Why won’t the Justice Department let Christopher Coates testify on New Black Panther Party case?

J. Christian Adams, a former Department of Justice official, has gained a lot of media attention as a whistle-blower in the dismissal of the New Black Panther Party (NBPP) voter intimidation case. His testimony before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights has raised a great deal of concern and questions about the current racial mandates at the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department.

While Adams’ statements about the racial directives within the division have caused public distress, they have not given rise to action as his testimony, though partially corroborated, is in some regards hearsay. Christopher Coates is perhaps the one man who could provide substantive answers to back up Adams’ claims.

Coates was the chief of the Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division at the Justice Department who led the team of attorneys that brought the initial case of voter intimidation against the NBPP. In May 2009, Coates was allegedly ordered to dismiss the charges against the NBPP.

On January 5, 2010, the Department reassigned Coates to the U.S. attorney’s office in Charleston, South Carolina. Some have speculated that the reassignment was in retaliation for his prosecution of voting rights violations against black defendants, specifically the NBPP and a case in Noxubee County, Mississippi (U.S. v. Ike Brown, a case in which a black political boss in Mississippi, Ike Brown, was accused of voter suppression).

A DOJ spokesman, Xochitl Hinojosa, told The Daily Caller in a brief e-mail that “Christopher Coates requested the transfer to South Carolina.” But despite DOJ’s position, some still question whether Coates’ reassignment was voluntary and why the DOJ won’t allow him to speak about the NBPP case.

Read more here.