By K. R. Claviger
Although Frank is going to be doing his own response to each of Suneel Chakravorty’s posts concerning the trial of Keith Raniere, I cannot allow some parts of what Suneel has included in his first post Suneel: Only a Gullible Fool Can Ignore the Cami Tampering Evidence: Part 1 -Why Didn’t FBI Agents Find the Cami Photos Sooner? to pass by without some comment.
In this regard, however, I will limit my comments to legal-related issues in order to avoid, as much as possible, any overlap with Frank’s response.
First, every delay in Keith Raniere’s trial was approved by his lawyers – and presumably by Keith himself. That’s because there was so much evidence involved in the case that both sides needed extra time to prepare for the trial.
Second, non-specific claims are meaningless. Thus, claiming that Keith was “denied due process” without identifying the specific actions, inactions, or decisions behind that claim has no merit whatsoever. In this regard, the term “denied due process” is not some magical phrase with infinite possible meanings.
On the contrary, that term is inextricably bound to the specific rules, statutes and case law that determine what specific “due process” is due in any specific circumstance – and what constitutes a violation of that constitutional right.
Third, asserting that something is possible is not the same as providing evidence that the something actually happened. Thus, asserting that one or more witnesses in Keith’s trial may have lied is totally meaningless. In order to make a valid point with respect to this matter, Suneel would need to provide compelling evidence that a specific witness lied about one or more specific issues – and that the lie(s) in question had a direct impact on the jury’s verdict.
Fourth, even if Suneel’s assertion that Keith’s lawyers should have done more than they did were true, that has nothing to do with due process. The reality is that Keith had an exceptionally good defense team – and that they were not constrained in terms of cross-examining prosecution witnesses, nor prevented from calling whatever defense witnesses they wanted to call to testify on Keith’s behalf. And, once again, Suneel has failed to provide any specifics in terms of what Keith’s lawyers should have done – or should not have done – during the course of the trial.
Fifth, Suneel’s assertion that Judge Nicholas Garaufis erred during the trial “…for not intervening to some degree and overlooking substantial procedural errors” indicates that he does not truly understand the role of a judge who is overseeing a criminal trial. In addition, Suneel, once again, failed to provide any specifics as to what exactly these alleged errors were.
I could go on and on in terms of other legal principles that Suneel either doesn’t understand or decided to ignore in his post – but I will hold off doing so until Frank has had a chance to post his full response.
In closing, let me just say that wishing our criminal justice system worked differently is not the same as proving that specific errors were made with respect to a case that didn’t turn out the way you wanted it to turn out.