Holy Love versus The United States of America—And Guess Who Is Winning

The Holy Love Ministry sits in a cornfield west of Cleveland. It is built upon the relationship between an otherwise ordinary woman and Mary, The Mother of God. Followers believe Mary visits on occasion and often sends signs, much like She does at Fatima or Lourdes. Pilgrims come from all over the world to witness and pray.

The Ministry is not poor. Donors have financed a beautiful Chapel and other buildings on the grounds. In fact, donors from Mexico City have been so generous that  the Cardinal of Mexico City called on the Vatican to apply some muscle and shut Holy Love down. Rome called Cleveland. Cleveland paid a visit to Holy Love. (I’ll write about that later, but it is not a coincidence that the country that produced the Vatican also produced the Mafia.)

Holy Love put its building fund into a credit union. A thief (The CEO of the Credit Union), looted hundreds of millions of dollars, including over $1,000,000 in Holy Love money. When Holy Love found out about the theft, and before the Government took over the looted credit union, Holy Love went to withdraw their money. That was their right. In fact, the Government was assisting some people in withdrawing money and structuring accounts. That way, when the Credit Union was shut down, they would not lose their money.

That did not happen to Holy Love. The Government lied to Holy Love. They told them that they had to wait until over the weekend to get their money. There was a rumor that Holy Love was under investigation. No one ever said what the investigation was about.  Just a rumor- nothing ever came of it. But over the weekend the Government shut down the Credit Union and locked up all of the money that was left.

And Holy Love was out more than $1,000,000.

I had represented them in their fight with the Vatican and the Diocese, so they came to me for help.

Easy case. It was their money. They went to take it out, but the Government did not let them. The Government lied to them to stop them from receiving their own money. The Government did so because of a baseless rumor. The Government had no right to the money.  Surely The Government would come to its senses and give the money back.

The Government did not come to its senses. The Government refused to give the money back. Suit was filed. The Government  fought the lawsuit.

And they did so by using a uniquely American defense.


You see,  you can only sue The Government if The Government allows you to. That is called Sovereign Immunity. There is more. You are not allowed to sue The Government if The Government lied to you. That is called THE MISREPRESENTATION EXCEPTION.  The Government’s defense was;  “Yes, we took the money-we shouldn’t have taken it-it wasn’t ours to take- and we won’t give it back. But, we lied about it so you can’t sue us.” Honest to God, that is what they said. And they won.

The case is on appeal, we’ll see,  but one thing is for sure.

The game is rigged.

Who is best qualified to be our next prosecutor?

Dear Friends and Colleagues,
This is an important election coming for Cleveland and Cuyahoga County. We will be conducting a contested election for a new county prosecutor for the first time in our lifetimes. Given all that we have seen in the past two years, unfathomable corruption, and a justice system so inbred that it has mutated beyond recognition, we need to pay very close attention. So, given that I have spent my whole life in that system, please allow me to impose upon you my opinion of who is best qualified to be our next prosecutor. 

In my opinion,
In order to understand how justice works in our county, you need to understand our history.

Our entire county, not just the courts, was dominated from the 1950's until the 1980's by John T. Corrigan. He was not always right, and his office got out of control as he got older, but he was a good man.

Ironically, he and my father fought cases with mutual respect for years and ended up in the Sandusky Veteran's home together, both enduring Alzheimer's, neither able to recognize the other.

During that time judges routinely came from the prosecutor's office. It was a strategy. If any judge fell into disfavor, an assistant was there to contest  the election. We also began the bizarre custom of electing Judges by last name (usually Irish, not that there is anything wrong with that) rather than an examination of their qualifications. John T loomed over it all.

Stephanie Tubbs Jones followed John T and the Justice Center lived in the Pax Stephanie. It was a time of reasoned and reasonable conflict.

Draw your own conclusions about Mr. Mason and what has happened to the County in recent years. But, in my opinion, we should all be ashamed of the job we let him do. It was almost like a Saturday Night Live Skit, with county cronies carrying out the furniture while the elected county prosecutor gave press conferences talking about how tough he was on crime.

What is most true to me about Cuyahoga County Criminal Justice is that it has evolved so far into its own world, it has become so ingrown, that it is a system in need of complete overhaul. We need a thoughtful approach to problem solving unencumbered by the past.

Now we have five Democrat candidates. Whoever wins the upcoming primary will no doubt  be the next prosecutor. This is Cuyahoga County and the chance of a Republican taking this position is so slim that none have yet filed.

So, in my opinion-

Subodh Chandra is the most thoughtful, and the best prepared of these candidates. He is well educated (Stanford, Yale Law), a former Law Director of the City of Cleveland, and a former assistant US attorney. His experience matches or exceeds all of the others. He is also a Justice Center outsider. Most important to me about his experience is the US attorney component. The Justice Department operates under strict rules for its prosecutors, built with checks and balances. On the other hand, in Cuyahoga County we have operated in a system so loose that almost anyone could have jumped on and taken it for a ride. The Tiki Hut and Hooker trial that will go on until after this election provides a clear view of how the county has operated. The only misleading aspect is that it appears what Dimora did was "small potatoes" compared to Russo looting the county property taxes for the benefit of his friends.

It is time for us, we here in Cuyahoga County, to look hard for an exceptional candidate to fill a difficult and complex job. To my mind, Subodh Chandra gives us the best chance to rebuild Criminal Justice in Cuyahoga County. That is surely something we need to do.