Diebold dumpster dive yields financial documents
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NEW DOCUMENTS FROM DIEBOLD ELECTION SYSTEMS
HAVE A “STINK” TO THEM
JULY 20, 2005: One late night in Texas, 51-year-old
Kathleen Wynne did something she never thought she
would consider: She jumped into a dumpster.
An ordinary citizen who had become concerned about
the integrity of Diebold voting machines, Wynne was
amazed to find hundreds of pages of documents in the
trash. Among them: internal notes and memos, planning
information, problems with equipment and customers,
price bid worksheets, staff bonuses, and financial
statements from Diebold Election Systems. It was early
July, just after second quarter financials, and the
Diebold elections division seemed to be cleaning house.
Wynne was a citizen volunteer then – she is now
a full-time investigator for Black Box Voting, a
nonprofit, nonpartisan 501c(3) consumer protection
group for elections.
Diebold, a company that boasts of its security, had
made no attempt to shred the documents, or protect
them in any way. Instead, the company was in the
habit of discarding its internal records in various
publicly available locations -- an apparent violation
of the management requirements of the Sarbanes-Oxley
Act. The first batch of documents is posted here:
(We’ll come back to the document stash in a minute.)
DIEBOLD DENIES INVOLVEMENT IN GALLINA MONEY
In May, Black Box Voting broke the story of ACG Group,
LLC, which has been funneling money from Diebold into
the pockets of . . . someone.
The ‘G’ in ACG stands for Gallina – Pasquale “Pat”
Gallina. According to the Columbus Dispatch, Gallina
was caught giving $10,000 to the Franklin County
Republican Party, handed off through the Franklin
County Director of Elections. The Dispatch also
contains a report of a $50,000 donation by Gallina
to Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell’s political
Diebold, according to the Akron Beacon Journal,
denies any involvement in the donations by Gallina,
pointing to “Celebrezze & Associates” and vowing
to fire that organization (set up by Anthony Celebrezze,
now deceased) if it is proved to have “provided the
check in the name of Diebold.”
Excerpts from the above news articles can be found here
Let us now dissect the spin:
1. The money was flowing through ACG Group LLC.
A few dollars may also have wandered into Gallina’s
pocket through “Celebrezze & Associates,” but the large,
UNDISCLOSED cash was flowing through ACG Group LLC,
an entity Diebold has not uttered a word about.
2. Who in their right mind would write a check “in
the name of DIEBOLD?” According to the Dispatch story,
Gallina showed up at the Franklin County elections
office with a check in hand and said "I'm here to give
you $10,000. Who do I make it payable to?” Gallina
claims the money was his own.
However, another principal of ACG Group LLC is Juan
Andrade (the ‘A’ in ACG). Andrade told Black Box Voting
on videotape that Diebold money is paid to him directly,
and Diebold money also goes through ACG Group, for
purposes that are largely for “persuasion.” (click
the VIDEO camera picture at Black Box Voting (.ORG)
and select “Cook County Money Trail” to clips of
Andrade talking about Diebold and ACG Group)
More details of Andrade and Gallina and Ohio money
dealings can be found here:
99 PAGES OF NEW DOCUMENTS REVEAL MORE PROBLEMS
Diebold financial documents found by Black Box Voting
investigator Kathleen Wynne reveal questionable
payments, and show that some items may have been
untruthfully reported to government authorities.
A document, first published online by Black Box Voting
in July 2004, exposes large payments to entities
investigated for unusual payments to political figures.
Black Box Voting has identified a $144,000 payable to
“Lottery Services of Georgia,” which was one of 16
companies found to have received "pass-through"
payments from GTECH in a 1995 probe. The same document,
and others, show $20,000 per month payments to Andrade,
Gallina’s partner in the Diebold-funded ACG Group.
Accounts payable document:
Documents also show payments to California lobbying
firm Rose & Kindel, whose executive recently popped
up with an appointment in new California Secretary of
State Bruce McPherson’s administration. The payment,
over $45,000, does not match the amount reported by
Diebold for the same period (around $7,000).
(copies of Diebold disclosures to California can be found here):
In another document, an executive memo, Diebold execs
admit to a culture of ethics problems, and you can
sense the gnashing of teeth as they describe trying
to explain to the Diebold audit committee about the
lying and obfuscating that went on during California
Secretary of State Kevin Shelley’s administration.
The memo states that this cost the company dearly,
resulting in a $3 million loss for the year.
A document from Coconino County, Arizona describes
refusal to pay Diebold’s bill due to quality problems
with the machines.
A hand-written note asks why voting machines originally
sold to Canada were re-sold as “new,” tracing serial
numbers to Mendocino County and LHS (a company that
services Diebold accounts in New England.)
Note that another voting organization,
http://www.countthevote.org, has unearthed other
devastating documents revealing specific failures
in Georgia in 2002.
Additional information about problems with Georgia’s
Diebold touch-screens, and links to The Count the Vote
documents, can be found here:
The GEMS central tabulator program has been pummeled
by computer programmers for its flawed, hack-friendly
design. Documents found by Black Box Voting show
flabbergasting pricing for GEMS.
(Click here to see $325,000 price quote for GEMS
on the bid worksheet for Sacramento County, California):
For a company that sells its voting system to unions
(especially the International Brotherhood of Electrical
Workers), both security flaws and union-bashing tactics
should give union members a moment of pause.
Latest security failures outlined in this one-sheet: http://www.bbvdocs.org/general/BBVreport-1sheet.pdf
Union-squashing tactics shown in this planning sheet:
(See page 3, plans to “research Teamsters Local 38 as to
finances, misconduct etc).
Additional documents, and analysis of the current
ones, will appear at http://www.blackboxvoting.org
throughout this week.
Folks, it is YOUR tax dollars that pays for these
shenanigans. Diebold recently achieved statewide
touch-screen sales for Mississippi, Utah and Ohio.
We may not win this battle by being “polite” and
“working within the system.” The system has been
broken for some years now.
We need to rekindle our confidence as Americans –
Kathleen Wynne, an ordinary citizen, has shown
that simple actions can have lasting repercussions.
It sometimes seems that we have an inferiority
complex – instead of believing in our own innate
good judgement, we continue to “leave it up to
It is the experts who got us into this mess. It
is the experts who certified Diebold and the other
machines (see http://www.blackboxvoting.org.BBVreport
for a devastating technical report showing just how
flawed these systems are.) It is the “experts” who
gave us the Help America Vote Act (HAVA). With this
kind of help, maybe we need to go back to basics.
To participate in discussions of your local elections,
and these issues, make friends with the “FORUMS” tab
on our home page: http://www.blackboxvoting.org.
Let us hear from you. Together, let’s fight this beast.
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