Complaint Alleges Judge Christine Arguello Slandered Local Pastor, Church & Religion
Denver, CO -- (ReleaseWire) -- 07/31/2017 -- On July 20, 2017, Colorado Springs advocacy organization A Just Cause filed a judicial complaint against Judge Christine M. Arguello for "displaying religious animus and making demonstrably egregious, hostile and slanderous comments" about Pastor Rose Banks of the Colorado Springs Fellowship Church (CSFC) in Colorado Springs, Colorado and abusing a legal court proceeding for the purpose of attacking Pastor Banks. Judge Arguello has never met Pastor Rose Banks, who, for the past 36 years, has been the Pastor of CSFC. Pastor Banks has never committed a crime or been indicted and has a stellar reputation for honesty, integrity, kindness, tough love and giving in the Colorado Springs community. "Judge Arguello clearly violated the doctrine of the separation of church and state and standards of basic human decency," says Cliff Stewart of A Just Cause.
According to the complaint, Pastor Banks' son-in-law, Gary Walker (54 years-old), who was the President & CEO of the IRP Solutions Corporation, was convicted of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud in 2011. Since the 2005 raid of IRP Solutions Walker chose to defend himself and his codefendants both in and out of court, even choosing to fire his attorney and represent himself at trial along with his five codefendants (David Banks, Demetrius Harper, Clinton Stewart, David Zirpolo and Kendrick Barnes) who were executives with him at IRP. However, after being wrongly-convicted and sentenced in 2012 by Judge Arguello to serve 135 months in prison for being a leader/organizer in the alleged conspiracy, Walker, feeling frustrated from being in prison, had a sudden, self-serving epiphany that he was not really the CEO and not responsible for running IRP Solutions and asked Judge Arguello to vacate his sentence based on some ridiculously fantastic claims.
In a habeas motion asking to have his sentenced vacated, Walker now fantastically claimed that 1) he was only a CEO front-man at IRP appointed by his mother-in-law, Pastor Banks, 2) he was under the psychological control of Pastor Banks during the commission of the alleged crime and in firing his attorney, 3) Pastor Banks was running the company and made all decisions based on divine direction from God, 4) his wife Yolanda was culpable because she was bookkeeper and 5) he was only a lowly software developer and that he was unaware that his codefendants were allegedly making false statements to staffing companies to induce them into doing business with IRP, which was the central claim in the government's indictment.
"Court records confirm that none of these claims were made by Walker before trial, during trial or at sentencing," says Cliff Stewart. "In fact, long before trial, Walker personally defended his actions and business dealings in three online videos with other codefendants (See videos at http://bit.ly/2sdCTVA & http://bit.ly/2ubWLKc & http://bit.ly/2szeGIH). No self-respecting prosecutor or judge would give Walker's ridiculous claims a second thought but Judge Arguello and the Assistant United States Attorney Matthew Kirsch shockingly agreed to immediately release Walker based on his absurd claims" adds Stewart. "At the end of Walker's hearing Judge Arguello viciously slandered Pastor Banks," says Stewart.
The judicial complaint alleges that Judge Arguello (1) slandered Pastor Banks and attacked the exercise of her religious beliefs from the bench, (2) took improper judicial action without an arguable legal basis to release Walker, (3) engaged in unfair, discriminatory sentencing practices, and 4) has a pattern and practice of abusing sentencing laws established by Congress "It is clear from court documents that both Judge Arguello and Kirsch have been illegally using judicial proceedings in the IRP6 case as a tool to secretly persecute and destroy Pastor Banks," contends Stewart. "Judge Arguello also needs to explain to Congress why she sealed virtually all court documents in Walker's proceeding when the public has a presumptive First Amendment right of access to view criminal proceedings," says Stewart. "It is obvious that Judge Arguello and the government is trying to hide their secret persecution of Pastor Banks," says Stewart.
The judicial complaint further highlights how, in open court, Judge Arguello slandered and vilified Pastor Banks and her Christianity, calling Pastor Banks a "vindictive and mean-spirited Christian and Prophet of God" who controlled the minds and decisions of others, including Walker, Walker's wife Yolanda and their adult son Kyle, church members, her son David Banks and the other codefendants. Judge Arguello made these statements after receiving testimony from Walker and a few disgruntled church members, most of whom had no affiliation with IRP Solutions and all of whom had either voluntarily left the church or were asked to leave or were excommunicated by Pastor Banks for continually engaging in morally questionable behavior. Judge Arguello or the government never asked Pastor Banks, Yolanda and Kyle Walker or the codefendants about whether or not they were under the spell of Pastor Banks. Pastor Banks has two other sons-in-law, both of which met Pastor Banks' daughters and married in the church. Certainly, they could have informed Judge Arguello about whether or not they were under Pastor Banks' control.
"Isn't it bizarre that Pastor Banks is and has been the obsession of Kirsch and Judge Arguello in a federal criminal case about her son and son-in-law's software company when Pastor Banks was not even named in the indictment?" ponders Stewart.
"I don't believe Judge Arguello or Kirsch believed Walker's ridiculous claims for a minute," says codefendant David Banks. "My mother does not make choices or control decision-making for me, my sister Yolanda, my nephew Kyle, my codefendants or her sons-in-law," adds Banks. "All Judge Arguello had to do was ask us," says Banks. "We are not mindless automatons," muses David Banks. "The facts and evidence show we (the codefendants) are innocent, Gary Walker is innocent, and him lying about my Mom and suddenly feigning guilt to get out of prison is not going to change those facts --- facts that were proven with evidence from the government's own witnesses," adds Banks. "See for yourself online at (http://bit.ly/2mkcn4k) and also read the Washington Post article at http://www.wapo.st/29jXqSC where former federal appeals judge H. Lee Sarokin says we were indicted and prosecuted for failing to pay corporate debt," says David Banks. "Judge Sarokin or any other federal for that matter judge would risk their reputation by coming to the defense of convicted criminal defendants unless there was clear evidence of innocence or an unfair trial," adds Banks. "The government's case against us has been exposed as a fraud and their true motive of pursuing my mother has been revealed," exclaims David Banks.
"Judge Arguello and Kirsch obviously didn't check or care about the backgrounds of some of the disgruntled church members," says Stewart. "One young lady who provided an affidavit was caught stealing money as a teller at Wells Fargo Bank and El Paso County court documents show another man who provided an affidavit for Walker, sexually preyed on his teenage stepdaughter for years, even getting into the shower with her," adds Stewart. "Judge Arguello and Kirsch were so blinded by their desire to persecute Pastor Banks and cover up their misconduct in the IRP6 case they used Walker's outrageous claims in an attempt to do so," adds Stewart. "Walker feigning guilt does not change the fact that Judge Arguello abused her power and engaged in misconduct when she maliciously slandered Pastor Banks from the bench and immediately freed Walker based on his absurd claims of being under a spell cast on him by Pastor Banks," says Stewart. "It was Arguello and Kirsch who said Walker was a leader in the conspiracy while knowing all too well that there was no conspiracy because there was no crime," exclaims Stewart.
"Court documents clearly indicate that the indictment against IRP Solutions executives was nothing more than a ruse by Kirsch and the Colorado U.S. Attorney's Office to secretly pursue Pastor Banks and the church from the very beginning," says Stewart. Court documents show that 9000 out of 18000 pages of discovery was church and parishioner banking records which were obtained without a warrant or subpoena. Court documents show federal grand jurors in a 2007 grand jury (no. 06-01), who obviously didn't issue a subpoena, questioned FBI agent John Smith where he obtained the records who claimed he got them by subpoena. However, banking records were dated as early as 2003 and no grand jury existed at that time. Court documents show and the judicial complaint discusses that the grand jury foreman stated in open court that Pastor Banks was the target of the criminal investigation. Court documents show that the government only called church members before the grand jury and peppered them with questions about Pastor Banks and the church. Court records now show and witnesses at Walker's hearing confirm that Judge Arguello slandered Pastor Banks, her church and its members.
"I have personally spoken to numerous members of Congress and/or their legal counsel about Judge Arguello making rude, intemperate and slanderous remarks about Pastor Banks from the bench and her selective resentencing of Walker based on new post-conviction claims of being under the psychological control of Pastor Banks while the codefendants remain in prison," says Lamont Banks, Executive Director of A Just Cause. "Every single one of them expressed displeasure and outrage," adds Lamont Banks. "We have now forwarded them the judicial complaint at their request," says Lamont Banks.
"I hope our leaders and the public are starting to see the true gravity of the horrible injustice these men, their families and Pastor Banks have suffered at the hands of these officials," adds Lamont Banks. "We will not relent until we receive justice for these men and they are released from prison and reunited with their families," concludes Banks.
To see an online copy of the judicial complaint, go to http://bit.ly/2vmk73J.
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