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Thus far, I have tried to present a background so that I could dis
cuss my case with the FEA, and you would have a better understanding of
some of the principles of law involved and an insight into those mat
ters which give me deep concern.
My case is an unusual one, as it is a Civil Rights case concerning
a small businessman.
At the present time, the papers and supporting documents concerning
the law and the facts are about three inches thick, and I anticipate that
before a decision is rendered, they will be six inches thick. You can
understand that with this volume of information, it would require
several lectures to cover the details.
I shall discuss some of the
Prior to being placed in court, I was threatened with being turned
over to the Justice Department. I say threatened, those with the FEA
thought they were threatening me, but really, they threw Brer Rabbit in
the Briar Patch.
It is heartbreaking that there are some in and out of
government who use the Justice Department to frighten the American cit
The JustICE Department is not in business for the sole purpose
of prosecuting criminals:
it should be respected and not feared.
in court, the Justice Department takes over, and the FEA becomes their
client. This is to my advantage.
My defense is laid out based on the denial of my First Amendment
right of free speech, and the right to redress government of my griev
Also the violation of my rights under the Fourth Amendment guar
anteeing protection against unreasonable search of my records and
thi violation of my 'Fifth Amendment rights of due process. Because my
constitutional rights are being violated, these being my Civil Rights,
this becomes a Civil Rights case.
Our attorney, Mr. William (Bi11) Cooney, receives the credit for
introducing Civil Rights into the case.
As this case was a violation
of my constitutional rights, he said that it would also be a violation
of my civil rights. So with this, we began to focus on Civil Rights.
He asked me to assist him in the research on Civil Rights, as this was
his first venture into this field of law.
I found the research fascinat
I began the research with a psychological prejudice, as perhaps
some of you would, since I had believed that Civil Rights laws were for
a minority group.
It is my country and my law and I shall use it. It
is your country and your law, and you, too, can use it, but to use it,
you must call upon the force of law.
If this were a case against a state agency, the law is well settled
and there would be little to do other than ask for the decision.
being a matter between me and a federal agency, I must overcome the law
made by Justice Douglas, and also the implication that it is the intent
of Congress to provide immunity to federal employees for their mistakes
whether they be honest or dishonest.
The FEA has subpoena ed our companies' leases.
In a recent court case
with Shell Oil Company, the court ruled that the FEA was without legal
authority to inquire into leases; the court also ruled that rent was not
the same as prices.
The court also ruled that certain FEA regulations
referring to leases and rents were unconstitutional.
I would think this
becomes a moot question and leaves very little for our District Court
One of the regulations in question concerns FEA investigations of
records, which I quotes
Inspection. Records required to be kept under
Paragraph (a) shall be made available for inspec
tion at any time upon the request of a repre-
One would need only to have had a decent course in civics to know
that this regulation fails to meet the Fourth Amendment requirements.
This regulation says investigations may be made' any time, day or night,
weekend or holidays, without notice and does not require the test of
reasonableness. Furthermore, it has a Nazi and Fascist flavor, and is
repugnant to our American principles. I shall ask the court to rule
this regulation null and void as being unconstitutional.
I sought under my Fifth Amendment rights due process and under the
rules of the court to obtain depositions of several FEA employees.
court granted my prayer. If this situation were not serious, it would
No one can imagine the organized confusion within the FEA.
Ordinarily, court logic is to first look at the subpoena to see if
it is valid on its face, second to look and see if the FEA met the tech
nical requirements of the law in the filing of its papers, and lastly,
to look at the merits of the case.
I shall ask the court to reverse its
logic. This request can be made in no other type case than a civil
It is highly suspect that the subpoena is invalid, and unless we can
have the court reverse its ordinary logic, the case stops at this point.
It is also highly suspect that the FEA was deficient in the filing of
its papers, and here, too, the case would come to an end. This may
help you to understand why it is so difficult to get a court decision
on a constitutional issue, since genreally the case is decided before
its me rits are even considered.
There is only a remote chance that I will get an unfavorable decision,
but what I want to get is a decision based on the Fourth Amendment:
that would go into the law books, on which others might rely. Regardless
of the outcome, the law developed in the Civil Rights field has been
worth the effort put forth, and can be used by others to their benefit
once they learn that it is an effective avenue of law in dealing with
governmental agencies. You should remember, I could not have initiated the action, but when the FEA placed me in the Federal Court, I gained
some advantages by being a defendant, or as the records state, the
In discussing this case, I used the first person, as the FEA placed
me in the courts, and it is my case.
Mr. Bill Cooney, our attorney, is
due much credit and praise, as he has not only loaned me his intellect
and talent, but also his heart.
Litigation is expensive from both a time and money viewpoint, and
is not to be recommended unless it seems to be the only avenue for a
redress of grievances.
In my case, because the very heart if my
government is at stake, and my most precious possession, i.e., my rights under the U.S. Constitution were and have been taken away, what
this case has cost in time and money will be the best investment I have
made in my life time.
In closing, I would like to reiterate one important point:
We stand facing two giants. We are frightened on the one hand by
big business, and on the other by big government. We see our
freedom slipping away by degrees, and an oppressive government
being run by uncontrollable bureaucrats.
We must do as David of old
did, use our sling-shots, and with a few pebbles, slay the giants.
Working together, we can sling a lot of pebbles.