Annabel Melongo is a computer professional, born in Cameroon, who has lived and worked in the Chicago area since 2003. She once worked for the Save-A-Life Foundation (SALF), a now defunct non-for-profit organization with political ties and a history of deceptive practices.
On October 31, 2006, Annabel was charged with Computer Tampering alleging remotely deleting files, mostly financial, belonging to SALF. On November 15, 2006, upon being made aware of the charges, she surrendered herself to a judge in the Rolling Meadows Courthouse. She was later released on an I-Bond. The charges against her were later dismissed on January 10th, 2007, for lack of evidence. Seven days later, she was indicted at 2600 S. California Ave., Chicago, IL, on the same charges. A new indictment on May 28, 2008, superseded the January’s case.
When she realized that she wasn’t arraignment on the new indictment, she ordered various court records to confirm this. The docket, the judge’s half sheets and notes, the court call sheet showed no arraignment. However, when she received the transcript for the arraignment’s date, the transcript showed an arraignment. Annabel therefore called Mr. Laurel Laudin, the court reporter, and threatened to file a complaint. The court reporter hung up.
On December 10, 2009, Mrs. Pamela Taylor, an assistant administrator at the Cook County Court Reporter Office and supposedly Mrs. Laudin’s supervisor, called Annabel and forbade her to call Mr. Laudin. Irritated, Annabel hung up. Minutes later, Mrs. Pamela Taylor called back and left a voicemail wherein she reiterated that Mrs. Laudin shouldn’t be contacted. She made herself available for any discussion related to the forged court transcript.
Later that day, using the phone number prescribed in the voicemail, Annabel called Mrs. Taylor and recorded the conversation. Subsequent conversations on the forged transcript continued on December 15, 2009 and December 16, 2009. The defendant recorded those conversations as well. On March 3rd, 2010, Annabel was scheduled to argue her motion to dismiss the computer tampering case. However, the state moved to request a psychological evaluation on her to determine her fitness to stand trial and to represent herself. On April 13th, 2010 as she was stepping out of the psychological evaluation session, she was arrested for the new offense of eavesdropping. One day later, she bond was set to $500,000D reduced to $300,000D on May 5th, 2010. On July 26, 2010, Annabel’s new lawyer, Mr. Albukerk, was set to argue her motion to dismiss the computer tampering case. The state through it prosecutors, Mr Podlasek and Mrs. Julie Gunnigle , from the state attorney’s financial crime and public corruption unit, switched election to the eavesdropping case.
From January 12th through January, 14th, 2010, Annabel underwent a trial on the eavesdropping case. The trial was a mistrial with a jury hung at 7-5. After her mistrial, the defendant fired her lawyer, Mr. Albukerk, and defended herself Pro Se. On November 30th, 2012, she filed an amended motion to have her case dismiss as well as Memorandum explaining why she was sent to jail on November 10th, 2011.
The state responded to Annabel’s amended motion to dismiss on February 14th, 2012. On March 6th, 2012, Annabel was again back to jail for making copies of subpoenas that were not properly filed. On March 19th, 2012, she argued her amended motion to dismiss claiming the eavesdropping law to be unconstitutional. On April 16th, 2012, she was released out of jail after Judge Goebel reinstated her bond. On April 18th, 2012, she was yet again back to jail for coming late to court. On May 4th, 2012, she was released after Judge Goebel stated that she showed good faith. On May 9th, 2012, Judge Goebel informed the state prosecutor and the defendant of the ruling in ACLU v. Alvarez, No. 11-1286. On June 19th, 2012, a short argument on that ruling was scheduled.
After more than two years of such legal harassment, this site was launched in an attempt to bring public attention to this abuse of the legal system. Illinois taxpayers may wonder why the state's top law enforcement officer and Cook County Prosecutor Anita Alvarez had expend so much time and public money to prosecute this controversial case against her rather than investigate what happened to the millions of tax dollars that went to the Save-A-Life Foundation.
This site presents documented information that may help answer that and related questions. If you have more questions, comments, or information, please don't hesitate to visit us at our facebook page.
Lisa Madigan: Illinois Attorney General
Anita Alvarez: Cook County State Attorney
Mary M. Brosnahan: Cook County Judge
Steven J. Goebel: Cook County Judge
Prosecutor Kyle French: Prosecutor Attorney General office, High Crime Tech Unit
Prosecutor Joseph Podlasek: Cook County special prosecutor, Financial Crimes and Public Corruption Unit
Prosecutor Julie Gunningle: Cook County Prosecutor, Financial Crimes and Public Corruption Unit
Pamela Taylor: Cook County Court Reporter Office, Assistant Administrator
Laurel Laudien: Cook County Court Reporter
Sergeant James Dillon #1068: Cook County Sherriff's Police Department
Inv. Antonio Rubino #5043: Cook County Sherriff's Police Department
Nicolas J. Albukerk: Private lawyer
James Flood: Private lawyer
Dana DePooter: FBI Special Agent
Peggy Anderson: Supervisor, Cook County Clerk's Office
Robin Sukalo: Cook County Clerk's office
Annabel Melongo: defendant. Software Engineer. Computer Networking.