The Newsome case exemplifies a despicable act of injustice, an abuse of the judiciary branch for financial and political gain.
We have reached out to federal authorities and have asked them to investigate U.S. Senator Luther Strange’s involvement in alleged corruption and the trampling of the Civil Rights of Burt Newsome, a father of four young children who was wrongly targeted, falsely arrested, and defamed by one of Strange’s most ardent financial and political supporters, the embattled law firm Balch & Bingham.
Strange has received tens of thousands of dollars from Balch & Bingham or political action committees funded by Balch & Bingham partners. Strange’s top political advisor and former campaign manager, Jessica Garrison, was “of counsel” at Balch until this past spring, a known revolving-door for political operatives.
What revolts us most is as Alabama Attorney General, Strange gave a helping-hand—just a year ago—to an alleged criminal conspiracy that trampled the Civil Rights of Burt Newsome, a father of four young children who was railroaded with a capital R.
According to court filings, Newsome, a small-town attorney in Alabama, was falsely arrested and defamed by the alleged co-conspirators including Balch & Bingham which allegedly had a financial objective: to obtain Newsome’s lucrative banking collections business.
In April of 2014, the criminal case against Newsome collapsed and was eventually expunged from court records. But almost a year later after the expungement, in June of 2016, another judge, with allegedly no knowledge of the details of the case, reversed the expungement and opened the contents of a case that no longer existed, declaring that the previous judge (since retired) had erred.
Incredibly, Newsome was allegedly barred by court officials from filing a brief or petitioning the court at that time.
Raising eyebrows and expanding the web of possible collusion, two months later, in August of 2016, then-Attorney General Luther Strange filed a brief in support of the resurrected expungement, citing and regurgitating the order signed by the new judge.
Observers could not understand why his office would ever get involved in a matter like this, especially since the brief looked like a simple “cut and paste job.” The reason was Balch & Bingham and other co-conspirators wanted to use the false criminal accusations in a civil case that the co-conspirators looked like they were losing against Newsome.
The fix was in.
The Newsome case exemplifies a despicable act of injustice, an abuse of the judiciary branch for financial and political gain. Luther Strange allegedly gaming the system for financial support is shamefully repugnant.
But the Newsome case story in recent weeks has exploded with even more controversial actions. Without a hearing, not even a notice, local Alabama Judge Carole Smitherman, last month appears to have done what Balch, Strange allies, and the actual co-conspirators wanted: to shut down public discussion about the Newsome case.
The case was sealed in its entirety creating a Star Chamber. All proceedings are held in secret with no public access or information available.
Now comes that Judge Smitherman took over $15,000 in campaign contributions from a Balch-backed political action committee called BIZPAC. Strange himself had accepted $15,000 from BIZPAC back in August of 2013 as Alabama Attorney General.
In addition, Schuyler Allen Baker, Jr., Balch’s lead attorney on the Newsome Conspiracy Case, donated thousands of dollars to BIZPAC, the political action committee with ties to Strange and Smitherman.
Balch & Bingham is under investigation in two federal probes right now. One involves the alleged $360,000 bribery scheme that led to the suppression of poor African-Americans in North Birmingham from getting their toxic and contaminated property tested; the other involves subcontracts in Mississippi in relationship to the clean-up of the BP oil spill.
Here is a 30-second educational advertisement about the Newsome Conspiracy Case:
For the record:
For past 16 years, the CDLU has been a leader in defending and assisting the public from abuses by irresponsible businesses and inept government agencies. The investigative reports and efforts of the CDLU have provoked three U.S. congressional probes and numerous state and local investigations. CDLU’s work has been profiled in numerous publications including People Magazine, The Washington Post, and CBS’ 60 Minutes. The CDLU is a non-partisan, public charity.