No doubt, you recall our report last month about the intergovernmental porn file swap ring going on in Pennsylvania. Shortly before the mid-term elections, high-level officials with the Tom Corbett (R) administration were forced to explain their part in a massive pornography file swapping scandal. Some resigned or were fired. Others, like now former Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Seamus McCafferty (D), fought back until unceremoniously suspended by his own court and finally admitted defeat by retiring.
It’s not over until the lady stops having sexual congress with the snake. According to Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane (D), the investigation continues – sort of. Here’s where it gets murky, but stay with me. This story has more curves than a cobra coiled and ready to strike.
Kathleen Kane ran for Pennsylvania Attorney General on a platform to investigate the investigation former Attorney General Tom Corbett conducted into whether Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky sexually abused minors while working for Penn State football coach Joe Paterno and later. Then-Deputy Attorney General Frank G. Fina led the original investigation.
Sandusky was eventually found guilty and is serving a long prison term, while Paterno resigned and died shortly after. Kane won, becoming the first female and first Democrat Pennsylvania attorney general since it became an elected position in 1980.
After she took office, a story appeared in the Philadelphia Daily News about another of DAG Fina’s investigations while working for AG Corbett. This one involved the finances of a NAACP director. The report suggested that Kane or her office leaked grand jury information about the case by quoting from a document alleged to be an internal memo prepared by the Office of Attorney General for a grand jury and that another grand jury was considering whether to charge Kane or others with violating grand jury confidentiality rules.
Still with me? Kane ran on a platform to investigate the Sandusky investigation, which had been Fina’s investigation. Fina investigated but did not charge a NAACP leader. A Philly paper criticized that investigation using information allegedly leaked from Kane’s office. That prompted another grand jury inquiry into whether Kane breached grand jury confidentiality rules.
But what, you say, does this have to do with pornographic emails? Those emails apparently emerged during Kane’s campaign-promise investigation as Kane reviewed the emails going back and forth between investigators and attorneys. Kane threatened to release them, and Fina asked a judge to bar their release because they were discovered during a review of files related to a grand jury investigation. The judge disagreed and Kane, in response to several newspapers’ Right to Know requests, released some of them.
But there are apparently others, so it’s not yet safe to open those file attachments coming from .pa.gov email addresses. And this is where the story really gets weird. According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Kane may be blocked from even mentioning Fina’s name in public. This may or may not be what she was referring to in a recent public statement she made after being called to testify on the leaks and after she hired famed lawyers Gerald Shargel, best known for defending mob boss John Gotti, and Lanny Davis, a former counsel to President Bill Clinton. In that statement, she lamented being unable to provide more information, claiming that court orders blocked her from doing so. She added that “I understand that there are those on the public payroll who stand to lose their jobs and who may feel threatened by our commitment to expose them. I will not be deterred.” Hours later, she retracted this part of her statement.
Kane eventually testified before the grand jury, but only after several months delay. On the day of one scheduled appearance, a driver picked her up at her home near Scranton and then crashed into a parked car after dropping an iPad on the floor. Kane, who was not wearing a seat belt, had to cancel her testimony because she suffered a concussion. If it worked for Hillary…
After finally testifying, Kane went on CNN to explain the nature of the emails. She called them deplorable, violent, hardcore and graphic, adding that some were “violent emails that had a string of videos and pictures depicting sometimes children, old women.” Davis later told reporters that he had seen the images, but that while the ones he had seen involving children were inappropriate, they weren’t necessarily child pornography. Davis also expressed confidence that Kane would not be charged criminally over the leaks on a technicality.
So that’s where we stand. There may or may not be more pornographic emails that may or may not involve children or mature women engaging in snake charming; and someone on the state payroll may or may not stand to lose a job over leaks, bad investigations or pornographic emails. That someone may or may not be AG Kane herself.
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