02 September 2015

Sacramento Superior Court Controversy: Divorce Corp Documentary Featuring Sacramento County Court Corruption Now Streaming on Netflix

Documentary Film Cataloguing Sacramento Family Court Corruption Now Available to 65 Million Netflix Members 


Judicial Council of California Chair Tani G. Cantil-Sakauye

The 2014 documentary film Divorce Corp is now available on Netflix, an on-demand Internet streaming media service with 65 million subscribers. The movie chronicles family court corruption throughout the United States and designates Sacramento County as one of the most corrupt. 

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In May, 2013, Sacramento Family Court News was the first news organization to report that several Sacramento County cases would be featured in the documentary. We reviewed the film shortly after its theatrical release in January, 2014. The movie also was reviewed by the New York Times, Village Voice, Minneapolis Star Tribune, McClatchy-Tribune News Service, Orange County Register and RogerEbert.com. For our complete coverage of Divorce Corp, click here. To view clips from the movie, visit the SFCN YouTube Channel.

Our original review of the film is reprinted below:  

Judge Peter McBrien and Sacramento County Family Court System Disemboweled in Divorce Corp Documentary 

Sacramento Federal Court Eastern District of California – United States Courts, US District Court Sacramento, Judge William B. Shubb, Judge Edmund F. Brennan, Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr, Judge Carolyn K. Delaney, Judge Morrison C. England Jr, Judge Gregory G. Hollows, Judge John A. Mendez, Judge Kendall J. Newman, Judge Troy L. Nunley, Judge Allison Claire, Judge Dale A. Drozd, Judge Lawrence K. Karlton, Judge Kimberly J. Mueller, United States Attorney Benjamin Wagner, Hon. Robert C. Hight – Hon. Bunmi O. Awoniyi – Hon. Steven M. Gevercer – Hon. Tami R. Bogert – Hon. James M. Mize – Vance Raye - CJP Victoria B. Henley – Hon. Thadd A. Blizzard -Chief Counsel Victoria Henley Commission on Judicial Performance - Victoria B. Henley Director Commission on Judicial Performance – Janice M. Brickley Legal Advisor to Commissioners Commission on Judicial Performance – Bradford L. Battson Senior Attorney III Commission on Judicial Performance – Sei Shimoguchi Senior Attorney III Commission on Judicial Performance- Janice M. Brickley Legal Advisor to Commissioners - Ulf Carlsson Benjamin B. Wagner – Melinda Haag – Jayne Kim – Victoria B. Henley – Elaine M. Howle - -Judge Kevin R. Culhane – Hon. Kevin R Culhane – Judge Kevin Culhane -
Sacramento Family Court litigant Ulf Carlsson's startling story is central to the documentary Divorce Corp

Movie Review and Opinion by PelicanBriefed

It is now difficult to dispute that the Sacramento County Family Court system - rebuilt more than 20 years ago to the specifications of local judge pro tem family law attorneys by Judge Peter McBrien, then-Judge Vance Raye, divorce attorney Robert O'Hair, and others - has become the most corrupt family court in the nation. The proof is now available to anyone for $20: the cost of the documentary film Divorce Corp, recently released on DVD, and also available by download at the iTunes storeIn his first, full-length documentary film, director Joe Sorge meticulously documents the epidemic of corruption and collusion in family courts throughout the United States. And the Sacramento County system rises to the top of the toxic slurry pond.

A parade of litigants from Indiana, Tennessee, Ohio, California and other locales recount their nightmare experiences in child custody and other divorce-related court disputes. Retired judges, active attorneys, child custody evaluators and court reform advocates are interviewed over the one hour, 33 minute run time of the film. In one compelling segment, Nevada County Superior Court whistleblower Emily Gallup reveals that state-level oversight and accountability of California family courts is effectively nonexistent. In a tacit admission, the Judicial Council and Administrative Office of the Courts declined Sorge's request to be interviewed and respond to Gallup's documented accusations. 

But the local, well-known Ulf Carlsson case takes center stage and is woven throughout the movie, overshadowing the horror stories of other litigants. Judge Peter McBrien's clinically sociopathic, personal vendetta against Carlsson - which in 2012 6th District Court of Appeal Presiding Justice Conrad Rushing called a "judicial reign of terror" - is chronicled in all its perverse glorySacramento family court litigants Andrew Karres, Mike Newdow and Robert Saunders, and Nevada County pro per Elena Haskins also make appearances criticizing virtually every aspect of local court operations. Judges, attorneys, custody evaluators, the family law facilitator, and even the "child's best interest" legal standard are all held under the microscope and come away nakedly exposed and tarnished. Sometimes, only a cliché will do: Must be seen to be believed. Missing only interviews with family court child victims. Four and a half stars.  

Click here to order the movie at the Divorce Corp web page. To download the film from the iTunes store, click here.

Click to visit Sacramento Family Court News on: Facebook, YouTube, Google+, Scribd, Vimeo, and Twitter. For additional reporting on the people and issues in this post, click the corresponding labels below the photos:
Judge Robert Hight – Judge Bunmi Awoniyi – Judge Steven Gevercer – Judge Tami Bogert – Judge James Mize – Vance Raye - Victoria Henley CJP - Judge Thadd Blizzard -Doug D. Cordiner Chief Deputy State Auditor Bureau of State Audits – Donna L. Neville Staff Counsel IV Bureau of State Audits – State Auditor of California - California State Auditor Elaine M. Howle Bureau of State Audits – Phillip J. Jelicich Principal Auditor Bureau of State Audits - Andrew Karres - Benjamin B. Wagner – Melinda Haag – Jayne Kim – Victoria B. Henley – Elaine M. Howle -Sacramento Federal Court Eastern District of California – United States Courts, US District Court Sacramento, Judge William B. Shubb, Judge Edmund F. Brennan, Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr, Judge Carolyn K. Delaney, Judge Morrison C. England Jr, Judge Gregory G. Hollows, Judge John A. Mendez, Judge Kendall J. Newman, Judge Troy L. Nunley, Judge Allison Claire, Judge Dale A. Drozd, Judge Lawrence K. Karlton, Judge Kimberly J. Mueller, United States Attorney Benjamin Wagner,  Judge Kevin R. Culhane – Hon. Kevin R Culhane – Judge Kevin Culhane -
Andrew Karres recounts his own hellish experience in Sacramento Family Court in the documentary Divorce Corp

Sacramento Federal Court Eastern District of California – United States Courts, US District Court Sacramento, Judge William B. Shubb, Judge Edmund F. Brennan, Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr, Judge Carolyn K. Delaney, Judge Morrison C. England Jr, Judge Gregory G. Hollows, Judge John A. Mendez, Judge Kendall J. Newman, Judge Troy L. Nunley, Judge Allison Claire, Judge Dale A. Drozd, Judge Lawrence K. Karlton, Judge Kimberly J. Mueller, United States Attorney Benjamin Wagner, Hon. Robert C. Hight – Hon. Bunmi O. Awoniyi – Hon. Steven M. Gevercer – Hon. Tami R. Bogert – Hon. James M. Mize – Vance Raye - CJP Victoria B. Henley – Hon. Thadd A. Blizzard -Jody Patel Chief of Staff – Judicial and Court Operations Services Division Curtis L. Child Chief Operating Officer – Judicial and Court Administrative Services Division Curt Soderlund Chief Administrative Officer – California Judicial Council  -Judicial Council of California Steven Jahr Administrative Director of the Courts – Judicial Council and Court Leadership Services Division - Robert Saunders -Benjamin B. Wagner – Melinda Haag – Jayne Kim – Victoria B. Henley – Elaine M. Howle - Judge Kevin R. Culhane – Hon. Kevin R Culhane – Judge Kevin Culhane -
Sacramento Family Court litigant Robert Saunders is interviewed for Divorce Corp during a protest demonstration at the courthouse. Saunders' case is ongoing. Last November, Judge Thadd Blizzard inexplicably authorized an illegal, out-of-state child abduction in the case at the request of judge pro tem opposing attorney Richard Sokol

Judge Robert Hight – Judge Bunmi Awoniyi – Judge Steven Gevercer – Judge Tami Bogert – Judge James Mize – Vance Raye - Victoria Henley CJP - Judge Thadd Blizzard -attorney Yasmine S. Mehment CFLS San Francisco Legislation Chair – attorney Naghmeh Bashar CFLS – attorney Vanessa Kirker-Wright CFLS – attorney Robert “Paul” Bonnar Pleasant Hill – attorney John A. Lazor CFLS Los Angeles – attorney Laurel B. Brauer Irvine – attorney John E. Manoogian CFLS Walnut Creek – attorney Raymond R. Goldstein Culver City – attorney Ana M. Storey Los Angeles – attorney Ronald Scott Granberg CFLS Salinas – attorney Edward J. Thomas CFLS Bakersfield – attorney Diane M. Goodman Encino – attorney Deborah Hannah Wald San Francisco – attorney Minouche D. Kandel CFLS San Francisco – California State Bar -State Bar of California Board of Trustees – President Patrick M. Kelly – Vice President Luis J. Rodrigez – Treasurer Gretchen M. Nelson – State Bar of California Office of the Chief Trial Counsel - attorney Jayne Kim Chief Trial Counsel – attorney Joseph R. Carlucci Deputy Chief Trial Counsel – Patsy J. Cobb Deputy Chief Trial Counsel – FLEXCOM – Family Law Section State of California – State Bar Family Law Section – attorney Mark Ressa San Ramon Chair – attorney Andrew M. Cain San Jose Vice Chair – attorney Michael J. Kretzmer CFLS Beverly Hills Secretary – Michael Newdow -Benjamin B. Wagner – Melinda Haag – Jayne Kim – Victoria B. Henley – Elaine M. Howle - Sacramento Federal Court Eastern District of California – United States Courts, US District Court Sacramento, Judge William B. Shubb, Judge Edmund F. Brennan, Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr, Judge Carolyn K. Delaney, Judge Morrison C. England Jr, Judge Gregory G. Hollows, Judge John A. Mendez, Judge Kendall J. Newman, Judge Troy L. Nunley, Judge Allison Claire, Judge Dale A. Drozd, Judge Lawrence K. Karlton, Judge Kimberly J. Mueller, United States Attorney Benjamin Wagner,Judge Kevin R. Culhane – Hon. Kevin R Culhane – Judge Kevin Culhane -
Sacramento Family Court reform activist, attorney and doctor Mike Newdow mocks the "child's best interest" standard, attorney fee awards, and other issues in Divorce Corp.

Sacramento Federal Court Eastern District of California – United States Courts, US District Court Sacramento, Judge William B. Shubb, Judge Edmund F. Brennan, Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr, Judge Carolyn K. Delaney, Judge Morrison C. England Jr, Judge Gregory G. Hollows, Judge John A. Mendez, Judge Kendall J. Newman, Judge Troy L. Nunley, Judge Allison Claire, Judge Dale A. Drozd, Judge Lawrence K. Karlton, Judge Kimberly J. Mueller, United States Attorney Benjamin Wagner, Hon. Robert C. Hight – Hon. Bunmi O. Awoniyi – Hon. Steven M. Gevercer – Hon. Tami R. Bogert – Hon. James M. Mize – Vance Raye - CJP Victoria B. Henley – Hon. Thadd A. Blizzard -Judicial Council and Court Leadership Services Division Jody Patel Chief of Staff - Doug D. Cordiner Chief Deputy State Auditor Bureau of State Audits - Bradford L. Battson Senior Attorney III Commission on Judicial Performance - Judicial and Court Operations Services Division Curtis L. Child Chief Operating Officer – Donna L. Neville Staff Counsel IV Bureau of State Audits- Sei Shimoguchi Senior Attorney III Commission on Judicial Performance - Judicial and Court Administrative Services Division Curt Soderlund Chief Administrative Officer – Elaine M. Howle California State Auditor - Bureau of State Audits Elaine Howle - Victoria B. Henley Director Chief Counsel Commission on Judicial Performance – Steven Jahr Administrative Director of the Courts - Phillip J. Jelicich Principal Auditor Bureau of State Audits - Janice M. Brickley Legal Advisor to Commissioners Commission on Judicial Performance - Elena Haskins-Benjamin B. Wagner – Melinda Haag – Jayne Kim – Victoria B. Henley – Elaine M. Howle -
Elena Haskins and her Nevada County Family Court case play a prominent role in Divorce Corp.

Correction: This post has been updated to reflect that Elena Haskins' family court case is in Nevada County.