More Prosecutorial Misconduct in the Sad Case of Jamie Olis

One can only wonder when the mainstream media will pick up on the outrageous conduct of the Justice Department in the sad case of former mid-level Dynegy executive Jamie Olis?

First, in a prosecution that probably should never have been pursued in the first place, the Justice Department dramatically misrepresented the market loss attributable to the transaction over which Olis was prosecuted, prompting U.S. District Judge Sim Lake to sentence Olis in March 2004 to an absurd 24 years in prison.

Then, after the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals threw out Olis’ sentence on this past October 31, the Justice Department had over two months to prepare for the hearing on Olis’ resentencing. Despite that time to prepare, the prosecution simply asserted that Olis should be sentenced to an almost as absurd 15 years in prison and failed to prepare any meaningful evidence of market loss to support that position.

On the other hand, Olis’ defense team produced impressive expert reports that establish the impossibility of establishing with any degree of meaningful certainty the market loss attributable to the transaction over which Olis was prosecuted.

Now, in yet another outrage, the Justice Department has requested six additional weeks to prepare market loss evidence for Olis’ resentencing hearing despite the fact that it has been clear since the Fifth Circuit’s decision of October 31 that such evidence would be necessary for Olis’ resentencing. Inasmuch as Judge Lake is about ready to commence the trial of former key Enron executives Ken Lay and Jeff Skilling, it now appears that Olis resentencing will be postponed for at least four months.

Meanwhile, justice, respect for the rule of law, the principle of prosecutorial discretion, common sense and human decency continue to be the casualties of the sad case of Jamie Olis and other dubious prosecutions of corporate agency costs in the post-Enron era.

Update: Doug Berman continues to place the over/under on the Olis resentencing at 5-7 years. I’ve been taking the under on that bet, but the latest news reflects that my bet is based more on a generally optimistic nature than savvy betting skills in such matters.

5 thoughts on “More Prosecutorial Misconduct in the Sad Case of Jamie Olis

  1. Agreed! How does the market loss only apply to Olis and why is he alone in all this? Could it just be because he refused to plead guilt? How can that be allowed in a system that is supposed to care about fairness, justice and lack of disparity? Olis’ boss gets 15 months for his “cooperation” in pleading guilty and testifying against his subordinate and the subordinate is then the one that faces the government firing squad just because he didn’t agree to do the same? News reports state that the judge is hinting at a minimum of 6 years even while he apologized to Olis’ boss and Olis’ colleague who got 15 months and 30 days respectively for disrupting their families. Why is Olis so different? Primarily because prosecutors charged him with as many counts as they could to punish him for the audacity to not just play dead but maybe also because he is requiring this process to work like it is supposed to and in the process, is revealing it’s seamy underside and that seems to be highly irritating to all involved.
    How can we be okay with the overwhelming control and authority that is being wielded by individual prosecutors in this case. Let’s face it, they aren’t all selfless champions of justice- they have their own personal goals and agendas and have the power to be vengeful when they don’t get what they want. Remember, this guy didn’t pocket money and he didn’t control company disclosures or communications to shareholders at his level. How can anyone dare to stand against government prosecutors when they can invent a crime and bully people into pleading guilt and bribe them with their own freedom if they testify against others? No one can take this risk when they have a chance to lie and make someone else, anyone else, the scapegoat. It is obvious that that is exactly the message that is intended and this judge is helping prosecutors send that message and is damaging an innocent family to do it.
    I think it is time to revise a very old saying: Crime does pay- Claiming a crime, pays even better but claiming innocence on the other hand, will be severely punished. How can anyone risk the penalty of claiming their innocence given this example?

  2. Can someone please explain to me how one can sleep at night knowing that he continues to unjustly hurt a family while not pursuing the higher ups implicated in the case. I don’t know the case well enough to know Olis’ level of guilt, however, it was pretty clear from the government’s own witnesses that there is much more culpability at much higher levels that appears to have not been pursued. So the message is: the government clearly has the time and resources to make sure they are unduly harsh to the scapegoat as opposed to attempting the more difficult task of going after the “true executives” (contrasted to the chronicles definition), that really profited. Who’s interest is truly being served here?

  3. I have a copy of an appeal that my common-law husband, Robert Allen Meek, has submitted for appeal. The is misconduct on behalf of the DA and his attornies. Is there anyway that this appeal could be reviewed and maybe you could help us with this case. Please let me know if you would at least be interested in looking at his appeal.
    Thank you in advance for your help with this matter.
    Sincerely,
    Jackie Weaver
    (713) 668-6641
    jweaver@bovayengineers.com

  4. Pingback: Hope for Sanity in Sentencing of Business Executives? | Houston's Clear Thinkers

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