Congressman Michael McMahon [D-Staten Island, Brooklyn] and Congressman Brad Sherman [D-California], have written letters to Attorney General Eric Holder, Jr. urging him to initiate a Justice Department investigation into allegations of improper ex parte communications, as well as possible abuse of sentencing guidelines, in the prosecution of Iowa businessman Sholom Rubashkin.
“Ex parte communications are not permitted between a federal judge and the government prosecutors who bring a case to trial before that federal judge” Rep. McMahon writes in the letter. “If contacts between the judge and the government attorneys were hidden from the defendant, this would result in a significant miscarriage of justice… These allegations demand immediate investigation.”
Some spectators have also questioned the wisdom behind the 27 year sentence imposed upon Mr. Rubashkin. A number of former US Attorneys General, US Attorneys, and several senior Justice Department officials wrote a letter to Chief Judge Reade on April 26, 2010, urging her to disregard the initial sentencing recommendation of 25 years. “Amazingly, instead of taking the advice of these experts, Judge Reade actually increased the length of the sentence proposed by federal prosecutors from 25 years to 27 years” Rep. McMahon writes. “This sentence appears to be grossly disproportionate to the sentences given to other similarly situated first time, non-violent white collar criminals.”
McMahon and Sherman now join a group of their colleagues who have already written to Attorney General Holder regarding the Rubashkin case, including Reps. Anthony Weiner, Tim Murphy, and Bill Delahunt.
“May their letters and many similar actions on behalf of Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin be the conduit to right this terrible wrong,” said Shliach Mordy Einbinder, a friend of Congressman Brad Sherman.
“May we finally see an end to the suffering of the entire Rubashkin family with ultimate accountability for this indescribable abortion of justice.”