Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Denouement Of L'Affaire Kent Hovind - The Sentencing Of Paul John Hansen

Abigal Meggisnson, with support from Interlock Media was on the scene last Friday when Kent Hovind's co-defendant Paul Hansen was sentenced for contempt of court.  In Abigal's report we get a rich picture of the scene that day that I have designated the end point of L'affaire Kent Hovind.

Friday, August 21 Paul John Hansen, former Creation Science Evangelism Trustee and Kent Hovind’s co-conspirator, was sentenced to 18 months in prison, with 10 months served time as credit, to be followed by supervised release of 3 years.


Hansen was convicted in March of contempt of court -  intending to cloud the sale of former Dinosaur Adventure Land property and failing to appear for fingerprint and case prints when subpoenaed.

The sentencing began at 2 p.m. at the Winston E Arnow Federal Building in Pensacola, FL with a calm presence outside the courthouse, without a protestor in sight.


Inside, supporters and reporters filled in to witness the sentencing. Kent Hovind entered the courtroom accompanied by his friends and advisors Ernie Land and Josh Jocelyn.

Kent, Ernie and Josh would provide a video report of the event not long after its close.


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Rhonda Herrington entered clutching a Bible and sat in the pew directly behind the defense. She came to report the sentencing for her pastor James David Manning’s internet radio show. After Hansen was brought out in chains and an orange jumpsuit, she knelt on her knees in prayer with her head bowed.


A court official interrupted her to let her know she would have to rise for the judge, to which Herrington asked, “Is it against the law [to pray in court]?” The court official was kind and simply asked for her cooperation and to be included in the woman’s prayers too. Despite the minute resistance, she did rise once the judge entered and sat in her seat once again clutching her Bible for the rest of the sentencing.

At the hearings in May, when Hovind's conviction for contempt had been dismissed, Rhonda had been a presence on the street in front of the courthouse.



Judge Casey Rodgers entered the courtroom. She allowed Hansen to address his objections, comments and concerns regarding the pre-sentence report and sentencing guidelines. Hansen's primarily put on  sovereign citizen arguments which he spouted with his hands twitching nervously behind his back.

Hansen first objected that the term in the pre-sentence report, residence, was inaccurate when referring to his home in Nebraska.

Hansen further claimed that he had been misinformed of the consequences of mailing the letter to the title attorney’s office. He said he had received a notice that stated he would be in civil contempt if he mailed the letter, but it did not warn him of criminal contempt of court. He said he would have taken the matter more seriously if he had known. Hansen asserted that he was planning on suing whoever had misinformed him, but Judge Rodgers was quick to steer him back towards the subject of the day, his sentencing.

Later, Prosecuting attorney, Mr. Ryan J. Love,that Hansen had sufficient notice of the consequences of his actions. Judge Rodgers informed Hansen that the jury had already ruled that he had proper notice.

A face not in the courtroom that was missed by Hansen was IRS agent Schneider. When he addressed his issue, he looked around the courtroom hoping to see Schneider. Hansen noted that he had made efforts to request that Schneider be subpoenaed for the sentencing but was not advised by Klotz to do so and had not filed the request himself in due time. The Judge made the statement that based on the fact that he would not have brought any new information to the sentencing, it would have been denied anyway.

Repeatedly, Hansen stated that he only mailed a letter and did not file it to the county clerk’s office for the extra one dollar. This would have been filing a lien on the property, a much more obvious and serious attempt to cloud the title. He wanted the court to know that what he didn’t do was just as important as what he did do.

Judge Rodgers went over the sentencing guidelines early on. The official sentencing guidelines determine months in prison by cross referencing points for offense and level of criminal history. Hansen originally had a score of 14 points but was given 3 more points (a total of 17) for substantial interference. With a criminal history of 5, the guidelines dictate a sentence of 47-56 months.

During the two and a half hours of sentencing, Hansen continued to claim that it didn’t matter what the intended harm was, as long as no harm came about. It was okay since the properties were selling well and the family would be in a comfortable position.

Judge Rodgers stated several times that Hansne had already been convicted of intending to cloud the sale, and intent was all that mattered.

Although Judge Rodgers has allowed Hansen to continually challenge the U.S. authority, she said she flat out disagrees with them. “It’s nothing personal… it’s my view of the law”

Hansen brought two character witnesses up to the stand: Kent Hovind and Ernie Land. Both testified to Hansen’s faith and his intent to do the right thing for his country.

Kent Hovind said he had known Hansen for over 10 years and spent significant time with him including three months in a jail cell. He testified to his godly character and good intentions. Hovind also gave his perspective on what Hansen’s sentence should be, “In my opinion, you should go home today.”

Ernie Land was also called to the stand. He denounced his own American citizenship while wearing a patriotic button up shirt boasting an American flag and We the People followed by the rest of the constitution. He stated that today’s U.S. citizen is not what was originally intended by the founding fathers. Mr. Love questioned him on the community courts of today. Land answered him saying there are many coming up across the nation, including some in South Florida and even one in Pensacola.

Hansen began his final statement by speaking of the hardships he has experienced in prison already and how he wished to go back home to his family. He said there was no evidence of a cloud on the property and no upset of the sale of it either. Hansen said that if he had known that he would’ve spent even one day in jail, that he would have never sent the letter.

Hansen expectedly, asked the judge for time served. “I don’t want to go to prison for 6 years for mailing a letter,” Hansen said.

He then humbly apologized for his ignorance. The Judge was confused by his apology and asked what exactly he was apologizing for. He ended up saying it was for "accidentally" committing a criminal act and his overall ignorance.

The closing statement from prosecution featured Mr. Love detailing the benefits that come with being an American citizen, yet Hansen still has claimed these benefits after repeatedly denouncing his citizenship. Love additionally noted that this case was not nor has ever been about faith. If he and his associates were to sit down with Hansen and Hovind, he said they would be shocked to see how similar their faith really is. He asked the judge to adhere to the guidelines and give Hansen 47-56 months in prison and “no greater than what is necessary.”

udge Rodger’s decision was a swing in Hansen’s direction to promote a respect for the law, she sentenced Hansen to 18 months in prison, giving him credit for the 10 months he has already served and 3 years supervised release.

She disagreed with the guidelines due to Hansen’s criminal history category. He had scored a 5 out of 6 which Judge Rodgers felt “over represents the seriousness of his crimes”

Mr. Love’s argument regarding Hansen’s beliefs became irrelevant, as the judge said, “We do not punish people for their beliefs. We do when those beliefs turn into harmful actions”

Judge Rodgers addressed Hansen and explained that the most dangerous thing to our society is when one individual takes action against the laws that apply to everyone. “You’re not special, you have to follow the same rules everyone else does,” she said to Hansen.

Hansen asked to finish his time in the Federal Prison Camp of Pensacola. The Judge agreed to recommend that facility, though she said she could not promise that he would end up there.

After court was dismissed, an unsettled Kent Hovind stood outside and said, “That should’ve never happened. The court should be apologizing to him [Hansen].”

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I really appreciate Abigails sharp observation of the proceedings.  Hansen is unlikely to be released while he appeals, which actually may be to his benefit, since under current conditions he is sure to be free in the Spring. Hovind continues to call for reversal of his 2006 conviction, but it seem unlikely he will get any traction.  Hovind has not preached tax protester theories in a long time. He is now focused on "end times".  I suspect that he will be conventionally tax compliant.  The second prosecution of Kent Hovind turns out to have been a waste of government resources and not to have been in the interest of promoting tax compliance as it seems to have emboldened his supporters in their alternative views.  Regardless, I'm glad that Kent Hovind is out and that he seems to be mainly focusing on his Gospel message.











8 comments:

  1. Did Hansen really say he wanted to "go back home to family"!

    That's kinda funny.

    Ten months and there is no indication in my recollection of Hansen having any family interested in his case; though Hansen has been observed being very secretive about what is really going on with his case and his sovcit friends back home.

    Recently, Hansen even asked Rudy to ask Ernie to call his mom and brother and let them know what happened Friday. So much for family relations. There is no good reason why Hansen could not have told his own family about what happened; he didn't have any trouble calling Rudy and Dan and Sam.

    And Hansen has been saying he plans to stay in Pensacola when he gets out. No evidence Hansen has any family in Pensacola, unless maybe he is playing on words and considers all sovcits like Kent and Ernie his "family".

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    1. Judging from comments his brother made on one of Rudy's videos earlier this year, I doubt anyone in his family would have him anywhere near them:

      Perry Hansen 7 months ago
      pauljohnhansen is a fraud, he talks of God just to hide behind his wrong doings, he took money from Dan and was sued for $85000.00, He lost several homes, he would buy a house for $5000 or $15000 and rent them, he would not keep them up "slum lord of Omaha", so the City of Omaha took them, he put poor family's in danger, He got credit cards and took cash of $1000's of dollars he told me he took close to $200,000 and walked away and took all the money, without paying them back. He has not worked for years, he looks on the internet and he copy's and paste of things that he knows nothing about, this is how he made his web page, And is taking credit for his big (little) brain. If he sat down and wrote a letter most of the words would be misspelled, he only attend college for six months. He grew up in Pender Nebraska 1977,
      My name is Perry Hansen I do not claim him as my brother I will never talk to him again in this life time, he took $6500.00 from me and turned around and said I owed it to him.

      FRAUD (trod) n. A DILIBERATE AND WILLFUL DECEPTION PERPETRATED FOR UNLAWFUL GAIN; A TRICK OR SWINDLE; AN IMPOSTOR; A CHEAT.


      Perry Hansen 5 months ago

      In his twisted mind, this is great for him, free rent, free food, free hair cuts. He wants people to feel sorry for him. And everyone suppose to send him money.
      This clown only went to college for six months and failed out of that.


      Also, Hansen is also listed as one of the top tax delinquents in Nebraska, owing over $36,000 to the state government:

      http://www.revenue.nebraska.gov/delinquent_list/DEL_LIST_AMOUNT.html

      Another reason for him not to go back to Omaha when he gets out.

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    2. Thanks Mike,

      I just picked up on a couple of Perry's recent posts today.

      We need to be told a lot more about Paul John Hansen's history back home; in my opinion.

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    3. Not just tax liens available online.

      The Nebraska Supreme Court's injunction against Paul Hansen:
      https://supremecourt.nebraska.gov/sites/supremecourt.ne.gov/files/sc/opinions/s12-475.pdf

      And all those dilapidated homes that pose health risks to the community have to be demolished. In 2013, the City of Omaha reported the following assessments for demolition:

      Paul J Hansen... $16,768
      1548 N 19 St
      ...
      Paul J Hansen 3213 N 24 St... $7,339

      http://www.cityofomaha.org/cityclerk/images/stories/agenda/ID%2013_08_20/Planning%20Misc/1103.pdf

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  2. Paul Hansen is very lucky that Judge Rodgers turned out not to be an "evil, Satonic, Jezebel witch" after all (not that he would ever even grudgingly admit it).

    On a side note, I've watched a few of Rudy Davis's non-Hovind-related videos recently, only to realize I hadn't fully appreciated the depths of that man's depravity. He consorts with anti-Semitic Holocaust deniers, he defends white supremacists, and he is virulently homophobic. No wonder the Secret Service decided to pay him a visit a few years back. A man so full of hate who has this much trouble telling fantasy from reality needs to be kept an eye on. Hovind and Hansen will do well not to have anything more to do with him.

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  3. Peter, your two statements appear to be contradictory: "I suspect that he will be conventionally tax compliant" and "the second prosecution of Kent Hovind turns out to have been a waste of government resources...."

    Either the Hansen will never obey US law or his mind will change based on the cold-hard reality of its weight coming down on him. You can't have it both ways. Either nothing will change his mind or the courts will demonstrate why he should obey.

    Both Hovind and Hansen have long done things they shouldn't have done, and the law should hold, or at least try to hold, them both accountable. Only Hansen, looking at several years in federal prison, seems to conceded now he should not have clouded the title.

    Let's review Hansen's history from his local newspaper:

    "Last month, he lost a fair housing case in federal court. He has been ordered to pay nearly $84,000 in damages and attorney fees to one of his former tenants, a man with schizophrenia who lived in Hansen's apartments for five years. Hansen got himself listed as payee for the tenant's monthly Social Security disability check of $607 to $637. Hansen 'occasionally returned $40 to (the tenant) upon which to subsist,' the suit said."

    and:

    "Then he sentenced Hansen to nearly a year in jail: 180 days for 14 different housing code violations, the sentences on each to be served concurrently; then another 180 days apiece for one count of giving false information, one count of resisting arrest and two counts of obstructing the administration of the law, the sentences also to be served concurrently."

    Link: https://web.archive.org/web/20090923010033/http://www.omaha.com/article/20090918/NEWS01/709189960

    Did Hansen ever pay back the $84,000? Did he stop obstructing the administration of the law? That was in 2009!

    Frankly, Hansen got off fairly easy in EVERY single case. Hansen even BRAGS on his website about being arrested "countless times." The reality is a judge should have shown him that his behavior is serious with some serious time long back. Him getting off easy in those early cases only encouraged him to take it further.

    As for Hovind, his behavior speaks for itself. I wouldn't be surprised if he is charged again for his shenanigans along with Rudy's repeated calls and "prayers" to federal officials.

    So Peter, I disagree, with you. Prosecuting people who break laws is not "a waste." The interest was never about "promoting tax compliance." It was much broader: Showing two men, one who was in federal prison, they can't break the law. Specifically, they can't cloud the title of property that was in the name of the federal government.

    Peter, you really stretch yourself sometimes to show sympathy to these two guys. If Hansen and Hovind clouded your property title or owed you $84,000 in the aforementioned case, I doubt you'd be so sympathetic.

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    1. Hovind was not convicted of anything that stood up which his followers interpret as a victory. I think they could have picked something better to prosecute Hansen on.

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    2. Peter,

      Yes, his "followers," including the ones who believe in geocentrism, take it as a victory. Hansen on youtube directly linked the dropping of Hovind's charges to Hovind's release.

      And why shouldn't they? Hovind/Hansen did something the government said they shouldn't do and Hovind was not convicted and was then released from prison.

      It's only going to embolden people who do that sort of stuff. More people will be encouraged who see the videos on youtube of Hovind and company's treatment of government authorities.

      You should be horrified about the outcome. Instead, you also write: "I'm glad that Kent Hovind is out and that he seems to be mainly focusing on his Gospel message."

      By the way, saying he preaches the "Gospel message" is like saying he preaches virtues of the US law. Actually, he preaches an idiosyncratic view of both. He preaches his own interpretation of the Bible and law, which normal Christians and Americans want nothing to do with.

      Also if Land isn't a US citizen did he follow these steps to renounce it?

      http://travel.state.gov/content/travel/english/legal-considerations/us-citizenship-laws-policies/renunciation-of-citizenship.html

      The law requires "making a formal renunciation of nationality before a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States in a foreign state."

      If Land did this and isn't a US citizen and lacks a green card, then he needs to be deported for being in the country illegally.

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