Retired Federal Judge Speaks Out About Colorado Case Involving Over 200 “Missing” Pages of Court Transcript

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Retired Federal Appellate Judge H. Lee Sarokin says Court of Appeals has enough evidence to conclude that the IRP6 rights were “indeed” violated and the court should “either reverse and remand for new trial or dismiss”

Free The IRP6

If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor - Bishop Desmond Tutu

The IRP6 case concerns a Colorado-based company (IRP Solutions Corporation) that developed the Case Investigative Life Cycle (CILC) criminal investigations software for federal, state, and local law enforcement. The IRP6 (Kendrick Barnes, Gary L Walker, Demetrius K. Harper, Clinton A Stewart, David A Zirpolo and David A Banks) were convicted in 2011 after being accused of mail and wire fraud. (D. Ct. No. 1:09-CR-00266-CMA). The IRP6 have been incarcerated for over 22 months in federal prison in Florence, Colorado while their case is under appeal. (Case Nos: NO. 11-1487, Case Nos. 11-1488, 11-1489, 11-1490, 11-1491 and 11-1492)

The Honorable Judge H. Lee Sarokin has posted a 3-part series on Huffington Post regarding the IRP6 case and the missing trial transcript associated with the case. Articles by the Judge include “The Case of the Missing Transcript”, “The Missing Transcript Case Becomes More Curious - - Part II”, and “The Case of the Missing Transcript Solved”.

In part one of his series in The Huffington Post, Judge Sarokin writes, “Because there is always a danger in these matters of hearing one side, I insisted that I be furnished with the government's version of what transpired in this disputed exchange.”

Court records from the criminal trial of the IRP6 show that the IRP6 argued a Fifth Amendment violation during trial, citing that Judge Christine Arguello had “forced” one of the defendants to take the witness stand or she would “rest their case”. The IRP6 argue that the transcript to prove the Fifth Amendment was not provided to them during trial. Court records show that Court Reporter Darlene Martinez admits to omitting 200 pages of the transcript, and that Federal Judge Christine Arguello did not release the omitted pages (D. Ct. No. 1:09-CR-00266-CMA, October 2011, Court transcript pages 2062 -2063).

According to court records Judge Christine Arguello stated, “First of all, the unedited version (of the transcript) cannot be used for any purpose... how many pages is it?” Martinez affirmed, “Over 200 pages.” Judge Arguello further stated, “Over 200 pages...for no purpose that I can see that would be served by having that at this time.” “I am not going to have an expedited, and unedited version (of the transcript) delivered to the defendants (IRP6)”, concludes Arguello. (D. Ct. No. 1:09-CR-00266-CMA, October 2011, Court transcript pages 2062 -2063)

In part two of his series in The Huffington Post, Judge Sarokin writes, “In my earlier post I mentioned that a separate civil suit was instituted against the court reporter to turn over the transcript. That suit was dismissed on legal grounds, but now having read the court's opinion, its factual findings confirm without question the defendants' contention -- not about what was said, but rather that there is no record of what was said.” “Judge R. Brooke Jackson (in the civil suit) … made detailed factual findings”, added Judge Sarokin in his Huffington Post article. Further, according to his Huffington Post article Judge Sarokin writes, “Very significant to me is that following th[e] exchange between the defendants and the Court, Mr. Barnes, one of the defendants took the stand, and shortly thereafter it was government counsel that expressed concern. He asked the court to make it clear on the record that all parties 'had every reason to believe that Mr. Barnes intended to testify no matter what happened in this case...regardless of the fact that the defense otherwise ran out of witnesses this morning.’ Why would he (prosecutor) bring it up, unless he was concerned that something had transpired which made that clarification necessary?”

“But having now resolved the factual issue so clearly by an independent court, one cannot help but wonder wherein lies the delay? If there is no way to determine whether or not the 5th Amendment rights of the defendants were violated, does the Court of Appeals have any other choice but to either reverse and remand for a new trial or dismiss?”, asserted Judge Sarokin in his series in The Huffington Post.

“When A Just Cause saw what Judge Sarokin wrote in the Huffington Post there were obviously positive responses”, recalls Sam Thurman, A Just Cause. “To have someone of Judge Sarokin’s status review this case through a fresh set of eyes and come to the conclusions that he does is awesome”, proclaims Thurman.

In part three of Judge Sarokin’s “missing transcript” series, the Judge lists what he refers to as 10 “uncontested facts upon which the court could reach a determination that the right against self-incrimination was actually violated by the trial court even without the critical transcript”.

In a summation of his three part series in The Huffington Post, Judge H. Lee Sarokin wrote, “With all of this uncontroverted evidence, the Court of Appeals certainly has enough evidence to conclude that the right against self-incrimination indeed was, violated by the trial court; that defendants reasonably believed that at least one of them was required to testify in order to have the defense remain open; and that they succumbed to that threat, and immediately voiced their objections”.

The Appellate Court panel in the IRP6 case includes the Honorable Senior Judge Bobby R. Baldock, Honorable Judge Harris L. Hartz, and Honorable Judge Jerome A. Holmes.

The Honorable H. Lee Sarokin is now retired but served on the United States District Court (N.J.) appointed by President Carter, and the United States Court of Appeals (3rd Cir.) appointed by President Clinton. He retired in 1996 after 17 years on the federal bench. Judge Sarokin is well-known for his participation in the Rubin “Hurricane” Carter appellate case, reversing Carter’s conviction of a triple murder. Judge Sarokin is a contributor to the Huffington Post (

Related press releases:!press-releases/c21pq
A Just Cause is requesting support for a petition regarding the IRP6 case transcript:

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