- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 31, 2008

The case against the Code Pink activist charged with disorderly conduct for waving her blood-colored hands at Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has stalled in federal court because defense attorneys want Miss Rice to testify.

Attorneys for the Georgetown Criminal Justice Clinic have issued a subpoena for Miss Rice to testify in a deposition about what she saw during the Oct. 24 incident at a congressional hearing.

The defendant, Desiree Ali-Fairooz, also called Miss Rice a war criminal and smeared red paint onto the walls as she was removed from the House hearing.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office has filed paperwork asking a judge to throw out the subpoena because the incident was videotaped and witnessed by others.

“It would adversely affect the mission of the Department of State for the secretary to be distracted from carrying out her important duties because she is required to appear and testify for no compelling reasons,” State Department attorneys wrote in a letter to an attorney for Miss Ali-Fairooz.

Attorneys for Miss Ali-Fairooz said they do not plan to withdraw the subpoena.

The defense also said in legal documents that Miss Rice should testify in her personal capacity “as an eyewitness to the events Ms. Ali-Fairooz is alleged to have engaged in that gave rise to a charge of disorderly conduct.”

The government’s motion to quash the subpoena was filed in federal court by the U.S. Attorney’s Office, while the disorderly conduct case is being prosecuted by the D.C. Office of the Attorney General in D.C. Superior Court.

The antiwar group Code Pink has become a fixture in the District, regularly disrupting high-profile congressional hearings,including a hearing in September with Gen. David H. Petraeus, U.S. commander in Iraq.

Members of the group have taken up residence in a Northeast brownstone within walking distance of the Capitol. Groups opposed to Code Pink have complained that the activists have violated D.C. zoning laws by running a lobbying operation out of the home, referred to on the group’s Web site as the “D.C. Activist House.”

In Internal Revenue Service nonprofit tax returns, the group is identified as part of a tax-exempt group in Malibu, Calif., called Environmentalism Through Inspiration and Nonviolent Action.

For 2005, its most recently available tax return, the parent organization reported $560,749 in revenue, none of which came from government sources.

The group lists only three persons on its 2005 tax return: Andrew Beath, president and chief executive; Patricia McPherson, chief financial officer; and Jodie Evans, a Code Pink co-founder who served as a top aide to former California Gov. Jerry Brown, a Democrat.