Letters From Michael & Jan Costello...to Bill Lockyer, Attorney General, The Pacifica P.R. Agency Head, Mr. Fineman, and The Plaintifs in The Lawsuit against The Pacifica Board
July 27, 1999
State of California
Department of Justice
P.O. Box 944255
Sacramento, CA 94244-2550
Dear Attorney General Lockyer:
I am enclosing a copy of a letter that my wife and I are sending to the law firm of Siegel and Yee. This is the firm that is representing the staff, community representatives, volunteers and supporters of the radio station KPFA in Berkeley. As a class group we have brought this lawsuit against the Board of Directors of the Pacifica Foundation which is incorporated in the State of California.
I will let this letter speak for itself. I am requesting your attention to this matter as I am convinced that there are serious legal issues in violation of the California Corporations Code that are worthy of your investigation. Thank you for your attention.
I am writing to try to clarify a few points concerning the Pacifica Foundation account that your firm recently took on.
As a long term subscriber to KPFA/Pacifica, my donations have always been intended to support the community programming that KPFA/Pacifica provided. Now it seems that the current Board of Directors of the Foundation is using my money not only in a wasteful way but in a way directly opposite its intended purpose.
Since I assume that you have been hired to work for the Pacifica Foundation and not the individual members of the Board, I would suggest that you might find resolution to this account by asking the Board members to resign. This would put the most positive public relations spin on this situation and your firm would save itself from the embarassment of representing a client destined to lose in court.
I am enclosing with this e-mail a letter that my wife and I are sending to the firm of Siegel and Yee requesting that they modify the current lawsuit to address the issues we raise. If you carefully read the grounds for removal of the Board I am sure you will realize that there are no valid issues for you to build a PR campaign around.
Thank you again for your attention,
TO: David Adelson, Lauren Ayers, Lydia Brazon, Cecelia Caruso, Gail Dixon, Anne Emerman, Sherry Gendelman, Terrence Guy, Jim Horwitz, Kahlil Jacobs-Fantauzzi, Dawud Kalil-Ullah, Pele de Lappe, Steve Lustig, Errol Maitland, Andrew Norris, Lewis O. Sawyer, Jr., Marialice Williams and Frieda Zames
c/o Dan Siegel, Esq. July 27, 1999 SIEGEL & YEE 499 14th Street, Suite 220, Oakland, CA 94612
Re: Adelson, et al. vs. Pacifica Foundation, et al., Alameda County Superior Court (Class Action)
Thank you for taking action to correct the abuses and unlawful acts of t he Pacifica Foundation Board of Directors. As members of the class you represent, we request that you amend the lawsuit to add a specific cause of action for removal of the entire Board of Directors, as permitted under California Corporations Code œ5223, for fraud, dishonest acts, and/or gross abuse of authority or discretion.
We believe that the court may not, on its own initiative, order adequate relief without specific requests for court orders for removal of the entire Board and election of a new Board under court supervision as to procedure and fairness. The grounds for removal of the Board include, but are not limited to, the following well-known acts (or ratification by silence): (1) installing armed guards from IPSA International, a corporate intelligence and security service, at KPFA, where journalists report on international corporate crimes and abuses; (2) conducting citizens arrests of peaceful demonstrators against the Board's actions; (3) arresting KPFA Berkeley station personnel for "trespassing", and taking all regular programming off the air; (4) conducting closed Board meetings and refusing to make Foundation books and records available for reasonable inspection by members; (5) virtual elimination of local community affairs and news programming at KPFT Houston, contrary to the purposes stated in the Articles of Incorporation; (6) engaging in "union busting" tactics at WBAI New York, contrary to the purposes stated in the Articles of Incorporation; (7) purporting to amend the bylaws, by unlawful and dishonest acts, to create a self perpetuating, self-selecting Board of Directors; (8) soliciting contributions from the public under false pretenses with intent to use such funds for purposes contrary to those stated in the Articles of Incorporation; (9) wasting Foundation assets and public contributions to carry out the above abuses and thereby threatening the Foundation with insolvency; and (10) imposing a "gag rule" on personnel at the five radio stations to prevent them from alerting the class members to these alarming and unlawful acts.
Thank you for your anticipated immediate action in response to this request.
Janet and Michael Costello
cc: Bill Lockyer, Attorney General, State of California, Department of Justice,
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