The path to getting the police report ( below) filed has been a thorny one. Back in 2007, I first attempted to alert the Redlands PD to the theft from my mother's storage space, which was at that point in time in the possession of the infamous Melodie Scott. As is the wont of the Redlands PD concerning Melodie Scott complaints, that agency refused to investigate, stating that all complaints about Scott must be forwarded to the State Attorney General. Senior Assistant Attorney General Mark Geiger proceeded to bury the report, as that agency typically does in terms of Scott complaints. Both the Redlands PD and Geiger refused to even tell me if Redlands were the proper jurisdiction to file the complaint.
So when Scott was removed by an order of the Riverside Superior Court on June 1, 2009, I opined of the new trustee (Riverside County Public Guardian's office) to allow me to have my personal representative go in to photograph and document the theft. It turns out that the PG's office was every bit as reluctant as Scott to allow me in. Toni Eggebraaten, the attorney for the PG, stalled as long as she could, stating that we had to wait until an inventory was done. In fact, the PG's office accomplished the inventory in October of 2009, listing on one page the remainder of what was left after Scott gutted our belongings , but Eggebraaten stalled until December 8, when she finally released the inventory to me. Shortly thereafter, Steve Price and Tammy Hull were allowed access to photograph and videotape the sad remains.
San Bernardino County Sheriff Deputy Keri Crosby took a verbal report from me today, December 29, and I faxed in the written declaration, below. I certainly hope that the Sheriff's Department will respond appropriately concerning the allegations of theft. If they do, it will be the first time that a criminal justice agency has advanced a criminal complaint against Scott from one of her victims.
Janet C. Phelan
258 A Street 1-15
Ashland, OR 97520
December 29, 2009
POLICE REPORT OF THEFT OF ESTATE ASSETS/San Bernardino Sheriff Department
DECLARATION OF JANET PHELAN
I am reporting theft from the storage unit at Universal Self Storage in Loma Linda, at 26419 Barton Rd. which contained the belongings of my mother, Dr. Amalie Phelan. Amalie was under a conservatorship with Melodie Scott, conservator and successor Trustee to the Phelan Family Estate. Scott has been replaced by the Public Guardian’s office as Trustee. The case number in Riverside Superior Court is RIP 080974
To give a brief history, I was allowed into the storage space only once by Scott, several years ago, in order to retrieve family photographs. I was shocked at that time in terms of how much was missing—furniture, art work etc. –and requested re-entrance to document the theft. Melodie Scott refused my request. The accountings for the Trust will support my contention that I was only allowed in once, although Scott denies this.
Melodie Scott was removed as Trustee by order of Riverside Superior Court on June 1, 2009. She has been denied a fiduciary license by the State of California Department of Consumer Affairs. The PG’s office became the Trustee and on December 8, 2009 I finally received an inventory of the storage space from the PG’s office. Scott had never provided this; indeed, she had declared to the court in September of 2006 that she had forgotten to inventory my mother’s belongings. On December 10, 2009, Steve Price and Tammy Hull, of Yucaipa, California, whom I designated as my personal representatives in this matter, were allowed to photograph and video the storage, as well.
The inventory and photos/video reveal massive theft. Here is a partial list of missing assets:
An antique secretary-type desk, maple, with glass windows and shelves above and a desk below
A yellow flowered sofa
An antique wood buffet, with shelves above and a cabinet below,dark wood
Three beds, mattress and box springs (Two king size, one twin)
A pink dresser, five or six drawers, antique
Several bookcases, including tall, painted white and one short, two shelves, blonde wood
Numerous pieces of art work, including—
1)an original pen and pastel of don Quixote. A photo of my father, James R. Phelan, in front of the painting is available on the dust jacket of Dad’s second book, entitled “Scandals, Scamps and Scoundrels-A Casebook of an Investigative reporter”
2)Also a pen drawing (original) portrait-type of an old man with a hat and a big nose, profile view
3)Also an original oil of an archway and buildings—very thin and long
4)A framed photo of my father, who was an author, which appeared in Penthouse Magazine in the seventies, when he was the “Penthouse Interview of the Month.”
5)Also an antique, a lithograph, non-representational and modern, yellow, black and red with lines and circles
6)Also a framed piece of artwork of a Victorian living room with two old ladies
7)Also a framed piece of calligraphy, which bored the statement, “I have loved the stars too dearly to be fearful of the night.”
8)Also a framed dictionary definition of the word “Free.”
9)Also a poster map of the United States, featuring New York City and portraying the rest of the country as fairly unimportant. Not an original and was very popular during the eighties.
10) Also a poster photograph of kittens In socks, hung on a line
11) Also a small framed picture of an Arabic cleric
12)A green trunk , approximately 3 ½ ft by 2 ft, which contained an antique doll (Red Riding Hood).
In addition, I have repeatedly requested of Toni Eggebraaten, who is the attorney for the current Trustee, the return of my wedding ring and an article I had written, the sole copy of which was in my mother’s home prior to her death. The title of the article is “My Mother’s Mastectomy.” I am a professional writer and the article has monetary value, as does my gold wedding ring, which was in my mother’s jewelry box for safe keeping. I have been refused the return of these items. It is therefore unclear to me if these were also stolen , or if the PG’s office is in receipt of stolen property (mine) and refuses to relinquish it. I have also requested input as to whether the Public Guardian’s office is in receipt of three (3) pieces of jewelry, which belonged to my mother: 1) a gold women’s wristwatch 2) an antique amethyst ring, with an engraved flower in the stone 3) a gold starfish charm necklace, on a gold chain. The Public Guardian’s office has not responded to my queries concerning the jewelry.
As Melodie Scott, as former Successor Trustee of the Phelan Family Trust, had possession of the storage space, refused my repeated requests to re-enter the storage space to document the theft, then lied to the court—in the face of the evidence—stating she had allowed me re entry when she clearly had not, the reasonable assumption is that Melodie Z. Scott performed or facilitated the theft.
Thursday, December 31, 2009
Please down load for FREE letters to senators, congressman and the president at our site
www.paradisecosts.com or find them in the book, *Paradise Costs with afterword by Bennett Blum, MD (second edition) a long with petitions to pressure the legislativors to STOP ELDER ABUSE NOW by enacting the Elder Justice Act...it is NOT perfect but it is a start.
I have been saying this for 3 years....what is the need to reinvent the wheel? While we "fiddle" seniors die. My father was killed and his forensic report indicates foul play and yet too many of us want to reinvent the wheel instead of pulling together.
We all hang together or we and our families will all hang seperatedly.
Irene A. Masiello Author: Paradise Costs- A Victim's Daughter Fights Back Against Elder Abuse Afterword by: Bennett Blum, M.D. www.ParadiseCosts.com Contact: 718.776.5644
"Never doubt that a small group of committed citizens can change the world; indeed it is the only thing that ever has" - Margaret Mead
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Chairman Herb Kohl
U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging
G31 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Elder Justice Act Should Include Elder Abuse, Kidnapping using Probate Courts for Profit.
Many webs on this subject says it is widespread. I am 86. My 82 years old wife had stroke with speech expression aphasia, cannot speak her mind which is OK. She has been confined against her will using conservatorship for 2-1/2 years with last 14 months in place secret to me using Elder Abuse restraining order to abuse this elderly couple. We missed our 60th anniversary and two Christmas and New Years. We are driven deep into debt to close a million with more kidnapper fees to pay by three judges sequentially.
U.S.C. 18-242 is clear, Deprivation of Rights Under Color of Law, any law. Laws were broken to put my wife under conservatorship but DoD or U.S. Attorney will not investigate. “It is a civil matter.” I cannot file criminal complaint in Central District Court of California. EJA can use this case as example of kangaroo probate court gone mad controlled by kidnapping attorney via the court staff attorney that transient judges rely on counseling. Case LP 012785 Van Nuys, CA via the court staff attorney. U.S.C. 18-241 applies.
I also have my 94 years old sister in San Antonio, TX also kidnapped using probate court. Several millions of her estate was distributed according to a will obtained by deception of her law professor husband. The judge was his student. She could not change her will because kidnapped under guardianship judge will not dismiss. She died shortly being confined against her will in Alzheimer unit she does not belong. She could walk up steep stone stairs of San Antonio County Court House unassisted and alert enough to point out to me “we just passed Walmart” where we were going. She died shortly after confined at Alzheimer facility. This case also used the court staff attorney by kidnapper, who was Director of San Antonio Bar Association so that one cannot even complain to the Bar Association. Case 2004PC3226.
These two cases are worse than Iran. Can never happen in China. One person can be victim of two probate courts 2000 miles apart. Legalized kidnapping for profit definitely is too common.
Suggest amend the Constitution to legalize “the right to the pursuit of happiness” in my wife’s case to stay married in freedom after 60 years. In my sister’s case, is to be with her last remaining sibling in California during her last years which the judge intended but overruled by court attorney: “not to let her leave Texas jurisdiction.” U.S.C. 18-241 & 242 needs strengthened with “must investigate if involving elder abuse and prosecute if valid” by District Attorney or FBI. Now only about 2-3 percent of complaints are prosecuted under that code. Probably mostly police use excessive force. I do not think any judge ever was brought to justice for legalizing kidnapping.
Please ask U.S. Attorney offices to investigate these two cases as example for criminal prosecutions to warn future kidnappers and to justify EJA changes. This Committee has the power. Please note the old Chinese proverb: execute one to warn hundreds, i.e. hang on city wall the cut off head. Please assign intern or staff to get details if this Committee is serious for EJA to solve the real problem.
Please coordinate with California Senator Dianne Feinstein (D) and Texas Senator John Cornyn (R), members of the Judicial Committee. Senator Feinstein’s office cannot help because of “separation of powers.” Probate courts can be above the laws and Constitutional rights, to ruin life of elderly victim with means. I served this country having worked on a computer in the Smithsonian Museum that ushered in the computer era. I do not deserve such legalized cruelty by kangaroo probate courts.
This elder wants justice by EJA.
5200 Topeka Drive
Tarzana, CA 91356
Todays probate courts want to re write the marriage vows from 'Till Death Does Us Apart" to "Till Probate Court Does Us Apart." I agree with Mr. Wong and the Constitution should legalize “the right to the pursuit of happiness” my parents were separated by force for financial reasons after 58 years of marriage, my father died a year later of a broken heart, he never understood fully why his wife after 58 years was taken from him!
In order to avoid court sanctioned kidnapping by greedy attorneys and their kingpins (Elder Protection Services a.k.a. DCF in Florida) we were forced to leave the country with the only surviving parent after a 4 year $350,000+ legal battle to get her back.
It's very sad that's come to this, the only way for elder couples with money to avoid legalized kidnapping is to leave the country, sad indeed!
Those that stay and face kidnapping for profit have no one to turn to, face forced isolation,overmedicating into oblivion, financial ruin and premature death..... it is beyond sad
we can only hope that there is a God and that the crimes being so willfully committed against so many who gave so much for their country and deserve better, so much better does not go unpunished...
Posted: 30 Dec 2009 03:56 PM PST
Legalized Elder Abuse: Guardianships And Conservatorships
December 29, 2009
Assisted Living Senior Housing
The American legal system has established “guardianships” for the specific purpose of protecting vulnerable individuals–called “wards”–when a judge or judicial officer determines that the ward’s decision making capability is so impaired that another person–the “guardian”—needs to be given the right to make these decisions. A guardianship is particularly appropriate for wards who are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia, as well as advanced alcoholism and similar afflictions that render the person unable to care for his or her health and other needs. A “conservatorship,” twin to the guardianship, is set up to conserve the ward’s assets; the conservator acts as a custodian.
The legal obligations of the guardian and conservator. As defined above, these legal vehicles seem completely sensible and necessary. After all, people who are so incapacitated that their decision making is unreliable obviously need professional assistance; left unprotected, their health and wealth are at risk. The law considers the connection between the guardian (or conservator) and the ward to be “fiduciary” in nature, a legal relationship of confidence or trust between two or more parties. Indeed, for legal purposes, a “fiduciary” duty requires the highest possible standard of care. It recognizes that the ward needs to have utmost confidence, reliance and trust in the guardian or conservator, whose aid or protection is essential. The fiduciary, therefore, is required to act at all times for the sole benefit and interests of the ward, with absolute loyalty to those interests.
The reality of guardianships and conservatorships. Unfortunately, vulnerable individuals are easy targets for the unscrupulous. Equally unfortunate is the fact that the legal system, having established these processes, frequently fails to supervise how they actually work. Not surprisingly, when there is a lack of oversight, as Elaine Renoire, a particularly experienced observer of guardianships and conservatorships, warns in her website http://www.StopGuardianAbuse.org, “(The system) operates to ensnare the most vulnerable people in a larger and larger trawling net, . . . a feeding trough for unethical lawyers and other ‘fiduciaries’ appointed by the courts to protect, but many of whom become nothing more than predators.”
Victims of guardianships and conservatorships. Ms. Renoire argues that wards are easily exploited by the system, frequently forfeiting their freedom, property, “and their very lives,” because, first, judges and court administrators fail to monitor these processes, and second, the state legislatures and the federal Congress fail to regulate legal practices. The result? According to Ms. Renoire, judges, who she claims are either “uncaring” or “corrupt,” fail to provide adequate due process to the wards, who in turn fail to get adequate notice of the proceedings that will result in the determination of their competence. Even when they are notified, Ms. Renoire reports that they are rarely defended by attorneys. And in those instances for which counsel is provided, these lawyers, again in her words, “(Are often) too closely affiliated with other professionals who make their living in this special area, and do not properly represent the victims’ interests. Corrupt judges do not apply the required evidentiary standards in (adjudicating incompetence), and frequently fail to obey the protective statutes . . .”
So, what’s the bottom line? According to http://www.StopGuardianAbuse.org, “(Guardians and conservators) are given power of life and death, burying their wards in nursing homes where they are kept chemically restrained with unnecessary and dangerous drugs; family members are denied any say in their care, and sometimes (they’re) denied visitation, except under guard at their own expense!” Is the system abusive? Is it possible that the guardianship/conservatorship system is as flawed as is claimed? According to the February 15th, 2009 edition of the “Minneapolis Star-Tribune,” the process is at least as ineffective as Ms. Renoire believes, and can be negligent–and perhaps corrupt–in practice.
The front-page headline blares: “2 years and $672,808 gone,” with an accompanying picture of a now-smiling older lady. She’s identified as Peggy Greer, approaching her 86th birthday, four years after she and her family members battled the Minnesota judicial system to free her from a guardianship/conservatorship nightmare that cost two years of her life and drained her entire life savings–nearly $700,000.
Peggy Greer’s situation is fairly typical. In 2004, just after she turned 81, her life was in crisis. Her eldest son, a drug addict, was living with her. After suffering a back injury, she also became drug-dependent. That summer, her daughter, Judith, petitioned the local probate court to appoint her and her brother as Ms. Greer’s guardians and conservators, claiming that her mother was “suffering from dementia and chemical dependency,” rendering her “unable to arrange to her medical care,” and “unable to manager her estate (and) vulnerable to financial exploitation.” The latter claim was particularly relevant, because Peggy Greer was about to inherit a substantial amount of money.
Subsequently, a local firm was appointed as the guardian, and Wells Fargo was named as conservator. Despite the fact that her condition had improved–she was considered to be neither chemically dependent nor suffering from dementia–Ms. Greer was sent to live in a nursing home, at a cost of $5,700 per month. She complained that she wanted to return to her home, but her chemically-dependent son was still living there, and the guardian refused her request to go home.
The family, realizing that at least an interim solution was required to stem the outflow of funds from the inheritance, attempted to relocate her into a less expensive assisted living facility; the guardian declined the request, arguing that “It would cost a lot to get her discharged from one nursing home and admitted to a new one when we all anticipated she would be returned to her home pretty quickly.”
Perhaps not surprisingly, that didn’t happen. The family filed a petition to replace the guardian. Legal expenses consequently skyrocketed. After a year of the conservatorship, these fees totaled at least $45,000; adding in the other costs, including the nursing home rent, the $226,800 inheritance—which was one of the justifications for the conservatorship itself—was exhausted. Additional funds would be necessary.
The conservator, Wells Fargo, petitioned the court to sell Peggy Greer’s home, despite the fact that the guardian was trying to move her back into it. Nonetheless, Wells Fargo pursued the sale, claiming that “The protected person is not able to return to independent living.”
The probate judge finally agreed to a “reverse” mortgage, whereby a bank captures the equity in a home in exchange for making periodic payments that allow the homeowner to remain in the home. In the case of Ms. Greer—again, not particularly surprisingly—the bank that received the reverse mortgage was Wells Fargo.
At this point, Charles Heintz, the chemically-addicted son, died, which allowed Ms. Greer to return to her home.
Although she was able to take care of most of her own needs, she received constant, 24/7 care from a home health agency. The cost? $26,000 a month! Although her nursing home doctor recommended that this assistance be discontinued, the guardian refused.
Finally, in January, 2007, the guardian agreed that this care, now totaling more than $55,000, should be scaled back, a decision that neatly coincided with the liquidation of her funds. As her son described the situation, “Once the money ran out, almost to the day, suddenly the care was no longer needed.” Peggy Greer summed it up this way, “My money was all used up, was all gone, without my knowledge or OK or anything.”
The final tally, as of October, 2007, reported that the total spent on her behalf since March 2005 was $672,808. The guardian and the conservator each earned more than $11,000, with the conservator earning an additional fee from the reverse mortgage. The amount owed by Ms. Greer: $ 48,388. Total assets remaining: zero.
About the author: Laurence Harmon writes for Great Places.
- Texas court reviews case for undue influence, incapacity
- From California
- MN perspective on financial elder abuse
- Is guardianship legalized elder abuse?
- Another PA judge pleads out
- Judge used recusal as ‘weapon’ over pay impasse
- Boxer’s death and wills leave unanswered questions
- Legal industry scoop - what’s hot, what’s not
- Meryl Gordon’s Astor trial wrap
Friday, December 25, 2009
Posted: 24 Dec 2009 03:47 PM PST
We’ve published an interesting blog post out of Florida on the attitude and actions of that state’s Bar and Supreme Court with regard to attorney misconduct. It makes some great points that can likely also apply to other states with regard to attorney misconduct and attorneys’ obligations to report bad acts.
Florida seems to stay on our radar of late and speaking of heavy-handed public officials, thanks to Paul for calling attention to this tragic story out of Naples regarding a woman who wants nothing more this Christmas than for her parents’ guardian to allow a family visit. Naplesnews.com reports that the parents are now residing in an assisted-living facility with the father, Marcel Vozzella, allegedly drugged due to expressing unhappiness with being removed from his home and separated from his daughter. Meanwhile, also reported is that $40,000 per month is being spent to pay the couple’s expenses. Wonder if that includes the guardian’s fee?
Getting this story late Christmas Eve afternoon serves as an important reminder for our audience to recognize and appreciate that for which we have to be thankful this holiday season. But also, get ready for 2010. This next year will be a bumpy one, but as someone far smarter than us once said, anything worth having is also worth fighting for. To those fighting probate corruption/estate abuse as well as others determined to battle the additional threats to American liberty and property, prepare as a big year with the prospect of much progress is ahead.
Meanwhile, Merry Christmas!
- Merry Christmas from EstateofDenial.com
- All she wants for Christmas is her parents…
- Perspective on Florida legal industry and public corruption
Monday, December 21, 2009
258 A Street #1-15
Ashland, OR 97520
December 18, 2009
Re: RIP 080974To Riverside County Presiding Judge Cahraman:
This letter will expand upon my letter of December 2, 2009. I request that you respond within five days of receipt, as your position as Presiding Judge of Riverside County mandates your administrative oversight of illegal, malicious and corrupt acts by the judges in that court.
I am in receipt of your recent letter, in which you state that I am liberally accusing judges of corruption. You furthermore state that you can see there is no basis to my allegations.
Apparently you are unfamiliar with the case at hand, RIP 080974. Therefore, this document will serve to alert you to the degree of judicial misconduct attached to this case. All the documents mentioned herein are on file with the court, but to alleviate you of the burden of research I will provide them herein.
I will look forward to your response to this letter within five days of receipt. Please be advised that you are bound by the Judicial Canons, including Canon 3, which state that (1) Whenever a judge has reliable information that another judge has violated any provision of the Code of Judicial Ethics, the judge shall take or initiate appropriate corrective action, which may include reporting the violation to the appropriate authority.*
(2) Whenever a judge has personal knowledge that a lawyer has violated any provision of the Rules of Professional Conduct, the judge shall take appropriate corrective action.
In closing, I will note that you did remove both Commissioner McCoy and Judge Sharon Waters promptly from my case when I researched and reported on their property loans. I want to thank you for those actions, which were highly appropriate given the implications of their financial transactions. If I do not hear back from you within the mandated time period, I will consider you to have vacated the Judicial Canons and your oath of office and will proceed accordingly.
Sincerely,Janet C. Phelan
Cc: Commission on Judicial Performance
Jack Leonard, Los Angeles Times
Mark Gutglueck, San Bernardino County Sentinel
Cassie MacDuff, PE
Stacia Glenn, San Bernardino Sun
Friday, December 18, 2009
I try not to stray to far on this blog from the topic at hand, however I recently wrote about a topic that's dear to all of us and that topic being freedom of expression.
I recently wrote a letter to my most loyal supporters that seems to have hit a nerve and I will reproduce it here for you and print some of your responses without the name to protect the identities which is something that has to be done in todays climate of fear and repression.
Well you might say,"Ray what does this have to do with me 'We are not military bloggers, the campaign is only directed to silence Military Bloggers'
Happy holidays, Ray:
The answer to your question if this: NO ONE CARES
The US has created a hostile environment for us to live in and answers to its GODS-
Business, profit, the rich, corporate greed...finally, however, some people realize it and give up
like me. I battled this for 10 years, went broke doing it, caused myself health ramifications and more
Democracy has never been by and for the people...at least not in the last 50 years...
there are TOO MANY SECRETS, too many corporate alliances (i.e. witness healthcare debate and
the power of the insurance lobby---do you think for a MINUTE this only happens in healthcare
This is what happens to our seniors...they are consumed by probate judges, elder care lawyers, social and protective services. They dehumanize us and our beloved seniors for GREED.
That's the mantra of America...profits before people...and it's always been that way or at least
since the USA knew Pearl Harbor was about to happen and did nothing in hopes of fueling the rich
and powerful corporations.
Viet Nam was the same way....lots of conspiracies say that was true in Kennedy's death (RFK & JFK) and with the WTC...there's plenty of video on the net. Take a look at it.
Ray, you did right by leaving the country. America is not what we were sold...that we were the "bastion" of freedom and yet our numbers suffer because corporate freedom to put profits before people is American domestic policy.
When the will of the people is circumvented by the will of corporate America...you got it exactly right:
NO ONE CARES...everyone is now caught up in trying to survive the joblessness, inflation, the lies,
the media that shoves starlets, weight problems, Tiger's extramartial affairs, etc down our throats rather than the truth.
There is not one person that is safe in this country...this is a police state, a lawyer state, a judge state, a corporate state and you all better accept it or leave this country. Our country is an illusion...things started out idealistic but big business and other countries now own us and there
is no where to hide.
Stay out of the system if you can...trust no one, mind your own business, go into business for yourself
and rebuild the American dream in your community. That's the only way not to be a consumable here in the America we thought was for the people, by the people....we do not matter....nothing does
except how much money you represent to anyone of the bottom feeding entities including the US government and those mentioned above...
it's every man and woman for themselves...use caution with EVERYTHING.
God bless you, Ray....you did the right thing leaving this country...in a place where mental midgets say, "this is America, love it or leave it" leaving it is just plain old good common sense.
EstateofDenial.com has brought to our attention a blog called NY Courts-New York Court Corruption.
The information on this blog about the corruption in the New York Unified Court System will disgust and frighten you and propel you into a world of racketeering, greed, larceny, malicious prosecution, and outrageous disdain for due process, the Rule of Law, the United States Constitution, the Bill of Rights and Professional Responsibility Standards, Rules and Statutes.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
Posted: 08 Dec 2009 05:14 PM PST
Corruption threatens “soul and fabric” of U.S.: FBI
BOCA RATON, Florida (Reuters) - Corruption, whether in the form of crooked officials, financial fraudsters or even philandering sports stars, is tearing at the fabric of U.S. society and is the country’s No. 1 criminal threat, a senior FBI agent said on Tuesday.
Addressing businessmen in Florida, where financial fraud cases jumped by 42 percent in the last year, FBI Miami Division Special Agent in Charge John Gillies said failures in personal ethics and integrity sowed the initial poisonous seeds of corruption in a society.
Gillies said transgressions by high-profile public servants and even perceived social role models, like top golfer Tiger Woods, currently embroiled in allegations that he had extramarital affairs, sent the signal to young Americans that cheating and stealing were acceptable.
“Where do our children learn this? They see us, their elected officials, their sports stars, they see how they act and they figure, ‘well it’s OK,’” he said, citing the case of Woods, whose early morning car accident in Florida last month triggered a storm of media questioning of his clean-living reputation.
“Money can’t buy everything,” Gillies said in a speech to the West Boca Chamber of Commerce in Boca Raton, Florida.
The special agent, who manages high-profile cases in Florida, the Caribbean and Latin America, in no way suggested Woods had committed any criminal offenses.
Florida police issued Woods a ticket for careless driving last week and said no criminal charges would be filed. He quickly paid the $164 fine, his lawyer said. Police also said no allegations of domestic violence were leveled.
Gillies, a 27-year veteran of the FBI, called corruption in all its multiple forms, whether in law enforcement or in the judicial system, or involving tax cheats and fraudsters, “our number one criminal threat” in the United States.
“It really gets at the soul and fabric of the United States when people are out there corrupting … it all starts with simple ethics violations,” Gillies said.
FOLLOW THE MONEY
He said public corruption investigations by the FBI were “huge” and had increased by more than 20 percent in the last five years, while financial scams — from securities and hedge fund frauds to Ponzi schemes — had jumped by more than 25 percent nationwide in the last year alone.
These cases involved hundreds of millions and even billions of dollars.
Florida in particular has been rocked by a number of high-profile Ponzi schemes this year, including fallout from the cases surrounding convicted Wall Street swindler Bernard Madoff and accused Texas financier Allen Stanford.
Gillies’ FBI team last week arrested a flamboyant Fort Lauderdale attorney, Scott Rothstein, and charged him with bilking investors out of $1.2 billion in a Ponzi scheme that funded his luxury lifestyle and political largess.
Rothstein, now disbarred, has pleaded not guilty.
Asked why the “Sunshine State” of Florida appeared to be so increasingly prone to financial scams, Gillies told Reuters the concentration of money in the wealthy Southeast state was “the number one” factor.
He said a high concentration of out-of-state Americans and foreigners was also a factor.
In his speech, Gillies also cited the economic recession as a contributing feature, as many victims were — often blindly, often out of greed — seeking to improve returns on money and investments in hard financial times.
He said offers of 15, 20, 25 percent returns in a recession should be an automatic “red flag” of possible fraud.
For those frustrated by diminished earnings eroded by the crisis the FBI veteran offered the following caveat against temptation: “The worst day at work is still better than the best day in jail.”
(Editing by Jim Loney and Howard Goller)
Monday, December 7, 2009
Posted: 07 Dec 2009 11:54 AM PST
Canadian-based TV production company - CMJ PRODUCTIONS - is currently shooting a new documentary series called, `The Will´ airing on INVESTIGATION DISCOVERY. “The Will” tells the true life stories of complex and surprising disputes that have arisen surrounding a will, estate or trust.
The series is now accepting story submissions to appear on-air. They are looking for dramatic, unusual stories with numerous twists and turns, secrets and real emotion. Most importantly, all cases must have reached a final ruling or settlement in order to be considered. The company wants to interview all parties involved as well as their legal representatives. Stories from Canada, the United States or the United Kingdom will all be accepted. The goal of this series is to objectively illustrate both sides involved.
Each episode will explore why each party felt entitled to the involved inheritance and why they might have thought that others were less deserving than themselves.
Involvement with the series offers a great opportunity for legal experts to help viewers to deepen their understanding of the
importance of wills and estates.
If you would like to participate in this series, or have a case you think they should profile, please contact researcher Ramelle Mair at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the production company, feel free to check out the company website at: www.cmjprod.ca (CMJ Productions, 100-640 Notre-Dame, Saint Lambert (Quebec), Canada, J4P 2L1).
And this is a link for our pilot show:
A few weeks ago, we posted this request:
Journalist Janet Phelan regularly reports on conservatorship activities in California. An important appeals hearing recently took place regarding the licensing of conservator Melodie Scott. Scott was prominently featured in the 2005 Los Angeles Times series Guardians for Profit: When a Family Matter Turns into a Business. Click here for an overview of the proceedings. Two later articles are also available: As Scott’s Licensing Hearing Resumes, Conservatee Dies and Scott Licensing Question Now Up to Judge.
Janet sent this request for the EoD audience:
Steve Price, who testified at Melodie Scott’s licensing hearing, has constructed this affidavit for people to sign and will forward the signed copies to the Department of Consumer Affairs. At last count, I believe we have somewhere in the neighborhood of fifty signatures. The head of the DCA must sign off on whatever judgment the Administrative Law Judge comes up with; therefore, the DCA is the best place to lodge our concerns. Please post this with the Price’s email address and a request for signatures and forwarding to Price.
Notification has now been received that affidavits are being prepared for submission such that anyone still wanting to participate should forward their signed document to Steve Price as soon as possible.
Friday, December 4, 2009
Posted: 02 Dec 2009 07:50 PM PST by EstateOfDenial.Com
Fla. Supreme Court approves grand jury to investigate corruption
December 2, 2009
TALLAHASSEE — The third try did the trick for Gov. Charlie Crist today, as the Florida Supreme Court ordered creation of a statewide grand jury to investigate public corruption in South Florida.
The high court had turned down the governor’s request just Monday. Crist had initially petitioned the court to empanel a multi-jurisdiction grand jury to look into criminal activities statewide, and then filed an amended petition, but was unsuccessful.
So he filed another amended petition, giving more detail of the types of crimes he wanted the grand jury to investigate — everything from bribery and drug dealing to carjacking and fraud –while certifying that “these crimes are of a multi-circuit nature,” crossing the lines of counties and judicial circuits.
This time, the seven justices agreed, directing Circuit Judge Victor Tobin to preside over a 12-month grand jury term with jurors drawn from four circuits.
Crist cheered the court’s decision, saying it is vital that the work of state attorneys in separate circuits be reinforced by the statewide panel. Although the grand jury has unlimited jurisdiction, its work is expected to focus on Southeast Florida, where Crist has suspended many indicted public officials in nearly three years as governor.
Attorney General Bill McCollum also said he’s encouraged by authorization of the probe.
“Public officials should be held accountable for any illegal and dishonorable actions that violate the public’s trust,” said McCollum. “They should adhere to a higher standard, not make a mockery of the offices with which they were entrusted.”
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Would the person who posted the following comment please get in touch with me at mailto:Ray@ElderAbuseHelp.Org inmediately you might have information helpful to an ongoing investigation.
I have heard about Colleen Patterson. She is a scary person. She has a bankrupcty that she did not report, is very deceitful and destroys families. The Court should not let people like her have control over such vulnerable individuals. She has done many really dishonest things and misrepresents her credentials.
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Clara at 93 years old ultimately left the USA for a third world country where elders are respected and she enjoys a loving family live away from endless court hearings and bottomless DCF investigation that only help serve the attorneys to victimize the elders. Unfortunately the DCF has been weaponized and is used by dissatisfied parties that feel shortchanged in the process as a weapon against the elder and their families....
Clara after having broken free from the shackles of tyranny of forced nursing homes stays, chemically restraining, and endless courthearings costing $100,000's she is now enjoying hassle free life surrounding by loving people..........God Bless Clara at 93 she never gave up not even in her darkest moments after having been left alone in hotel rooms to fall and become incapacitated..this by the people that were supposed to be watching over her but were only interested relieving her of her life time of savings....
Children who have survived the passing of one or more parents, are especially vulnerable to stress, loneliness, and guilt. Imagine never having any kind of closure - and having to relive the pain of loosing your parent finding out 20 years later everything was stolen. Imagine trying to seek justice for your lost parent - only to be mocked and ridiculed - and having the head of the D.C. Probate Court award all again with every court date, letter, discovery, and realization that justice is denied no matter how hard you try.
From: rudy bush
To: Ray Fernandez
Sent: Thursday, November 26, 2009 10:19 AM
Subject: From Rudy
Ray, I thought I would keep you up to date. A legislator and a non profit lady went to see my mom, her first visitors from outside the guardianship in years. The nonprofit lady wrote a letter to the guardian asking for guardian's reports and for an honest evaluation for my mom and saying that the non-profit lady wants to give this information to the legislature.
The guardian's lawyer wrote a letter back sent registered (at cost to my mom) to the non profit lady saying I hope you know what a terrible character this Rudy is, and what gives you the right to have any information--who do you think you are--you are not a lawyer.
When the guardian's lawyer got no response to the registered letter the guardian filed with the court "Petition for Instructions" on Oct. 26, 2009 stating that the information the non-profit lady wants is being protected by the guardian as protecrtion of my mother's rights from being given to the non-profit lady and the legislature.
The fact is the guardian's lawyer is protecting her client the guardian because the information is very incriminating to the guardian. Now the same biased judge who hates Rudy is going to rule this week without my mother or me or the non-profit laddy being allowed to file, a nice one sided "proceeding." As part of the pleading the guardian's lawyer is asking he judge to make the non-profit lady sign a paper that will be drawn up by the guardian's lawyer (at charge to my mom) to keep prevent the non profit lady giving the information to the legislature.
Hi Rudy, this is very enlightening, thanks....
But it makes my blood boil to read about cases like yours where state sponsored terrorism, is keeping you from your mother and she is being held in solitary confinement for so long. it is truly hard to believe this is happening in our beloved land of the free...
My prayers go out that there is a God and the horrible crime of confining an elder during their golden years for profit is a heinous crime that will not go unpunished in the big scheme of thing and that Karma will make the thieves who found their niche in partnership with the courts some day pay for their crimes against humanity
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
One thing everyone can agree on, no matter where they come down on the current health care debates, is that no one should get sick as a result of visiting the doctor.
When someone develops an infection at a hospital or other patient care facility that they did not have prior to treatment, this is referred to as a healthcare-associated (sometimes hospital-acquired) infection (HAI).
Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) are a global crisis affecting both patients and healthcare workers.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), at any point in time, 1.4 million people worldwide suffer from infections acquired in hospitals.
A Centers for Disease Control (CDC) report published in March-April 2007 estimated the number of U.S. deaths from healthcare associated infections in 2002 at 98,987.
To learn more about Health Care Acquired Infections (HAI) go =>>Here