Thank you, Howard Root

The SE Texas Record May 3, 2016, 8:07am


Joseph Stalin’s infamous KGB chief, Lavrenti Beria, had a unique approach to justice. Instead of investigating a crime to find the culprit, he would arrest the “culprit” first and create a crime to pin on him. “Show me the man,” he boasted, “and I will find the crime.”

Sad to say, things don’t seem much different in Barack Obama's Justice Department.

Like Beria, some federal prosecutors seem willing to abuse their powers to target successful businesses and create “crimes” to cudgel them into submission. If successful they reap the political and often monetary benefits at the expense of the country's economy and diminished freedom of our citizens.

Vascular Solutions appears to have been a company targeted for shakedown by Justice thugs.

What did owner Howard Root do to incur their wrath? He created a successful company that makes useful products and employs numerous people.

“Over the last 20 years, I’ve led the company in developing over 100 new medical devices that are used worldwide to improve the lives of patients suffering from vascular disease,” Root recalled in a guest editorial posted at StarTribune.com. “In the process, we’ve created more than 500 well-paying American jobs and never received so much as a warning letter from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).”

Nevertheless, prosecutors filed felony charges in San Antonio against the Minnesota-based entrepreneur simply because they “thought it was 'off-label' for our salespeople to talk with physicians about using just one version of just one of our more than 100 medical devices to treat perforator varicose veins rather than saphenous varicose veins . . . even though our device was FDA-cleared for treating all varicose veins . . . and not a single patient was harmed,” according to Root.

The government's case was so shoddy that Root was acquitted without even bothering to present his own witnesses, but five years of lawfare cost $25 million in legal fees.

Concluding that “the process was its own punishment,” Root called for the firing of the prosecutors and for reforms in an out-of-control Justice Department.

We agree.

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