His Lawyers Seek to Avoid Jail Time with House Arrest
(Washington, D.C.) – This afternoon, U.S. District Court Judge Deborah Robinson sentenced disgraced former U.S. Special Counsel Scott Bloch to one month’s imprisonment for lying to federal investigators. Bloch’s lawyers, however, pled for house arrest or halfway-house “community confinement” as an alternative to imprisonment, and the judge is accepting another round of briefs.
GAP Legal Director Tom Devine commented, “Mr. Bloch’s desperate attempts to avoid accountability are becoming pathetic. He continues to disgrace the Office of Special Counsel, even after resigning in disgrace.” The U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC), established to defend whistleblowers and political threats to the civil service merit system, has been leaderless for nearly 18 months, since Bloch resigned after being indicted for making false statements to FBI investigators probing corruption at his office.
During his four years at the OSC, Bloch turned the agency into a caricature of its mission. He issued gag orders and engaged in harsh retaliation against whistleblowers on his own staff, abandoned the agency’s mission to protect whistleblowers, and challenged former House Government Reform Committee Chair Tom Davis (R.-Va.) to settle matters with a physical fight outside when challenged at congressional oversight hearings.
Devine put the latest sentencing development in perspective, “Taxpayers and whistleblowers should be grateful to a judge who is defending the rule of law.”