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Adam Kokesh Legal Defense Fund Update

Free Adam Kokesh As regular readers of the Shield Mutual blog know, Adam Kokesh is a customer of ours. We acted in his defense upon his instructions after his 18 May 2013 arrest, very briefly after his 8 June 2013 arrest and again recently after his 9 July 2013 arrest. Adam Kokesh is a valued customer of Shield Mutual.

Legal Defense Fund Timeline

Here is a rundown of the legal defense fund we created, promoted and administered for Adam. Money is a sensitive topic and Shield Mutual is committed to operating with transparency and integrity.

Creation

On 21 May 2013, Adam’s then- business manager Lucas Jewell authorized the creation of a legal defense fund in Adam’s name while Adam was incommunicado on baseless federal felony assault charges in the Philadelphia federal prison. You can see the blog post at FreeAdam.net for this. Shield Mutual immediately went to work and among USD, bitcoin and litecoin, we raised an estimated $6,300 (based on then- bitcoin and litecoin prices) in just under 11 hours. I stopped the fundraiser shortly after it reached the $5,000 goal. You can see the full report on everything we did for Adam during his 6-day caging in Philadelphia in our after-action report. I also assisted Lucas in separately raising more than $1,500 and 3.3 bitcoins to sustain “Adam vs. The Man” operations while Adam was in a cage.

In total, Shield Mutual raised the following funds for Adam’s legal defense in May: $5,377.44 USD/FRN (before payment processing fees), 4.58002619 bitcoin and 120.50 litecoin.

Refunds

On 30 May, I asked Adam to clarify whether he would hire a lawyer or not using these funds. On 3 June, I told him that returning them is the most appropriate course of action if he decides not to hire a lawyer and that I would like to take action either way as soon as he had reached a decision. Adam suggested that we give the 146+ individual donors the option to get their money back or give it to Adam to use in offensive civil rights lawsuits. I agreed. On 5 June, I sent a joint email to the donors to this effect. I planned to give donors 7 days in which to reply but later extended that to 14 because someone contacted me suggesting that 7 was too short of a time.

Nine donors requested refunds, as you can see in the below screenshot for a total of $365.04 USD (pre-payment processor fees). We processed these refunds on 21 June.

Legal Fund Refunds Processed 21 June 2013

Legal Fund Refunds Processed 21 June 2013

Later, a donor contacted us requesting a refund that we were previously unaware of in the amount of $20.87. We processed this as well, although it looks like it has yet to post.

Final Amount

After processing the refunds on 21 June, and after subtracting the payment processor’s fees, $4,911.61 was left over.

USD Disbursement

After processing the 9 refunds on 21 June, we issued a check to Adam in the amount of $4,911.61, direct from the payment processor, that same day. Shield Mutual never touched these funds. See the screenshots below as evidence of this. In the first you see how much is in the payment processing account and that the check is made out for that same amount. In the second, you see that the check has been requested and is pending and that the account has a zero balance.

The name on the check and the address were provided to Shield Mutual by Adam’s business manager at the time, Lucas Jewell. Normally, we would insist that legal defense funds go direct to a defense lawyer but since Adam’s donors enabled him to use their funds for a civil rights lawsuit, the funds were disbursed directly to Adam. We expect that Adam will make arrangements to ensure that these funds are not intermingled with business or personal funds and are destined solely for legal defense or lawsuit purposes.

N.B. Normally we would not disclose to the public the address that we send customer correspondence to, however, in this case, Adam has reportedly lodged a public complaint from prison about the delay in receiving the check.

Digital Currencies Disbursement

On 21 June, we also disbursed the bitcoin and litecoin to Adam as you can see in the below screenshots.

Check Undeliverable by USPS

On 26 June, Adam’s business manager, Lucas, contacted me and asked me about the check, as it had not arrived yet. I was told to expect its arrival in 8-9 business days so I was not concerned at this time. Lucas contacted me again on 2 July, after 7 business days had almost elapsed, so I told Lucas that I would check on it later that week. I expected the maximum 9 business days to expire on Friday 5 July. Lucas contacted me again on 5 July to say that the check still had not arrived. On 6 July, I counseled him to wait a little longer as the check might simply be delayed and if we cancel it, it could cost us money and if the first check arrived in the meantime, we would just waste more time. At that time I shared with him a screenshot that showed the check payment as complete as of 6:22PM on 21 June.

Adam was arrested again on 9 July so the issue of the check fell into the background until 12 July. I checked in with the payment processor that day but did not receive a reply until Monday 15 July. The reply was unclear, saying only that payment had been stopped. I logged on to live chat support to find out that the check had been returned to them as undeliverable by the US Postal Service (USPS) on 12 July. Here is the transcript of the support chat. (I erased certain numbers and my email address for privacy reasons.)

Chat Suppport Transcript with Payment Processor

Chat Suppport Transcript with Payment Processor

Here is the entry in the payment processor’s database showing that the check was returned to them on 12 July in the morning.

First Check Returned to Payment Processor 12 July

First Check Returned to Payment Processor 12 July

Public Relations Defense Fund for 9 July Arrest

In the meantime, and post- Adam’s 9 July arrest, I set up a public relations defense fund for Adam and raised almost $1,400 and more than a bitcoin in order to fund up to 3 x $369 national press releases in his defense. I wanted to send one immediately and have funding for another two in pocket, just in case.

I spent $369 for this press release on 11 July. See the receipt below.

Receipt for national distribution of Adam Kokesh press release

Receipt for national distribution of Adam Kokesh press release

New Check Issued

At approximately noon on Monday 15 July, after a long process of coordination with Adam’s new business manager, Jeffrey Phillips, I requested a new check according to Jeffrey’s specific instructions. I checked every step of the way with him and sent him screenshots to confirm that everything I told him was true. You can see the screenshots below. As you can see, I did not issue the check for the same amount as was available in the account because I spent the $369 for the press release out of Shield Mutual petty cash and was awaiting reimbursement. Also, you will see in the next subsection that I advanced $500 to Darrell Young, a member of his business team, out of Shield Mutual petty cash and awaited reimbursement on that as well.

N.B. Normally we would not disclose to the public the address that we send customer correspondence to, however, in this case, Adam has reportedly lodged a public complaint from prison about the delay in receiving the check.

Loan to Darrell Young for Bail

Also on Monday 15 July, as we found out that Adam could be bailed out, his new business manager requested a loan of $500 in order to expedite the release with a bail bondsman. I agreed and advanced the funds out of Shield Mutual petty cash to Darrell Young, a member of Adam’s business team on the strict understanding that it was a loan and only to be used to bail out Adam.

Receipt for loan to Darrell Young

Receipt for loan to Darrell Young

Cancellation of new Defense Fund

Also on Monday 15 July, Adam’s business manager, Jeffrey Phillips, requested that I set up a new legal defense fund for Adam but canceled it shortly thereafter for reasons unknown. In the short time in which it was open, $172 was donated to the fund but Shield Mutual will be refunding those donations shortly as Adam is going to use a public defender for his defense against the current Virginia state charges, multiple sources close to Adam have told us. You can find out more about these charges at FreeAdam.net, the site that Shield Mutual operates as part of our service to Adam.

Pending Disbursement

Shield Mutual has some bitcoin to disburse, some of which was for public relations and some of which was spontaneously sent without us requesting it, and there may be a small amount of USD that we owe him or he owes us. We will settle this matter in the coming days.

Arbitration and Audit

Shield Mutual is considering having an outsider audit our handling of Adam’s legal defense fund and if Adam has any concerns, we encourage him to contact us at (215) 360-3513. Shield Mutual is willing to submit to arbitration if there are any irreconcilable differences of opinion.

Conclusion

Shield Mutual has maintained close contact with Adam and his designated representatives throughout this entire process. We have always acted in accordance with their wishes. In fact we only take significant actions upon direct instruction from our customer or their designated representative. We have acted impeccably in this matter. We are committed to transparency and integrity and will answer any reasonable questions from members of the public. It goes without saying that we are completely accountable to Adam himself in this matter and to the donors.

We will update this page as we process and close out the legal defense fund. Thank you for your interest.

On a side note, I’d like to clarify that Shield Mutual has never been affiliated with “Adam vs. The Man LLC” in any way, shape or form. Adam Kokesh is our customer. That is the extent of our relationship with him. We will continue to defend Adam Kokesh with great pride and enthusiasm until we receive instructions from him or an authorized member of his family requesting that we cease. The folks at “Adam vs. The Man LLC” are a third party to our contract with Adam Kokesh.

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  • Curious

    I really appreciate the transparency here and the detail, however I just had one question:

    You state:

    Public Relations Defense Fund for 9 July Arrest

    In the meantime, and post- Adam’s 9 July arrest, I set up a public relations defense fund for Adam and raised almost $1,400 and more than a bitcoin in order to fund up to 3 x $369 national press releases in his defense. I wanted to send one immediately and have funding for another two in pocket, just in case.

    I spent $369 for this press release on 11 July. See the receipt below.”

    Then in a paragraph below, you state you had used funds out of petty cash for the release, etc.

    Where did the $1,400 go?

    Thanks so much for taking the time to do this!

    • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

      I have yet to officially account for that but $369 went to the national press release distribution last week, $500 was loaned to Darrell Young on Monday 15 Jul for the sole purpose of bailing Adam out and the rest is in the (2nd) check that I issued on Monday 15 Jul to Adam. That’s why the second check is a greater amount than the first.

      The petty cash connection is that I fronted those funds out of pocket and am reimbursing myself from the funds raised.

      Like I say at the end of the article, I will process the rest of the transactions soon and close the whole thing out.

      Thanks for your interest.

      • Michael Shanklin

        Great work George!

  • skifter

    It seems odd to use USPS for funds in a matter related to a federal charge. Is there no other way to transfer funds in this case?? If there didn’t seem to be enough funds to cover it, I’d offer to pay the difference to cancel the check and wire the funds via Western Union or another service.

    • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

      Why would a dismissed legal charge have any relationship to how a check is sent?

      (1) I have no interest in bringing other people’s funds into my accounts. That is ethically questionable and practically problematic.

      (2) The only other option offered by the payment processor is a check sent by USPS.

      (3) Adam and his representatives have selected the check option.

      (4) I do not use Western Union and for logistical reasons I will not go into it is well nigh impossible for me to use it.

      (5) If you have extra funds, I’m sure Adam would love to have them. Donate at his site.

      (6) I’m not sure what the rush is on the funds that Western Union would need to be used. He is using the public defender for the Virginia state charges and I’ve already worked to line up a pro bono option for him for any federal charges that may get filed in relation to the July 4th video.

  • RobertC

    Thanks for coming out with that! Doesn’t explain what happened to Lucas but hey.. he’s 3rd party. My friends and I would clearly have you on retainer if we practice civil disobedience. Keep up the good clean hard work over there.

    • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

      Thank you kindly!

  • Carrie Gordon

    Awesome. Thank you so much. My husband and I have donated and probably will do so again because of your forthright transparency. Also, thank you for working with Adam directly.

    • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

      Thank you for your comment and your donation.

  • The Osprey

    According to the YouTube press release from AdamvsTheMan they say that Adam will NOT be using a public defender and that they are no longer affiliated with Shield Mutual.

    • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

      Please see the last paragraph of the article and the latest I have from sources very close to Adam is that he is using the public defender. I’m not going to get into a he-said she-said.

      • The Osprey

        Well, here’s the link from presumably the people closest to him: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J8Yga-2Sk0Q

        • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

          ‘Presumably’ being the operative word here. You don’t actually know anything about this situation except third- or fourth- hand. And I won’t be baited into talking about what I know about the situation any further than I already have been. You can see what we did for Adam in May. http://shieldmutual.com/2013/06/aar-adam-kokesh-18-may-2013/

          • The Osprey

            I’m not trying to start anything I’m just letting you know other things have been said. I never claimed to know anything about anything except that which was posted on a public video sharing website. I’m not baiting anybody to do anything.

          • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

            Thanks for the clarification and apologies for my misunderstanding.

      • The Osprey
        • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

          Time will tell what Adam’s ultimate decision is. If he wants to re-activate the legal defense fundraiser, Shield Mutual, as always, is prepared to help him.

  • AgoraJoe

    Thank you so much for clearing this up.

    So are Shield Mutual and AVTM still on good terms?

    • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

      I see no reason why we wouldn’t be on good terms with Adam Kokesh. As far as his business team, I’m not really sure. :)

  • http://whoplanswhom.com/ Justin Oliver

    Top notch, George!

    • http://georgedonnelly.com/ George Donnelly

      Thanks Justin.

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