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Whistleblower Requests Investigation of Department of Justice Lawyers and Nominee for Federal Court

From a just-released press release:

Whistleblower Requests Investigation of Department of Justice Lawyers and Nominee for Federal Court

Actions by Justice Department lawyers raise concerns about possible cover-up involving the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PRLog (Press Release) – Jan 31, 2012

WASHINGTON — Joseph Carson PE, multiple-time prevailing federal whistleblower and nuclear safety engineer, called for an investigation by the Department of Justice’s Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) into the conduct of attorneys from the office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia. The basis for the request stems from a 2007 lawsuit against the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB). The attorneys, Sherease Louis, Rudolph Contreras, and then-U.S. Attorney Jeffrey A. Taylor, argued on behalf of their client, the MSPB, that MSPB’s formal interpretation of a critical federal civil service law had been validated, several times since 1978, when Congress reauthorized MSPB.   However, MSPB’s response to a recent Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request reveal that no such formal interpretation exists.

One of the attorneys named in the request – Rudolph Contreras – has been nominated for a federal district court judgeship in the District of Columbia court – the very court he apparently made a false argument. The Senate Judiciary Committee approved his nomination with an unopposed voice vote on November 3, 2011. A full Senate vote is due at any time.

The 2007 lawsuit began when Carson sued the MSPB to compel it to comply with its mandate under 5 U.S.C. 1204(a)(3): to “report to the President and to the Congress whether the public interest in a civil service free of prohibited personnel practices is being adequately protected.” Carson contends that the MSPB, in its 34 year history, has never complied with this duty.

“If these allegations are true, it means that the Justice Department colluded with MSPB to cover up the fact that MSPB is in violation of its most critical mandate: to be the guardian of the civil service system by shining a bright light on abuses in federal agencies,” Carson said. “Now, we come to find out that Mr. Contreras is mere days away from being confirmed to the D.C. district court. His nomination should be put on hold until the Senate can get to the bottom of this situation.  This is particularly so as the allegations involve a critical law – perhaps THE critical law – for Congress’s ability to do oversight of the integrity of the entire federal civil service.”

A copy of the request to the Office of Professional Responsibility, as well as letters to the appropriate Senate offices, are available at www.mspbwatch.net.

 

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