Brooklyn, NY (Family-of-Hal-Turner.blogspot.com)– The federal criminal trial of radio shock-jock Hal Turner took a dramatic turn this week when the defense proved with actual FBI documents that Turner was paid to go on national TV and say a federal judge was “worthy of death.” It was revealed last July that for years, Turner was a National Security Intelligence Operative for the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force.
Using two video clips from two separate national television shows, along with FBI pay vouchers and payment memos, defense lawyers flatly proved the FBI not only allowed Turner to say a federal judge was “worthy of death” but the FBI later allowed him to mention several elected public officials BY NAME and say they “deserve to be killed.’
Even more astonishing, less than two weeks after his appearance on national TV shows and posting the courthouse addresses of three Chicago judges, the FBI paid Turner $3,000 for doing it!
The icing on the cake: The payment memo issued to explain the $3,000 payment to Turner clearly states it was “. . . . . not illegal or criminal to post the Judges addresses on TURNERS web site. . . . .”
This may have been all Turner needed to drive a stake through the heart of the government’s case against him, which charges Turner with “Threatening to assault and murder three United States Judges.” The government is prosecuting Turner over an editorial he published last June which criticized three federal judges who violated the US Constitution and who ignored a recent US Supreme Court ruling. The editorial called the Judges "traitors" and said they "deserve to be killed."
The government claims that "deserve to be killed" is a threat to actually go kill them. Hal Turner says "deserve" is an opinion; protected free speech.
As a large screen descended from the courtroom ceiling and the lights dimmed, the courtroom stared in stunned disbelief as video of Turner from the national TV show “DATELINE NBC” showed the facts. In that video, which aired in April 2005, turner boldly repeated a statement he made on his worldwide radio show in 2002 that a ruling made by a federal judge made her “worthy of death.” When asked by DATELINE correspondent John Murphy if Turner still believed that, he replied “Yep . . . . . that’s my opinion.”
Watch that video now then read the rest of the story – and view additional evidence – below:
When the DATELINE video finished, Turner was still on the witness stand and explained that in late February of 2005, the mother and husband of a federal Judge in Chicago had been brutally murdered. The FBI suspected White Supremacists were involved in those killings and they met with Turner the following morning to plot a strategy.
At a meeting which took place at the Coach House Diner on Kennedy Blvd in North Bergen near Turner’s home, Turner testified that Special Agent Stephen M. Haug of the FBI and Detective Leonard Nerbetski of the New Jersey State Police spoke with Turner about using his extremist radio show to flush out information about the murders.
At that meeting, Turner testified, a plan was proffered to “poke fun at the murders” to see if it would flush out information from any White Supremacists who may have been involved. Turner testified that he was told to “ratchet-up the rhetoric” and to do so in a way that would “enhance his image as an anti-government radical.”
Within an hour of that meeting, Turner returned to his North Bergen home and uploaded to his radio show web site, a photo of the Judge whose family had been killed beneath a banner headline which read “GOTCHA.”
Defense lawyers showed the web page to Jurors who appeared quite taken aback by what they saw. You can see the actual evidence in a .PDF file by clicking HERE.
Turner continued his testimony by saying after appearing on DATELINE NBC, he was invited to appear on FOX NEWS CHANNEL. On March 5, 2005, Turner appeared live during a segment of “At Large with Geraldo Rivera” and again repeated that a federal judge was “worthy of death.” Then, in a move that shocked even the jaded Geraldo Rivera, Turner went on to publicly name three additional judges on the 7th US Circuit Court of Appeals and said they “would now feel the same scorn as Judge Lefkow.” He proceeded to name the Judges as a slack-jawed Geraldo sat in stunned disbelief.
You can see the FOX NEWS video – which was played in open public court and is shown here as evidence from that public courtroom – then read more and see more evidence below.
When the video from FOX NEWS CHANNEL finished playing, the lights in the courtroom returned to normal and Jurors then got an earful of more shocking defense evidence. Audio from a “Hal Turner Radio Show” was played from one year later which let the jury hear Turner name several elected officials and public university professors. Turner said they were “legitimate targets” for betraying the United States by supporting illegal aliens. Turner let loose by saying they “deserve to be killed” and later saying “I advocate anyone who can get close enough to go do it!”
LISTEN TO THE COURTROOM AUDIO CLIP HERE
After the audio clip, Turner was asked if he was arrested for what he’d said and testified “no.”
The icing on the cake came when defense lawyers produced an FBI pay voucher which shows the Bureau paid Turner $3,000 on March 18. The cherry-on-top to the defense was a memo accompanying the pay voucher which read in part “. . . . . . there was nothing illegal or criminal about publishing the Judges addresses on TURNER’S web site. . . . .” View a .PDF of those documents HERE
Whether this is strong enough to overcome the government case remains to be seen. In a despicable act of treachery, Assistant US Attorney William Hogan used material from Turner’s web site from as far back as 2002 in an effort to smear Turner as a vile racist. So desperate was Hogan to win, that he even produced a letter to the editor of a local newspaper from the year 1998 wherein Turner had criticized another federal judge. If that wasn’t low enough, Hogan then produced information about Turner having to leave his real Estate job with COLDWELL BANKER in 1997 because protesters threatened to picket the realtor over Turner’s on-air remarks as a caller to radio station 77 WABC in New York!
Turner was on the witness stand for more than two days and the majority of that time was spent deflecting government playing the race card. According to numerous persons in attendance, Turner was masterful at rebuking the government on almost every point.
Making matters quite interesting was the repeated need for Judge Donald Walter to tell Mr. Hogan to “stop.” In one extraordinary moment on Friday, Judge Walter had to tell Assistant US Attorney Hogan, “Sit down and don’t get up until I tell you to.” So stunning was this open display of judicial discontent that spectators at the rear of the courtroom broke out in laughter as Hogan sat down with a look of stunned disbelief.
Seeing the rising pitch and intensity of the exchanges between Hogan and Turner, the Judge admonished both men “This is not a high school debate. Keep your voices down.”
Hogan was clearly rattled by Turner, who fought for his freedom tenaciously. Hogan repeatedly fumbled for papers at the Prosecution lectern and was even seen talking to himself as he clumsily fumbled for documents.
The trial has been a media event, with print journalists from the AP and newspapers throughout New York City and New Jersey in attendance. Producers from a very prominent TV news show have also been in the courtroom every day. If he wins the case, Turner is expected to appear on CBS News “60 Minutes” within weeks.
The trial will resume Monday when the Defense is expected to call Special Agent Stephen M. Haug and Special Agent Dan Brunner, both from the FBI. Haug is expected to testify that Turner was a reliable and productive part of the Joint Terrorism Task Force and continued to supply information to the FBI after the Bureau cut ties with Turner in 2007. Agent Brunner is expected to rebuke Government claims that Turner was no longer desirable to the FBI when he is asked to testify about contacts with Turner as recently as March 2009.
If things go as expected, closing arguments would probably take place on Tuesday with the Jury being given the case either late Tuesday or Wednesday.
Hal Turner faces 10 years in federal prison if convicted.