"The Court is ordering both the Defendant and her agents and attorneys, including counsel in her civil cases, Montgomery Blair Sibley, to not release, further distribute, or otherwise provide any person or organization the phone records of Pamela Martin & Associates and/or the phone records of Deborah Jeane Palfrey." -- From the court order issued today by U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler.
Washington D.C.--And so, we have the reason for why Ms. Palfrey's site is down, it was by a court order. This last Sunday, the "DC madame" and her civil attorney, Montgomery Blair Sibley, threatened to release her remaining phone records (once stated from 1993-2002, now "1996-2002"). In a strange twist, federal U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler has placed a "temporary restraining order" on the records, claiming the situation is akin to "witness intimidation."
So let's get this straight: I go and have illegal sex with a "prostitute," and I'm suddenly a "witness" to the crime that I was a co-conspirator in. That's a pretty creative interpretation of the law, isn't it?
Not that Palfrey seems the type to let this deter her; if she's as cunning as I assume she is, there's an individual (or more) out there who's going to do timed-releases onto the Internet of the phone records--if the judge and prosecutors turn up the heat or jail Ms. Palfrey. It could be done from another country, too, and shutting it down would be a real challenge, especially if the people releasing it were mobile.
In a letter dated Sunday, Palfrey's civil attorney, Montgomery Blair Sibley, had demanded that Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales conduct a special investigation into what Sibley described as an unfair prosecution of Palfrey's business. Sibley said that he would release Palfrey's phone records for all to peruse -- including Internet bloggers -- if Gonzales did not take action. Noting that ABC News had identified one federal prosecutor -- now deceased -- in its review of Palfrey's phone records, Sibley suggested that the remaining records probably contain the numbers of other notable customers and escorts. (Washington Post, 05.11.2007)Man, what I would give for those records. Why, I would be proud to be one of the millions of bloggers who posted some of them on my site (with analysis). Ms. Palfrey and her lawyer might want to invoke whistle-blower laws, but one has to wonder the precise reasoning for the judge's injunctions.
Surely, it could be a bluff on Palfrey's part, but we have no reason to think so. Just ask Randall Tobias. It should be noted that Sibley has an expertise in federal forfeiture laws, and has even written a textbook on it that's available through Amazon.com. Perhaps Ms. Palfrey is ignorant in her ideas of "fairness" in Washington D.C., and all the other corridors of power. Has "fairness" ever entered into it? I should think not, and so her path is clear: she has to play as dirty and as ruthless as her former clients, and she has begun to.
This woman is a real quandary to established power, and it's not unlikely that she and her service were part of an infrastructure of rewards, secrets, and information networking. The reason for the new injunction is made clear in an AP release from May 8:
In his letter to Mr. Gonzales, Mr. Sibley said several years of phone records were never given to ABC News and that he plans to widely distribute the records in seven days unless a deal can be reached with the Justice Department. Mr. Sibley suggested in the letter that "the journalists and Internet bloggers who will receive these records have decidedly different standards than that of ABC News." Further release of the phone records might cause conflict with a judge's order barring Miss Palfrey from making certain disclosures. The exact scope of the order is under dispute [Ed-my emphasis.]. (AP, 05.08.2007)And today, it's no longer disputed. Let's face it, powerful men usually never have anyone they can confide in--not even their trophy-wives--and that's OK. They should feel isolated, paranoid, and lonely because they covet power. In intelligence parlance, "pillow talk" has always been one of the easiest routes in obtaining intelligence. Getting into a man's--or woman's--head tends to work best after coitus.
You can see the possibilities in this, can't you? It's possible--even likely--that a whole lot of blabbing occurred [Ed., 06.14.2007-Ms. Palfrey has been comparing the whole case with the Profumo scandal in the UK, during the 1960s recently]. Damage control is almost impossible in this situation, especially with the potential for dissemination in the age of the Internet. But what's lost in all of this is the dead federal prosecutor:
In a letter to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, Palfrey’s civil lawyer, Montgomery Blair Sibley, contends that the Justice Department should compel ABC to disclose the prosecutor’s identity and whether he had any role in the Palfrey investigation. (ibid)Today, the Department of Justice (Gonzales) has stated the prosecutor is "long-dead." Can we trust them at their word? Considering we know attorney general Gonzales is a serial liar, the reasonable answer would be "no." Simply releasing his name would clear everything up, wouldn't it? That's what we should expect from any legitimate investigation. Which leads us to...The investigation of Pamela Martin & Associates: when did the investigations really begin? Justice seems to be implying it wasn't before 2004. The problem is, how does the Justice Department have the name of the deceased prosecutor? Was ABC's statement that he was dead a tip-off to Gonzales? Did ABC have contact with the Justice Department over the contents?
A "career Justice Department prosecutor" identified in a news report as a client of alleged Washington madam Deborah Jeane Palfrey has been dead for nearly three years, the Justice Department said Tuesday. ...In a statement Tuesday, the Justice Department said the individual died in 2004, presumably before authorities began investigating Palfrey. "I don't know how dead people can influence prosecutions," Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd said. (AP, 05.08.2007)Curious, all that. I think Ms. Palfrey knows more about what's in those records than she's letting-on. Is the dead prosecutor a red-herring? He could be, but it's obvious you cannot trust anyone at face-value in this story.
The Washington Post Today: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/05/10/AR2007051001450.html
AP, 05.08.2007: http://washingtontimes.com/metro/20070507-110432-5627r.htm
AP on the dead prosecutor, 05.08.2007: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2007/05/08/national/a102104D46.DTL&feed=rss.crime