August 2, 2007, - 12:54 pm
Comedy Club Owner Says He Was Duped, Defrauded Into Writing a Letter for Muslim Defendant Robert Mustaq John
By Debbie Schlussel
**** UPDATE: Reader Barry Popik sent me info that Al Martin’s New York Comedy Club featured open Yasser Arafat fanatic and Palestinian Terrorism Supporter Ray Hanania in 2002 (and Martin also featured him in 1997). As Barry says (facetiously): “Yeah, just like the Beatles. All you need is love.” But Al Martin tells me he will NOT feature Hanania, again. Great news.****
Earlier today, I posted a column about Federal Magistrate Judge Joan Azrack’s extremely soft sentence for Robert Mustaq John, a Muslim who already received a lenient plea deal for sending me an anti-Semitic death threat. I noted in my column that, among the letters Mr. John submitted to the Court for leniency was a letter by New York Comedy Club owner Al Martin. Mr. Martin contacted me, telling me he was duped into writing the letter, that he was never aware what was involved. I feel bad for him given what he has written me, so I withdraw my call for you to boycott his New York Comedy Club. But I must say that he was very easily duped because he failed to investigate why he was writing the letter.
I have not seen the letter he wrote, because the Court did not post it in the record. I called the Court, this morning, to ask why not, and I was told that there was so much mail (from you) and documents, that the court was slow in docketing them. Here is Al Martin’s letter followed by my response and a subsequent interchange:
From: AL MARTIN
Date: Aug 2, 2007 12:37 PM
Subject: FROM AL MARTIN REGARDING ROBERT JOHN
John submitted a letter to the judge from Al Martin, owner of the New York Comedy Club, praising him and asking for a lenient sentence. Boycott Martin and his comedy club. Clearly he thinks anti-Semitic death threats from Muslims are funny. Let him know you don’t appreciate his “taste” in “comedy.”
I am Al Martin owner of the New York Comedy Club.. I have been a long time fan of yours and have heard you on numerous talk shows.
Naturallly I was shocked to hear I somehow wound up in your column.
This Robert John guy took a course many years ago on stand up comedy at my club. He recently asked for a letter of referance. I had no idea what he was involved in. I had no contact with him since he had taken my class years ago. Would you have a picture of this guy ? I never put anything about leniency in the letter since i had no idea what charges were pending against him.. Actually if I remember correctly, he said it was it was a domestic dispute.
Is it to late to contact the judge regarding this fraud. If so, who do i contact, or can you put me in contact with the proper authority.I feel horrible that this low life twisted my words and duped me into something i never would have done.
This is a terrible misunderstanding. I am a proud jewish man . I would not support the kind of garbage of a man that you are describing on your website.
Please help me to correct this misunderstanding.You have wrong information, And this can be hurtful to me. I can understand if it is warranted, but this is a serious misunderstanding..
Here is my first response:
I did not see the letter, b/c it is not recorded on the court docket or in the court file. I can only go by what Robert John said in his letter. I’m glad to hear that you did not do this. However, I must question why you would write a letter of reference for something when you hadn’t a clue what it was for or what this person looks like. Sounds like you aren’t even sure who he is. So why write a letter? That puzzles me. Since you were aware it was for a criminal matter, don’t you think you should have done the tiniest amount of investigation and asked for the court case name or number? Sounds like it really didn’t matter to you. Don’t you think if someone told you they wanted a letter of recommendation for a “domestic dispute” that you should have looked into what the details of the dispute were and for what and whom you were vouching?
I’d never write a letter for anyone I didn’t know or couldn’t remember, especially if I was told it was for a legal, criminal matter. I hope you will indeed contact the judge and tell her that the letter was obtained under false pretenses and that you were duped and a fraud was committed upon the court. I will post your letter on my site. And I hope you will contact the court as soon as possible. It is, frankly, probably too late. But I hope you will do something. Perhaps this soft on crime, liberal judge who has a predilection for kindness to extremist Muslims will reconsider. Or if I can convince the do-nothing Justice Department to appeal the sentence, perhaps this will help.
If you are worried about what is “hurtful” to you, I only wish you had the same concerns when you blindly wrote a letter praising someone you can’t remember. I do feel bad for you, though, because you were apparently duped. But it sounds like you made it very easy and couldn’t be bothered to check into it, until it has now come back to bite you.
Would love for you to please send me a copy of the letter you wrote. I would be interested to see what you wrote on behalf of someone you can’t remember for what you were told was a “domestic dispute.” That is where this “serious misunderstanding” started.
Here’s Al Martin’s response:
I do know what Robert John looks like…I was curious if it was the same Robert John refferanced in your article., Though now I have no doubt it is , Because there is only one person i wrote the letter for.
My 2nd response:
Then why are you asking for a picture? How could it be two different people? What–Robert John who threatened my life and got a soft sentence, helped by your letter, is different than the one who took comedy from you, but one knew the other and duped you into writing a letter for one that was used for the other? Come on. I really wish you had looked into why your letter was needed. You say it was a “domestic dispute.” What if it really was and the guy was beating a woman senseless? Would you write a letter for that? Come on. You would lend your name to that person so he could get leniency? What did you think a letter from you was needed for? A harsher sentence? When someone needs a letter like this, it’s quite obvious what it is for.
There’s a lesson here. Muslims are very deceitful when they want to get out of prosecution for crimes, especially hate crimes. It is up to us to not blindly help them in this endeavor. I don’t think I need to tell any readers of this site this, but never write a letter on someone’s behalf unless you know the person well and understand how the letter will be used.
In this case, it was successfully used to help a Muslim fanatic get a far-too-lenient sentence.
And this begs the question: Were Robert John’s other letters obtained under similarly fraudulent ruses? Bet on it.
Tags: Al Martin, Al Martin Here, Al Martin's New York Comedy Club, Barry Popik, Debbie Schlussel, Debbie Schlussel Here, Department of Justice, Federal Magistrate Judge, Joan Azrack, judge, Liberal Judge, New York Comedy Club, owner, Ray Hanania, Robert John, Robert Mustaq John