Lawsuits Against Members of Congress Basted Upon
Cover-Up of Continuing High-Level Corruption
When former federal air safety agent Rodney Stich repeatedly encountered cover-ups when seeking to provide information and evidence of corruption relating to a series of fatal airline crashes (and other areas of corrupt activities) to members of Congress and federal judges, that fell within their area of responsibilities, he exercised rights provided by federal statutes. He filed lawsuits against several of the Senate and House members, and federal judges, seeking a court order requiring them to perform a mandatory duty and to halt their obstruction of justice conduct.
To understand the gravity of the issues, Stich was a federal air safety inspector when he first started contacting members of Congress. He had been assigned the primary responsibility for correcting the conditions that caused the worst series of airline crashes in the nation's history. Many crashes, and many deaths, occurred in his area of direct federal air safety responsibilities as a result of the deep-seated corruption and other problems. The corruption and the resulting crashes--and deaths--continued to occur as the checks and balances engaged in obstructing justice.
The corruption that Stich was seeking to report to members of Congress and to act upon created conditions that on September 11, 2001, insured the success of the 19 terrorist hijackers. These conditions included refusal by FAA management to order the simple and inexpensive measures that would have prevented the four groups of hijackers from hijacking the four airliners on September 11, would have prevented 40 years of prior hijackings, and would have prevented many other air disasters arising from known, from reported, and easily corrected safety problems or safety violations.
In addition to seeking a court order forcing these members of Congress to receive the information and evidence of corrupt activities in the FAA (and in other government entities), there is a section of the Civil Rights Act that makes a person financially liable if they know of civil rights violations being inflicted upon a person, and who have the power to prevent them, and if they refuse to take such actions. Title 42 U.S.C. § 1986 provides for this federal cause of action.
This cause of action arose on the basis that Justice Department personnel and federal judges were acting in unison, violating Stich's civil rights as part of the scheme to block his reporting of the criminal activities.
Another goal Stich sought with the filing of these lawsuits was to make a record of the charges and a record of the response. Probably never in the nation's history have lawsuits been filed against members of Congress claiming they were criminally covering up for criminal activities that were subverting major national interests, including national security.
Two lawsuits were filed against members of the U.S. Senate and House. These members named as defendants in the lawsuit filed in the District of Columbia ( No. 89-0170 SS) included Senators Edward Kennedy, Strom Thurmond, Ernest Hollings, Albert Gore, Pete Wilson; Representatives Joseph Biden, Jack Brooks, John Conyers, Harley Staggers, and Henry Gonzalez.
Another lawsuit was filed in the United States district court at Reno, Nevada (No. 89-85), in which one of the defendants was California representative Norman Mineta, who was on the House aviation committee and who would in 2001 be head of a major aviation department naming (plus defendants Senator Alan Cranston, and Representatives George Miller, Fortney Stark, Don Edwards, and Daniel Lundgren.
The names Biden and Mineta played prominent roles in subsequent aviation disasters arising from the continuation of major air safety problems that was made possible by their cover-ups. In one day's deja vu consequences 3,000 people died. Mineta was the head of a government agency responsible for, would you believe, aviation safety! And Biden would be responsible for, would you believe, an investigation into the conditions that had a major role in the 3,000 deaths.
The primary basis for these suits was:
(1) they knew of the corrupt and criminal activities in their area of oversight responsibilities, primarily the aviation area, and that they refused to perform their legal duty to receive evidence of such crimes;
(2) that they knew of the civil rights violations inflicted upon former federal aviation safety agent Rodney Stich by Justice Department lawyers and federal judges in association with the misuse of these government entities to block the reporting of these crimes against the United States; and
(3) to put into this information into a judicial record to show how subsequent tragedies were made possible by their cover-ups and obstruction of justice.
The Defendant Members of Congress Did Not Deny Charges
Lawsuit filed in the federal courts at Washington, D.C. (MS Word) (Adobe PDF)
In response to the filing of these actions, the Senate legal counsel filed a motion to dismiss my complaint on February 27, 1989. The motion to dismiss admitted that the defendant senators and representatives knew of my charges; knew of the consequences in air tragedies and the harms inflicted upon me. They did not deny the relationship between the misconduct and the deaths in the air tragedies Stich listed or the actions taken to silence him. Nor did they deny that they failed to take any actions to prevent the criminal and wrongful acts. Under federal pleading practice, any allegation in the complaint that is not denied is deemed admitted as true.
Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8(d): Effect of Failure to Deny. Averments in a pleading to which a responsive pleading is required, other than those as to the amount of damages, are admitted when not denied in the responsive pleading. Averments in a pleading to which no responsive pleading is required or permitted shall be taken as denied or avoided.
These matters would play a key role in the 3,000 deaths made possible by the documented corruption within the FAA, but by being part of an investigation into that tragedy, they simply became part of the standard damage control process.
Claiming Immunity for Their
Criminal Cover-Ups and Obstruction of Justice
After these admissions, they argued that they were immune from the consequences of their acts, under the Speech or Debate Clause of the United States Constitution. To put this response in perspective, picture an air disaster scene in which the crash and deaths were related to misconduct that they could have prevented, they were washing their hands of any guilt. Pictures of people leaping to their deaths from high-rise buildings that were part of the yet-to-describe aviation tragedy may make this argument somewhat arrogant.
This response has serious implications. No longer could these members of the Senate and House argue they did not know of my allegations or of the corruption related to a series of continuing air tragedies. All they could now argue was that regardless of their inactions, which made possible many of the deaths described within these pages, they could not be sued. The defendants' motion to dismiss stated in part:
This suit is barred by the Speech or Debate Clause, Art. I, sec. 6, cl. 1, of the Constitution, and (2) the complaint fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted.
Stich opposed the motion to dismiss by stating case law showing that the Speech or Debate Clause only related to actions taken on the floor of the Senate and House relating to passage or non-passage of legislation. Stich recited case law that held the clause did not protect illegal or unconstitutional conduct. I also argued controlling law that prohibited dismissal of lawsuits that state federal causes of action, and that the allegations in the complaint must be accepted as true for the purpose of opposing dismissals. Further, that the court had a responsibility to receive the information of the criminal activities and to consider an order requiring the defendants to perform their legal duties. The law that Stich cited included:
Miller v. Transamerican Press, 709 F.2d 524 (9th Cir. 1983); Kilbourn v. Thompson, 103 U.S. 168, 204 (1881); Eastland v. United Airlines States Servicemen's Fund 421 U.S. 491, 502. (1975).
In addition to seeking dismissal before the matter could go to trial, the defendant senators and representatives requested that the judge remove all evidence from the court records that the lawsuit was ever filed. The intent of this motion was to protect the senators and representatives from consequences at a later date if the judicial records were examined by an inquisitive investigative reporter. In this way there would not be any evidence a lawsuit had been filed; that the defendants admitted the charges; and that they continued the cover-ups that would be involved in subsequent air disasters (and the consequences of other criminal activities that were also inflicting great harm upon national security).
There is no law permitting removal of evidence of the filing of an action. These are public records, protected by the public's right to know. Their destruction would violate federal law. Further, federal law, including Rule of Civil Procedure 60, permits a party to file a motion, years later, to reinstate an action. This right, however, becomes valueless if the record is destroyed.
Lawsuit Filed in Federal Courts at Reno, Nevada
The lawsuit filed in Reno (February 10, 1989, had as one of the defendants, Norman Mineta. His earlier cover-ups when former federal aviation safety agent Rodney Stich several times made him aware of the corruption and related crashes helped continue the conditions that enabled four groups of terrorists to hijack four airliners on 9/11. After 9/11, believe it or not, the Bush administration placed Mineta in charge of aviation safety matters where his conduct could continue the harm he made possible by his earlier conduct.
One of the reasons for filing similar lawsuits in different courts was due to the (a) emergency nature of the charges, and (b) the repeated dismissal of the lawsuits by different federal judges. The multiple filings increased the chances of having one of the filings escape immediate dismissal.
Amended lawsuit filed in Reno on March 14, 1989. (MS Word) (Adobe PDF)
Motion by Senator Cranston to dismiss, March 28, 1989. (Adobe PDF)
Supplemental motion to dismiss by Senator Cranston, April 4, 1989. (Adobe PDF)
Stich's opposition to motion to dismiss, April 10, 1989. (MS Word) (Adobe PDF)
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