Category Archives: Spotlight on Balch & Bingham

Receivership for Vogtle? Southern Company Scrutiny Soars with Rebirth of North Birmingham Bribery Trial and Targeting of Innocent Children

The enormity of Southern Company’s alleged wrongdoing is unprecedented.

Now that two-time Pulitzer Prize winning journalist John Archibald has pealed back the alleged blatant corruption of the Alabama judicial system by the Southern Company criminal enterprise in regard to the ridiculous sealing of the rebirth of the North Birmingham Bribery Trial, the Office of Investigations at the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission can finally tell the commissioners to place the Vogtle Nuclear Plant into receivership, with a third-party administrator.

The Office of Investigations “develops policy, procedures, and quality control standards for investigations of licensees, applicants, their contractors or vendors, including the investigations of all allegations of wrongdoing.”

Southern Company paid contractor and vendor Matrix, LLC, and its founder “Sloppy Joe” Perkins millions, with no need of invoicing, to allegedly investigate, target, spy on, and harass potential enemies and innocent children.

Perkins foolishly admitted that over $50 million was laundered through 18 different tax-exempt entities, and then had his press release deleted into an Internet blackhole.

Targeted by Southern Company

Why in heaven’s name is a publicly traded utility company sending threatening packages of luggage and outfits to four young children and their mother?

Why in heaven’s name is a publicly traded utility company calling and harassing a Hispanic mother and her two young daughters demanding to know her whereabouts causing her and her family to flee to Mexico?

Why in heaven’s name is a publicly traded utility company allegedly breaking into offices, stealing bank records, and impersonating others to illegally obtain confidential financial information?

Southern Company, its subsidiaries, and vendors and contractors are out of control and appear to be involved in a large web of wrongdoing and deception.

Sitting in federal prison

The embattled law firm Balch & Bingham, another Southern Company vendor, has two of their attorneys sitting now, this very moment in federal prison. One for bribery and money laundering; the other for possession of kiddie porn.

Both disbarred attorneys at one point represented Southern Company. The bribery and money laundering were tied directly to the original North Birmingham Bribery Trial in 2018.

Now look at the Vogtle Nuclear Power Plant. The Plant is operated by Southern Nuclear Operating Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern Company.

Vogtle costs “have more than doubled to north of $31 billion after taking seven years longer to complete than projected,” according to a report Monday by the Georgia Recorder.

The cost overruns and delays appear to show “intentional deception and criminal concealment” to investors, ratepayers, and regulators.

Millie Ronnlund

The Compliance Officer and General Counsel at Southern Nuclear is Millie Ronnlund, the former Balch & Bingham partner whose husband, Robert M. Ronnlund, was the attorney accused of engaging in alleged obstruction of justice and the alteration of evidence in the Newsome Conspiracy Case.

Ronnlund lives just yards up the road from Willard L. Bowers, the retired Alabama Power executive whose son, Jeffrey Bowers, a then-Columbiana Police Officer, pulled Burt Newsome over in 2013 and arrested the innocent man in an alleged “staged arrest.”

Another Southern Company subsidiary was allegedly engaged in fraudulent practices, criminal concealment, and false claim acts.

As ENRSoutheast wrote last December:

The Puerto Rico Racket

“The [U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’] Jacksonville District hired Durham, N.C.-based PowerSecure Inc., a subsidiary of Atlanta-based Southern Co., via a sole source time-and-materials contract for repair and restoration of Puerto Rico’s power grid following Hurricane Maria in 2017. The Corps’ contract was initially worth $1.3 million. After several modifications, its value reached $523 million, according to a 2019 U.S. Dept. of Defense Inspector General audit.

“U.S. Justice Dept. officials alleged that PowerSecure violated the Truth in Negotiations Act, which requires that government negotiators have access to cost or pricing data when developing a proposal for a sole-source contract, as well as the False Claims Act, which makes contractors liable for defrauding the federal government, by knowingly failing to disclose pricing data related to labor and equipment costs on another post-hurricane restoration project it had taken in Florida and Georgia earlier in 2017.”

In December, Southern Company’s wholly owned subsidiary agreed to pay the federal government $8.4 million to resolve allegations that it improperly withheld pricing data. 

Southern Company made 400 times than originally planned.

The concealment of pricing data confirms what we correctly foreshadowed in 2022: criminal concealment has been a consistent element involving Southern Company and their stooges, vendors, and contractors.

Wrongdoing? The enormity of Southern Company’s alleged wrongdoing is unprecedented.

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has the irrefutable evidence, the documentation, the chronological timeline to put the Vogtle Nuclear Power plant into receivership and end the criminal RICO enterprise known as Southern Company.

Southern Company: Don’t mess with my mommy or salami!

The Stench of Lies and Criminal Acts: Southern Company Racketeering Enterprise Successfully Erodes Alabama Judiciary

An employment matter? That is a large spoonful of human waste.

Two-time Pulitzer Prize winning journalist John Archibald has ripped the legal mockery and lies of a Southern Company stooge blocking access to ex-Drummond executive David Roberson’s $75 million civil lawsuit against embattled law firm Balch& Bingham and Drummond Company.

Southern Company’s criminal racketeering enterprise is in full-throttle, on overdrive.

In a skewering, Archibald writes:

You want to know what happened when a former coal company executive – one convicted in the bribery of former Alabama Rep. Oliver Robinson – sued his powerful bosses and their powerful lawyers for putting him in that bind?

Of course you do. So do we.

But don’t hold your breath. Even in those polluted neighborhoods that started this thing. Finding basic facts – even the status of the case – is like, well, like finding a body in a Walker County coal mine.

Because a Jefferson County judge says “this is not a public issue.”

Despite the First Amendment. Despite Alabama open records laws. Despite appearances and the stench emanating from Judge Tamara Harris Johnson’s court.

“You just have to take my word,” she said.

Take her word?

Let’s look at the record.

In December of 2020, Alabama Power was in sheer, uncontrolled panic about the rebirth of the North Birmingham Bribery Trial.

Allegedly using the enormous weight of their racketeering enterprise, resources, and agents, Southern Company heavily fought back.

On Wednesday December 13, 2020, Alabama Power and Alabama Power CEO Mark A. Crosswhite objected to discovery and intent for deposition requests by Roberson.

That same day in Drummond’s pleading before the Alabama Supreme Court calling for a stay on discovery and depositions, Alabama Power and Crosswhite are mentioned as an example of the “burden and expense” the rebirth was causing.

Assisted Tackler McKinney

On Sunday, December 17, 2020, unheard from since the summer of 2018, Steven McKinney, the former Balch & Bingham partner who was indicted but acquitted in the North Birmingham Bribery Criminal Trial, came out of obscurity and retirement; and objected to discovery and intent to deposition requests, giving his old comrade Crosswhite an assisted tackle.

Trying to obscure their panic, Mark A. Crosswhite, the former Balch partner and now ex-CEO of Alabama Power, had his team of attorneys at White, Arnold, & Dowd, led by white-collar criminal attorney Mark White, file an avalanche of hard-copy, paper court pleadings at the courthouse in office, over the counter, that same week.

The two Marks offered a 22-page pleading asking for a protective order in part because of us, the CDLU and this website,

Alabama Power whined that we outlined correctly that Alabama Power, Mark Crosswhite and “an all-star reunion show” would be subpoenaed in the rebirth of the North Birmingham Conspiracy Case.

Judge Johnson eventually succumbed to the enormous pressure of the racketeering enterprise and blocked the discovery and deposition of Crosswhite, Alabama Power, and anyone tied to Southern Company in January of 2021.

Stooge Luther Strange

In February of 2021, we reported about the written testimony from the case in which Roberson answered to a list of admissions provided by Drummond. Roberson outlines an alleged bribery scheme involving ex-U.S. Senator Luther Strange and Drummond in which Strange, then-Attorney General of Alabama, was allegedly bribed to sign letters opposing the North Birmingham EPA clean-up effort.

Two days after our report that struck a raw nerve, Josh Moon, brain amputee of the discredited Alabama Political Reporter and alleged CDLU stalker, published a report apparently on behalf of Southern Company that viciously attacked us, the CDLU, about the $2 million grant that we had received in 2019, falsely alleging it was tied to attacking Balch & Bingham, the sister-wife of Southern Company.

Spreadsheets showed the $120,000 payoff to the envelope journalists at Alabama Political Reporter.

Southern Company’s criminal racketeering enterprise had authorized the payment of $120,000 to Alabama Political Reporter (APR) in August of 2020 to allegedly defame and smear us through July of 2021.

Blown out inches from Roberson’s head

Two days after Moon’s smear piece was published, Roberson’s car window was shot out as he was driving along Highway 280 in Birmingham. Some claimed the criminal act was an assassination attempt; others claimed it was a warning.

We also published a report on the Balch & Bingham invoice that appeared to be manipulated and intentionally changed from Drummond’s “confused ” general counsel’s name to Roberson’s name

Shortly thereafter in March of 2021, Judge Tamara Harris Johnson sealed the entire case for what appears to be solely for the benefit of the Southern Company criminal enterprise.

Johnson created another Star Chamber so that Southern Company’s criminal enterprise can lie, cheat, and manipulate the system just like they did in the Newsome Conspiracy Case.

Now over two years later, the Energy and Policy Institute, according to Archibald, filed to intervene and open the case up. The Alabama Media Group filed brief in support of opening the case.

But Judge Johnson wants to keep the alleged corruption, bribes, and set up of the “fall guy” hidden.

Archibald writes:

Johnson has ordered the case sealed, lock, stock and coal-smoking barrel. Court dates are invisible on Alacourt, the state’s online court record system, and elsewhere. Even headings of past and scheduled hearings are stricken, because Johnson says it’s none of your business.

“This is not a public issue,” she told lawyers this week.


“It is strictly an employment matter,” she said.

An employment matter? That is a large spoonful of human waste.

Setting up an executive as a fall guy and sending him to federal prison is not an employment matter.

The reality is the Southern Company criminal racketeering enterprise appears to have been involved in the North Birmingham Bribery Scheme since day one. 


The alleged brainchild of the scheme was Matthew Bowden, the late Senior Vice President and General Counsel of Alabama Power, who curiously died two weeks after Roberson, Gilbert and McKinney were indicted.

Bowden wanted to discredit GASP.

North Birmingham appears to have been a side-show, a distraction to the real objective: squashing the tiny environmental group GASP before the Birmingham group could start probing the Miller Steam Plant, one of the biggest greenhouse polluting, coal-burning plants in the nation, according to news reports.

Jim Kerr, then-Chief Compliance Officer and General Counsel of Southern Company lied to us in 2018, when he claimed that Southern Company was not involved in the North Birmingham Bribery Scheme.

Kerr tried to ignore the alleged racist act of suppressing the poor African Americans of North Birmingham from having their toxic property tested. Kerr had the audacity to dismiss the racist scheme, telling the CDLU, “I don’t accept your proposition or your hypothesis.”

Five seconds of silence

North Birmingham’s population is 92.5 percent African American.

When confronted about why Balch lobbyist Jeffrey H. Wood was on Capitol Hill at the height of the bribery scheme inquiring about North Birmingham on behalf of Alabama Power, Kerr was silent for five seconds before regurgitating a canned legal answer.

Kerr was caught blind-sided, with his legal pants on the floor. Kerr appeared to have been protecting the criminal enterprise, and looked the other way.

Southern Company Executive Chairman Tom Fanning and current CEO Chris Womack also have looked the other way and let Crosswhite, Alabama Power, Mark White, Balch, embattled political consulting firm Matrix, LLC, and Matrix’s founder, “Sloppy Joe” Perkins run out of control.

Fanning authorized and Womack supported an internal investigation about the secret surveillance in 2017 of Fanning and his then-girlfriend, Kim Tanaka, that concluded with no conclusion. An utter farce!

Millions of investors’ resources at Southern Company were wasted on personal vendettas and efforts to defame an innocent man falsely as a rapist. In addition, the company foolishly terrorized innocent children.

As we have documented, law enforcement, including the former U.S. Attorney who resigned in disgrace in 2020, were compromised and appear to be agents of Southern Company’s RICO enterprise.

Upcoming civil RICO cases, derivative lawsuits, and federal probes may finally expose the truth, and force a deep, forensic investigation into all the criminal shenanigans, including the ex-parte communications between Judge Johnson and the criminal enterprise that has eroded the Alabama judiciary.

Take our word for it!

Ex-U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town and ex-Alabama CEO Mark A. Crosswhite chugging together.

Top Order from Alabama Power: Destroy Newsome! Balch and Matrix Alleged Agents of Doom

Escalating a highly-anticipated civil RICO lawsuit, a high-level source who was once part of the inner-circle of disgraced ex-Alabama Power CEO Mark A. Crosswhite alleges that the order to destroy innocent victim Burt Newsome came from the top.

Crosswhite allegedly was doing a favor for an elite Mountain Brook friend that falsely blamed Newsome for financial woes after a successful collection effort was made on behalf of a financial institution that Newsome represented.

The allegations confirm what we wrote last December:

The alleged Alabama Power/Southern Company criminal enterprise was not only involved in intimidating, smearing, and destroying perceived enemies of Alabama Power, but also to allegedly help friends of friends or distant acquaintances retaliate or seek revenge that had no corporate purpose whatsoever.

The expenditures against Newsome make no sense and have no fiduciary purpose for the wholly owned subsidiary of a publicly traded company, Southern Company.

The agents of doom were allegedly embattled law firm Balch & Bingham and the obscure political consulting firm Matrix, founded by the Oompa Loompa of Alabama politics, the diminutive Joe Perkins, both of whom have earned millions a year from Alabama Power.

The demand to destroy Newsome included using the color of authority.

Columbiana Police Chief Jeffrey Bowers, the cop-son of former Alabama Power Vice President of Environmental Affairs Willard L. Bowers, allegedly was told in 2013 to “hide in wait” for Newsome who had a scheduled court appearance in Columbiana, the county seat of Shelby County, sources claim.

Bowers, then a police officer, participated in the staged arrest of Newsome in May of 2013. (In 2019, a nervous Bowers foolishly claimed that he had only “held” Newsome for sheriff deputies.)

The mugshot of Newsome was then sent to bankers via email the following Saturday afternoon by a Balch & Bingham partner in an alleged attempt to defame and cripple Newsome’s reputation and law practice.

The same mugshot was used in 2020 by Matrix operatives on a smear website against Newsome and us, the CDLU, that was paid for by Alabama Power falsely claiming and implying that Newsome was arrested for rape.

Less than a month after the website went live, Newsome was hit head-on in a horrific car wreck.

Was that near-death collision attempted murder?

This past January, we published an extensive post with graphics and photos about how inaccurate the accident report was and how a state trooper appeared to have been waiting to report a fatality.

We wrote in January:

The ongoing investigation has not only found that the accident report was severely inaccurate and at times false, there is now solid evidence of connections between the state trooper and a known business associate of Mark White, the most trusted advisor of disgraced ex-CEO of Alabama Power, Mark A. Crosswhite.

J. Mark White

We have since learned from investigators that the state trooper allegedly lived across the street from the business associate of Mark White. The street is narrow, practically one lane, and on trash day, the neighbors may have spoken face to face.

Investigators claim the business associate was allegedly affiliated with White and Stover Innovations, LLC, now defunct. Mark White was a principal member of the LLC, listed by his legal first name John.

The company, dissolved in 2014, provided internet and software support to Mark White’s law firm, White, Arnold & Dowd, the same firm involved in that “phony-baloney” investigation at Southern Company.

Southern Company last month told The Wall Street Journal that the utility has “moved on” from scandal after conducting that half-baked internal investigation which concluded with no conclusion.

However, the smear website that they paid for, defaming Newsome and us, the CDLU, is still up and live.

Southern Company spent over $40,000 in a seven-week period creating and publicizing the site. Zeke Smith, Vice President of External Affairs at AlabamaPower, approved the expenditures that had no corporate purpose whatsoever.

Spreadsheets confirm that Southern Company wasted investor resources on a personal vendetta.

WIth Southern Company acknowledging that clandestine surveillance operations were conducted by the company, documents confirming that hundreds of thousands of dollars were spent in less than two months on a campaign of fear and intimidation against Newsome and the CDLU, and a reliable source now claiming that orders to “destroy Newsome” came from the top, the alleged act of attempted murder against Newsome can no longer be dismissed.

Southern Company’s insidious, egregious, and immoral misconduct using vendors like Balch, Matrix, and White apparently hasn’t changed.

Instead of distancing themselves, or firing the unholy trinity, Southern Company continues to pay White and the agents of doom millions.

Boiling in hot water

Chris Womack, the CEO of Southern Company, is now boiling in hot water for not leading the company in a new, ethical direction.

Womack, like Jim Kerr, the former Chief Compliance Officer and General Counsel at Southern Company, appears to be covering up the alleged misdeeds and criminal misconduct of Crosswhite and others.

While Southern foolishly claims that they have “moved on,” news about the call to “destroy Newsome” comes coincidentally as Newsome is “moving forward.”

Newsome has recently hired a major and seasoned civil RICO law firm that will fund a massive legal effort against the utility.

Southern Company for years looked the other way and allowed their most profitable subsidiary Alabama Power and their “unholy” vendors run free, like outlaws in the Wild West.


Because Alabama Power’s excessive profits helped pay for the billion-dollar cost overruns and chronic delays at two Southern Company boondoggles: The Vogtle Nuclear Power Plant in Georgia and the Kemper Plant in Mississippi.

The effort to destroy Newsome utterly backfired.

Mark A. Crosswhite resigned in disgrace last November.

Balch & Bingham has lost as much as $100 million in fees in the aggregate since 2017.

No longer feared or respected, Matrix and its founder, “Sloppy Joe” Perkins appear to have imploded, lost major clients, and become the laughing stock of the chattering class.

The nail in Matrix’s coffin was Florida Power and Light that declared, “We regret ever having associated ourselves with [Matrix.]”


Does Southern Company have any or just too many?

On Fire! Southern Company Criminal Misconduct Allegations Escalate and Solidify

Top executives at Southern Company appear to have lied repeatedly, consistently, and habitually.

What a hot mess!

Claiming that a million-dollar internal probe did not find out who authorized or why a surveillance effort was conducted against ex-Southern Company CEO Tom Fanning and his then-girlfriend in 2017, Southern Company looks like a sack of lying fools at best or a bunch of incompetent imbeciles at worst.

Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal report appears to solidify and escalate the criminal misconduct allegations against Southern Company, and shows an epic size hole in their compliance, regulatory, and oversight executive team.

No one believes Southern Company has “moved on.”

This is just the beginning.

A pattern of deception, deep lies, secret surveillance, intimidation, unscrupulous behavior, and harassment are all tied to Southern Company.

From the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, how can Southern Company be trusted?

Top executives at Southern Company appear to have lied repeatedly, consistently, and habitually.

Southern Company operatives and consultants appear to have engaged in criminal and unsavory acts against unwitting victims, innocent children, and perceived enemies of Southern Company.

Spreadsheets and work orders provided to law enforcement and regulators list some of the alleged immoral acts.

Three specific alleged acts were criminal felonies:

  1. In September of 2020, Burt Newsome was injured in a head-on accidentHe was gravely injured and nearly killed. Some even claimed the act was an alleged act of attempted murder by Southern Company. Evidence from the crash allegedly links known vendors of Southern Company to the law enforcement agents at the scene.
  2. A few days after Newsome’s near-death crash, a Southern Company stooge attempted stupidly to impersonate our Executive Director, K.B. Forbes, and his then-eight-year-old daughter in two attempts to illegally obtain banking information from his regional bank in Alabama. The criminal suspects had private, confidential information including full bank account numbers.
  3. In November of 2020, Burt Newsome, still recovering from his car wreck, discovered that a law office checkbook was stolen from his office. The weekly cleaning crew disconnected the security camera and stole the checkbook, allegedly bribed by Southern Company operatives.

Other alleged acts by Southern Company operatives include:

  • The smashing of the car window of Burt Newsome’s wife at a gym in which her purse was stolen. Law enforcement alleged she was targeted. Video surveillance of the incident shows the suspects driving around allegedly specifically looking for Newsome’s vehicle.
  • In 2018, the sick operatives tied to Southern Company who sent the Newsome family a threatening package: Five pieces of luggage and numerous clothing outfits. There were ten outfits for mom and the four Newsome children. Was Newsome going to be injured, killed or murdered?  Or were the wife and children going to “disappear” on a permanent vacation?
  • In the summer of 2020, Southern Company allegedly and foolishly decided to target, harass, intimidate, and terrorize the Hispanic family of CDLU’s CEO, spending big bucks to do so, and gathering intelligence and detailed personal information about the family. The terror and harassment included phone calls to the Hispanic mother demanding to know her location, asking if she was at home, and offering to “drop off a package.”

Will Southern Company attempt to say once again that they did not know who authorized these acts and why?

All the while, Southern Company continues to pay embattled law firm Balch & Bingham and Joe Perkins, the Oompa Loompa of Alabama politics, millions of dollars.

What a hot mess! A scurrilously hot mess!

True Heroes: Community that United Against Balch & Bingham’s Alleged “Whites-Only” Land Grab in Vincent, Alabama

This spring, we, the CDLU, drove to Vincent, Alabama and met with the courageous leaders that united the African American and white communities to stunningly defeat well-financed Balch & Bingham political stooges in 2019.

In a shocking, lopsided vote, residents cleaned house and tossed out the politicians by margins as high as 69 percent to 31 percent.

The election results were a crushing blow to Balch and a planned rock quarry.

Over a decade ago, Balch & Bingham lawyers (and their public relations stooges) spearheaded the strategic purchase of farmland and the fast-as-lightening re-zoning of said land, and oversaw the lucrative transactions for a client called White Rock Quarries.

Five years ago, we, the CDLU, had met with residents who alleged that only white landowners were approached for land purchases while African Americans were not; worse many of these African Americans were older, senior citizens, descendants of slaves.

Our reporting of the allegations exposed this abhorrent, immoral scheme and shook the town.

In a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice from May of 2012, Wanda Threatt, an African American resident of Vincent, wrote:

The River Loop

“’The River Loop’ is predominately Black-owned property. Many of the inhabitants are slave descendants. Prior to the rezoning of the property by the Vincent Council, White Rock Quarries had surreptitiously bought the property under various names for highly inflated prices for the reported purpose of growing corn for conversion to gasoline. No offer at any price was made to a Black. The quarry bought what has become known as the purposed quarry site right up to the boundaries of Black-owned property…. White Rock bought land bordered by Blacks, but never from Blacks.

The alleged “whites-only” land grab was central to a scheme to operate a rock quarry in the heart of Vincent’s historic African American area, “The River Loop.” The quarry borders the African American Church the Evangel Temple.

While embattled and alleged racist law firm Balch & Bingham stupidly collects make-believe awards for diversity and inclusion, the reality is the law firm was involved in what appears to be a blatantly racist “land-grab” scheme.

Even historic slave graves are located on the property acquired by Balch’s client.

The good news is that the rock quarry is now shut down. Rusted locks, chains, and a closed gate greet you at the entrance.

The rock quarry itself is overgrown with high grass and shrubs.

White Rock Quarries still owns huge tracks of land in Vincent, and the community leaders are still concerned that the company will possibly attempt to come back in the future and operate a rock quarry.

But for now residents can rest assured that the city itself will fight the quarry tooth and nail.

Closed entrance to the quarry.
Rock Quarry borders African American Church Evangel Temple

Crushing Defeat for Balch & Bingham! U.S. Supreme Court Rejects Repugnant Racist Redistricting Scheme

Embattled and alleged racist law firm Balch & Bingham was handed a huge, crushing defeat this morning by the U.S. Supreme Court which rejected Balch’s congressional voting redistricting defense for the State of Alabama.

Dorman Walker

Dorman Walker, a Balch partner, represented the State of Alabama and John H. Merrill, the former Alabama Secretary of State, during arguments before the nation’s highest court.

“Under the Court’s precedents, a district is not equally open when minority voters face—unlike their majority peers—bloc voting along racial lines, arising against the backdrop of substantial racial discrimination within the State, that renders a minority vote unequal to a vote by a nonminority voter,” Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts wrote.

Civil-rights groups challenged the map in court, calling it “the latest example of a decadeslong pattern of the white-controlled Alabama Legislature enacting congressional and state legislative districts that discriminate against Black voters to maintain power,” according to the Wall Street Journal.

Last year, a federal court in Birmingham, Ala., ruled that the map violated Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act, which prohibits racial discrimination in voting. 

Citing “Alabama’s extensive history of repugnant racial and voting-related discrimination,” the district court ordered Alabama to redraw its map to create an additional district “in which Black voters either comprise a voting-age majority or something quite close to it,” the Wall Street Journal added.

And what about Balch & Bingham’s history of repugnant racial discrimination?

The late Schuyler A. Baker, Sr. was at one time a top attorney at Balch & Bingham, and also an avowed and staunch segregationist who was part of racist Governor George Wallace’s inner circle in the 1960s. 

During the Civil Rights struggle, Baker was mentioned in a The New York Times article about a federal highway scandal.

Imperial Wizard Robert Shelton

And why was the federal highway scandal so sensational?

The Wallace-era highway scandal in 1964 involved the Imperial Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, Robert Shelton, who was contracted as a “publicity man,” according to The New York Times.

Baker’s son, Schuyler Allen Baker, Jr., served as General Counsel at Balch from 1974 until his death in 2020.

Ironically, Schuyler, Jr. vowed to fight the CDLU and the Newsome Conspiracy Case to the death.

Now nearly 60 years later, the vestiges of racism still shine vibrantly.

In 2011, Balch’s Walker defended the state’s redistricting plan that was later tossed out by a federal court because the state improperly used race.   And now 12 years later, the Supreme Court of the United States, with a conservative majority, rejected Walker’s latest defense.

Former Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill is no puritan, no angel. In 2021, Merrill was rocked by a “tie-her-up-and-bite-me” sexual affair of three years when raunchy texts and audio recordings were released by the media. He did not run for re-election last year and Wes Allen took office in January.

Still refusing to apologize for the North Birmingham Bribery Scandal that targeted poor African American families (the scheme was born at the offices of Balch & Bingham), Balch Managing Partner Stan Blanton appears to be engaging in tokenism while collecting make-believe awards for “diversity and inclusion.”

Only 2 percent of Balch partners are people of color.

And Stan apparently can’t figure out why even the conservative Supreme Court of the United States hasn’t embraced Balch’s defense of a phony, fake, and racist redistricting plan.

Maybe Balch has contracted the wrong “publicity man.”

Town Probe Over; SEC, DOJ Investigations of Southern Company Escalate; NRC Digs Into Svinicki

The correspondence we received recently from the Office of Professional Responsibility at the U.S. Department of Justice was clear: the probe of disgraced ex-U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town is over.

“We are taking no further action,” they wrote, which reveals that an alleged deal was cut in 2020.

The quid pro quo: the abrupt resignation of Town meant he wouldn’t be investigated or prosecuted for criminal misconduct, especially now since he is no longer a U.S. Attorney

No further action, indeed.

Even though Town is off the hook, insiders claim that the criminal probe of Southern Company’s criminal enterprise is escalating, now that former Southern Company Chairman and CEO Tom Fanning has retired.

Besides looking at the Kemper Plant debacle and Vogtle Nuclear Power Plant cost overruns, criminal investigators at the U.S. Department of Justice are apparently looking deeply at the alleged money laundering through third-party vendors tied to Southern Company and its subsidiaries, including embattled political consultant “Sloppy Joe” Perkins.

Perkins stupidly outlined a criminal enterprise last year where over $50 million was funneled through 18 different tax-exempt entities.

The criminal investigation complements an ongoing civil investigation by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that is looking at the multiple, no-invoice-needed, multi-million-dollar secret contracts with Perkins and his affiliated entities.

The U.S Nuclear Regulatory Commission is looking at any potential misappropriate and alleged illegal communications between former NRC Chair Kristine L. Svinicki, now a member of the Southern Company Board of Directors, and the NRC staff or Commissioners in June and July of 2022.

Sources claim that Svinicki is barred for life from contacting the NRC about Southern Company since she voted for Southern Company’s Vogtle permits as NRC Chair, but may have communicated through NRC back channels last year.

Ex-Balch & Bingham Attorneys are Now Federal Prison Inmates 04104-510 and 35504-001

Convicted pedophile and ex-Balch & Bingham attorney Chase T. Espy is now inmate 04104-510 at the Federal Penitentiary in Atlanta, Georgia, while ex-Balch partner Joel I. Gilbert, convicted of money laundering and bribery in the North Birmingham Bribery Scandal, is inmate 35504-001 at the Federal Prison Camp in Montgomery, Alabama.

Balch has boasted these last five-years of expanding their footprint in the Southeast, and now the embattled firm can add two convicted felons in Atlanta and Montgomery.

Both convicted felons represented Southern Company, one of Balch’s top clients currently in the middle of a sex and accounting scandal.

With only 2 percent of Balch partners being people of color, the alleged racist law firm’s partners are 98 percent white while their esteemed convicts are 100 percent white.

So desperate to hide their racist and segregationist past, and links to Governor George Wallace and a Ku Klux Klan scandal, Balch recently added their Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer on their professionals list of attorneys and lobbyists, even though she is not involved in any practice area of law nor participates in government relations.

No other Balch officers are listed on the professional pages.

Neither the Chief Operating Officer, Director of Human Resources, Director of Finance, Director of Client and Community Engagement, Chief Information Officer, nor the Chief Marketing Officer.

Could it because that they are all white?

Tokenism. Tokenism of partners. Tokenism of attorneys. And now tokenism of management officers on their website.

How embarrassing!

But then again Balch managing partner Stan Blanton is collecting make-believe awards for diversity and inclusion.

And then they wonder why others are laughing.

Another Matrix Mess? Joe Perkins and Matrix Goons Allegedly Smear Self-Made Businessman Stan Pate

Joe Perkins, the diminutive consultant to Alabama Power and founder of Matrix, LLC, the obscure political consulting firm, is embroiled in yet another scandal.

This time Perkins and his Matrix firm are in the middle of a lawsuit in the heart of Alabama that alleges libel and slander.

This latest scandal out of Tuscaloosa raises the serious question: Who would ever want to hire Perkins, the Oompa Loompa of Alabama politics, if you could end up getting sued, fired, or investigated?

Look at Florida.

Matrix, LLC, was officially terminated by Florida Power & Light (FPL), one of the largest utilities in the United States, in December. A few weeks later, FPL’s CEO was ousted in January.

Last August, an FPL company spokesman said in a statement. “Learning about the surveillance of the CEO of Southern Company further reinforces our decision to have severed all ties with Matrix, a consultant we regret ever having associated ourselves with.”

And who allegedly approved that surveillance? Alabama Power CEO Mark A. Crosswhite who was also ousted last November.

Now let’s look at the latest scandal out of Tuscaloosa. reports:

Stan Pate, Tuscaloosa businessman and political donor, subpoenaed Joe Perkins, founder of Montgomery-based political consulting firm Matrix LLC, last month in a libel lawsuit.

Pate filed a civil lawsuit in Tuscaloosa County Circuit Court in February against William L. Stephens, Jr., Gary Simpson, and Alvin Ray Grayson over statements made about Pate and various real estate projects on an Alliance for Responsible Growth website and Facebook page. 

Pate filed the lawsuit for libel/slander, harassing communications and invasion of privacy/false light. Stephens filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit in April. 

Pate also subpoenaed Perkins for the following information related to his involvement with Alliance for Responsible Growth:

        • Any and all contracts, communications, or correspondence between any representative of Matrix, LLC and William L. Stephens, Jr.

        • Any and all contracts, communications, or correspondence with any representative of the Alliance for Responsible Growth and any representative of Matrix, LLC or any representatives of Matrix, LLC.

        • Any and all advertisements or fliers created for the Alliance for Responsible Growth.

        • Any and all invoices, bills to, or payments from the Alliance for Responsible Growth or William L. Stephens, Jr.

Perkins is listed as the media contact on Alliance for Responsible Growth’s website. Perkins and Matrix represent a variety of powerful interest groups in Alabama. The consulting group has been in the headlines in recent months for their work in Florida, Alabama, and a settled lawsuit between Perkins and former Matrix CEO Jeff Pitts.

So who is REALLY funding this alleged smear effort?

Is William L. Stephens, Jr. of the Alliance for Responsible Growth another “fall guy” like David Roberson was for the Alliance for Jobs and the Economy during the North Birmingham Bribery Scandal?

Is Alabama Power or another deep pocket entity behind this effort to smear Stan Pate?

Was Balch & Bingham in any way involved in the creation of this alliance? adds:

Jeffrey Smith, Pate’s attorney, said in the lawsuit the Alliance for Responsible Growth’s website is “replete with malicious and false information related to Mr. Pate, his projects, and business interests.” 

“The website is evidence of Mr. Stephens’ malice toward Mr. Pate in referring to Mr. Pate, among other slanderous and libelous statements, as ‘greedy.’ Stephens also made false and misleading statements about another project proposed by Mr. Pate on Rice Mine Road,” Smith said in the lawsuit. “It is clear that the Alliance for Responsible Growth Facebook page was initially created not for any legitimate civic discourse but, again, to paint Mr. Pate and his businesses in a false light and to cause damage to Mr. Pate in his business  efforts and damage his plan for the project at the McFarland Mall site, the Rice Mine Road project, and other projects.”

So who is Stan Pate?

He is a successful businessman, philanthropist, and political donor.

According to BhmWiki, Pate was an A-student in Tuscaloosa’s public schools, graduating from high school in 1975. Though he had planned to enlist, the close of the Vietnam War led him instead to enter college with an eye toward a medical career. He earned his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering at the University of Alabama in 1981.

After briefly working for local chemical companies, Pate determined to go into business for himself and invested in rental property. His ventures were immediately successful, leading him to pursue business opportunities across the country. In addition to buying, leasing and selling property, his Pate Holdings offers real estate management, development and construction services.

Kerr Running to the Fire Escape? Five-Alarm Scandal Engulfs Southern Company

Jim Kerr, the former Chief Compliance Officer and General Counsel at Southern Company, who met with us, the CDLU, in December of 2017 and later lied to us about Southern Company’s involvement in the North Birmingham Bribery Scandal and the Newsome Conspiracy Case, is allegedly looking for a new job, according to

Watkins writes:

On January 5, 2023, the Southern Company announced that Jim Kerr would assume the position of chairman of the Board of Directors, CEO, and president of the Southern Gas Company, effective on March 31, 2023.

… Jim Kerr is attempting to flee his new CEO job at the Southern Gas Company.

Last month, Jim Kerr quietly submitted his resumé to the executive search firm of Korn Ferry, a management consulting firm headquartered in Los Angeles, California. Korn Ferry offers executive job placement services for senior management executives who are looking for better employment opportunities.

After we “outed” Jim Kerr as a racist, black employees at the Southern Gas Company wanted to have no association with him.

During the first week of April, Jim Kerr worked hard to endear himself to the company’s black employees

However, Jim Kerr’s words on the audiotape [with the CDLU] and his actions in the North Birmingham situation overshadowed his phony attempts at endearment and his self-serving “wokeness” makeover at the Southern Gas Company.

The company’s black employees are not buying it.

They saw beyond Kerr’s fake smiles, hand-holding, and hugs while he was prancing around in their faces. They have judged Kerr by his words on the audiotape and his hostile actions toward the company’s black customers in North Birmingham. These customers had their environmental justice rights willfully suppressed by a cold and calculating Jim Kerr for the benefit of the Southern Company, Alabama Power Company, and their business alliance partners.

The news came as Southern Company is embroiled in a five-alarm scandal involving alleged accounting fraud, self-dealing, money laundering, secret contracts, and conflicts of interest allegedly involving Southern Company executives and members of Southern Company’s Board of Directors.

In a separate post, outlines in great detail the alleged secret contracts and potential conflicts of interest involving a Southern Company subsidiary and another company, once near financial death, called Southern Fiber Company. 

Watkins writes:

How did Southern Fiber Company, which was destitute in 2020 when it applied for a PPP loan in 2020, become awash in multimillion dollar fiber optic installation contracts with Georgia Power Company in 2022?

Why is this Georgia Power Company key external vendor relationship not listed in the consolidated Form 10-K financial statement for 2022 filed by the Southern Company with the SEC on February 15, 2023? The amount paid to Southern Fiber falls within the Southern Company’s definition of a “material” expense for its 10-K for 2022.

It is obvious that someone in the Georgia Power/Southern Company sphere of influence has taken a special interest in growing Southern Fiber Company.

It is also obvious that the Southern Company, via its partnership between Georgia Power and AT&T, has staked out the hosting of fiber optic communications lines – for a fee — as a profit center for the Southern Company’s business operations. The installation, splicing, maintenance, and repair business of these fiber optic lines is an add-on economic benefit for Southern Fiber and whoever else is discretely financing and growing the company behind-the-scenes.

Some individual or entity has financed the restructuring and rapid expansion of the Southern Fiber Company and this person or entity is hiding behind the thick veil of a well-known Georgia law firm to conceal his/her/its identity.

It is obvious that somebody at Georgia Power is channeling a lot of fiber optic installation work to a company that was near bankruptcy in 2020.

Who at the Southern Company would have a focused interest in growing Southern Fiber Company?

And now more gas is being thrown on the fire with the expected report on a steamy sex scandal in which mistresses were allegedly paid off in millions.

Speechless! Steamy Sex Scandal About to Rock Southern Company; Mistresses Allegedly Paid Off in Millions is about to document a steamy, illicit sex scandal allegedly involving millions of Southern Company’s shareholder dollars.

The investigative report comes as Southern Company faces a highly anticipated civil RICO lawsuit, an ongoing SEC probe, an investigative review after numerous complaints were filed with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Agency, and alleged investigation(s) by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Donald Watkins writes:

One important fact was never disclosed to the 9 million Southern Company customers who were forced to pay these rate increases: These utility companies used millions of dollars of customer money each year to pay the mistresses and lovers of Southern Company executives and other corporate officers.

What is more, these secret romances, as well as the inherent conflicts of interest related to them, were never disclosed to the Southern Company’s board of directors or to the company’s state and federal regulators, as required by law.

We have all of the fascinating details related to this sex and romance scandal. We will break down this misuse of corporate funds for you.

Stay tuned for an explosive investigative report that will leave you speechless!

Subsidizing Racism and Pedophiles? McWane Funnels Over $1.1 Million to Balch & Bingham

Will they remove McWane’s name from the children’s science center in Downtown Birmingham?

McWane, the cutting-edge and innovative iron pipe, plumbing, and waterworks company, has taken an enormous step backwards by hiring embattled law firm Balch & Bingham for lobbying services in Washington, D.C.

Starting in 2020, McWane has emerged as Balch’s largest federal lobbying client and Open Secrets reports that McWane has paid the alleged racist law firm over $1.1 million.

In March, Chase T. Espy, an eight-year veteran of the Balch firm, who had pled guilty to possession of kiddie porn, was sentenced to 97 months in federal prison.

Espy, a registered sex offender, was arrested by local authorities in August of 2021 for soliciting a child for sex. The online “child” actually was an undercover local law enforcement officer.

According to authorities, there were approximately 69 videos and four images of child sexual abuse material located on Espy’s cellphone including two involving toddlers, 20 depicting penetration, three depicting humiliation, and 29 involving masturbation.

The total number of child sexual abuse material images for sentencing purposes was 5,178.

Espy’s plea deal described the repulsive, graphic, and disgusting images and videos. (We wanted to literally throw up when we read the document last fall.)

No corporate client with a moral conscience should be using Balch & Bingham.

How many clients will end their relationship with Balch over Balch’s history of alleged child exploitation?

Will McWane, East Texas Electric Cooperative, Northeast Texas Electric Cooperative, Globe Life, O’Neal Industries, and others finally cut the ropes with Balch?

Espy’s kiddie porn included revolting photos of young children less than 12 years of age, according to law enforcement officials.

But child exploitation is not new at the century-old law firm.

The young children in North Birmingham, an area that is 92.5% African American, were targeted and alleged victims of Balch & Bingham’s repulsive scheme in the North Birmingham Bribery Scandal which suppressed and discouraged African American families from having their toxic and contaminated property tested by the EPA.

Targeted with $50 gift cards

Handing out free coat gift cards to poor Black children to discourage EPA testing was one of the abhorrent acts spearheaded by Balch & Bingham’s convicted partner and criminal felon Joel I. Gilbert, now sitting in federal prison.

The idea to target the children of North Birmingham was born at the offices of Balch & Bingham.

But McWane appears not to care.

Jim Proctor, Senior Vice President of Legal and External Affairs at McWane, should immediately terminate Balch & Bingham.

If there is a specific lobbyist or team of lobbyists he likes, he should tell them to jump ship, like William F. Stiers did in 2017.

McWane is paying Balch $30,000 a month or $360,000 a year. McWane spends about $800,000 a year on lobbyists. They should shift the $360,000 to one of their other firms or find another well-qualified firm without the baggage.

We have no bones to pick with McWane or Mr. Proctor except to criticize their absurd decision to hire an embattled law firm that has two former attorneys sitting in federal prison right now.

According to a recent review of Balch’s website, people of color account for less than 9 percent of their professionals and only 2 percent of their partners.

Critics are asking, “Will they remove McWane’s name from the children’s science center in Downtown Birmingham?”

Not a bad idea if they keep on subsidizing a law firm that has yet to apologize to the residents and African American children of North Birmingham.

“Fall Guy” Follies: Drummond’s “Confused” General Counsel Briefed Since Inception About North Birmingham Scheme

The emails and documents we recently received show unequivocally that Blake Andrews, the “confused” General Counsel of Drummond Company, was briefed regularly about the North Birmingham Scheme.

On February 18, 2015, at the inception of the money laundering entity, Alliance for the Jobs and the Economy (AJE), convicted felon and now ex-Balch partner Joel I. Gilbert reached out to Andrews and his underling, Curt Jones, an Assistant General Counsel at Drummond Coal Company.

AJE was not incorporated until almost two weeks later, on March 3, 2015 in the State of Delaware.

Both men, according to Gilbert’s email, “expressed interest in participating in the planning/strategy session of the establishment” of AJE.

In our story about the over 20 entities that participated in AJE, we posted the body of the email written by former Balch partner Steve McKinney warning Drummond executives and his staff about emails falling into the wrong hands. Blake Andrews and Curt Jones were included in the header.

In the body of the email, McKinney called the operatives “the Drummond/AJE team.”

Interesting choice of words or a Freudian slip of the keyboard?

A day after McKinney warned Andrews and others about the emails, he drafted another email to Blake Andrews discussing:

  • 1.) a potential AJE contractual agreement with Dr. Kenneth A. Mundt of ENVIRON. The goal was to present “truth squad” work that went counter to the arguments laid out by GASP and the EPA.
  • 2.) and asking Andrews if Balch’s AJE effort was or was not “perfectly on track with the company’s interests and concerns.”

As we reported in 2020 before ex-Drummond executive David Roberson’s $75 million civil lawsuit was sealed in its entirety, Drummond’s attorney foolishly argued that lying to and framing Roberson was ” a legal service.”

We wrote at the time:

Drummond’s attorney threw a hand grenade when he testified at the hearing. This is what he foolishly said:

With respect to the argument that Drummond’s general counsel was not giving  legal advice, I think [Roberson’s attorney] just made the argument for me. Their theory is that Drummond’s general counsel formed a legal opinion that this whole plan was illegal and did not tell Mr. Roberson about it, and in fact told him things that would basically make him be the fall guy, I think is their theory. That is — the formation of a legal opinion as to whether something is legal or illegal is the definition of what a lawyer does. So I don’t know that I can state it any better than [Roberson’s attorney] did. That is legal services.

Problem is that Drummond’s General Counsel Blake Andrews allegedly never, ever told Roberson the scheme was illegal.

Roberson’s attorney Burt Newsome rips Drummond’s argument to shreds. From the transcript:

[Drummond’s attorney] did a great job summing up Balch and Drummond’s legal services argument in a nutshell. He just told you because Blake Andrews formed in his head that this lobbying scheme was illegal and decided, I better not pay these invoices to the foundation because I’ll go to jail, then I’m going to — so I’m going to get David Roberson to pay these so he will go to jail, that that was providing a legal service to Mr. Roberson. That is absurd. Blake Andrews making a legal opinion in his head that this is illegal, I better not pay these, I better get somebody else to do it, that’s not giving legal advice to Mr. Roberson. That doesn’t make David Roberson his client. That makes David Roberson him and Balch’s fall guy.

Roberson appears to have been set up as the “Fall Guy” in the North Birmingham Bribery Case.

In court documents, Drummond denied ever having received invoices in Andrews name, an apparent bold-faced lie.

In early 2021, Roberson filed concrete evidence that Drummond Company lied in a court proceeding and that original invoices sent to Drummond from Balch & Bingham were addressed to Blake Andrews, the “confused” General Counsel of Drummond Company.

White lies, damn lies, and fall guys!

Blake Andrews should have been and should be investigated for his participation in AJE and the North Birmingham Bribery Scheme.

Now, in 2023, Andrews should also be probed for his alleged role in which Roberson’s defense attorneys (paid by Drummond) rejected a full-immunity deal for David Roberson back in 2017, allegedly trampling Roberson’s civil rights.

The only “confusion” we see has been the truth.

Corporate Execs Were Protected by Southern Company Lackeys; Balch Warned that Emails Could “Easily End Up in the Wrong Hands”

For at least two years, 2017 and 2018, U.S. Attorney Jay Town, Principal Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey H. Wood, and U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions appear to have never allowed a probe of Southern Company or an expansion of the investigation in North Birmingham to happen on their watch.

Since the Southern Company criminal RICO enterprise had their grip on the U.S. Department of Justice with three of their most staunch lackeys in key positions, no probes or an expansion of the North Birmingham Bribery Scandal ever happen.

Southern Company Stooges (L to R) Sessions, Wood, and Town

The anonymous documents we, the CDLU, received included a list of corporate attendees to a luncheon of the Alliance for Jobs and the Economy (AJE) that was held on November 30, 2015.

The AJE, an entity pushed by ex-Alabama Power Chairman and CEO Mark A. Crosswhite, was the organization that laundered over $360,000 in bribes to former Alabama State Representative Oliver Robinson.

Through the emails and documents that we have obtained, over 20 entities were involved at some point with the AJE.

The “lone wolves” theory issued by disgraced ex-U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town was a crock.

Southern Company was involved (as were others) and a good prosecutor should have interviewed each and every entity and individual involved, even if their involvement was peripheral.

McWane’s Proctor

From Jim Proctor, Senior Vice President of Legal and External Affairs, at McWane, to Chip Grizzle, General Counsel at Brasfield & Gorrie, from Van Richey, the CEO and President at American Cast Iron Pipe Company, to Joe Howle, the Manager of Environmental, Community, and Government Affairs at Vulcan Materials, each and every individual who had any interaction with AJE should have been interviewed.

Now with a new EPA director, Michael S. Regan, and new leadership at the U.S. Department of Justice, law enforcement should re-open the North Birmingham Bribery Probe and investigate Southern Company’s criminal RICO enterprise, and the other 19 or so entities involved with AJE.

Embattled law firm Balch & Bingham was so wary and preoccupied with the scheme that Balch partner Steve McKinney dispatched an email in April of 2015 warning staff and Drummond executives to be careful about dispersing information in email correspondence since “your emails will not be privileged and it not hard to imagine that they could easily end up in the wrong hands.”

McKinney included a distribution list that included top brass at Southern Company, Drummond, ABC Coke, Alabama Power, McWane, United States Steel and the American Cast Iron Pipe Company.

Balch & Bingham’s Steve McKinney warned that emails could “easily end up in the wrong hands.” We have intentionally obscured email addresses out of privacy.

In an addition to that email, we also received a list of attendees to an AJE luncheon, showing that many leading businesses were invited to participate at the inception of this money laundering entity.

At the lunch was Mike Thompson, the owner of Thompson Tractor who was listed as a director of the AJE in the incorporation documents from the State of Delaware.

Thompson allegedly took Balch & Bingham’s biggest stooge, former U.S. Senator and Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange, directly to Drummond’s headquarters in 2014 to meet Drummond family members and pick up a $25,000 check.

Mike Thompson

A few days later, Strange signed a letter ghost-written by Balch & Bingham attacking the EPA’s efforts to put the North Birmingham Superfund Site on the National Priorities List and expanding the site to include the City of Tarrant.

An official act in exchange for an alleged $25,000 bribe?

Without a doubt, now is the time to re-open the North Birmingham probe and question all of these business leaders and entities.

The four pages of attendees. We have removed email addresses and phone numbers out of privacy.

Email Exposé: Southern Company Lobbyist Critical Element in North Birmingham; DOJ Compromised

The trifecta was complete. With U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Principal Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey H. Wood, and U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town, Southern Company compromised the U.S. Department of Justice with three of their most ardent lackeys in power at the same time.

We, the CDLU, provided documentation in December of 2017 to Jim Kerr, the Senior Vice President, General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer, and Chief of Staff of Southern Company showing indisputably that Jeffrey H. Wood, a lobbyist for embattled law firm Balch & Bingham, had lobbied on behalf of Alabama Power in the second and third quarters of 2016 specifically about the North Birmingham CERCLA matter.

We provided Kerr with lobbying reports from the second quarter and third quarter of 2016 filed with the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives showing he was clearly on Capitol Hill inquiring about CERCLA.

CERLA stands for the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act and the North Birmingham CERCLA matter eventually led to bribery scheme born at the offices of Balch & Bingham and led by Balch-made millionaire Joel I. Gilbert, who is currently serving a 5-year sentence in federal prison for bribery and money laundering.

In January of 2018, during a phone call, Kerr falsely told us that Southern Company was not involved in the North Birmingham Bribery Scheme or the Newsome Conspiracy Case. Both were lies.

When confronted on the call about Jeffrey H. Wood, Kerr was side-swiped and obviously caught unprepared.

At first, Kerr said he wasn’t sure what we were asking, but after repeating the question with reminders, he took 5 seconds to respond with a canned legal answer: “It’s, um… I told you that I looked into the information provided me. We reviewed the information and I have no concerns about anything inappropriate.”

As The Root reported in 2018:

Kerr responded, “We do not see a place to step into [the Robinson scandal].” That rings hollow considering that Wood, Balch’s point lobbyist for Southern, was lobbying on Superfund policy at the time on behalf of Southern. In fact, Wood has specifically recused himself from any matters at the ENRD pertaining to the 35th Avenue site, suggesting that he was specifically lobbying about the site. After [the CDLU] pointed this out, Kerr took a long pause before going full Sarah Huckabee Sanders: “We reviewed the information. I have no concerns about anything inappropriate.”

Jim Kerr goes silent for 5 seconds when asked about Jeffrey H. Wood in 2018.

But now, never-seen-before emails delivered anonymously to the CDLU, show that Jeffrey H. Wood indeed was in the thick of the North Birmingham effort to suppress African Americans from having their toxic and contaminated property tested. The population of North Birmingham is 92.5 percent Black.

Jeffrey H. Wood

On May 18, 2016, Wood briefed Joel I. Gilbert about efforts on Capitol Hill, confirming that he was on Capitol Hill specifically about the “EPA’s actions in North Birmingham.”

The hearing on Capitol Hill was an attempt to help the criminal scheme to suppress African Americans by having congressmen allege that EPA employees were overzealous, acting improperly, accessing property without permission of the owner, and overreaching in their conduct.

They even alleged that the EPA was trying to close businesses employing people in the energy sector.

They even provided an unnamed affidavit, the star of the hearing, in an attempt to grill the two representatives of the EPA.

An orchestrated spectacle indeed!

But an hour later, Gilbert, so proud of the efforts on Capitol Hill by Southern Company, sent an email to the top brass at Drummond Coal Company, including “confused” Drummond General Counsel Blake Andrews, and executives from their affiliated company, ABC Coke.

What affidavit?

Southern Company lobbyist Wood was a critical element in the spectacle. He worked with congressional staff to create “talking points” and brought Congressman Gary Palmer “up to speed.”

And the unnamed affidavit, the star of the hearing?

Per the criminal enterprise’s request, the affidavit was not entered into the record nor was the name of the affiant ever released by Congressman Palmer.

An orchestrated spectacle indeed!

Eight months later, Jeffrey H. Wood would be one of the first people to enter the Trump Administration on inauguration day as the acting Assistant U.S. Attorney General for the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice.

Wood would work under U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions whose number one lifetime financial supporter as a candidate for U.S. Senator had been Southern Company while his number two lifetime financial supporter was Southern Company’s sister-wife Balch & Bingham, according to Open Secrets.

U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions Top Lifetime Financial Contributors

That summer of 2017, Jay E. Town would be confirmed U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Alabama.

The trifecta was complete.

With U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Principal Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey H. Wood, and U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town, Southern Company compromised the U.S. Department of Justice with three of their most ardent lackeys in power at the same time.

Is it no wonder that no one expanded the North Birmingham bribery investigation after Gilbert and Roberson were found guilty in 2018?

Is it no wonder that no one investigated the terrorist acts and death threats against Burt Newsome, his wife, and his four young children in the summer of 2018?

Is it no wonder that no one investigated the initial billion-dollar cost overruns at the Kemper Plant in Mississippi and the Vogtle Nuclear Power Plant in Georgia?

Is it no wonder that no one investigated Jay Town who blocked four FBI investigations into the Newsome Conspiracy Case?

Southern Company was too powerful, too entrenched.

These emails demonstrate without a doubt that Southern Company was “up to their eyeballs” in North Birmingham and that the criminal RICO enterprise had three powerful lackeys in the U.S. Department of Justice that appear to have been more loyal to Southern Company than the pursuit of blind justice.

An orchestrated spectacle indeed!

Ex-U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town and ex-Alabama Power CEO Mark A. Crosswhite enjoying libations before they both resigned in disgrace.