Prosecutorial Misconduct in the Case of Former Congressman, Rick Renzi

A formal complaint and request for investigation was filed with the Inspector General and the Office of Professional Responsibility within the Department of Justice on April 10, 2019 regarding misconduct committed by Gary Restaino, Esq., an Assistant United States Attorney in Arizona (“AUSA Restaino”), and Daniel Odom, a Special Agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“SA Odom”). Factual Findings and Sanctions by the Court against these DOJ officials clearly established that the government deliberately and with foreknowledge repeatedly engaged in corrupt and illegal acts during the investigation and prosecution of Mr. Renzi, proving irrefutably that his trial was fundamentally unfair and that his convictions were fraudulently obtained and are without merit.

  1. Fabricated Dossier/“Operation Eagle” – The government investigation was driven by a fabricated dossier procured by Resolution Copper Company (a foreign-owned mining company) President Bruno Hegner (a South African citizen) and Democratic lobbyist Ron Ober who together hired former FBI agent Jim Elroy to launch a covert plot which they code-named “Operation Eagle” to target Mr. Renzi in a blatant political “hit job.” Although the allegations in the dossier were false, the scheme was handed off to the politically-driven AUSA Gary Restaino, a staunch partisan Democrat whose wife was Arizona’s then-Governor Janet Napolitano’s General Counsel.
  2. Illegal Media Leaks and Electioneering – In the weeks leading up to the 2006 mid-term election, DOJ officials intentionally leaked details of the grand jury’s investigation of Mr. Renzi to Arizona and national media outlets, calculated to sabotage Mr. Renzi's hopes for re-election.
  3. Illegal Wire Taps of Mr. Renzi’s Attorneys – After an evidentiary hearing in 2008, the district court found that the government had deliberately and illegally recorded dozens of attorney-client privileged phone calls between Mr. Renzi and his counsel and had lied regarding the manner in which the calls were recorded.
  4. Destruction of Evidence – In order to cover up the illegal wiretap, SA Odom ordered the transcript of an illegally recorded call to be destroyed, falsely claiming it was done to “prevent agents from being tainted by exposure to the privileged calls.” However, another case agent kept a CD with a copy of this call in his unlocked desk throughout the investigation.
  5. Witness Payoff Scheme – The government repeatedly engaged in witness manipulation by inducing key witness, Phillip Aries, to make a monitored phone call to Mr. Renzi and to change his testimony to match the false narrative contained in “Operation Eagle” in exchange for a significant future payoff that Mr. Aries later claimed would be “like winning the lottery.”
  6. Suppression of Exculpatory Evidence – The government deliberately concealed and withheld exculpatory evidence provided by Mr. Aries regarding the nature and origins of a proposed land exchange underlying the criminal case, information that would have revealed Mr. Renzi’s innocence.
  7. Knowingly Sponsoring False Testimony to the Jury – The government contrived and knowingly elicited false and misleading testimony from Mr. Aries while under oath and deliberately concealed from Mr. Renzi and the jury the offer of a future payoff to Mr. Aries in exchange for his false testimony.

We ask with all humility that you support our efforts by contacting the Inspector General and the Office of Professional Responsibility to demand a thorough and honest investigation of corruption and prosecutorial misconduct in Mr. Renzi’s case.

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