This was posted on Congress.org.
This might seem as an ordinary story to others, but it definitely represents much more to us, it is injustice committed by the wealthy and powerful against innocent law abiding citizens.
We have lost our confidence in almost all elected officials and in most of the government departments; however, we want our voice to reach all those who are sitting somewhere in their offices, under the false pretence of representing their constituents especially those representing the state of California.
We are almost certain that exposing those who are responsible for our pain and suffering would not prompt any official to confront those wealthy individuals who have harmed us, because that would jeopardize their special relationship and potential future donations, but we are committed to reveal what happen to us whether someone is concerned or not about our well being.
This is about retaliation and discrimination; retaliation by a big name CEO who employs his network of agents and attorneys to harass and intimidate those who are much less wealthy than he is, those who dare confront him in any way, such as practicing their right as granted by the Law; and why wouldn't he? When he owns almost an entire county in California, it is easy, as long as he has such huge wealth he can buy anything, from attorneys, to federal government employees to elected officials.
This way he can rest assured that his name would remain untarnished. Since we are certain our civil rights have been violated, we are going to put down facts, names and dates as it happened. We live in Santa Maria Apartments in Irvine, Orange County California since December 2004.
It is owned by Mr. Donald Bren; CEO, real estate developer, investor, owner and chairman of the board of The Irvine Company; oh, sorry, correction, he does prefer to be called The Philanthropist Mr. Donald Bren, who has been ranked high on Business Week magazine's list of The 50 Most Generous Philanthropists.
We've been retaliated against and harassed by Mr. Bren's agent and attorneys just for practicing our lawful rights. Imagine that Mr. Philanthropist, as he preferred to be called, has retaliated against a senior citizen mother and her daughter who are both in a bad physical condition due to a car accident, by :
Revoking their lease renewal offer, canceling their current lease and transferring it to month-to-month, just to squeeze out of them about $300.00 a month in retaliatory rent increase. Immediately after the act of retaliation we contacted The Fair Housing Council of Orange County, they agreed it was a clear case of retaliation which is definitely a violation of the Fair Housing Act, and advised us to send a letter to the landlord/manager, and told us to call them back if we didn't receive any answer. We did send a letter to Ms. Christine Haneishi, our community manager who initiated the retaliation as the Landlord's representative. When we received no answer we contacted once again the Fair Housing (They have instructed us to do so), we informed them with what happened, so they promised to call us back, but they never did.
On April 2, 2008 we filed a Civil lawsuit Pro Per in California Superior Court, Central Justice Center in Santa Ana, Orange County. We are not going as far as saying every employee in the court is a bigot, racist, or would stoop so low to please that Corporate tycoon and his entourage of lawyers; on the contrary, most of those who work there are efficient, hard workers who take the time to help in any way they could, there may be only a handful of those who would go against any ethics and morality just to harm others. Unfortunately, our case was assigned to a very few of those bigots, namely; a deputy Clerk and her supervisor, who for almost a year now have tried every possible method of violating the law, from hiding our complaint to the presiding judge which was mailed to his room and under his name, and returned it back to us by one of the supervisors marked CANCEL; How could anyone cancel a complaint?
Then the Deputy Clerk canceled the Entry of Default which was signed and filed by the Clerk of the Court/CEO Alan Carlson, does she have all that power and authority to cancel her superior's decision? As a result an alternate Judge followed the deputy clerk and dismissed our case (December 8, 2008).
Since, we don't trust any employee in this court, we didn't complain to the court executive officer Alan Carlson. It is truly shameful and disappointing to have a few low-ranking court employees gambling with people's lives just because they think they are superior in terms of race, also to assist in every way those who represent Mr. Bren.
During that time attorney Linda Burden who represents Mr. Bren, used every low, unethical and dishonest tactics in the book to harass us, from defending the landlord's agent act of retaliation, to making several false accusations and threats of eviction and suffering of consequences.
She kept coming up with fresh accusations and warnings, at one point she didn't realize the hole she just dug for herself regarding a certified letter. We don't think Ms. Burden had lost her ability to read a simple address on an envelope, but we believe that it is either she tampered with this certified letter's envelope, or an employee(s) at the Post office had collaborated with her. She couldn't see how her little scheme was falling apart; this is why we filed a request for investigation with The United States Postal Service Consumer Advocate office in Washington D.C. Then in mid 2008we contacted once again The Fair Housing Council of Orange County, and requested their help as they are required to help us by the law; either by conducting an investigation, mediating or by representing us in court.
After inquiring about our ethnicity and promised to have someone contact us, we never heard from them again; could it be because they are not willing to assist people from different ethnic groups? If that so, it means we have been discriminated against by those who are supposed to fight discrimination and retaliation? It wasn't until very recently when we have learned about how The Fair Housing Council of Orange County including its President had been marred by corruption.
We refused contacting our local Congressman John Campbell, the reason is simple; to live in a corrupted county like Orange County, California, one must understand that it is a huge closely-knit network of corporates, its CEOs' survive and thrive by controlling most of the county through donating to politicians and surrounding themselves with attorneys to keep their watchful eyes on who might revolt or might represent a problem for them in the future. We don't know Congressman Campbell, however, all facts suggest we better not contact him; the following reasons are enough:
1. Both Mr. Bren and Congressman Campbell are Republican who live in Orange County, California. 2. Congressman Campbell's office is located in a building owned by Mr. Donald Bren. 3. Congressman Campbell's office is a very few yards away from the law offices of our landlord's attorneys. So, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out what his answer would be if. For the record, we are neither Republicans nor Democrats, we are Independents. Mr. Campbell's office is located in: 610 Newport Center Drive, Suite 330 Newport Beach, CA 92660. Mr. Donald Bren's attorneys' office is located in: Smith & Susson, LLP 660 Newport Center Drive, Suite 100, Newport Beach, CA 92660.
We did contact California Attorney General, his office didn't help, we contacted the US Commission on Civil Rights, we even contacted the Justice Department Civil Rights Division, they too didn't answer, and we also contacted Senator Feinstein; whom we wish if she didn't answer instead of that clich letter we received from her. We are certain that those elected officials are trying to distance themselves from this problem in order not to offend our billionaire landlord.
The problem with those elected officials is; when they hear or read different names like ours their minds instantly make a simple process assuming that since we are not called Janet, John, Cynthia or Robert etc... We must be stupid morons, who are not educated enough to understand how life goes on in the free world, who could hardly understand, some words such as: Democracy, Law, right or wrong, or anything that could come close to normal intelligent human beings. Take for instance Senator Dianne Feinstein, when we mailed her our complaint we were quite aware of the fact that her authority has limits, we do understand quite well that as a Senator Ms. Feinstein can't intervene or give any advice in a matter within the jurisdiction of the court, this is why we didn't ask her to comment, intervene in any way with the court's issue or decision, all we did was informing her of what happened to us from retaliation at the hands of Billionaire and CEO Donald Bren, to the Fair Housing's reluctance to assist us in any way, to the court corruption. Our request was: Where to complain against those court employees? Instead of suggesting the right place; we were lectured about the separation of powers doctrine, assigned by the Constitution to the branches of government and the integrity of our system of justice. This is about misconduct and corruption in the court, so as a Senator she should have at least gave us the benefit of the doubt and directed us to the right place to complain, after all, this has to do with unacceptable mismanagement at its best, but we believe the court employees are off limits and have a license to commit any violation against whoever they dislike as long as no body has the power to question their actions. The response would have been completely different if we were reporting about a terrorist whom the court employees hid his/her file to help set him/her free. It seems that if any issue doesn't include any terrorism act it doesn't catch the eyes of the officials , so the keyword is TERRORISM, tough luck for us, there is no terrorist involved in our issue, at least we two are definitely not terrorists, the terrorists are those who are terrorizing law-abiding citizens, by harassment, manipulation and dishonesty, in addition to hiding behind their protective shield of wealth which could easily buy lost, weak souls and their illusory materialistic happiness as well, in addition to some others who are given authority whether in federal or private sector, in some cases this authority is used to satisfy and appease the devil within themselves; those are the real terrorists. Since our problem doesn't mean anything to Senator Feinstein she didn't even care about how unjustly we've been treated by The Fair Housing , which in itself is a violation of the Fair Housing Act, she also didn't care if Mr. Bren is hiding behind his team of lawyers to suffocate and pressure those who dare practice their legal rights. Why should she concern herself with such unimportant matters? Because if they were important issues, someone in her office should have called to see how could they help? If it is not possible in one way they should have tried figuring out another, but why should they, as long as in their minds, our names denote stupidity and most probably low level of education. Our all-time favorite is California Attorney General Edmund Brown, we contacted his office twice, the two responses should be the subject of a very successful highly-rated sitcom. Keep in mind we are talking about court complaint. First, they suggested contacting the Orange County Internal Auditing Department, the other suggestion wasn't less hilarious; they advised us to contact the Department of Human Resources in San Francisco. Doesn't that prove our point? Since our names are less common the assumption is, we are not going to differentiate between a court of law and a supermarket. Isn't that exactly a racial stereotyping and racial discrimination at its best? What those elected officials don't know is; we are highly educated, well-informed knowledgeable citizens who came to this country several decades ago from a country known to the world as the cradle of civilization, it laid down the foundation of the legal system for the entire world to follow, that was thousands of years before America was discovered. Unfortunately, at present this country's name is synonymous with corruption, backwardness, negligence, and is controlled by those who believed to be powerful and influential, they shamelessly dominate every aspect of life there. How did it reach this point? The reason is very simple, bad management, favoritism, and greed. Since we wholeheartedly love The United States, it is the only place we call home; we are extremely worried that what we are witnessing rings a resonant bell to the beginning of a very bad sign. It is hard to believe that just because we practiced our lawful rights Mr. Donald Bren has unleashed his power through his attorneys, Ms. Linda Burden and Mr. Scott Smith to hurt, harm and chase away an injured senior citizen mother and her physically ill daughter, just to prove that he is rich, and has the upper hand to behave however he desires. Oh, we don't want to offend Mr. Bren in any way by leaving out his beloved title PHILANTHROPIST, we could have been awarded that title too, if we have harmed innocent citizens by violating the law as he did with us. It doesn't matter if we constantly live in fear of eviction, it also doesn't matter if we have been exemplary tenants who pay the rent sometimes even before the month starts, it doesn't matter if we had to completely stop seeking treatment to be able to pay the retaliatory rent increase; no, no all that is meaningless, what does matter is Mr. Philanthropist, CEO sees his wealth grow, so he could pay his attorneys to keep up the good work of harassing, threatening and warning those who would dare complain.
We should be grateful that Mr. Bren has allowed us through his retaliation to contribute, even if it is by a very small portion, to his Philanthropic cause by using our nearly $4,000.00 in retaliatory rent increase in a year, after all, it is for a good cause, our health comes last. What Mr. Bren, his agent and his attorneys don't know about us is that when it comes to our rights, we are persistent, strong human beings who fear nothing but God, we know our duties quite well and strive to fulfill them, in return we expect our rights to be fully respected. By all means, we are not done exposing those who have harmed us, and caused us such mental and physical anguish; as a matter of fact we have just started, and as God is our witness, we promise that we won't rest or settle until this issue is exposed and laid wide open before whoever is interested or not, even if it reaches the Supreme Court, whether it is Mr. Bren, The Irvine Company's agent Ms. Christine Haneishi, Attorney Linda Burden, attorney Scott Smith, The Fair Housing of Orange County or The Central Justice Center in Santa Ana, they all have participated in violating our civil rights and contributed equally in our physical, mental, financial and emotional anguish and suffering. We do have proofs for every single violation done against us.