D’Souza’s Astonishingly Incoherent Defense

D’Souza’s Astonishingly Incoherent Defense September 16, 2014

In debating the details of the Dinesh D’Souza case with those who claim, with no evidence whatsoever, that he is a victim of selective prosecution, I went through and read the transcript of the pretrial hearing on several motions by his attorney. What those transcripts showed was an incredibly incoherent defense strategy that can be summed up thusly:

1. He committed the crime and knew that he was doing so when he did it.

2. But he had no criminal intent.

3. And he’s really, really sorry. Ashamed, in fact, and terribly contrite.

4. But the entire case is nothing but a political witchhunt by the Obama administration to destroy one of its prominent critics, so he shouldn’t be punished for the thing he’s incredibly sorry for and ashamed of.

Did they really think that was going to be a viable defense? One other thing that should be pointed out is that the judge considered the question of selective prosecution during that hearing and both sides had a chance to brief the matter. After reading those briefs and hearing oral argument, the judge pointed out that the DOJ, the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York and the Eastern District as well had prosecuted both Democrats and Republicans for exactly the same type of conduit contributions since Obama took office. He cited four separate cases that had been filed in similar situations, three of them involving contributions to Democrats and one involving Republicans. He also notes that D’Souza was flagged in a routine audit of contributions made in the 2012 campaigns in New York by the FBI.

The judge then concluded that “the defense, respectfully, has presented no evidence that he was selectively prosecuted. The burden, at this motion stage, is some evidence. I determine that there is no evidence. There is no evidence of discriminatory effect nor of discriminatory purpose. The defendant is, for example, unable to say what classification he is in and whom, if anyone, is similarly situated in a different classification that has not been prosecuted. That the case is interesting or high profile is insufficient to constitute some evidence of selective prosecution.” Here’s that full transcript:

D'Souza Pretrial Hearing

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  • Alverant

    What makes you think he needs evidence to convince the right wingers that he’s being persecuted? It sounds like another case of IOKIYAR.

  • John Pieret

    Brafman, who is a quite renowned criminal defense attorney in New York, sounds like he doesn’t want any part of arguing the selective prosecution defense. D’Souza may have insisted on raising it, possibly as a face-saving position among the right wing crowd.

  • grumpyoldfart

    Alverant #1 see if you can work this out: WDYWTWW

  • blf

    WDYWTWW: Wicked Democrat partY Wants Totalitarianism World-Wide.

  • Glenn E Ross

    I think that the right wing crowd is living in their bubble to such a degree that they have lost their ability to function in the real world. They think the same irrational and fact free arguments will work outside their bubble. Either that or they now believe that their bubble IS the real world.

  • R Johnston

    The “selective prosecution” claim never was a legal claim in this case; it was a cry to solicit funds from right-wing rubes. Which is kind of ironic given what he’s being prosecuted for.

  • tmscott

    Aaaw… and his mommy told him he was special.

  • felidae

    Let’s look on the bright side: if D’Sleaza gets some jail time maybe he will become another right wing asshole that becomes an advocate for prison reform like Chuckie Colson , Mikey Milliken and Jack Abramoff

  • freehand



    What do you want to watch Wednesday?


    I think that the right wing crowd is living in their bubble to such a degree that they have lost their ability to function in the real world.


    They get their internal model of reality from tribal authorities, and they get their tribal identity by avowing approved beliefs (not just values, food, and clothing, but beliefs). Even the ones who started out as cynical propagandists, have, I think, lost track utterly of reality.

  • whheydt

    Sounds like D’Souza was attempting a variation of the old joke about a guy who killed his parents and then threw himself on the courts mercy because he was an orphan.

    (W. S. Gilbert did that idea much better, of course, with the help of Sir Arthur Sullivan’s music.)

  • What’s the maximum sentence he could get? I’m sure that less-famous people get more time than that for stealing or otherwise misusing smaller amounts of money than D’Sozzled misappropriated.