Help Justin Haggerty's wife and children while he is in custody in federal prison; and, support his fight to the Supreme Court of the United States.
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For two long years, I have been entrenched in a battle with the U.S. Department of Justice, for an action I took in the defense of the Catholic Faith and Christendom. Upon the guidance of my family and counsel, I have remained silent about my struggle. But, as I prepare to start my 12 month and 1 day sentence in federal prison, for which I must self-surrender on June 15th, I find it my patriotic duty to illustrate the corrupt and politically biased condition of our judicial system that currently wages a war against conservative, ethnically European, Christian men.
Antifa and BLM, marxist domestic terrorists, are protected by the government to loot businesses, burn down our cities, assault and murder police officers, and attack our Churches. In the past two years, most vandals and terrorists have had their charges dropped by liberal, George Soros backed, district attorneys. In fact, in Portland alone, 47 of 96 federal cases have been dismissed by making ‘deferred resolution deals” with known antifa members, who clashed with police, federal agents, and attempted to burn the federal courthouse.
I have not wanted to talk much about this issue with those close to me, yet alone on a public forum; however, I feel, after much prayer and contemplation, that I must speak out in conjunction with my legal fight, as we challenge the constitutional violations of the federal government to the Supreme Court of the United States.
In the subsequent article, I will address the marxist, anti-Catholic violence that sparked my action that resulted in my arrest by the FBI, my legal fight with the DOJ, the government’s violation of the 5th Amendment, the failed appeal to the 5th Circuit, and our appeal to the Supreme Court.
Marxist Revolution and Anti-Catholic Violence
2020’s marxist revolution has been brewing in the shadows of our inner cities and universities for some time, but in 2016 it began to violently operate in public. What first started with stoking a false race war, enabling BLM and other anarchists to incite violence, attacking the police, and threating to remove confederate statues and monuments, quickly took a turn against Christopher Columbus and St. Junipero Serra, who both spread Catholicism to and throughout the New World. It was also the beginning of rampant vandalism against Catholic Churches and statues of the Blessed Virgin Mary and our Lord Jesus Christ.
Two men of God and sons of the Church, Columbus and St. Junipero Serra represent everything that marxists hate; and it was in the attacks against them that showed the true nature of Antifa and BLM. The world has seen their kind before during the revolutions of 1789 (France), 1848 (Europe), 1905 (Russia), 1917 (Russia & Mexico), 1919 (Germany & Italy), 1927 (China), 1936 (Spain), 1945 (South Korea & Vietnam), 1953 (Cuba), 1968 (United States) and 1999 (Venezuela). From Karl Marx to Saul Alinsky, both who dedicated their souls and works to the diabolical, communists have attacked the faithful and the Church in each violent and bloody revolution since the Reign of Terror in Paris. This recent revolution in America is and has been no different.
Via the lies of ‘critical race theory’ and the mainstream media, Columbus and St. Junipero Serra were painted as colonizers, rapists, slave traders, and murderers, who committed crimes on genocidal levels and forced the Catholic Faith and European culture on native peoples. The violent thugs and vandals in American cities took their marching orders to start attacking public imagery of Western history. The operation was calculated and far more than an attack on confederate monuments or the memorials of our founding fathers, President Abraham Lincoln, President Ulysses S. Grant, and Catholic saints would have been left alone. Hundreds of Catholic statues were defaced with red paint, graffiti, damaged by blunt objects, decapitated, and torn down. The worse violence was inflicted on the West Coast.
My Offense on Columbus Day
During the summer of 2017, very similar to the anti-Catholic attacks today, there were some weeks where every evening I would see a new attack posted on social media. Living in El Paso at the time, stationed as a U.S. Army Captain at Fort Bliss, we were very aware of the anti-Catholic sentiment being shared from California in the media and on social media. A spree of anti-Catholic attacks against local Churches was worsening between Las Cruces and El Paso, and various groups and socialists were openly discussing Spanish and Catholic statues that should be targeted and removed. The local celebration to remove and replace Christopher Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples Day was very loud and charged with anti-Catholic hatred.
Frustrated that no one was speaking out about this violence, not even the Knights of Columbus or the clergy, I let my anger get the best of me. I wish I would have chosen to speak out in a more academic way or formed a group of Catholic gentlemen to help defend Catholic statues and Churches, but I failed to do so. As St. James the Greater is my Confirmation saint, I am often too zealous for my own good. On the eve of Columbus Day, 2017, I threw red paint on a newly erected Indian statue and placed a wooden Cross, which read ‘Columbus,’ in front of it. It was a countersign to their marxist attempt to “redwash” all Western and Catholic culture.
Fast forward to May 2019, I have an amazing job as a Plant Manager outside of Atlanta, a growing young family, an amazing relationship with a new parish, and the FBI raids my house one morning at 6:00am. Like I was some domestic terrorist or violent criminal on the most wanted list, nearly a dozen FBI agents, guns drawn, surrounded my house and scared my wife and children half to death.
My greatest fault was that I was completely transparent and honest with the FBI. My West Point education and Catholic upbringing led me to believe that if I cooperated with law enforcement that I’ll be let go to attend to my family and that the punishment wouldn’t be as severe. I was greatly mistaken, and I regret my naivety.
Legal Battle with the DOJ
Although I was blessed to be let out on bail in Atlanta, I was shocked to learn the severity of the charges and the unjust intentions of the government. Originally, the DOJ and the Civil Rights Division of the FBI sought hate crime charges; thanks be to God that they were unsuccessful. Manipulated by political motives, it was in 2019 that a man was charged with a hate crime and sentenced to 15 years for burning a gay flag that was hung from a Methodist church in Ames, Iowa. How is that a just punishment?
In my case, the prosecution was unable to prove to a grand jury that my action was made, due to any personal hatred or reservation against Native Americans. Nevertheless, it was clear, according to the interactions that my attorney had with the prosecutor, that the DOJ, Department of Indian Affairs, and the Civil Rights Division of the FBI were displeased with losing the hate crime and wanted the next highest federal charge.
Since the statue was on native land, of which I was unaware at the time, the property fell under the protection of federal land and maritime laws. As a result, I was charged with a felony for Malicious Injury of Property Located on Indian Country 18 U.S.C. § 1363 and 18 U.S.C. § 1152. The government was not willing to back off the felony, which has its lifetime implications, like voting rights (some states), employment issues, holding certain federal offices, military service, and Second Amendment rights.
A lifelong felony seemed much for having an unblemished record, serving my country, and for my crime of $1,800 in damages, which was the cost to pressure wash the paint from the statue. Even worse, my attorney, who was often ignored by the prosecutor, was unable to get the government to agree to probation, home confinement, or work release; simply put, the DOJ desired time in custody.
Before my sentencing on March 4th, 2020, we had gotten the government to agree on several variables of the federal sentencing guidelines. Firstly, the prosecution agreed that the statue was not a cultural heritage item, since it was new; secondly, we agreed that the damages would be recognized as the undisputed $1,800 pressure washing cost; and thirdly, that the sentencing guidelines projected 0 to 6 months in custody, which mostly likely would result in probation or home confinement.
At the sentencing, the government reneged on the agreement, and we were ambushed by the prosecution with a presentence investigation report that listed higher calculations. We should have been prepared for this, especially since Assistant U.S. Attorney Debra Kanof had been investigated multiple times and removed from cases for failing to present evidence and for misconduct. Approaching the bench, Kanof convinced the judge to recognize the statue as an item of cultural heritage, the damages as the full cost of the statue at $92,000, and a projection of 12 to 18 months in custody. As you can imagine, I felt the world slipping through my fingers at a rapid pace.
I delivered my statement and apology to the court and to the members of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo tribe:
To U.S. District Judge Kathleen Cardone and the Good People of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo,
I am heartily sorry for having offended thee, and I detest the harm that my actions inflicted against the good people of your community, your property, the reputation of your tribe, and the laws of the United States of America.
My actions were not directed toward the Tigua, Native Americans, nor any culture or peoples. On the contrary, they were an inappropriate and unjust attempt to defend against malicious attacks toward Christianity in America. Like many, I became angry as anti-Christian sentiment on televised media and social media manifested into violence. Throughout 2017, statues of the Blessed Virgin Mary, St. Junipero Sara, and Christopher Columbus were vandalized and defaced. Furthermore, Catholic Churches, sanctuaries, and tabernacles were damaged and molested, of which such crimes have continued over the past two years in El Paso County.
I was wrong in my actions, which hurt good people who had no connection to the beforementioned injustices. As an act of reparation and in accordance with the laws of Moses on property damage (Exodus 21:33-37), I reaffirm my offer, originally made on December 17th, to pay restitution for the costs of cleaning the statue. I do so, because it is right and just.
A read through the character statements, provided to the court by my peers and associates, present an understanding of my professional and accepting demeanor towards others and a strong condition and motivation to serve my family, society, country, and Church. Every day, and with all of my actions, I strive to be a servant leader. As a collegiate athlete, a West Point graduate, a former U.S. Army Captain, an entrepreneur in the international drone industry, a fortunate leader in resurgent American manufacturing, a charitable director in the Church, a friend, a husband, and a father, I remain motivated to lead and serve others.
Sergeant First Class [NAME OMITTED] and Dr. [NAME OMITTED], in his psychiatric evaluation, articulated the several life changing events that led to my medical separation from the U.S. Army and how they manifested undue stress that set the conditions for my err in judgement. Albeit a valid articulation of my state, the truth remains that I failed to be a servant leader on October 9th, 2017, and I express my concrete resolve to never fail again and to not let my failure define the rest of my life. In fact, I will learn from it; you cannot fight hate with hate, but with charity, prayer, and Truth.
I ask the Court for discretion to grant me the fortunate opportunity to continue to serve and develop the 166 men and women, who work in my two manufacturing plants in Atlanta, under my care and responsibility; to expand my education and earn a Master’s in Business Administration in the near future; and, most importantly, to continue to work in order to support and protect my family.
With a contrite heart and a most firm purpose of amendment, whilst with grief of soul and the offering of true repentance for my sins against God, the good people of the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo, and the United States of America, I pray and beseech Thee for forgiveness.
In Christ Crucified,
Justin W. Haggerty
Needless to say, the statement and apology was not well received. The prosecutor threw baseless and slanderous accusations that I didn’t truly serve in the U.S. Army honorably, because I was medically discharged; that military institutions protected me and shielded my disciplinary tours as a young Cadet; that I wasn’t a good father or family man; and that I was “privileged with a nomination to West Point.” That was the closest accusation to being a “white privileged” male; last time I checked I had earned my nomination to the academy and had to sacrifice a year at the prep school to do so. You cannot miss the choice of words when that phrase was the hot-button talking point on the mainstream media in 2020. Although I nudged my attorney, he did nothing to rebuke the slander from the liberal, female prosecutor, who was clearly mad at the world and every successful, ethnically European, Christian male. Her demeanor said it all and was a clear representation of her bias.
The judge had heard enough, and I was sentenced to 12 months and 1 day in custody. I was emotionless, almost lifeless, and walked out of the courtroom in a daze.
During my trips to El Paso for court appearances, I witnessed the easier treatment and sentencing of other criminals that leaves me appalled in contrast to my situation. I saw Mexican cartel and gang members, with multiple illegal entries and drug trafficking charges, get released and deported with only a few months of time served. For example, in 2017, the case of two soldiers at Fort Bliss, who were smuggling illegal immigrants across the boarder, was dismissed after a sealed court hearing. They each faced 10 years in federal prison.
Its obvious that justice was not applied fairly in my case.
Appeal to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals
I was accepting my fate and I wasn’t interested in appealing the case. We already spent our available funds on the failed legal defense and couldn’t afford to go further. COVID-19 was just spreading in the United States, and I was arranging my affairs in preparation to surrender to federal prison in May 2020.
My COO for the manufacturer that I work for had been very supportive since my arrest, but he was leaving the company for another opportunity. Before leaving, he spoke with the company’s co-owners, who were both extremely supportive and offered to hire my wife to keep our family financially secure. This was a true blessing, one that I can only credit to my daily Holy Rosary that I prayed with the intentions to keep me safe in prison, grant me early release from custody, and to allow me to continue to work to support and protect my family.
I was also expected to assume the roles and responsibilities of my COO, managing all operations for the company and its three manufacturing plants. Both owners of the company were motivated to figure out a way to keep me out of custody, and immediately contacted a very professional law firm in Texas to review the case, and I was granted an extension to my self surrender date due to the outbreak of COVID-19.
Immediately, the new attorneys wanted to challenge the court’s acceptance of the full value of the statue at $92,000 for the damages, when the actual $1,800 was never refuted and was used for my restitution to the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo tribe. Secondly, and most significantly, the law firm discovered that the prosecution violated my 5th Amendment rights and failed to present evidence in court to establish the federal government’s jurisdiction. In retrospect, my attorney at the time should have addressed the issue immediately and requested a dismissal.
The statutes that I was charged with, 18 U.S.C. § 1363 and 18 U.S.C. § 1152, both assign the burden on the government to prove the Indian or non-Indian status of the defendant. This is important to establish federal jurisdiction, as an Indian-on-Indian crime would be left to the jurisdiction of the tribal nation. No evidence was ever presented in court, the judge failed to require the prosecution to fulfill the requirements of the statute to establish federal jurisdiction, and the DOJ assumed, from the beginning, that I was simply a “white” male.
In their overzealousness and witch hunt to obtain the most severe charge and sentence, the prosecution and the court erred to “offer any evidence of an essential element of the case.” It is for situations like this, why the constitution provides protection.
If the evidence would have been presented to the court, we would have had an argument to the validity, tribal enrollment, and genetic makeup of my grandmother, who had claims to native lineage from the Indian Territories. By the abuse of power of the federal government, this opportunity was robbed from my defense. Regardless, the failure of the federal government to establish jurisdiction was a violation of my constitutional protections and warranted an acquittal and dismissal of the indictment under double jeopardy, since I was already tried and sentenced unconstitutionally.
My new attorney, with the assistance of a law professor from Georgetown, filed an appeal with support from the rulings of the 10th Circuit in United States v. Prentiss (2001) and Supreme Court in United States v. Lucas (1896), among other court precedents, that validate the constitutional requirement of the federal government to present all jurisdictional elements in court and that the federal government has the burden to prove those elements beyond a reasonable doubt. In fact, in United States v. Lucas (1896) the Supreme Court overturned the case and acquitted Lucas for the murder of Levy Kemp in Choctaw Indian territory, because the federal government failed to prove the non-Indian status of Kemp, who was assumed to be a “negro.” Justice George Shiras Jr., in the ruling opinion of Lucas, also applied failure to the court, that the judge erred in permitting the prosecution to not prove all jurisdictional elements.
The government countered our appeal with the ruling of the 9th Circuit in United States v. Hester (1983), “which had held that the defendant’s status as an Indian or non-Indian is an affirmative defense rather than an element under § 1152.” Additionally, the weaker side of the government’s argument was that the matter was never addressed during the trial.
In a zoom call on January 6th, 2021, instead of arguing the appeal in New Orleans, the law professor from Georgetown delivered the argument eloquently. We waited for nearly four months, and on May 7th were received the written ruling that the 5th Circuit had sided with the government, affirming the court’s application of the $92,000 figure and agreeing with the 9th Circuit’s decision in United States v. Hester (1983) that the burden of proof does not lie with the government but is an “affirmative of the defense.” In short, the 5th Circuit ruled that the burden resided in my defense and that we should have addressed the matter during the trail.
Erroneous, what is the purpose of an appeal if not to present new arguments and facts?
Appeal to the United States Supreme Court
The ruling by the 5th Circuit is a copout and an easy judgement to make to avoid greater constitutional challenges. Since the 5th and 9th Circuits agree that the burden lies on the defense to prove that the prosecution lacks jurisdiction, the ruling is a dangerous one and creates room for jurisdictional abuses by the federal government. Where is the constitutional protection in that?
By the grace of God, the 10th Circuit in United States v. Prentiss (2001) and Supreme Court in United States v. Lucas (1896) disagree and have ruled that, in order to protect the American people from federal abuses, the government has the burden to prove all elements. Even outside of Indian and non-Indian situations, such constitutional rulings will protect all Americans from a federal government that seeks to impose itself unconstitutionally and outside its jurisdiction to abuse and persecute its citizens.
This is a major federal jurisdictional issue, and one that must be fought, especially as the government has become infiltrated by socialists and marxists, who are working overtime to suppress Christianity and Western values.
As I write this, my attorneys are preparing to file an appeal to the United States Supreme Court. If the court chooses to hear my case, the Justices will have to constitutionally analyze the rulings between the 5th, 9th, and 10th Circuits and their predecessors on the Supreme Court in 1896. We have already been blessed with the assistance of two renown law firms in the Chicago area that will join the case pro bono.
The appeal to the Supreme Court will likely be a one to three year endeavor. It is a long shot, but necessary for the preservation of the Constitution. Unfortunately, I’ll have served my sentence, but an overturn and acquittal would clear my name and remove my lifelong felony.
COVID-19 is on the decline and the politicization of the virus is no longer a hot-button issue. Even if it was, I don’t want to continue to waste time fighting for extensions when I could go ahead, self-surrender, and get it over with. I want to get on with my life and continue to grow my family. I’m already fortunate that we were able to earn extensions for 13 months; we have been living on borrowed time.
On June 15th, 2021, I will surrender to the federal prison that I’m assigned to within the Bureau of Prisons. Since I’m designated as minimum risk, only listed as ‘property damage,’ I’ll be at a satellite camp with no fence and hopefully a better environment.
Thanks to President Donald J. Trump and his First Step Act, the Bureau of Prisons, counselors, and wardens have been given more programs and abilities to help minimum risk inmates rehabilitate and get home faster. Worst case is that I serve 8 to 10 months. I could possibly serve half the time with 6 months; and, there are cases where the warden sends inmates home in 3 to 4 months, placing them on home confinement, because they had a good family and work situation at home.
Not to be prideful, but my better place is to be home working, adding value to the economy and society, and paying my taxes. I don’t need to be locked up, punishing my family, and wasting taxpayers’ dollars for throwing paint on a statue with $1,800 in damages. Fact is fact, there was no $92,000 in damages.
My spiritual director has recommended that I treat this time in custody as a penitential period or a mini-purgatory if you will. I intend to strengthen my prayer life, tune down the noise and distractions in my life, continue to write articles, write a book, and continue to grow the Knights Republic to defeat modernism. A close friend of mine in the Knights said to “light the place on fire,” in reference to the Faith and the Holy Ghost. I intend to do so.
In the meantime, I will continue to publish articles about this matter, continue my duties in the Knights Republic, and grow the Army of the Sacred Heart to defend our churches from communist attacks. Just because I’m unjustly being sent to prison, doesn’t mean that the work stops. The apostles did not pause our Lord’s commandment to “teach all nations,” because they were unjustly incarcerated.
God often permits injustices so that people turn closer to Him or so something good can build from the ashes. I'm not sure of His plan, but if going to prison gives me the ability to fight and help destroy communism and modernism, then I will happily be persecuted a thousand times over to obtain that glorious victory.
Please pray for my wife and children during this difficult time; and, if you have enough time, please pray for me.
In Christ Crucified and the Most Victorious Heart of Jesus.
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