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September 11, 2004

Comments

Tom

Copyright violation is an untenable accusation. First of all, it would be a civil violation only, not a criminal offense. More importantly, if the documents are real, they were created by a government employee in his official capacity and therefore they are public domain. If they are forgeries, the copyright is vested in the forger, who presumably approves of their use by CBS.

Tom

Copyright violation is an untenable accusation. First of all, it would be a civil violation only, not a criminal offense. More importantly, if the documents are real, they were created by a government employee in his official capacity and therefore they are public domain. If they are forgeries, the copyright is vested in the forger, who presumably approves of their use by CBS.

Russ

Just spitballin' here... but it occurs to me that forging a document over the signature (real or otherwise) of a TANG LtCol might be construed as "impersonating an officer," which is almost certainly a crime.

Any doubt I have about that is due to my imperfect (read, "scant") knowledge of Texas law. Impersonating a "regular components" officer, however, would certainly appear to be a crime.

18 U.S.C. Sec. 912 says:

Whoever falsely assumes or pretends to be an officer or employee acting under the authority of the United States or any department, agency or officer thereof, and acts as such, or in such pretended character demands or obtains any money, paper, document, or thing of value, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both

Maybe there's room for interpretation there. I dunno: IANAL.

Antonious

Wouldnt it just be easier to apply 'election fraud' or 'forgery of government document' charges? I would also think that you could concievable apply 'slander' as well (from Killian's family POV).

Carridine

Breaking the tyrannical grip on CBS and other entrenched orthodoxies is my sincere hope! If a small lawsuit will do it, HOW CAN I HELP?

Because I still want to see charges filed against John Kerry, for either 1) providing aid and comfort to the enemy during a time of declared war; OR 2) lying under oath before the US Senate. Either/OR, but damned if he can have it both ways.

How can we (I, an American citizen) pursue filing papers against JFKerry?

Andrew X

What about libel? Don't these memos show Killian to be acting in a manner that is less than honorable, possibly outside of regulations, ouside of his character, and show him willingly complicit in the accused behaviour?

Were the Killian's to sue CBS for doing this maliciously, the case might be borderline, specifically in terms of libel, and there's a good chance they would lose. But "winning the case" would not be the issue here. Discovery and subsequent vindication would be. Would this not be an option?

Pink Pig

There are plenty of ways that a criminal case could be made here. For example, if the documents were ever sent through the mail, then that could constitute mail fraud. I'm also pretty confident that it could be prosecuted under RICO; all that is required is proof of a pattern of fraud, which in regard to 60 Minutes is pretty much a slam dunk.

JM Hanes

The question I keep waiting for someone to address is what "personal" file are we talking about here in the first place?

BTW, did you catch this item from RatherBiased noting that:

"Over at the liberal grassroots site IndyMedia, Pablo Kristophoros says that the disputed memos cited by CBS are in author Kitty Kelley's upcoming book The Family : The Real Story of the Bush Dynasty.

For some reason my hotlink html didn't work. Find quote above at:
http://ratherbiased.com/news/content/view/231/2/

Alex

You're arguing contradictory theories here. If the memos were created by Mr Killiam as part of his duties as a TANG officer, they are almost certainly work product, and the property of either the Texas of federal government, not the Killiam family. I really question whether the law professor you quoted thought his statement out.

It they are forgeries as you claim, then of course they are the property of neither the Killiam family nor the TANG.

I don't see the Killiam family having any sort of a credible claim against CBS.

There isn't a libel claim either. THe memoes don't place Gilliam in a bad enough light that they could reasonably be said to libel him. Others have confirmed that the basic story they convey is authentic, whether or not the docs are. And the dead can't sue for libel anyway.

Since the source isn't coming forward, it's likely that it's somebody else who had access to TANG files and removed the docs without authorization or, possibly, forged them. If they forged the materials and took money from CBS, then they (but not CBS) are guilty of criminal fraud. But CBS as a rule doesn't pay sources, so this is unlikely. If the stuff is genuine, there may be other statutes which can be used to prosecute the removal, but those who claim to support the rights of individuals against the overweening power of big government really should think about whether that is a prosecution they should support.

J_Crater

Looking at the DOD site, the most like criminal offenses committed are mail fraud, wire fraud, false impersonation with intent to defraud, or false official statement.
I doubt any of these would apply to CBS, but rather the source of the documents. Although CBS could have exposure with Accessory after the fact or Conspiracy.

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