a former federal inmate who served fifteen years in federal prison
with his father Anthony J. Varca, */ for a 1985 conspiracy, to import
marijuana, during their involvement in CIA intelligence gathering
and Contra-aid operations in the Caribbean Basin, known as the
Caricom*Project, as part of President Ronald Reagan and CIA
Director, William J. Casey's effort to back the Contra freedom
fighters in Nicaragua (The Iran Contra Affair).
They were prosecuted
under the Classified Information Procedures Act (CIPA). Convicted after
trial by jury and sentenced to fifty-two years in federal prison,
having to serve fifteen years, day-for-day, with no GTC deductions, before becoming eligible for parole
(a former sentencing procedure reserved for America's most heinous
and dangerous offenders, not for first time offenders of non-violent offenses, like the Varca's). Anthony's sentence and
parole was terminated on 21 November 2005. Mark's sentence and
parole was terminated on 12 October 2007. Mark and Anthony were fined $500,000.00 each. The
fines were extinguished by virtue of the expiration of a 20 year statute of limitations on 27 February 2009.
The Varcas' hold the
unique distinction of being the only father and son in the history
of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (and possibly the United States) to
have been incarcerated together, as cellmates, for fifteen years.
They served time at: county jails in New Orleans and Florida;
Federal Bureau of Prisons: USP Atlanta, FCI Talladega, FCI El Reno,
FCI Bastrop, FCI Texarkana, FCI Marianna, FCI Jesup and FCI
Varca has a Management and
Marketing degree from Drake. He earned his law degree while in
prison; and also completed 376 hours of ACE and CLE courses in:
Information Technology, Intellectual Property Rights Law and
Psychology. Prior to going to prison, Varca, inter alia, held
positions as: Director of Operations for Romar Transports Ltd. (a
world wide maritime transportation company); Director of The Simmons
Companies (a global minerals and mining consortium); Director of
International Affairs for Global Companies (developer of the Global
Exchange); and as an outside director of several international
As Chairman, Varca is
spokesperson for FedCURE, he communicates daily with FedCURE's
membership, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, United States Courts and United States Probation Office, United States Parole
Commission and United States Department of Justice policy makers and personnel, United
States Senators and members of the House of Representatives and
their legislative staff and the media, advocating for and on behalf of federal
inmates and their families.
Varca, assisted in writing the
legislation to revive the system of parole for federal prisoners
that has been introduced into Congress. Currently, Varca is working
on FedCURE's re-entry programs: Forming partnerships and alliances
with the Federal Bureau of Prisons, faith based and neighborhood partnership organizations,
as defined by the White House Office for
Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships (FBNP) */
Chief Information Officer and Executive Director from June 2002 to May 2009: As
Executive Director of FedCURE Varca's duties included that of above as shared with former Chairman Kennith Linn. As CIO of FedCURE, Varca was responsible for
developing, overseeing and managing the Information Technology
(IT) assets, infrastructure and operations of the www.FedCURE.org
enterprise. Whereas, in early 2002, FedCURE.org embarked on an ambitious IT
project to become the world's premier electronic forum for the
exchange and processing of information concerning the reform of the
Federal Criminal Justice System in the United States. "Using
Technology To Bring About Federal Criminal Justice Reform." TM. Varca's email address is: CIO@fedcure.org.
*/ R.I.P.: With regret, we inform you of the passing of Anthony J. Varca (Pop) at a young 91, FedCURE's most Senior Director, Advisor & Fellow.
09/10/1924-06/11/2015 ~ Dio Benedicto, FedCURE. CONDOLENCES.
Message From FedCURE's Chief Information Officer and Executive
Dear FedCURE Membership:
Yesterday, Kenny Linn, Acting
Chairman, resigned over concerns of violating a condition of
post-incarceration supervision that states: "[O]ne cannot 'have
contact' or 'associate' with those who have a criminal record
without the permission of the probation/parole officer. Mr. Linn's
resignation was prompted "[D]ue to the antics of FedCURE's past
Executive Director and because of the continuing fallout over her
recent actions and allegations. . ."
In no instance, however, are we
able to find the association condition to have been applied in the
context of federal criminal justice reform organizations and their
work. To the contrary, in a controlling case on this issue, the
United States Supreme Court held that: "We do not believe that the
parole condition restricting association was intended to apply to
incidental contact between ex-convicts in the course of work or a
legitimate job for a common employer." 404 U.S. 4 (1971).
Unfortunately, I have been
advised by my U.S. Probation Officer as follows: "[Y]our continued
association with this organization only places you in violation of
parole, particularly condition #10 which states: 'You shall not
associate with persons who have a criminal record unless you have
the permission of your Probation Officer.' As long as you are on
parole, this permission will not be granted. . . It is strongly
recommended that you resign your position as Executive Director. . .
Failure to do so may jeopardize your future parole status."
Consequently and most regrettably, I tender my resignation
To be sure, this matter is
unsettling. It is exceptionally troublesome in light of what has
become a Republican and Democratic bipartisan recognition that we
have a broken corrections system which has speared new interest from
President George W. Bush, congressmen, governors and state
legislators, to initiate prisoner re-entry programs to help inmates
make the transition from prison to home, i.e., preparing inmates for
life on the outside.
These programs include drug
treatment, job training, and finding housing. Eventually, 97 percent
of America's inmate population will be released. They all have to go
somewhere and cannot be cast off into some invisible society.
Sixty-seven percent of the 630,000 state and federal prison inmates
who will be released this year are likely to be rearrested within
three years, according to the Federal Bureau of Justice Statistics.
Nine million people are released from jails annually.
In his State of the Union
address, President Bush proposed a $300 million initiative for
re-entry programs, to be conducted by religious-based groups. In
addition, the National Governors Association has created a Prisoner
Re-entry Policy Academy which is conducting workshops in seven
states to improve the process.
Similarly, the Council of State
Governments has formed a Re-entry Policy Council, working with 100
experts, to come up with a manual. The report will contain
recommendations on how states can better help newly released
prisoners find jobs, get decent places to live and re-establish
At the same time, the National
Institute of Corrections, a branch of the Federal Bureau of Prisons,
has developed a new model for re-entry that it is trying to use in
All of these programs are
operated, in part, by ex-inmates. All have persons with criminal
records associating with each other. If what has been imposed on
Linn and myself becomes the norm, these programs will all be in
direct violation of the association condition. So, how are the
re-entry programs going to work? Additionally, application of the
incidental contact condition in this manner, would jeopardize the
existence of the majority of the criminal justice reform
organizations in the United States.
The record will show that the
errant actions and conduct of our former Executive Director, my
predecessor, and her continued abnormal functioning have brought us
to this most unfortunate place. Consequently, I will not have any
further contact with persons in violation of the "association
condition". I will continue in all other endeavors that are not
contrary to this condition, inter alia, communicating with the
Federal Bureau of Prisons, the United States Parole Commission and
the United States Department of Justice's personnel, the United
States Senators and members of the House of Representatives and
their legislative staff, advocating for and on behalf of federal
inmates and their families and for the passage of H.R. 4036 and H.R.
Like Linn, I anticipate my
resignation to be temporary until: (1) The condition no longer
applies, or (2) The United States Parole Commission clarifies its
regulations to allow for incidental contact between persons with
criminal records in the course of their work in criminal justice
reform organizations. The matter is currently pending a decision
from the highest authority in the United States Parole Commission.
Please pray for us. God willing, we will have a speedy and favorable
Mark A. Varca, J.D.
12 May 2004