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November 05, 2012

Wendy Runge Loses Appeal, Will Serve 10 Year Sentence

Wendy RungeMinnesota filmmaker Wendy Weiner Runge’s appeal of her 10-year prison sentence was denied by an Iowa appeals court last week. Runge claimed that the trial judge improperly considered comments she made during her trial on her blog  attacking prosecutors and the judge. Runge also claimed that the charges against her were filed as result of antisemitism.

Wendy Runge
Wendy Weiner Runge

Wendy Weiner Runge Loses Appeal, Will Continue To Serve 10 Year Sentence
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com

Minnesota haredi filmmaker Wendy Weiner Runge’s appeal of her 10-year prison sentence was denied by an Iowa appeals court last week, the Associated Press reported.

Runge claimed the trial judge improperly considered comments she made on her blog during her trial attacking prosecutors and the judge. Runge also claimed that the charges against her were filed as result of antisemitism.

Runge pleaded guilty to defrauding the State of Iowa in what became known as the Iowa Film Office scandal. A co-owner of Minneapolis-based Polynation Pictures, Runge was accused of inflating expenses on applications for film tax credits offered by the state. Polynation Pictures received $1.8 million in incentives from the State of Iowa to make the low budget film.

Two of Runge’s partners pleaded guilty and were sentenced to probation.

Runge's appeal claims that Judge Douglas Staskal violated her rights to free speech when he considered her blog posts at sentencing.

In some posts, Runge accused prosecutors of engaging in political games. She also criticized the judge, writing that her lawyer found Staskal to be unprofessional.

The blog posts were given to Staskal, who cited them at Runge's sentencing hearing, telling Runge that the posts indicate that, “you have not taken responsibility for what you did, and what you did was a felony."

Staskal also called Runge "arrogant and defiant.”

Runge, now 47, claimed in her appeal that a guilty plea inherently means that she has accepted responsibility and demonstrated remorse.

The appeals court rejected all of Runge’s arguments.

"The judge chose to sentence her on these clearly articulated reasons and grounds, which we find are not clearly untenable or unreasonable," the appeals court said.

Runge was sentenced by Staskal in May 2011.

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"""In some posts, Runge accused prosecutors of engaging in political games. She also criticized the judge, writing that her lawyer found Staskal to be unprofessional."""

I saw that blog and could NOT believe someone would be that dumb! Of course, the blog was just meant for her friends and this dumb bunny did not know that whatever you put on the the Web is NOT private and can be found by anyone.

If she one the other hand did a blog that...
How she was overtaken by the evil impulse and was so sorry and crying into a handkerchief [with crushed onions] she be home right now.

Get down on your hands and knees and beg forgiveness and keep the act going

This is from the Iowa Supreme Court, its ruling

http://www.iowacourts.gov/court_of_appeals/Recent_Opinions/20121031/2-823.pdf

There is no need to go to law school to understand that one does not rip the trial judge before sentencing

Is she smart? Perhaps not, but ten years is anti semitism. Many murderers get lighter sentences.

The frumma need to stop crying "antisemitism". It will backfire on all of us.

And they need to stop p*ssing off the judge.

AND they need to show remorse and accept responsibility for their actions.

Well, another Holly Merthyr in the list (Pollard, Rubashkin, Weberman, the pious community of traitors, thieves and perverts). Frumma will be able soon to have full iconostasis in their Shtibelach, like in Russian Orthodox Churches.

אחינו כל בית ישראל, הנתונים בצרה ובשביה! העומדים בין בים ובין ביבשה, המקום ירחם עליהם
ויוציאם מצרה לרוחה, ומאפלה לאורה, ומשעבוד לגאלה, השתא בעגלא ובזמן קריב

On a side note, it was brought to everyone's attention at the meeting that everyone in this community should be aware of strangers knocking on doors pretending to be FEMA agents. Four people were arrested today in our area posing as FEMA agents. Please know that there will be legitimate FEMA agents in Woodmere and Cedarhurst tomorrow, but you can recognize them by way of the fact that they will be accompanied by a frum man by the name of Ira Grossman.

Also, please be aware that there are contractors out there who are trying to take advantage of people in crisis.
Please check everyone's credentials and don't sign anything without doing your due diligence. It already happened that one individual in the community signed a contract with a contractor for what he thought was a $10,000 agreement, but did not realize the fine print actually obligated him to pay the contractor $100,000 for that "$10,000" job.

Thank you.

The Chofetz Chaim Torah Center

wendy in captivity. aaron rubashkin will contact lewin and lewin who will represent wendy ,pro amico, as they do for all hardei persecuted by the antisemites. 10 years is no joking matter,wendy is in for a rude awakening.

10 years for a mother of small children is quite a sentence.

Shows you how stupid it is to criticize a sitting trial judge.

So sad.

Now the campaign starts for Kosher food and minyanim for her.

I am already seeing the cries of antisemitism. Shame on these lowlifes who have diluted the term to the point where some decent gentiles have to be skeptical any time a Jew complains about antisemitism. The term should be saved for the real thing instead of deploying it for every orthodox fraudster. If Madoff had been ultra orthodox I bet we would be having pidyon shvuyim campaigns on his behalf.

Is there parole in Minnesota? After how long she will be eligible for?

I'm not trying to be difficult, this is a serious question: is she really all that "haredi?" What Haredi woman would a) wear a jacket that color, b) wear lipstick like that, or c) have a photograph like that taken.

Looking at her, she looks like the right wing of MO.

The sentence is entirely too harsh. Sentence her to 366 days. Then confiscate her assets to reimburse the state. In fact, maybe she should reimburse the state *double* what she stole from them.

Judge Douglas Staskal criticized the head of Polynation Pictures before sentencing her for attacking prosecutors and judges in public statements she has made, while blaming her plight on antisemitism and “some sort of political conspiracy.”
....
He said the sentence was a difficult decision to make for a woman with no prior criminal history, but he could not ignore the “complete arrogant and defiant” way in which she had denied responsility for her crime.
....
Two of her former partners who were more cooperative with prosecutors received much lighter sentences Tuesday before Staskal.

Matthias Saunders, a pivotal player in Polynation’s deals with the state, received an up to 10-year suspended sentence for first-degree theft and two years probation, meaning he will stay out of prison if he complies with the terms of his release.

Saunders, 39, who has been living in Georgia, ran a company called Maximux Production Services, and profited from services his company provided that prosecutors said were highly inflated or didn’t exist.

Chase Brandau, 26, also of Minnesota, received a deferred sentencing for second-degree theft. He will be able to wipe the felony from his record if he successfully completes to two years of probation. All three will have to pay restitution to the state, the amounts of which have not yet been determined.

http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2011/05/wendy-weiner-runge-345.html

very interesting case. I'm sure she did a lot more and than what she got caught doing. What ever happened to the woman in Passaic NJ who was defrauding the school system for the Head Start program she was in charge of and ran up thousands in VICTORIA SECRETS bills? I will try to remember her name and let you know

Shmarya, you are a little connected to this case, because you knew Wendy before this all went down. what is your opinion of this sentence?

While I agree that she was imbecilic in criticizing the judge and mocking the justice system, but to sentence a first-time white collar offender, who was just a cog in a larger program rife with abuse, to 10 years hard time seems a bit heartless and cruel.

All the people in Iowa are anti smetic. All prosecuters in Iowa are anti smetic. All Judges in Iowa are anti smetic.
Yet all the semites go to Iowa to defraud the "rednecks" over there.
When they get caught they don't apologize and act accordingly. They go and party because they'll be free soon. "Those dumb Farmers....".

Well, They are not so dumb. They are not so red. They are not so anti semites.
Now pay the price. Maybe others will learn.

"""because you knew Wendy before this all went down. what is your opinion of this sentence?"""

I knew her
Sentence is justified because she 'kicked the judge in the shins' and spat on the court system

Get down on your knees and beg and cry for mercy and keep the act going for as long as the suspended sentence would be.

She would have gotten ZERO time in jail

Lesson number one for all you frum felons out there:

NEVER spit in the face of a bureaucracy. The USA has been the kindest, most benevolent country that Jews have ever lived in since creation. Don't abuse it by trying to game the system; do not take your freedom for granted.

I must also question the many lawyers and Rabbis that Wendy turned to for advice and assistance. Did they not understand the severity of the situation? Did they not tell her to daven, be contrite, and keep her mouth and keyboard quiet? From what I've read, all the Rabbis seemed to say is that they were confident that she would beat the rap, and she should be strong and keep the faith. They did not serve her well.

Nevertheless, this is certainly a harsh sentence for this crime - I grieve for her and her family.

I just don't understand why frumma crooks keep thinking that they can "beat the system" and then also criticise the system and also fail to admit responsibility when they have been caught fair and square.

Is it because they are uneducated and don't know how "the system" works and have no familiarity with secular society?

…I must also question the many lawyers and Rabbis that Wendy turned to for advice and assistance. Did they not understand the severity of the situation? Did they not tell her to daven, be contrite, and keep her mouth and keyboard quiet? From what I've read, all the Rabbis seemed to say is that they were confident that she would beat the rap, and she should be strong and keep the faith. They did not serve her well.…

Wendy and her rabbis (and some of her legal advisers, too, I think) drank the Rubashkin kool-aid and thought that screaming antisemitism and attacking the judge and the prosecution would help her raise money.

And they thought they were justified because, after all, they were sure Rubashkin was justified – but he wasn't.

In a sad way, Runge faces 10 years in prison because Nathan Lewin, et al, decided to smear a sitting federal judge and the legal system.

Lots of us condemned Lewin, etc., for doing so, and some of us attacked Runge for copying him.

But Runge and her friends, family and rabbis wouldn't listen.

If she had just said she was sorry, showed real palpable remorse, and apologized to the judge and to the people of Iowa for trying to game the system, she might have escaped with probation or a much shorter sentence.

And if she had started to try to repay the money to the state, that would have helped, as well.

She's a nice person. But she's very much a used car type of salesperson, always working angles.

And unfortunately for Wendy and her family, the judge saw that very clearly.

If I were her I would make a YouTube video apologizing for what she did and for attacking the judge and the prosecution, and warning kids not to steal and cheat. Be completely sincere. Don't try to hedge or cut corners.

Ask your attorneys to be sure, Wendy, but I think a judge in Iowa can amend his own sentence in a case like this.

Be smart and give him every reason to do so.

Posted by: sickened | November 05, 2012 at 06:58 AM

Please provide us with some examples of murderers sentenced in Federal court to "lighter sentences."

Posted by: SkepticalYid | November 05, 2012 at 04:05 PM

Runge's case is a state case, not a federal case.

But even so, very few murders get less than 10 years. Most get 15 or more years, with many getting 25 to life in a lot of states.

In Iowa, murder 1 is punished with life in prison; murder 2 carries a maximum sentence of 50 years; B felonies a maximum of 25 years; C felonies, maximum of 10 years; and D felonies a maximum 5 years.

Hardly the slap on the wrist "sickened" claims.

Thanks for the correction, Shmarya. "sickened's" claim was the typical hyperbole one sees in these situations.

As far as I remember from the video of her original sentencing, the judge clearly hinted that he may reconsider the sentence (something like “it can be changed but right now I sentence you for 10 years etc”). Instead of appellation, she should to show real remorse and to ask sentence amendment. The judge made it very clear that the lack of remorse demonstrated by social media statements is the only reason of the harsh sentence. And it stupid to mix here the freedom of speech issues. Indeed, she had full right to say what she said. However, the judge has full right to handle the maximum sentence regardless plea agreement (the court is not part of the deal and is not limited by), and this is clearly explained to all defendants taking deals.

B"H

What a great justice system.

Not.

Better than some but far from great.

Whose justice system is better?

Why the Bes Din, of course. They have DOS toireh. They are so wise God himself obeys their rulings. They speak Yiddish.

Simpleton Jew - the justice system did just fine. The problem is that yidiots like you. have been drinking the Orthodox Kool Aid for too long.


You've swallowed the "Chosen People" bullshit wholesale, so instead of acting like polite guests in Galus, (as per your Toyreh), you're putting your dirty feet on the furniture, stealing the children's piggy banks, and pissing all over the floor.

Then, when caught in the act, you screech "Don't you fucking know who I AM? ANTI-SEMITES!! WHEN MOSHIACH COMES YOU WILL SERVE US, GOY SCUM!", instead of feigning contrition.

Then you go online, saying how stupid the Goyim are, how you'll get off easily and be home for shabbes. You "baruch Hashem" on every line, saying that god will not allow you to be imprisoned, because you have 37 mouths to feed, and the stupid goy judge and jury will know in their primitive animal hearts that you need to be set free, that whatever crime you committed is irrelevant when you're raising the next generation of ubermenschen.

You'll never, ever learn that you're no better or worse than any other human. You're not. "chosen" or special, you don't operate on a higher level, or have a special soul. You're just an ordinary
human, a bipedal ape in clothes, who can speak and use a computer. That's it.

Oddly, what draws a lot of wallets yearning to be emptied by Chabad are their statements that they are no better than everyone else. They'd spend a lot less time in jail if they proclaimed that to their sentencing judges as well.

Don't blame simple jew. It's not as though he comes without a warning label.

Tsk Tsk Tsk

Let me see, Runge was accused of inflating expenses on applications for film tax credits offered by the state. Polynation Pictures received $1.8 million in incentives from the State of Iowa to make the low budget film. And it is antisemitism to catch them red handed and call them for what they are? Crooks?

Just chanced upon this site, shocking is not the word...

If the Nazi Der Sturmer would of had a website it would of looked just like yours, they would be drooling with all you scoops on Jews.... you prove every one of their sadistic stereotyping of Jews, unbelievable... whats going on here, the disgusting racist violent comments..... so much haterd so much animosity towards frum yidden... WOW!!!

Shamraya, all I can say, a warm cozy corner is waiting for you in hell, your ancestors are turning in their graves seeing the einikel as such a Jew Hater....

Preposterous.

Pleading guilty is taking responsibility, legally speaking. Throwing the book at her because of her "attitude" about it... is sentencing for contempt of law.

The lawbreaker in chief will lead us all into contempt. May we all rot in prison.

Idiot.

Runges attitude included writing that she really was no guilty and was only making the plea deal to get off easy. I realize you lack some basic grasp of reality, but get caught doing this in almost any court in the US and expect to have the book thrown at you.

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