Judicial reformRight to travel

Cops put 6 men in jail enforcing trucking law on mere presumption of ‘driving’ and ‘operating’ — a noted state racket

A new graduate of the police academy, his dad behind him, is congratulated by chiefs of the Chattanooga police department. (Photo David Tulis)

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn., Saturday, April 29, 2023 — Six men in arrest reports posted at news outlet Chattanoogan.com are men innocent of any crime, harm or wrong. Yet they are arrested alongside the roads of Chattanooga and the county, taken to the Silverdale detention center, booked and criminally charged.

By David Tulis / NoogaRadio Nework

They are victim of a court-approved and politician-permitted racket using the amorphous police power in Tennessee that lets officers do more than just “keep the peace.” It’s a power that lets them “enforce laws.”

And what are the laws being “enforced” against Christopher Martin, Benjamin Keith, Brian Standifer and three others? The state trucking and transportation law enforced against people not involved in the trucking and transportation trade.

Under terms of that body of law, these six being criminally prosecuted in Hamilton County sessions court by police, deputies and, ultimately, the office of district attorney Coty Wamp. Even judges such as Lila Statom participate in the scam because she allows prosecutors to impose a legal standard inapplicable to these men and the run-of-the-mill crowd who are traffic enforcement defendants at her bar.

The law in question is at Tenn. Code Ann. § Title 55, motor and other vehicles, which is a commercial body of law applicable, well, to commercial users of the public roads in Tennessee.

These people are subject to the enforcers of the department of safety and homeland security, serving the governor in the executive branch. Its “shock troops” in military enforcement of the privilege system or trucking are state troopers. Their powers are described in the utilities part of Tennessee, in Title 65, chapter 15. This brief chapter on “carriers” delegates police powers to troopers.

Their privilege enforcement by law is upon evidences of commerce. Evidences. That’s an important word because it shows the burden of proof is, in a criminal matter as well as an administrative matter, is on the accuser. That is the state. The state of Tennessee in our case.

Bills of lading

The authority and the facts the officer is to obtain (in evidence) are here:

Such enforcement officers, upon reasonable belief that any motor vehicle is being operated in violation of this part, shall be authorized to require the driver thereof to:

(A) Stop and exhibit the registration certificate issued for such vehicle;

(B) Submit to such enforcement officer for inspection any and all bills of lading, waybills, invoices or other evidences of the character of the lading being transported in such vehicle; and

(C) Permit such officer to inspect the contents of such vehicle for the purpose of comparing same with bills of lading, waybills, invoices or other evidence of ownership or of transportation for compensation.

Tenn. Code Ann. § 65-15-106 (West) [emphasis added]

Do Chattanooga police, East Ridge police or Hamilton County sheriff’s department obtain such evidence of commerce?


When it comes to dealing with the “general public” in traffic stops, not even troopers obtain this sort of evidence.

Geronimo Arreaga Saqueo, Juan Ruis Ortega and Leroy Garner and the other three innocents are being prosecuted without their accusers’ establishing they are in commercial activity, with the evidences being bills of lading, waybills or “other evidences of ownership” or “of transportation for compensation.”

Notice what creates the power of the officer: “transportation for compensation.” If these men are not either common or private carriers, pursuant to law, their prosecution is an abuse, a harm, an oppression and an evil. A moral wrong. A sin.

Other evidences the officer fails to ask for and obtain in your arrest could include:

➤ Contract for hire of driver

➤ Passenger list (A passenger is paying to be transported. Your son or daughter in the car with you, or your husband or wife, are guests)

➤ Manifest

Parties under notice

I don’t have these defendants’ legal filings in front of me. But, given my earlier reporting and review of these matters, it is safe to say they are typical victims of this human trafficking operation continued despite notice by Sheriff Austin Garrett and police chief Celeste Murphy of Chattanooga.

These are men who are private users of the road. They use the road per right, carrying their goods and property for private purposes, under right and no doubt under duty and necessity. They are on the road serving their families or their personal business, and most likely are on the road not as agent of an employer, company or master.

Their accusers are under Tennessee transportation administrative notice for more than 1,900 days. In 2018 I put several municipal governments under notice about ultra vires enforcement of the trucking law (Latin for “outside the scope”). The social engineering and social management that operates from illegal use of police power is called Jim Crow, most harmful among minorities and the poor.

If it were me facing your charges

If I were facing the charges these by which these six innocents are beleaguered, I would opt for “waiving the court.” That is simply telling the sessions court judge that I am insisting on a right to an indictment.

The case now is heard in criminal court, and you have a right to a jury. In this venue, and at trial, I would show the cop has no evidence to support the accusation, and that the court has no subject matter jurisdiction. That is determined by examining the state’s evidence against you. You will see that the cop obtained no evidence of the kind the trooper has authority to collect.

He has no evidence that you are “driving” or “operating” a motor vehicle.

I am trying to show that the essential element in driving (the charge being “driving on revoked”) is that the officer has no evidence of driving (i.e., the commercial act of steering and controlling a motor vehicle as part of a commercial act, under privilege and license) Several stories along this line are on my website, TNtrafficticket.us. Here’s one of them, “Turn cop into nincompoop with these questions in traffic case.”

In the notorious Gregory Parker case in Chattanooga, I published this take on how to handle the trial. “How trooper should be interrogated if Parker takes ‘traffic‘ arrest to trial.” (DA Wamp dismisses this case in October 2022.)

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