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Tag: bribery

FBI Makes Arrests, Raids in Public Corruption Cases in North Carolina, California & New York

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Separate corruption investigations led to the arrests of two public officials in North Carolina and California and to the raid of the office of a New York state senator, the Washington Post reports.

Hundreds of federal agents descended on offices in the San Francisco Bay Area, arresting several people including state Democratic Sen. Leland Yee and a former head of a Hong Kong-based crime syndicate.

In the North Carolina sting, FBI agents arrested Democratic Charlotte Mayor Patrick Cannon, charging him with theft and bribery. He’s accused of soliciting and accepting bribes, the Post reported.

And in New York, Assemblyman William Scarborough’s offices were raided, and he was questioned in his Albany hotel room. He was questioned about per diem reimbursements, he told reporters.

FBI Rushed Trenton Mayor Mack Investigation Because of Suspicions from Inner Circle

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI rushed its investigation into Trenton Mayor Tony Mack because agents were worried the administration knew about the probe, the Trenton Times reports

A city carpet salesman, who was Mack’s fraternity brother, warned the mayor of an investigation, prompting the FBI to scurry for search warrants. 

“We needed to execute immediately because we believed we were compromised in the investigation,” FBI Supervisory Special Agent Mike Doyle said.

Mack and his brother are accused of accepting bribes in exchange for fast-tracking the sale of property to build a garage, which actually was an FBI sting operation.

DEA Probe Leads to Charges Against Veteran ICE Agent in Extortion Case

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A veteran ICE agent is accused of accepting bribes to help smuggle illegal immigrants into the country by claiming they were witnesses to a drug investigation, CBS Miami reports.

That’s one allegation facing Special Agent Juan Martinez, who appeared in court Friday on 12 criminal counts, including extortion and bribery.

Martinez also is accused of looking the other way in exchange for expensive jewelry, airline tickets and liquor.

His attorney, Silvia Pinera-Vazquez, said the charges are false.

“We disagree with the government 100-percent. Agent Martinez has been a law enforcement agent for over 20 years. He has dutifully served his country. He denies every single paragraph of that indictment and is looking forward to a trial where is innocence will be proven,” Pinera-Vazquez said, according to CBS Miami.

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Naval Criminal Investigator Pleads in Massive Fraud and Bribery Scheme

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A big scandal continues to unravel.

The latest:   John Bertrand Beliveau Jr., 44, a special agent with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) pleaded guilty Wednesday to participating in a massive international fraud and bribery scheme, admitting he shared with a foreign Navy contractor confidential information about ongoing criminal probes into the contractor’s billing practices in exchange for prostitutes, cash and luxury travel, the Justice Department said in a press release.

“Today, John Beliveau has admitted to accepting lavish gifts in exchange for revealing sensitive law enforcement information to a primary target of this massive bribery investigation,” Acting Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division said in a statement. “For nearly two years, Beliveau deliberately leaked the names of cooperating witnesses, reports of witness interviews, and plans for future investigative steps. Through his corrupt conduct, Beliveau helped the target of the investigation evade the reach of law enforcement, and cost the U.S. Navy millions of dollars. Thanks to the Navy’s extensive cooperation and assistance, and the hard work of the NCIS and DCIS agents assigned to this ongoing investigation, we have now been able to hold him to account.”

Sentencing is set for March 9.

According to the press release Beliveau

Acknowledged that he regularly searched confidential NCIS databases for reports of investigations related to the contractor, Leonard Glenn Francis, chief executive of Singapore-based Glenn Defense Marine Asia (GDMA). Beliveau admitted that, over the course of years, he helped Francis avoid multiple criminal investigations by providing copies of these reports plus advice and counsel on how to respond to, stall and thwart the NCIS probes. This duplicity began while Beliveau was stationed in Singapore and continued for more than a year after Beliveau returned to the NCIS office in Quantico, Va.

The guilty plea is part of a bigger scandal involving contracts.

Border Patrol Agent Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison for Helping Smuggle Drugs

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Border Patrol Agent Ivhan Herrera-Chiang had one major job – stop criminals from smuggling drugs.

But Herrera exploited his position to help smugglers bring meth, cocaine and marijuana into the U.S., the Arizona Central reports.

On Tuesday, he was sentenced to 15 years behind bars on four felony counts of bribery.

“You have done about the worst thing a law-enforcement agent could do, especially a Border Patrol agent, and that is passed confidential information” to criminal organizations, U.S. District Judge Paul Rosenblatt said during a sentencing hearing in Phoenix.

Herrara even helped smugglers find their way around underground sensors and lock combinations.

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Former Detroit Mayor Gets 28 Years in Prison for Racketeering Scheme

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick was sentenced to 28 years in prison for running a complex racketeering scheme out of city hall.

The sentence is one of the stiffest ever leveled against a corrupt politician.

U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds said she wanted to send a clear message that corruption would not be tolerated.

Kilpatrick extorted bribes from contractors and steered at least $127 million in contracts to his friend and business partner, Bobby Ferguson, who is to be sentenced today.

Kilpatrick said he “really messed up” and was “extremely remorseful.”

Brothers, Father Accused of Running Small Texas Town with Retaliation, Intimidation

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

When it comes to politics in the small Texas town of Progreso, it’s safe to say the Vela family flexed some muscle.

Omar Vela, 35, is the town’s mayor. His brother, Michael Vela, 28 (pictured), is the president of the school board. And their father, Jose Guadalupe Vela, 64, works in management at the school district.

All three are accused of participating in a “pay-to-play” scheme involving contractors, the San Antonio Express-News reports.

Following an FBI investigation, the trio were charged in federal court Wednesday with conspiracy, mail fraud, theft and bribery.

Special Agent Ricardo Ale testified in court Wednesday that the men ruled through intimidation and retaliation.

The border town of Progreso has a population of about 5,000.

Joint Task Force Nabs 7 Detroit Building Inspectors in Alleged Bribery Scandal

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

After high-profile corruption cases against Detroit officials, including ex-Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, a joint task force that includes the FBI announced charges Thursday against seven building inspectors accused of accepting bribes for phony inspections, the Detroit News reports.

The charges stem from an FBI probe dating as far back as 2007.

According to authorities, the scheme involved seven inspectors who accepted bribes to forge building inspections and even covered up potentially dangerous code violations.

“When you violate the public’s trust, it’s a big deal,” Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette said. “When you endanger lives and families, it’s a big deal. You can’t close your eyes to it.”

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