Charges Filed Against Noah Stern
Roy Pfaffman Discusses Noah SternSenior Roy Pfaffman talks about the night Pfaffman claims President-elect Noah Stern voted on his behalf. The Daily Californian did not film or produce this video, it was submitted as a piece of evidence in ASUC Attorney General Kevin Gibson's voter fraud charge sheet.
Charge Sheets »Read the charge sheets filed against Noah Stern:
Voter Fraud Charges
Monday, April 26, 2010
Category: News > University > ASUC
ASUC Attorney General Kevin Gibson filed formal charges Sunday against President-elect Noah Stern, which may lead to the nullification of Stern's April 13 electoral victory.
In three separate charge sheets submitted to the Judicial Council, Gibson alleged that Stern violated election bylaws by interfering with the "proper tallying of votes," seeking extra votes and voting twice in the election, campaigning in campus residence halls and sending out spam e-mails to students during the election campaign.
The council accepted the charges Sunday night, which call for multiple censures exceeding the five-censure threshold mandating disqualification. A hearing time has yet to be set, said Council Chair Kiira Johal in an e-mail.
Stern-who has said that he did not violate any election bylaws during campaigning-could not be reached for comment Sunday.
According to the charge sheets, an investigation conducted by Gibson has identified several witnesses who said they observed Stern campaigning in Unit 1. The investigation also found more than 10 e-mails sent by Stern from non-ASUC accounts that the charge sheet states are in violation of election bylaws. The charge sheet does not state the specific content of the e-mails.
"The charge sheets are made in a strategic way because we don't reveal our full evidence to each other until 48 hours before the trial," Gibson said. "I kept the charge sheets sort of vague just so we both kind of have a fair shake in knowing what we're going to deal with."
The charge sheets also reference violations stemming from an investigation conducted by The Daily Californian, which reported that Stern approached sophomore Axel Prompt and senior Roy Pfaffman on the last night of voting, offering to cast a ballot on behalf of the two students. A reporter for The Daily Californian observed the exchange between Pfaffman and Stern in which Stern offered the use of his BlackBerry so that Pfaffman could log into the elections website with his CalNet ID. Pfaffman then returned the phone to Stern, who voted on Pfaffman's behalf.
In the charge sheet, Gibson writes that while other candidates may have engaged in similar behavior, "this is not an excuse for me or the Elections (Council) to neglect our respective duties or the evidence against Mr. Stern that has come to light."
"A primary element of the democratic process is trust between members of the student body," the charge sheet states. "In the three charge sheets I have filed I cannot help but conclude the evidence is overwhelming."
He said that he remained confident that the ASUC Constitution and bylaws would ensure a fair hearing for Stern and the student body as a whole.
"If this trial goes through and Mr. Stern is found innocent, then that's good--he has nothing to worry about from this; and if the bylaws as he has argued to me are not super clear and that comes out in the case, then that's fine as well," Gibson said. "But if I am right, and the bylaws are clear in their meaning and the evidence is indeed overwhelming, pointing to the fact that he may have engaged in these extralegal actions, then I think the students of the University of California are going to see justice done."
CalSERVE presidential candidate Eunice Kwon--who as the second highest vote-getter in the presidential election could assume the presidency if Stern is disqualified--said it is important to refrain from drawing conclusions regarding the ongoing controversy surrounding Stern's victory.
"I'm just hoping that he gets a fair hearing, (and) I trust the Judicial Council to do their job properly," she said.
Zach E.J. Williams is the university news editor. Contact him at [email protected]
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