FBI Investigating Prosecutor Dan Kasaris’s Sexual Relationship with Government Informant Kathryn Clover
–OCTOBER 4th, 2016 — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE —
Senior Assistant Ohio Attorney General’s four year romantic relationship with criminal defendant and government witness Kathryn Clover is the subject of an FBI investigation, according to the United States Attorney’s Office in Pittsburgh. Ms. Clover’s former boyfriend, Bryan Butler, previously revealed the existence of hundreds of romantic e mails between Kasaris and Clover, which are part of a public records suit in federal court. Clover, the government’s lead witness in what prosecutors call the “nation’s largest mortgage fraud case,” testified in multiple trials against Tony Viola and assisted Kasaris when he prosecuted Clover’s former husband Matt Fairfield. Clover also helped Kasaris prosecute more than three dozen defendants in Ohio v. Uri Gofman, Case # 536877, and a dozen more defendants in Ohio v. Karen Harris, Case # 551555.
Dan Kasaris’s erotic e mails include professions of his “endless love” for Ms. Clover. Butler said that Clover “told me that her and Dan had been sleeping together since before the trial” and that the sexual relationship started “before he prosecuted her ex husband Matt Fairfield.” The early stages of Kasaris’s romantic relationship with Clover caused “huge arguments” between Clover and her husband Matt, who became alarmed after his wife began spending time alone with Kasaris at bars, restaurants and at an Indians game. Fairfield, a U.S. military veteran who served overseas, described several late night rendezvous between the Prosecutor and Clover “over drinks” including one evening when “she came home and went straight to take a shower.” Fairfield told Clover he was informing Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Bennett about her affair but Clover quickly contacted Kasaris, who texted that he’d “take care of” her husband. Kasaris then the Mortgage Fraud Task Force arrest Fairfield as a “terrorist.” Fairfield’s cellular phone contained text messages about Clover’s affair with Kasaris but the phone was seized by Kasaris after his arrest. Attorney Marcus Sidoti, who represents Fairfield, successfully obtained a substantial reduction of Fairfield’s prison sentence. Mr. Sidoti has repeatedly raised concerns about Clover’s relationship with Kasaris and her role as an informant in Fairfield’s case, and he is continuing his efforts to get Fairfield released from prison.
In May, 2016, federal judge Susan Paradise Baxter ruled that e mails between Kasaris and Clover are “public records” and subject to disclosure, Viola v. Department of Justice, et. al., case # 15-cv-242, W.D. Pa.. Jaye Schlachet, counsel for Ms. Clover, said “If any e mails exist, and I’m not saying that they exist, they will not be turned over voluntarily.” Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Colville represents the Justice Department in the public records litigation and did not object to including Ms. Clover as a defendant in the public records suit to compel production of e mails or text messages in her possession, July 7, 2016 filing by Mr. Colville. Recently, AUSA Colville stated, “I have sent these filings directly to the FBI and asked them to look into this.” Special Agent Stephen D. Anthony, the agent in charge of the FBI’s Cleveland office, recently obtained additional documents concerning Prosecutor Kasaris but, as of this date, Special Agent Anthony has not spoken publicly about this matter.
Clover was initially enamored with Kasaris and appreciated his assistance with legal issues. Prosecutor Kasaris acted as Ms. Clover’s attorney when he assisted her with her divorce, foreclosure cases and when he drafted an affidavit for her, filed as Docket # 110 in USA v. Viola, Case # cr-08-506. That affidavit remains sealed despite years of litigation by Viola to unseal all records and voice recordings in his case. After Clover was ordered to pay more than $2.5 million in restitution as part of her guilty plea in federal court, she grew increasingly disenchanted with Kasaris, telling friends she was “sick of Cleveland and everything there” and wanted to “get away from Dan.” She quit her job at a massage parlor and moved back to her hometown of Cincinnati, where she rekindled an old flame with her long-time admirer Bryan Butler, who she first met in high school. Before long, Butler and Clover were in a serious relationship. In order to keep Clover quiet about the affair, Kasaris first assisted Clover in obtaining a Barrister’s Scholarship at Cleveland Marshall College of Law then paid Clover from a fund for government informants. Despite a requirement that prosecutors disclose financial assistance or direct payments to government witnesses before trial, federal and state prosecutors failed to disclose inducements given to Clover before either of Viola’s trials. Butler, who worked in the construction industry, was in love with Clover but discovered the relationship between Clover and Kasaris as a result of Kasaris’s e mails to Clover. He asked Clover why she was receiving erotic e mails from another man and who was sending such e mails. Clover’s response: “You’ll never believe who he is. He’s the prosecutor who won’t go away.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Bennett, who prosecuted Viola with Kasaris as part of a joint federal-state task force, told attorney John Gibbons that he was “increasingly queasy” as more and more details about Kasaris’s relationship with Clover became public. Viola proved his innocence at his second trial, where Clover testified that Kasaris let her remove evidence from the prosecutor’s office, attend meetings with other government witnesses, review evidence not related to her case and even take the Fifth Amendment as a government witness. Bennett said “Clover provided false testimony during the trial” of Viola and that Kasaris did not prosecute Clover for “other mortgage fraud schemes … for bankruptcy fraud, nor for filing a false police report … [and Kasaris] did not prosecute Clover for her involvement in the companion state prosecution,” USA v. Clover, case # 10-cr-75, N.D. Ohio, Docket # 46.
After the ruling by Judge Baxter, the Ohio Attorney General’s Office (AGO) assigned Mr. Matthew J. Donahue as Special Prosecutor to look into this matter. On May 16, 2016, Mr. Donahue said his office was preserving all “e mails between Senior Assistant Attorney General Kasaris and Ms. Clover that are in the AGO’s e mail system.”
“I proved my innocence at trial yet remain imprisoned,” said Tony Viola. “I’m asking everyone to write Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, requesting that he make the e mails between Dan Kasaris and Kathryn Clover public. I’d also like to thank everyone helping me expose the outrageous and illegal actions by federal and state prosecutors throughout my case.”
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FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION, kindly contact:
Senior Assistant Ohio Attorney General Dan Kasaris, (440) 305-4226 or [email protected]
Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Colville at (412) 644-3500 or [email protected]
Jaye Schlachet, Counsel for Kathryn Clover, at (216) 456-2488 or Jaye @schlachetlaw.com
FBI Special Agent Stephen D. Anthony, 1501 Lakeside Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44114
Kathryn Clover, (216) 776-8905
Assistant U.S. Attorney Mark Bennett, (216) 622-3878 or [email protected]
Marcus Sidoti, Counsel for Matthew Fairfield, (216) 357-3350, [email protected]
John Kennedy, counsel for Bryan Butler, (513) 946-3728
Tony Viola, ID # 32238-160, McKean FCI – P.O. Box 8000 – Bradford, Pa. 16701 or www.FreeTonyViola.com. Find Tony’s facebook page by searching [email protected]
Tony Viola’s public records suit is available upon request or via the federal court’s Pacer system. The suit includes written statements from Bryan Butler and Matt Fairfield about Prosecutor Kasaris’s sexual relationship with Ms. Clover. The suit also contains testimony of Kathryn Clover and affidavits from key witnesses, see Viola v. Department of Justice, Case # 15-cv-242, Western District of Pennsylvania, permission to file amended complaint granted by Judge Baxter, 7/13/16.