Friday, October 19, 2007

Thornburgh To DC on Wecht Case

The Post-Gazette reports that former Attorney General Dick Thornburgh will testify before a congressional subcommittee next week about his belief that politics are behind the federal prosecution of former Coroner Dr. Cyril Wecht.

A news release on a congressional website says Thornburgh will appear on Tuesday, October 23 at 10 a.m. It says the testimony will be webcast via a yet-to-be-posted link here.

Thornburgh will be one of three witnesses. The hearing is titled "Allegations of Selective Prosecution: The Erosion of Public Confidence in Our Federal Justice System".



Anonymous said...

How ever you frame this story, it is unprecedented. A former US Attorney testifying against a current US Attorney is not something that happens.

I personally do not feel that Former Attorney General Thornburgh is testifying for personal gain and/or any personal benefit. I feel he like so many others feel the US Attorney's Office, especially Western PA, is no longer working for the interests of the people. Jury is out on this one.

I will comment that I found the press statement by US Attorney Mary Beth Buchanan disingenuous. Less than 24 hours after Cyril's indictment, Mary Beth Buchanan held a press conference talking about the alleged body traffiking and plea deals. Somehow she was allowed to do this act and others are not. Seems odd.

As for Thornburgh's testimony, he is testifying before Congress per the ORDER OF CONGRESS. As much as the prosecutor's office might play up that this testimony is not allowed, they are wrong. Congress is simply acting in their role of oversight.

In the end, Mary Beth Buchanan and others should not fret too much. If she and the others committed no crime or unethical behavior, they have no need to worry. I mean after all, only the guilty go to court and go to jail. Its not like there are ever errors.

Anonymous said...


Did I read the post article correctly. The total amount of money misappropriated is ~$1,800 out of over $1.78 million dollars in appropriations. That's less than 0.1% Ah, its kinda like the rounding error on pennies from Superman III.

I hope that this is wrong. I can not imagine why we would spend millions (and yes having over 500+ motions already in court the wecht case has cost us millions) on an alleged billing error that very well could easily have been caused by a limitation in a computer billing system related to the handling of fractions of pennies in million dollar billings.

Why has the US Attorney's Office not provided a dollar total yet? In addition, is it fair to go forward with an indictment alleging miss appropriation of resources without providing any dollar figures?