Captain's personal log, Stardate 52933: We are currently docked at Deep Space Nine along with the Wildfire. It gives me time to talk to my sister and see what's going on.
"Dr. McCoy is still very ill. The doctors have given him about a month and a half to live. Ambassador Spock has tried to make him as comfortable as possible."
"I think I can understand that, how about —" Phaser fire in the Promenade interrupted Patrick's thoughts, "Security to the Promenade — Dr. Bashir is down."
In the infirmary, Dr. Bratney stepped in to take care of DS9's fallen CMO. "He managed to avoid a direct hit, but the explosion that followed knocked him down — the phaser was apparently set on level 16. Lieutenant Nog is working on repairing the damage to the promenade."
Before Patrick could respond, he received a "Kira to Ingrum."
"Go ahead, Colonel."
"I think there's something here you ought to see. Please report to Ops as soon as you can."
"On My Way."
In Ops, the Deep Space Nine senior staff assembled along with Patrick, "Here's what we know. At 1300 today, a phaser was fired and struck near Dr. Bashir in an apparent assassination attempt."
"The Phaser was set at 'Maximum'," Nog continued, "We found the weapon that was used in upper pylon 3."
Ezri stepped in, "Julian managed to cure the founders' disease by retrieving the information for a Section 31 operative. Perhaps they are attempting to get even for thwarting them."
"We might be able to narrow it down," Nog continued, "This phaser is registered to the USS Hood. We have also found some tissue residue."
"Can you ID who it belongs to."
"The Sample we obtained is positively identified as belonging to Captain James Traficant."
"I would seriously doubt that Jim would want to work for 31, but we have no other leads," Patrick answered. "Contact the Hood, I hope he has a good alibi."
Patrick was sitting at his desk when the doorbell rang. "Come."
Captain Traficant entered the room in a very bad mood. "Captain, I demand to know what the heck is going on."
"I am investigating an attempted murder that occurred yesterday on Deep Space Nine."
"Am I to assume that I'm the prime suspect?"
"Maybe. All we know is that the weapon used was traced to the Hood — and to you, personally. Right now, I have two questions — where were you at 1300 yesterday, and is there someone we can ask to corroborate this?"
"I was on leave on Risa, and no, I don't have a corroborator."
"In that case, I will forward this to the JAG office for review. In the meantime, I'm required to relieve you of you command."
"Captain, this is outrageous. There is no reason whatsoever why I would — "
"Twenty years ago, you were acquitted in a court-martial of accepting bribes from the Orion Syndicate. I have it on good authority that the Syndicate has a price on Dr. Bashir's head. A good prosecutor will probably try to connect the two together."
"I will not stand for this kind of stuff from people who are corrupt and go against all the Federation stands for."
"Your commentary is noted. I will advise you that your historically flamboyant attitude will not fly in a court-martial. If it gets to that point, you will choose your defense counsel or else I will choose for you."
"On what authority do you have to appoint counsel?"
"As the leader of Squadron 10, I have discretion to take action that I feel is in the best interests of the squad. In any case, I would suggest that you find counsel immediately."
Patrick stepped into the infirmary. "How is he, doc?"
"I'm doing all right," Bashir replied. "I have to believe that Section 31 would like nothing better than to have a price on my head."
"Apparently, it is 50 bars of latinum," Patrick said. "And we have a potential suspect — or fall guy."
"I heard that there is enough evidence to court-martial Captain Traficant. Considering his conspiracy theories regarding Starfleet Intelligence and the Criminal Investigations Division, he would be the perfect fall guy for Section 31."
"I don't think he has selected a defense counsel yet. I may have to find someone that can help us expose Section 31's involvement."
"Certainly, Section 31 won't identify themselves, even to the Orion Syndicate, and we only know one Section 31 operative."
"And he's dead," Patrick commented. We're going to need a good sleuth. Maybe it's time to check the JAG biographies."
Captain Traficant walked into Patrick's office. "You wanted to speak to me, sir."
"Unfortunately. It is my duty to inform you that you are hereby indicted on the charge and specification of attempted murder."
"In other words, they're going to court-martial me. I refuse to accept this kangaroo court. I will defend myself to the bitter end."
"I have spoken with the victim. He believes that a rogue band of Federation citizens have marked him for revenge for thwarting their plans."
"I'm not getting it."
"You know the disease that was spread among the founders?"
"I am aware of it."
"This rogue band — known as section 31 — was responsible for developing it and infecting the founders. Dr. Bashir developed a cure for the disease."
"And this Section 31, you suppose, is responsible for the assassination attempt."
"Yes. However, before you bellow out the Section 31 theory in court, we're going to have to instill reasonable doubt with the members. That's why I've arranged to bring in a very good lawyer — that is, unless you have already picked out one."
"I would prefer to be my own attorney. However, I doubt that you would be willing to allow that."
Before Patrick could reply, the doorbell chimed. "Come."
A tall, dark-haired man entered the room. "I see that the counsel has arrive. Captain Traficant, this is Captain Rabb of the Antares sector JAG office."
"Captain Traficant, I presume. I've heard that you can be a bit extravagant when speech making."
"Apparently, my reputation precedes me."
"That could, unfortunately, lead to your downfall in a court martial. I'm here to make sure Section 31 does not cause an innocent captain to go to prison."
The Admiral pounded his gavel on his bench to open the hearing. "This is the case of the Federation versus Captain James Trafficant. Would the defendant and his counsel please remain standing. The rest of you may be seated." Everyone except for Captains Rabb and Trafficant sat down. "Mr. Trafficant, how do you plea."
"I plea not guilty."
"So entered. The prosecution may begin calling witnesses tomorrow morning at 0900. This court is in recess until then."
After exiting the courtroom, Patrick approached the defense team. "I just wanted to wish the two of you good luck. If I have any information that could help you — "
"Baldwin to Ingrum."
"Go ahead, JP."
"I've got a report here that you might want to take a look at."
"On my way. Would the two of you care to join me."
Patrick, Jaimie, Jim, and Captain Rabb entered the Baldwin's ready room. "What have you got, JP."
"Sarah was doing a routine check of ship wide logs and found a discrepancy."
"Who is Sarah?" Captain Rabb asked.
"Lieutenant Sarah Allison, my astrometrics officer. She's also in charge of the safety of the intelligence gathering equipment aboard. It now appears that someone has downloaded the plans for the KAM-421 cloaking device."
"This ship is equipped with an experimental cloak. Starfleet feels that cloaking devices are not necessary for normal service. Therefore, plans for this device are under seal and located in Baldwin's computer. Access requires a sigma level clearance. I'm looking at the records, and note that a Admiral Luther Sloane authorized the downloads."
"Luther Sloane, Isn't that the Section 31 agent that Dr. Bashir lured to his lab to retrieve the information needed to find a cure for the founders' disease?"
"The one and only," Patrick replied. "Captain Rabb, I hereby place you on TAD aboard the Baldwin and put you in charge of the investigation. JP, have Sarah do a periodic scans — anything that might turn up a cloaked ship."
Captain Rabb entered the astrometrics office. "May I help you, sir?" Sarah asked upon noticing his presence.
"Captain Harmon Rabb," he introduced himself, "I'm in charged of defending Captain Traficant in his upcoming court martial."
"I understand that Patrick thinks that the Traficant case is related to this morning's discovery that someone downloaded the specs for the cloak."
"I do, and I'll need you're help. How long ago did this download occur."
"According to the databanks, it was done on Stardate 52924 — about two days before the Bashir shooting."
"How come you didn't learn this sooner."
"I routinely check records on a weekly basis. Requests for information on our intelligence gathering operations from command are routine, but this request raised a red flag, particularly in light of what happened."
"I see. Can we get records from the Hood."
"I'm already on it," Sarah answered.
After opening statements, the prosecutors called the first witness to the stand: "Colonel Kira, you are the commanding officer of Deep Space Nine, correct."
"Can you verify that a unauthorized phaser was fired aboard your station on or about Stardate 52932.9?"
"And that you authorized an investigation into the incident?"
"And the result of the investigation?"
"The weapon was found on upper pylon 3. The weapon was traced to Captain James Traficant through identification of tissue residue."
"No other tissue residue was found on the weapon?"
"That is correct."
"No further questions."
Harmon stood up to begin cross examining. "Colonel, was there any evidence of any other residue?"
"There was some fabric and polymer residue on the weapon, but nothing inconsistent with normal handling."
"Still," Harmon continued, "would it be possible for someone wearing protective gloves to have handled and fired the weapon, given the traces of residue found on the weapon?"
"It is possible."
"Thank you, no further questions."
"Captain, here are the logs from the Hood."
"Thank you," Harmon answered, "Did you look at them?"
"As requested, sir," Sarah said. "I think you'll find it interesting. Captain Traficant had checked that particular weapon out two days before his shore leave on Risa. He was apparently practicing on the phaser range. What's strange is that he apparently checked it in two hours later, then checked it out after he said he had left for Risa. The Shuttlecraft departure logs seem to indicate that he left three hours later than he stated in his statement to you."
"Does the shuttlebay have a duty officer?"
"Yes, sir. I'll find out who was on duty, and ask that he talk with you."
"I'm betting the logs were tampered. Check the authorization for phaser checkouts — and I'd also like to meet with Hood's tactical officer."
"I'm on it."
"Captain DeSoto, how long have you known the Defendant?" Harmon said.
"Eleven years, since I appointed him to fill a vacancy at first officer."
"How would you evaluate him?"
"He's one of the finest officers I ever served with," Captain DeSoto started. "He was always a talker, an eccentric character, he questioned Federation policy at times, but always obeyed orders."
"Do you think that Captain Traficant would attempt to kill another officer."
"Absolutely not," DeSoto replied.
"Captain," the prosecutor began his cross-examination, "when you appointed Mr. Traficant as first officer, where you aware that he had been accused of having dealings with the Orion Syndicate?"
"Objection," Harmon cried, "relevance?"
"I'll allow it," the judge replied.
"I was aware that he had some baggage."
"Did you have any reservations when performing his duties."
"Lieutenant," Harmon began his questioning. "You were in charge of the weapons locker on the day that Captain Traficant departed for Risa, correct?"
"When was the last time you checked the phaser inventory."
"I visually checked the inventory in locker four three times during my shift. On the third check, I observed that one phaser was missing."
"What time was the previous inventory check?"
"0900 hours. The phaser was there at the time."
"I see. Your witness."
The prosecutor began cross-exam. "Are you aware that Captain Traficant is listed as having departed the Hood at 1000 hours?"
"That's news to me. I am aware of all shuttle arrivals and departures, and I know for a fact that Captain Traficant left the Hood at 0700 and that was the only shuttlecraft that left or arrived that day."
"Perhaps, Lieutenant Harvey, the ship's chronometer needed adjustment."
"No, sir. My second check visual check of the phaser inventory was after the captain left. In addition, I would have supervised checkout of the weapons in my locker. I did not check out the phaser."
"Thank you. Nothing Furthur."
"The Defendant had his fingerprints all over his weapon, he had no alibi, and has had links in the past with organized crime. There is no doubt that Captain Traficant had the potential motive and the ability to travel to Deep Space Nine and target Dr. Bashir for assassination. I ask for a finding of 'Guilty,'"
Harmon stood for his closing arguments. "There is plenty of evidence that would lead to doubt that my client made an assassination attempt. There are eyewitness accounts that state that he was gone at the time the weapon disappeared. There's little way my client would have been present to steal the weapon, then head to D.S. Nine undetected. There was not enough evidence to connect Captain Traficant with the Orion Syndicate 20 years ago, and there isn't any today. I ask that you find my client not guilty.
"Have the members reached a verdict?"
"We have sir." The lead juror handed a copy of the judgment to the bailiff, who handed it to the Judge.
"Please state your findings."
"On the charge and specification of attempted murder, we find the defendant not guilty."
"This case is hereby dismissed," the judge finished, banging the gavel to conclude the trial.
"Congratulations, Captain," Patrick said as he approached the defense table. "Now that we know who didn't do it, perhaps we need to send a message to those who did. " Patrick spotted Dr. Bashir on the other side of the Courtroom. "Doctor, could I speak with you for a moment?"
"Something tells me that Section 31 may try to make another attempt to eliminate what they consider a threat. I suggest that you be careful."
"Believe me, I will."
Jaimie stepped into the warroom. "You said you had something important to show me."
"Yes. I've been monitoring for cloaked ships as the captain requested, and I think I found something. I can't make out what is behind the cloak, but I can tell that there's something out there that doesn't want to be seen."