U.S. District Magistrate Judge Paul M. Warner said utahfedwatch.com, which
federal prosecutors say Sharla Johnson operates, violates a gag order he issued
May 9. Warner said if she persists, Jeremy Johnson would "find the sanctions
not to his liking." The gag order was against Mr. Johnson. Is this then an
attempt to bridle free speech?It sounds to me Mr. Johnson has a lot
to answer for but threats against critical speech?
How does putting Jeremy Johnson in jail stop his wife's website?
I say she should take her website down once Swallow has been fired and sent to
jail. Until then, keep the website up.
I remember as a child the story of Wolf, Wolf, I think Johnson is hoping to
distract the media and the public crying Wolf about John Swallow in hopes to
take away the heat and attention he is facing. John Swallow is innocent until
proven guilty. There has been no trial. Seems like some think he is guilty until
proven innocent. This story furthers the depth of misdeeds lined up against
There's no free speech issue. Johnson surrendered his right to untrammeled
expression when the judge issued the gag order in the case. Now, by continuing
to verbally assault everyone involved in prosecuting him he is attempting to
poison the pool of people from which juries trying him and his associates will
be drawn. The pretext that his wife is running the sites will not prevent
Johnson from being sanctioned. In fact, there may be grounds to indict her.
The article mentions that he was an administrator, but when he got called on it,
he took his name off. This could mean he is simply continuing to run it under
his wife's name. If she had started it independently, his argument would
hold more validity. His lawyer says he has done "virtually" nothing with
the site since removing his name. As a writer, I can tell you that
"virtually", which technically means "practically nothing" is
used as a weasel word. In writing, especially in advertising, it is used to mean
"it could be, but might not be." In other words, it means nothing.
Having done "virtually" nothing with it may be meant to deceive
listeners into believing he is not involved when he is.If it truly
is his wife's site, then the judge is wrong to order him to make her stop
or to divorce her. That is immoral--she has a right to speak her own mind. The
question is whether it really is her mind, or if it is just her name on his
If the judge's jurisdiction is limited to the accused himself, he has no
authority to gag the wife. Under what law will he punish a man innocent until
proven guilty for somebody else's behavior? If he has the authority to gag
the wife, then he should do so legally, and then legally punish her if she
violates it. By making threats to overreach his power, it seems he lends
credibility to the accusations made on the site. Isn't the judge supposed
to be unbiased? Federal prosecutors don't charge people until they
feel they have enough evidence to prove a case. If he's guilty, I hope they
keep him in orange jumpsuits for a good long time. Most people who have been
scammed (and that's a lot of us) will slant against him, no matter what he
accuses the govt of doing.
If I read the article correctly the judge stated he had no authority over her.
That should be the end of the matter right there. It is not, the judge is now
acting to coerce speech he does not like. The !st Amendment is not about
protecting happy talk, but offensive speech. This seems a classic example of
it.I say sanction the judge. I've all but run out of tolerance
for Federal mischief.
Let's have a gag order against Swallow in the form of him not being allowed
to hold his job until he is cleared of the accusations against him. Johnson has
not been convicted, and this overzealous judge and federal government impose
unreasonable sanctions against him, such as STEALING his property.Do
the same to Swallow. There is more evidence of his wrong doing than the feds
have against Johnson.This is nothing but more abuse by the federal
government, that has run wildly out of control with power. Anyone that supports
this action by the feds belongs in prison, because ultimately that is the only
means by which they will learn what liberty is.
Free speech is something both sides of the isle stand together on.
So a Wife loses her first amendment rights because her husband is under a gag
Order. Hasn't the Judge disqualified himself under the rules of
professional conduct, by threatening someone within his jurisdiction, for
conduct of someone he has no jurisdiction? Isn't that evidence of exactly
what they say is wrong with the federal government? Hasn't he made a
decision without evidence as to the defendant's control over his wife. Or
is he showing his gender bias that the man controls the women. You
do not give up your first amendment rights when you marry, or your spouse is
charged with a crime. Perhaps the Judge should focus on the conditions of
release, rather than stomping all over someone's constitutional rights.
Jeremy Johnson did business outside the rules. Now he wants to go through the
court system outside the rules. That won't work.
This is another example of Mr. Johnson finding loopholes. Trying to pretend that
he has nothing to do with the websites that he started is disingenuous. Putting
something in his wife's name so he can't be held accountable is so
typical of these types of criminals who justify their behavior and think they
are above the law.
"There's no free speech issue. Johnson surrendered his right to
untrammeled expression when the judge issued the gag order in the case."Interloper: Certainly this is a free speech issue. Johnson did not
surrender his right to free speech, it was taken from him when the judge issued
the gag order. I suggest you learn the difference. I
wish to know what he has to say and prefer to draw my conclusions.
Apparently, the judge assumes that Mrs. Johnson is completely under Mr.
Johnson's control. That wouldn't be cool even if he were inviting the
Johnsons over for dinner. But the threats he's making sound like something
you'd hear in a medieval courtroom. "Control your wife!" Oh my heck.
Clearly, Jeremy Johnson has many supporters. That tends to be true of con men.
They are masters of manipulation.As I said before, the gag order
takes precedence over Johnson's right to free expression. The purpose of
the order is to protect everyone's interest in the trials being fair,
including his. Allowing him to poison the jury pool by using his wife as a
cat's paw is to malign the prosecution is against the public interest.
The judge may have no current power over Mrs. Johnson, but that doesn't
mean she cannot be charged if she continues to interfere. To me,
this seems to be of a piece with Johnson selling basically nothing to consumers
and claiming he is somehow benefitting them by taking their money. He uses
language to obfuscate what he is really up to. Perhaps Johnson
doesn't realize his abuses of the system will be taken into account when he
is sentenced. Defendants who have been combative get longer sentences.
What's with the feds? I know nothing of this man, this case or even the
rules for gag orders. But all gag orders should be suspect. Silencing a wife
should not be an option for the judge - unless she was a co-conspirator in the
alleged crime.Why should defending yourself in the public square be
subject to a gag order? Are jurors thought to be idiots?