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December 2008


How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Archive for December, 2008

U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald Named “Fed Of The Year” by

By Jon Perkins
WASHINGTON –Patrick Fitzgerald, the crusading district attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, has been named “Fed of the Year” for 2008 by The designation is given to the federal law enforcement official who has had the most impact on news events over the course of the year.
Fitzgerald’s role as a newsmaker and a “prosecutor’s prosecutor” , widely respected by his peers, makes the 47-year-old the natural choice for this honor .
Fitzgerald has aggressively pursued public corruption and gone after such notables as fundraiser-financier Antoin “Tony” Rezko, who had ties to President-elect Barack Obama and Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich. Rezko was convicted earlier this year.
Fitzgerald’s filing of criminal charges against Blagojevich in early December, charging the Democrat with trying to auction the Senate seat vacated by Obama, sealed the designation for us.
Fitzgerald gained national notoriety for successfully prosecuting Vice President Dick Cheney’s chief of staff, I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby on charges related to the unmasking of CIA operative Valerie Plame Wilson. LIbby was convicted in March 2007 of perjury and obstruction of justice. President Bush commuted his 30 month prison sentence.

Former Maryland Restaurant Cook Charged With Spying For Saddam Hussein

Documents unearthed in Iraq are giving investigators insights into who spied for Saddam Hussein. Indictments like this have been popping up around the country.

Associated Press Writer

An Iraq-born Canadian citizen who was picked up at the U.S. border last week was charged Monday with conspiring to spy for Saddam Hussein and Iraq.
A criminal complaint filed by the Justice Department alleges that Mouyad Mahmoud Darwish, 47, was paid to provide information to Iraqi government officials and intelligence officers in 2000 and later, including that Iraqi volunteers were being trained by the U.S. military in Virginia.
The complaint was filed in Maryland, where Darwish worked as a restaurant cook before moving back to Canada. He could face up to five years in prison if convicted of the charge of conspiracy to act as an agent for a foreign government.
For Full Story

Read FBI Affidavit

Feds Had More Wiretaps Than Previously Disclosed in Gov. Blagojevich Probe

state photo

This scandal may end up having more legs than a centipede.

Chicago Sun-Times
CHICAGO — Federal authorities had more wiretaps than previously disclosed in the investigation of Gov. Blagojevich — including the cellular telephone of a member the governor’s inner circle.
A new government filing in federal court indicates that in November, authorities tapped the cell phone of “Lobbyist 1.” The Sun-Times has identified lobbyist 1 as Lon Monk, the governor’s first-term chief of staff. Monk later became a fund-raiser and state lobbyist.
The revelation that investigators captured more on secret recordings than previously disclosed, came as federal prosecutors seek to release portions of those recordings to a House Committee seeking the governor’s impeachment.
Prosecutors are asking Chief U.S. District Judge James Holderman to release portions of four recordings having to do with the governor’s alleged discussion of asking for campaign contributions in exchange for his official actions. Prosecutors will go before Holderman today to discuss the motion.
“These calls bear on a discrete episode of criminal conduct alleged in the complaint affidavit … the calls are evidence of a criminal offense that the government was authorized to monitor under the wiretap order,” prosecutors wrote in their filing.
For Full Story

See Records of Fed Subpoenas Released

Former NYPD’s Bernie Kerik Pleads Not Guilty to Added Charges

Bernie Kerik has gone from super crime fighter to accused criminal. Not an enviable spot to be in.

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — Former NYPD top cop Bernard Kerik pleaded not guilty Monday to new charges of falsifying income tax records and not declaring a BMW luxury car he got as payment for consulting services.
The added charges involve falsifying statements on loan applications and his role in preparing false tax returns for 2002 and 2005. He was initially charged with falsifying tax returns for the year 2000.
Kerik, 53, wore a charcoal gray suit and a red and silver-striped tie. He stood with lawyer Eric Tirschwell as White Plains Federal Court Judge Stephen Robinson asked a series of questions about his state of mind before accepting the plea.
For Full Story

Read Superseding Indictment

Number of Officers Fatally Shot in Line of Duty Expected to Hit 50 Year Low

FBI Agent Sam Hicks was fatally shot Nov. 19

FBI Agent Sam Hicks was fatally shot Nov. 19

By Allan Lengel
WASHINGTON — The number of U.S. law enforcement officers killed by gunfire this year is expected to hit a 50 year low, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial fund.
The Washington-based organization said Monday an analysis of preliminary data showed that 41 officers were fatally shot this year, a 40 percent dip from 68 in 2007. This year’s figure was the lowest since 1956 when 35 deaths were recorded. In contrast, 156 law enforcement officers were killed in 1973.
Overall, in the line of duty deaths dropped from 181 in 2007 to 140 this year, the law enforcement organization said. Just over half of the overall deaths in 2008  were traffic related.
“2007 was a wake-up call for law enforcement in our country, and law enforcement executives, officers, associations and trainers clearly heeded the call, with a renewed emphasis on officer safety training, equipment and procedures,” said NLEOMF Chairman and CEO Craig W. Floyd in a statement. “The reduction in firearms-related deaths is especially stunning, given the tremendous firepower possessed by so many criminals today. The fact that law enforcement has been able to drive down the crime rate, and do so with increased efficiency and safety, is a testament to the hard work and professionalism of our officers.”
Specifically, the organization said Texas recorded the most law enforcement officer fatalities with 14 followed by California with 12 and Florida and Pennsylvania, both with eight. Half of Pennsylvania’s deaths were in the Philiadelphia Police Department.
Eight federal law enforcement officers were killed this year including Samuel Hicks, an FBI agent in the Pittsburgh office who was fatally shot on Nov. 19 while serving a drug-related search warrant. Last year, 17 federal officers were killed.

FBI Joins Probe of Woman Missing from Cruise Ship

Granted, an endless numbers of people go on cruises every year. But it just takes one of these incidents to make them sound so dangerous.

By Sofia Santana
South Florida Sun-Sentinel
MIAMI – Cruise ship surveillance images show a woman falling overboard hours before her husband reported her missing from the Miami-based Norwegian Pearl last week, U. S. Coast Guard officials said Sunday.
The FBI began an investigation into the woman’s disappearance when the 15-deck vessel returned to the Port of Miami on Sunday morning.
“We’re looking to see if a crime was committed on the high seas,” said FBI Special Agent Michael Leverock.
For Full Story


Ex-FBI Agent Robert Hart Named President of Manhattan-based Consulting Firm

Robert Hart was named president of Pathfinder Consultants International LLC, a Manhattan-based investigative, security and consulting firm, Newsday reported. Hart of  Garden City resident was senior agent in charge of the Long Island office of the Federal Bureau of Investigations.

Chinese Women Made It Into FBI Academy Before Getting Busted For a Sham Marriage to Get Citizenship

By Allan Lengel
A 26-year-old Chinese woman made it into the FBI academy to train as an agent before authorities busted her for entering into a sham marriage to obtain U.S. citizenship.
Yue Cheng of Williamsburg, Va. pleaded guilty last week in Norfolk, Va., to naturalization fraud and false claims. She faces up to 26 months in prison at her April 19 sentencing.
According to authorities, Cheng entered the U.S. in 1999 to attend college. Two years later, at age 19, she married a 57-year-old California man in Las Vegas to obtain citizenship, according to an FBI affidavit. She then joined the U.S. Navy and was stationed in Norfolk. She collected extra pay because of her marriage.
On Sept. 28, 2004, she became a naturalized citizen, authorities said.
In March 2007, she applied to the FBI in Norfolk to become a special agent and in September she reported to the FBI Academy for training,  the affidavit said.
Earlier this year, while in special training at the FBI academy in Quantico, “she admitted to entering into a fraudulent marriage for the purpose of obtaining United States citizenship.”
During an interview with two FBI agents, Cheng told agents that she first suspected there would be a financial obligation to her sham husband, but that she suspected he ultimately “benefitied from the marriage through sexual favors”, the affidavit said.
She told agents that “her intent was to create better educational and career opportunities in the United States rather than to cause harm to the United States or help the Chinese government.”
Read FBI Affidavit