The Wojtas case, decided
May 10, 1985, by the United States District Court For The
Northern District Of Illinois, Eastern Division, Case No.
85 CR 48, cited as United States Of America, Plaintiff,
v. Wayne Wojtas, Defendant, and reported at 611 F. Supp.
118, is particularly interesting in that Wayne Wojtas was
not a pro se appellant – he was represented by Andrew
B. Spiegel, the attorney lauded by William J. Benson in the
book The Law That Never Was.
Also note, that this is the same Atty. Spiegel
who represented Benson in previous litigation and is alleged
to have paid him in excess of $100K in "under the table"
cash that Benson was convicted of neglecting to pay tax on.
In this tax evasion case, Wayne Wojtas moved
to dismiss the indictment charging him with three counts of
willful failure to file income tax returns in violation of
26 U.S.C. § 7203. In support thereof, Wojtas argued that
the Sixteenth Amendment was not validly ratified, so that
the present Internal Revenue Code was unlawful, and any indictment
brought under the Code was invalid.
As evidence, Attorney Andrew Spiegel submitted
his Memorandum of Law as well as three large volumes including:
The Law That Never Was by Bill Benson and M. J. "Red"
Beckman, and two loose-leaf binders containing certified copies
of the documents referred to in the book.
In this 1985 case, the Court received and reviewed
Benson’s “evidence” as presented by Atty.
Spiegel according to the published Opinion, in which they
“The Court This Court has read all
the introductory and concluding materials in the Benson-Beckman
volume, particularly including the February 15, 1913, memorandum
(the "Opinion") by the Solicitor of the Department
of State (that Department's general counsel, with responsibility
for furnishing legal opinions to the Secretary of State)
-- a document characterized by Messrs. Benson and Beckman
as their "Golden Key" that "unlocks a Pandora's
box of criminal fraud perpetrated by public servants, who
betrayed the trust of their masters."
The Court went on to say:
"Spiegel argues for Wojtas that Secretary
of State Philander Knox committed fraud -- a violation of
the criminal statutes of the United States -- in certifying
the adoption of the Sixteenth Amendment. But Wojtas' counsel
is no different from most persons who essay revisionist
history: He prefers to ignore what he cannot explain away.
[C]ompliance with Article V's requirements are within the
sole province of Congress and not the courts -- in the language
that has come to characterize such issues, they are "political"
(that is, nonjusticiable) questions.
Wojtas' counsel simply refuses to recognize
the impact of Field (let alone Leser) on his arguments "an
amendment has been completed and become a part of the Constitution,"
and as to that the "Congressional determination ...
is final and removed from examination by the courts."
Despite Wojtas' counsel's efforts to distinguish
away controlling Supreme Court authority, the principles
announced in Leser, Field and Coleman are dispositive. Secretary
Knox's certification and Congress' determination as to the
adoption of the Sixteenth Amendment are not judicially reviewable.
Further, as if the spanking they gave Benson's
16th Amendment argument wasn't enough, the Court saw fit to
include an Appendix to their decision providing a forum for
them to express ther comments related to Atty. Spiegel.
One kind of extraordinary irony is posed
by the motion dealt with in the body of this opinion. Wojtas'
counsel Spiegel, apparently imbued with the same fervor
that marks his clients' beliefs, makes a number of references
to asserted misrepresentations and false representations
by government counsel (in that respect Spiegel would do
well to read ABA Code of Professional Responsibility EC
7-37). Yet he fails to recognize the lack of candor in one
of his own fundamental contentions, on which it is worth
spending a moment.
But the point here is not whether counsel
is right in contending that the proper test for his clients'
criminal intent is a subjective one, but rather whether
counsel is forthright in simultaneously urging a sharply
different standard for "criminality" of the long-deceased
former Secretary of State.
This is not a case where "foolish
consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds." Counsel's
responsibilities to the adversary system deserve better.
Rather than expect your Clients to accept your
word for it, you can let them read the Decision, Order and
Appendix for themselves. See Exhibit.
questions and suggestions.