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Utah lawyer says Obama’s A.G. pick behind cover-up

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Accusation–Attorney general-nominee led effort to kill investigation into
prisoner’s death.

By Pamela Manson

Salt Lake Tribune

December 25, 2008

A Salt Lake City lawyer who claims his brother was tortured and murdered in
a federal prison is alleging that Attorney General nominee Eric Holder played
a role in covering up the crime.

In a letter to Senate Judiciary Committee members, lawyer Jesse Trentadue acknowledges
the paper trail on Holder’s actions "is scant," but claims he was
the "point man" in an effort to persuade Congress to not investigate
his brother’s death. He is asking that Holder be questioned at his confirmation
hearing next year about his alleged attempt to block efforts "to obtain
a certain measure of justice for my brother’s murder."

The Department of Justice, where Holder served as deputy attorney general under
President Bill Clinton, referred a request for comment to the Presidential Transition
Team (PTT). A statement issued by an Obama transition aide denied Trentadue’s

"Multiple independent investigations have found that Kenneth Trentadue’s
death was a suicide," the statement said. "There is simply no evidence
to support the claims in this letter."

The body of Kenneth Trentadue, who had served time for bank robbery and was
being held on an alleged parole violation, was found hanging in his cell at
the Federal Transfer Center in Oklahoma City on Aug. 21, 1995.

Several investigations by state and federal agencies ruled the death a suicide,
but his survivors believe Kenneth Trentadue was strangled with plastic handcuffs
by guards who mistook him for an accomplice in the Oklahoma City bombing. Jesse
Trentadue has filed several lawsuits alleging the Justice Department and the
FBI are withholding records concerning his brother’s death, which he requested
under the Freedom of Information Act.

In his Dec. 19 letter, Trentadue says Justice Department e-mails show Holder
planned to meet with Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch on Oct. 9, 1997, to defuse Judiciary
Committee oversight and media inquiry into what happened the night Kenneth died.
Hatch, then-chairman of the Judiciary Committee, announced the day after the
meeting that he intended to schedule a hearing in the matter but never did,
Trentadue writes.

In addition, Trentadue alleges that an FBI delegation, at the "apparent"
urging of Holder, approached Oklahoma Sen. Don Nickles to ask for assurances
that there would be no Senate oversight.

Nickles said Monday that he was sympathetic to the Trentadues and at first
was leaning toward their position, but he became convinced the death was a suicide
and that there was no cover-up after inspecting Trentadue’s prison cell, talking
to the medical examiner and meeting with FBI agents in late 1997 and early 1998.

"I do remember reviewing the case and wanting to get to the bottom of
it," said Nickles, now chairman of The Nickles Group, a Washington, D.C.,
consulting company. "This is the only case in my 24 years in the Senate
which I was ever involved."

Hatch said Tuesday that at the time the case came to his attention, "federal
officials were operating a formal investigation into the details of this issue
and a Senate Judiciary Hearing would have been premature and counter-productive."
Source URL:

Family offers reward for information

A Salt Lake City attorney is offering a $250,000 reward for information that
leads to the conviction of the person who allegedly killed his brother in a
federal prison in Oklahoma City.

Jesse Trentadue and his family have announced the offer on the Internet at, in newspaper ads in Oklahoma and Washington, D.C.,
and in a notice in Prison Legal Times, which circulates throughout the federal
correctional system.

The death was ruled a suicide but family members believe Kenneth Michael Trentadue
was murdered in 1995 after being mistaken for a conspirator in the Oklahoma
City bombing.

Source URL:


as mentioned in the above article–


Shortly after the Oklahoma City Bombing, Kenneth Michael Trentadue is tortured and strangled in an isolation cell at the Oklahoma City Federal Transfer Center. The Department of Justice informs the family that he had hanged himself with a bedsheet. His family believes that he was murdered by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and that his death is linked to the Bombing. Kenneth Michael Trentadue may have been the 169th victim of that attack.

Search of John Doe No. 2: The Story the Feds Never Told About the Oklahoma
City Bombing

Murder in a Face

The Trentadue Files
- New documents offer details of the FBI’s secret Oklahoma City Bombing

The Trentadue Case:
A Coverup That Won't Stay Covered

the matter of Kenneth Michael Trentadue

Coverup Under Two Presidents: The Unsolved Mystery of the Oklahoma City

Files - Oklahoma City Bombing



Scott Horton Interviews Jesse Trentadue
December 6th, 2008

Jesse Trentadue discusses the the events surrounding the 1995 murder of his
while in federal custody in Oklahoma City and the connection to the
bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, the Elohim City paramilitary
camp sting operation run by the FBI and Southern Poverty Law Center, foreknowledge
of FBI agents and complicity of FBI informants in the bombing, the ongoing court
battles with the U.S. government over FOIA requests and civil lawsuits and the
involvement of Obama’s appointed attorney general Eric Holder in the coverup
of Kenny’s murder.

Scott’s collection of Trentadue pdf files.

. (54:24)

Jesse Trentadue is an attorney in Salt Lake City, Utah.