A courtroom mole for the Victoria Taft Show writes the Oregonian to ask: wha’ happened to your coverage?
Funny postscript: The Hillsboro Argus beat the Big O on the story here.
ATTENTION: Michael Arrieta-Walden, Oregonian Public Editor
RE: State of Oregon v. Miguel Robleto
in the Circit Court of Washington County
Judge Steven Price presiding (jury waived by defendant)
Dear Mr. Arrieta-Walden:
You may recall the phone call we exchanged this past Tuesday afternoon.
I’m compelled to express concern about the lack of serious media coverage of the trial involving the alleged “kingpin” in what
The Oregonian termed, the largest racketeering and fraud case in Oregon history.
To bring you up to date, the trial ended late Tuesday afternoon with summations by both the prosecution and defense counsels.
Judge Price told all concerned that there was a 60% chance he’d issue a verdict next Tuesday, November 8th, at 8:30 am.
Before I proceed in listing the reasons for concern, I’d like to direct you to a September 3rd, 2005 article in the Itemizer Observer by Erin Zysett. It covers Lorna Youngs (the current head of State DMV & Transportation) firing of LaVay Jeffries, a Linn County DMV official, for notifying law enforcement when he suspected illegal activity.
Here is the link:
Additionally here is a link to KPAM radio talk show host, Victoria Taft’s blog, which will provide you with trial updates and details not covered or reported in The Oregonian. http://victoriataftkpam.blogspot.com/
Here are the most prominent reasons for concern:
1. Why was a trial about a “criminal enterprise” that literally flourished, in a POST/911 era, under state officials’ noses NOT CONDUCTED in FEDERAL COURT?
Indeed, who made this decision which has all the earmarks of a cover-up? A number of us, including an outraged airline pilot, Chuck Weise, asked the prosecutor this question, who also seemed puzzled by the “downtown” decision by an undisclosed party.
2. Without ANY reflection against The Oregonian’s Holly Dank’s reporting, WHY did the Oregonian limit coverage to a suburban Portland Metro section?
3. Why hasn’t the Oregonian asked similar questions that were repeatedly raised in the recent coverage about the sale of stolen items in second hand shops? Just to list a few:
a) Why confine pilot Privatized DMV agencies to Hispanics? And why contract the management of one those agencies to a former DMV employee that, according to trial testimony, had been terminated “under a cloud”?
b) Why haven’t the above questions been directed towards the former head of Transportation, Bruce Warner, (who recently became the appointed head of the Portland Development Commission, PDC), and Lorna Youngs the current head of ODOT and the former chief of DMV?
c) According to testimony by an undercover Hillsboro detective, falsified Voter I.D. cards were among the credentials both recommended and facilitated both at Robleto’s Drive Mater Education (DME) office in Hillsboro, and at “Carousels” staged by foreign counsuls, and attended by Oregon Elections and other state agency officials.
WHY haven’t Governor Kulongoski and Secretary of State Bradbury been asked for some “EXPLANATIONS”?
d) In his trial summation, the Prosecutor made a critical rebuttal remark. He said that even though glitches in state law make it equally possible for anyone to access fake credentials, Mr. Robleto is no less guilty for at the very least, “aiding and abetting” the “criminal enterprise” that exploited the vulnerabilities of the present system.
So why is NO URGENCY being expressed by The Oregonian for lawmakers and State Agency officials to impose the safeguards sought by both the Federal Real I.D. Act and the Help America Vote Act, each of which require proof of legal status and identity for access to a drivers license AND for inclusion in the federally funded State Centralized Voter Registration process?
The Oregonian’s very poor showing at trial has resulted in only two published Metro reports. This gives perhaps the indication of The Oregonian’s desire to minimize the largest racketeering and fraud case in Oregon history and to conceal it from statewide readership.
To be quite blunt: This case at trial not only has Oregon statewide implications but more importanly, Nationwide implications.
The Oregonian’s lack of coverage is outrageous.
Your publication’s readers are owed far wider coverage and at the very least some answers to the questions articulated above.