Maryland May Prosecute ACORN Sting Video Makers
In a shocking twist to Thursday's ACORN sting video story, the Baltimore city state's attorney is considering charging the two people that exposed the activity.
As NewsBusters has been reporting, Hannah Giles and James O'Keefe (pictured right) caught on video several ACORN representatives giving them advice as to how to get a loan to purchase a house to be used as a brothel whose employees would be under-aged illegal immigrants.
Despite the long list of laws possibly broken by these ACORN representatives, the Baltimore city state's attorneys office is looking into whether or not Giles and O'Keefe violated statutes concerning taping people without their consent (h/t HotAirPundit):
Baltimore, MD – September 11, 2009 – We have received inquiries from citizens and the media asking whether the Baltimore City State’s Attorneys Office would initiate a criminal investigation for acts allegedly committed at ACORN offices located in Baltimore. The only information received in reference to this alleged criminal behavior was a YouTube video. Upon review by this office, the video appears to be incomplete. In addition, the audio portion could possibly have been obtained in violation of Maryland Law, Annotated Code of Maryland Courts and Judicial Proceedings Article §10-402, which requires two party consent.
If it is determined that the audio portion now being heard on YouTube was illegally obtained, it is also illegal under Maryland Law to willfully use or willfully disclose the content of said audio. The penalty for the unlawful interception, disclosure or use of it is a felony punishable up to 5 years.
Isn't that special?
People are caught on tape giving business advice to folks looking to create a child-prostitution ring, and the state of Maryland is considering prosecuting those that uncovered the activity!
The Washington Examiner's Mark Tapscott elaborated Saturday:
[T]wo ACORN employees appear to have voluntarily become accessories to multiple federal, state and local crimes, including child abuse, interstate transportation for purposes of prostitution, tax evasion, and immigration law violations. The two ACORN employees may also have thus provided hard evidence that their employer should be prosecuted as a criminal enterprise under the RICO statutes.
And the Baltimore City State's Attorney may prosecute the two people responsible for exposing this heinous operation!
If any of this sounds vaguely familiar, it should because back in the Clinton days, the Maryland State's Prosecutor prosecuted Linda Tripp for recording Monica Lewinsky's description of her sexual encounter with President Bill Clinton. And, as the Baltimore blog Inside Charm City noted, this particular ACORN office has previously been in hot water for apparent illegal activities.
Reasonable people can disagree about the importance of the Lewinsky matter, but nobody can deny that O'Keefe and Giles have exposed multiple serious felonies involving sex slavery, child abuse, and federal tax evasion.
Indeed, yet this state's attorney, who apparently hasn't issued any comment concerning the prosecution of the ACORNers, is looking into going after the filmmakers?
Further complicating matters, Ed Morrissey noted Saturday that a Baltimore television station on several occasions used hidden cameras in investigative reports that ended up winning it awards. For some reason, the state's attorneys office didn't investigate the legality of those activities.
Beyond this, the actual code in question obviously exempts law enforcement officials that are involved in criminal investigations.
As these videos exposed folks in offices possibly funded with taxpayer dollars aiding and abetting criminal acts, the idea that those who uncovered such acts could be prosecuted is absurd.
Or is it?
After all, as HotAirPundit identified, the state's attorney in question, a Patricia Jessamy, is an avid Obama supporter and contributor.
As such, if charges are actually filed, wouldn't they obviously be retaliation?
If so, we now not only have a media unwilling to report the misdeeds of ACORNers, but we also have authorities going after those that dare to uncover such acts.
Honestly -- what country is this?