On April 9th, 2012, Frank Ambrose was resentenced to 70 months in prison. This is a significant reduction in his sentence, which was originally 108 months. Ambrose’s projected release date is now December 2013. This reduction in sentence is NOT the result of an appeal. Rather, the reason for this unusual reduction in sentence midstream is Ambrose’s continued “substantial assistance” to the government in “investigating or prosecuting another person.” While we don’t have any documented evidence of exactly who Ambrose has been snitching on, we do know the context in which his resentencing has occurred.
In December 2009, the government filed – then immediately sealed – an indictment against Jesse Waters for his alleged involvement in an arson of logging equipment in Mesick, MI in January 2000. This is one of the two actions to which Marie Mason eventually ended up pleading guilty. Frank Ambrose also admitted his involvement in this action. In the government’s motion to unseal the indictment against Waters in March 2011, they stated: “one of the Government’s anticipated witnesses was actively assisting the FBI as a cooperating human source (CHS) in its conduct of another arson investigations [sic] in numerous other Federal judicial districts. In order to avoid compromising the identity of that CHS before his or her investigative utility was exhausted., the Government sought and obtained an Order sealing the case for an indefinite duration.” They were unsealing the indictment because the CHS was scheduled to testify in another trial in the Southern District of Indiana on May 23, 2011, effectively outing them as an informant. Daniel Kruk’s trial was originally set for this day in the Southern District of Indiana. It would seem that the same informant was operating in both of these cases.
On March 27, Daniel Kruk (who has been indicted for his alleged involvement in an arson at the Republican National Headquarters in Bloomington, IN in 2000) filed a Motion to Compel Production of Brady Materials. The following day, March 28, the government filed an Emergency Motion to Seal Kruk’s Brady motion. At that point in time, Kruk’s motion was removed from the docket. We don’t know exactly what was contained in those documents. What we do know is that the government’s motion to seal reads: “The above referenced pleadings should be sealed as they contain law enforcement sensitive materials, pleadings that were filed under seal and that remain under seal, and other materials for which there is a law enforcement need to remain confidential.” In Kruk’s response to the government’s motion to seal, his lawyer wrote: “Defendant is completely unable to ascertain what information in his motion and brief constitutes sensitive material. For example, the documents related to Agranoff attached as exhibits can now be located on the internet. See http://waronsociety.noblogs.org/?p=3657. The U.S. Bureau of Prisons website advises that Agranoff is a federal inmate residing at a low security facility in Arkansas. Agranoff even maintains a blog site. http://davidagranoff.blogspot.com/.”
On April 12, the court ruled on these motions, granting the government’s motion to seal. The court also stated that Kruk has indicated he will be changing his plea. The order read, in part: “Accordingly, the Government’s Motion for Protective Order [Dkt. Nos. 43 & 20] is GRANTED and Defendant’s Motion to Compel [Dkt. Nos. 45 & 22] is DENIED, except that the Court will permit counsel for Defendant Kruk along with their client to review, but not to have possession of or make copies of: (1) the transcript of the sentencing hearing for Defendant David Agranoff conducted on January 13, 2012, before the Honorable Tanya Walton Pratt; (2) Agranoff’s plea agreement [Dkt. Nos. 44-3 & 21-3]; and (3) the Agranoff pre-sentence investigation report [Dkt. Nos. 44-6 & 21-6], in order to fully prepare for the upcoming change of plea and sentencing hearing scheduled for Mr. Kruk, on the chance that said materials may prove relevant to rebut or distinguish the appropriateness of a sentencing enhancement sought by the Government.” The fact that Agranoff’s paperwork is referenced so consistently in Kruk’s motions is troubling.
It seems that there is clearly a connection between the cases of Agranoff and Kruk. We also know that there are two case numbers listed on Kruk’s court documents. One of them is the case resulting from Kruk’s alleged involvement in an arson at the Republican Party Headquarters in Bloomington, IN in 2000. The other case, however, does not come up in any searches of court documents. This might indicate that the case has been sealed.
The court in Agranoff’s case has also taken the unusual step of removing almost all the documents from his docket including the indictment and the plea agreement. They recently sealed the sentencing transcripts as well.
We don’t know who else might be involved in these cases or if there are people who have yet to be indicted. What we do know is that Agranoff and Ambrose have cooperated with the state in ways that are still unknown and may be continuing to cooperate with the state. There very well may be further indictments coming down the line and there also might be indictments already filed that have yet to be unsealed.
Stay safe. Be smart. If old friends come around asking questions about past actions, politely decline to engage in those conversations. And don’t talk to the cops.