and others. Now Cunningham, whom Wilkes once described as dimwitted and easy to control, is saying he never took bribes from Wilkes. But the U.S. Attorney's office cites a number of specifics, including prostitutes that Wilkes provided to Cunningham in Hawaii. "The majority of Wilkes's motion is based on two recently-signed declarations," says the government, noting that both declarations were false.

  • Scam Diego alerts

Comments

MURPHYJUNK Jan. 6, 2011 @ 10:44 a.m.

" "Cunningham signed a plea agreement in which he swore under penalty of perjury to having been bribed by Brent Wilkes" and others."

have all the "others" been found out, or are they leaving that can or worms alone?

If the feds really start digging, the whole defense industry will get turned inside out.

0

Don Bauder Jan. 6, 2011 @ 12:02 p.m.

The U.S. Attorney's office in San Diego has nabbed several local defense contractors who were bribing military officials to get contracts. That is going on in other jurisdictions, too. You are correct: if the government really went after bribery in defense contracting, it wouldn't have time or money for anything else. In fact, any industry doing contracting work for the government could be a subject of intense investigation. Best, Don Bauder

0

SurfPuppy619 Jan. 6, 2011 @ 11:05 a.m.

The sun is shining. The Chargers are talking about moving to Los Angeles. The Padres are giving away their best players. And Brent Wilkes and Duke Cunningham are trying to put one over on the rest of us. Yes, life in San Diego is back to normal."

As one who was cheered from San Diego to New York (and one or two jeering) for dropping some F-bombs in a federal appeals court filing, this is worse, these yahoo's are representing the US Government.

Having said what idiots the Assistant US Attorneys are for filing that garbage-Wilkes has a MUCH BETTER than average chance of having his convictions thrown out on the so called "honest services" violations-which is unconstitutionally vague, ambiguous and overly broad.

The Jeffrey Skilling case at the SCOTUS is the case on point that will determine if Wilkes conviction holds up. I hate the guy. I think if he was run over by a Mack truck today- and died- I would not bat an eye. But the fact is he did what many people do to gain influence with government officials-he wined, dined and gifted members of Congress. If you start throwing people in jail for that every CEO of the Fortune 500 would be in lock up.

Also, a big factor that indicates the case might get tossed is that the judge allowed Wilkes to remain free on bond. Under the rules there has to be substantial evidence that there are legit issues that could overturn the case before the judge allows a party to remain free on bond after a conviction. Something to think about.

0

Don Bauder Jan. 6, 2011 @ 12:09 p.m.

Only part of Skilling's conviction was for so-called "honest services" violations. Even if he is cleared on those, he has still been found guilty of other violations. I honestly don't know how much of the Wilkes case is based on "honest services." I read the government's brief last night and it didn't jump out at me. The big question: why does Duke Cunningham state under oath that he got bribes from Wilkes and then decide at this late date that he didn't? Best, Don Bauder

0

SurfPuppy619 Jan. 6, 2011 @ 2:46 p.m.

The big question: why does Duke Cunningham state under oath that he got bribes from Wilkes and then decide at this late date that he didn't?

1) I think the entire Wilkes case is built entirely on the "honest services" law.

2) I know the entire Cunningham case was based on the "honest services" law.

3) I know Cunningham wants out of lock up, and I would bet my last dollar that when the SCOTUS took on the "honest services" law in the Skilling case Cunningham was having "buyers remorse" over his plea deal and kicking himself real hard in the butt.

I bet Cunningham probably thinks he got a bad deal in light of the legal problems the "honest services" law has had-and now he will say and do anything to unwind his plea deal.

I would be interested in knowing if Cunningham waived his right to appeal in his plea deal.

Duke is set for release in June of 2013, 30 months-not that long really. On the down side he is 69 years old right now-that makes him 72 when he gets out of the joint-but at least he will be alive.

Too bad he was not connected in with Bushie, he could have pulled some sort of Arnold/Nunez pardon scam..........

0

Don Bauder Jan. 6, 2011 @ 6:13 p.m.

But if someone is jailed entirely on the "honest services" law that SCOTUS later knocks down, but if that someone clearly committed (and/or admitted committing) criminal acts, can that person be tried on those crimes without use of "honest services?" If someone clearly commits grand larceny, is nailed on "honest services," SCOTUS shoots down "honest services," than can the rascal be exonerated completely of the grand larceny? I don't think so. I don't think SCOTUS was giving amnesty to everyone convicted of any crime, no matter how heinous, under "honest services." You are the lawyer. Explain. Best, Don Bauder

0

SurfPuppy619 Jan. 6, 2011 @ 2:49 p.m.

The U.S. attorney's office goes on to point out numerous reasons why Wilkes does not deserve a new trial. One of the main ones: on Nov 23, 2005, "Cunningham signed a plea agreement in which he swore under penalty of perjury to having been bribed by Brent Wilkes" and others.

Considering Cunningham is an admitted felon, I myself would not put much worth into anything he said then or says now. . . . Now Cunningham, whom Wilkes once described as dimwitted and easy to control, is saying he never took bribes from Wilkes =========== Another reason not to give Cunningham ANY credibility.

0

Don Bauder Jan. 6, 2011 @ 6:19 p.m.

Everyone knows Cunningham is a flake. But you seem to be saying that you can't trust any statement by someone who is a flake. I'm sure Wilkes's attorneys will use that argument. But if that were true, then prosecutors would rarely nail anyone, given the number of flakes around. After all, Cunningham was a Congressman. That says little for the voters of North County, but he did get elected several times. Are you also saying that you can't trust any statement by a felon? Best, Don Bauder

0

Robert Johnston Jan. 6, 2011 @ 4:51 p.m.

Any idea what is going to happen to Randy Cunningham after he leaves prison? --LPR

0

Don Bauder Jan. 6, 2011 @ 6:22 p.m.

Upon leaving Congress, many if not most ex-members become lobbyists. Cunningham certainly knows that business very well, having been on the receiving end of largesse that was flowing liberally. He has some sleazy contacts that might influence votes in Congress, which is what lobbyists are paid to do. Best, Don Bauder

0

MURPHYJUNK Jan. 7, 2011 @ 8:16 a.m.

maybe he will write a book and expose what a sham the procurement system is.

( likely similar the procurement system pimps use)

0

Don Bauder Jan. 7, 2011 @ 1:21 p.m.

Cunningham is already trying to reform prisons. Maybe he will write a book on the subject. More likely, he will have someone else write the book and he will claim to be the author. Best, Don Bauder

0

MURPHYJUNK Jan. 7, 2011 @ 2:44 p.m.

or he will take payoffs to leave out some names

0

Don Bauder Jan. 7, 2011 @ 5:25 p.m.

Of course. I don't know why that didn't occur to me. Best, Don Bauder

0

Founder Jan. 8, 2011 @ 8:10 a.m.

LOL Sort of a Who's Who of those that did not pay up to have their name excluded...

0

Don Bauder Jan. 8, 2011 @ 11:05 p.m.

I have thought of several potential publishing scams. For example, one could write a book exposing how a book publisher is a thoroughly crooked enterprise, then sell the rights to the book to that publisher. But I haven't thought of MURPHYJUNK'S scam. Best, Don Bauder

0

Sign in to comment

Join our
newsletter list

Enter to win $25 at Broken Yolk Cafe

Each newsletter subscription
means another chance to win!

Close