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October 2008


How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Archive for October, 2008

Boston U.S. Atty. Press Conference On Arrest Of State Senator Wilkerson


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NYPD Chief Kelly As New Sec. Of Homeland Security?

Rich Cooper, a columnist for Security DeBrief, a website on homeland security issues, has a few suggestions for a replacement for Homeland Security Sec. Michael Chertoff in 2009. Some of his nominees include New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino.

NYPD Police Chief Ray Kelly/official photo
NYPD Police Chief Ray Kelly/official photo

By Rich Cooper
With Election Day approaching, the parlor game of who might get ‘the big jobs’ of the new President’s Cabinet is underway. As a longstanding Washington tradition (thankfully only celebrated every four years), there are lots of names being floated around to fill these big chairs. There has already been coverage by Politico, CQ as well as other media outlets on some of the prospective names but none of these positions has as much personal and professional interest for me as who will selected as the next Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
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FBI Informant Takes Stand in Ft. Dix Terrorism Trial

The informant in the Ft. Dix trial, whose credibility has been attacked, was on the stand Tuesday. Jurors heard tapes of him while wearing an FBI wire.

By Geoff Mulvihill
Associated Press Writer
CAMDEN, N.J. — The paid informant who helped build the case against five men accused of plotting to attack soldiers in New Jersey took the witness stand Tuesday, but much of what jurors heard from him came in the form of secretly taped conversations with one of the accused.
“We have talked a lot and we are still talking. What can we do?” informant Mahmoud Omar asked defendant Mohamad Shnewer during a 2006 discussion in which both decried U.S. treatment of Muslims.
Omar kept asking similar questions in Arabic at Shnewer’s family’s home in Cherry Hill. Once, Shnewer’s answer was to seek help from God, saying he had helped the cause by unleashing Hurricane Katrina.
A moment later, Shnewer, then 21, had another idea.
“Here, if you want to do anything, there’s Fort Dix,” he said. “I am not exaggerating how easily you can strike an American base.”
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Reputed Hitman For Bonanno Crime Family Convicted

BROOKLYN – A reputed hit man for the Bonanno Crime Family was convicted Monday in the 2005 killing and dismembering of a man at a historic mansion on Staten Island, the Justice Department said.
Joseph Young was found in Brooklyn U.S. District Court of murdering Robert McKelvey, authorities said.

Mother’s Tip Lead Authorities To Obama Assassination Plot

The Haywood County Sheriff probably didn’t expect to be thrust into a national story about a presidential candidate. But here it is.

Suspect Daniel Cowart-lower left/southern poverty law center
Suspect Daniel Cowart-lower left/southern poverty law center

By Bartholomew Sullivan
Memphis Commercial Appeal

It all began with a mother’s call to the Haywood County Sheriff’s Department in Brownsville, Tenn., last Wednesday night.
The unidentified woman told authorities her daughter had just acted as the driver for a planned burglary across the county line in Crockett County that was abandoned when two neo-Nazi skinheads chickened out at the sight of dogs, Haywood County Sheriff Melvin Bond said this morning.
The getaway-driver daughter is the girlfriend of Daniel Cowart, 20, of Bells, Tenn. Cowart and Paul Schlesselman, 18, of West Helena, Ark., are in custody charged with possession of a sawed-off shotgun, conspiracy to rob a federal firearms licensee, and making threats against a major candidate for president.
“This particular young lady is in fear of her life now, bless her heart,” said Bond.
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Mass. State Senator Busted In FBI Bribery Sting

As the FBI has learned by now, there always some politician somewhere waiting to cash in.

State Sen. Dianne Wilkerson/official photo

State Sen. Dianne Wilkerson/official photo

By Jessica Fargen and Mike Underwood
The Boston Herald
BOSTON — State Sen. Dianne Wilkerson was arrested this morning following an 18-month, “painstaking” undercover investigation, during which she was allegedly caught on tape stuffing a cash bribe into her bra and taking payoffs to push through a Roxbury nightclub liquor license, according to a complaint.
“Dianne Wilkerson accepted these cash payments in exchange for her official duties and responsibilities,” said U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan during a morning news conference at the federal courthouse.
Wilkerson will be charged this afternoon in federal court with attempted extortion and theft of honest services as a state senator, stemming from a money-for-legislation sting operation, officials said.
A federal criminal complaint alleges that Wilkerson was busted for accepting eight brides, totaling $23,500, in exchange for her influence on Beacon Hill.
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Cartel Infiltrates Mexico’s Top Law Enforcement Unit and May Have Bought U.S. Intelligence

It’s one of the worst fears of the Mexican and U.S. governments. Unfortunately, it’s not the first time and likely won’t be the last.

By Tracy Wilkinson
Los Angeles Times
MEXICO CITY — In a damning blow to its fight against drug traffickers, the Mexican government Monday acknowledged severe penetration of a top law enforcement agency by a vicious gang that may even have bought intelligence on U.S. operations from renegade employees.
At least 35 officials and agents from an elite unit within the federal attorney general’s office have been fired or arrested in an investigation that began July 31 following tips from an informer.
The officials, including a senior intelligence director, are believed to have been leaking sensitive information to the very traffickers they were investigating for as long as four years, prosecutors said.
In exchange, prosecutors said, the corrupt government officials received monthly payments of $150,000 to $450,000 each from the so-called Beltran Leyva cartel, a drug gang based in the Pacific state of Sinaloa that is engaged in a bloody fight with rivals for domination of the region’s lucrative trade.
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Bikers Gave Undercover ATF Agents Polygraphs

atf photo

atf photo

And you thought your job was stressful!

By Thomas Watkins
Associated Press
WEST COVINA, Calif. – Weeks of drinking and carousing to win acceptance in a notorious motorcycle gang came down to a nerve-racking moment for three undercover federal agents: taking a polygraph examination in a room full of armed bikers.
Flunking could threaten what would become a three-year probe into the Mongols Motorcycle Club – not to mention the agents’ own safety.
Federal prosecutors say all three Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents were prepared for the challenge and passed the tests, critical moments in the investigation that culminated last week in multistate raids and at least 64 arrests on charges including murder, drug trafficking and torture.
The Mongols had been infiltrated before, so gang leaders went to extraordinary lengths to test their “prospects,” including running background checks and having a private investigator administer the polygraph tests.
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