Sunday, January 15, 2006

It didn't turn out well for Irv at ALL!

by Martin Paskind (all the red)

A lawyer who represents himself, an old saw says, "has a fool for a client." Let's check this out. Irving Kanarek is a longtime lawyer. He represented himself. And just as the old saw predicts, he hasn't done really well so far. There's another old belief, perhaps supported by too little evidence, that we in the legal profession are ethical, honest, and honorable people. Well, maybe. Kanarek may not think so.

Kanarek was a California lawyer who became famous years ago as Charles Manson's defense attorney. Manson was a cult figure whose followers killed an actress named Sharon Tate and several other people. One of his followers took a shot at Gerald Ford, when he was president. Until O.J. Simpson turned up, Manson probably was Los Angeles' biggest homicidal celebrity.

Fame doesn't last. Few people remember Kanarek, although he was well known for his wardrobe and habits during the decade or so following the Manson case. During that time, Kanarek prospered reasonably well. In fact, he had a household staff of two, Jose and Hermalinda Rangel. In January 1989, more than eight years ago, the Rangels sued Kanarek for breach of contract, fraud, and malpractice.

Kanarek represented himself. Then, in November 1989, he wound up in a locked psychiatric ward at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. There Kanarek remained for a very long time.

Kanarek's hospitalization got lots of press in Los Angeles. Kanarek was the kind of guy that the papers love to write about, and that lawyers love to gossip about. The Rangels and their lawyers, Nancy Kaufman and Edwin Printemps, knew about it, along with the rest of L.A. Kanarek's mental condition didn't slow Kaufman and Printemps down. They went right ahead with the Rangels' case.

Kaufman and Printemps took part in two in-court settlement conferences. They then set an uncontested hearing in August 1990. They didn't say a word to the judge about Kanarek's whereabouts and said nothing about the defendant's state of mind. They didn't ask for a guardian ad litem to look out for Kanarek. Kaufman and Printemps wanted a default judgment that they could present for payment to the Client Security Fund of the California State Bar. Very few readers of L.A. newspapers back in 1990 were unaware of Kanarek's circumstances, but one of the unaware, apparently, was the judge. This supports a theory of mine that judges need not read newspapers because they know everything already. However that may be, the judge ruled in favor of Mr. and Mrs. Rangel and against Kanarek. This fate frequently befalls litigants who don't show up in court.

The Rangels took their judgment to the security fund, which, in turn, sued Kanarek to get its money back. At about this point, Kanarek got out of Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. He was not a happy man. Naturally, he sued everybody in sight. Kanarek went after Kaufman and Printemps for abuse of process, fraud, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Kanarek made things as hard as he could for the trial and appellate judges. They said, "The first cause of action alone runs 39 pages, much of it filled with material concerning alleged statements by defendants which the trial court found to be clearly statements uttered in a judicial proceeding." Nevertheless, the judges found, buried amid the discarded matter, allegations that the litigation privilege did not protect Kaufman's and Printemps's silence.

The two lawyers did not like that outcome, so they took the case up on petition for writ of mandate. The two defended themselves energetically. They claimed a perfect right to keep their mouths shut about Kanarek's whereabouts.

Appellate judges faced the issue of whether concealment by silence, without accompanying statements, qualifies for immunity under the litigation privilege. "The answer," they said, "lies in the complex nature of silence itself. Silence can signify nothing, or it can communicate a good deal, all depending on context."

Kaufman and Printemps, said the appellate court, given their knowledge, "had a duty to advise the court of [Kanarek's] condition and of the need to appoint a guardian ad litem for him. But the defendants kept the information to themselves, breaching this duty."

"There is," the court continued, "a truth at the core of Kanarek's claims. This is the principle that a plaintiff may not take advantage of a defendant's legal disability to obtain a judgment without a fair adversary hearing. A plaintiff who is aware of a defendant's mental incapacity or some other factor preventing the defendant from participating in a legal proceeding is duty-bound to inform the court of this fact."

This sort of conduct, said the judges, is fraud extrinsic to, or outside, the judgment. Such fraud allows the court to set aside the judgment. "Kanarek, however, seeks something else in this action," said the court. "He seeks to establish defendants' liability in tort for their breach of this duty of disclosure. It is this claim for monetary damages that runs headlong into the litigation privilege."

So the question is- if BUGliosi paints Kanarek as a nutjob at the trial in his novel, HELTER SKELTER AND if it turns out that Kanarek ends up in an nut house, then did Mr. Manson get adequate representation at his trial? Whether he choose it or not?

Just askin'!


Bruce Hall said...

If i remember correctly, the only lawyer that the defense team had with any murder trial experience at all was Paul Fitzgerald, and i believe that he was Patricia Krenwinkel's attorney.

The "Bug" was very well seasoned in murder trials and Kanarek was in way over his head.

Was it a "Fair" trial that Manson got ..... honestly, my answer to that would be "No".

I think that a real good attorney would have made the drug connection between the Manson group and Frykowksi and how that some members of his alleged "Family" had been to the Tate house "Before" the murders. I believe that Linda Kasabian was ripped off somehow in one of her drug runs and that fact never came up.

Helter Skelter, Beatles White Album and Revalations 9 & 10 in the Bible was all well and good and the "Bug' made great play of it ...... but that's not why those people at Cielo drive were whacked. The whole drug angle was completely ignored.

Kanarek didn't do his homework like the "Bug" did. I have no doubt in my mind that Bugliosi knows the truth but he would never admit that he sold the people of the state of california a bill of goods by admitting that he spun the Helter Skelter thing. Manson, much to his own stupidty, played right into Bugliosi's hands because he loved the attention and notariety that he got from the whole Beatles/Helter Skelter thing.

There were drugs found at Cielo drive when the police investigated that most likely came from Jay "Candyman" Sebring's inventory.

Also, it has been said that Leno LaBianca may have also been involved in the drug trade and was alleged to have connections to the mob. He was also rumored to enjoy walking around the house in Rosemary LaBianca's pantyhose (Was quoted over on the Mark Turner Message Boards). Not that what Leno LaBianca did was any of my business because its not my place to judge someone but i do think it paints a picture of these people not being so squeaky clean as they have always been portrayed to be.

ColScott said...

transvestitism is neither illegal no grounds for a murder

Bruce Hall said...

I thought the pantyhose thing was a low blow anyway. There was some speculation that the LaBianca's had some kind of a drug connection that may have had ties to Frkowski or Folger. I don't believe that the defense ever probed that or tried to prove that there was another motive outside of Vince's Helter Skelter theory.

Bruce Hall said...

One more point to make about the unsolved murders and this is something that might have intrigued Bill Nelson.

Tex Watson once said that he owes thanks to the girls (Manson Girls) for helping him get over his sexual problems (As told in the interview between Bill Nelson and Barbara Hoyt.

Isn't it interesting that the murders of Daureen Gaul and Marina Habe, who were once thought to be victims of Bruce Davis, were thought to possible victims of Charles Tex Watson by Bill Nelson.

It almost makes sense. In Psychological terms, people who are uncomfortable with their own sexual mannerisms tend to have more of a psychotic or violent personality. The level of sexual frustration brings out these suppressed feeling of rage that are sometimes uncontrollable.

Bill Nelson tied Marina Habe to Tex Watson saying that Marina Habe went to the University of Hawaii and that Tex had met her there when he was in Hawaii, presumably when Tex was involved in a drug run. She came home for Christmas and was found dead by a jogger on January 1st 1969 just about two miles from a house where Tex Watson was staying at. Bill was convinced that Tex had killed Marina Habe soon after she got to Los Angeles as there wasn't even any smog in her lungs when the autopsy was done.

Had Tex Watson killed Marina Habe as a result of his own sexual insecurities, it may also be true that Daureen Gaul may have met the same fate having also met Tex Watson as both women were found stabbed to death.

What i'm getting at here is almost what Alfred Hitchcock showed in detail in his movie "Frenzy" about a serial rapist that murdered his victims by strangling them with a necktie after he had sex with them.
Tex Watson, with his own sexual hangups, may very well have fit the criteria of a serial rapist as I believe, as Bill Nelson did, that Tex was responsible for the murder of Daureen Gaul and Marina Habe.

There was an admission by Tex that he did have sexual hangups and that a former girlfriend once claimed, after the murders, that Tex was rough and scarey when it came to sex.

There's alot of violence locked up in Tex Watson and Daureen Gaul and Marina Habe may have been on the receiving end of one of Tex's "Freak outs". He would have sex with them and then kill them .... just like Hitchcock's movie,"Frenzy".

Audio Magic said...

From what I learned just from some Biography on A&E about Roman Polanski. Frykowski had a degree in chemistry--and was cookin up MDA and mescaline at the Polanski residence. Gary Hinman also had a degree in chemistry and I am not certain but I think he too was making mescaline. As far back as I can remember I have always felt that this crime was a little more reality based than the whole "Helter Skelter" story, and was probably a drug burn mixed with money $$$ as in the killers did not get what they paid for.

Ages ago I read or heard somewhere that Roman Polanski was very regretful for letting Frykowski live at the Cielo Drive address for as long as he did. I'm wondering if that was because of the drugs Frykowski was making and dealing.

Pristash said...

Good points, everybody. The defense did suck, I suppose, but as I've said before, Bugliosi freely admits to not wanting to confuse the jury with things you can't prove. If he could have proven the drug angle as motive, I'm sure he would have. Since he couldn't he hung it all on the Helter Skelter angle.