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June 2009


How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Archive for June 25th, 2009

House Panel Spars With Ex-N.J. U.S. Atty. Chris Christie Who Awarded Lucrative Contract to ex-Boss Ashcroft

The lucrative contract Christie approved has raised plenty eyebrows and some voices on Capitol Hill. No matter who’s right, one thing is for certain: Christie doesn’t need this type of publicity while he runs for New Jersey governor. And  oh yes, Democrats would prefer this doesn’t go away.

Christopher Christie

Christopher Christie

The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — A former U.S. attorney and New Jersey’s Republican gubernatorial candidate Thursday defended an arrangement in which one-time Attorney General John Ashcroft’s consulting firm made millions of dollars monitoring a controversial deferred prosecution agreement.

In a sometimes tense exchange with congressional Democrats, Chris Christie told the House Judiciary Committee that the choice of Ashcroft was acceptable to the company, Zimmer Holdings Inc. But the testimony from Christie, who once worked for Ashcroft, was at odds with e-mails that surfaced before the hearing that showed the company was unhappy with the fees it had to pay Ashcroft’s firms.

In one e-mail, Christie said he was “disappointed” by the firm’s complaints about the fees to Ashcroft’s firm and said “we can’t afford to be distracted.”

Ashcroft’s consulting firm stood to make $28 million to $52 million or more for 18 months of work monitoring a hip and knee replacement manufacturer accused of giving kickbacks to doctors.

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Christie testifies about the selection of Ashcroft

Brooklyn Dentist Gets 17 Months For Aiding Hezbollah Via Television Broadcasts

Many Arab Americans continue to see groups like Hezbollah and Hamas as freedom fighters. But the U.S. State Department continues to list them as terrorist organizations. The result has been that some supporters in the U.S. have gone off to prison. Here’s the latest case.

New Jersey Star Ledger Staff

The Hezbollah Flag

The Hezbollah Flag

A Brooklyn dentist who lives in New Jersey was sentenced to 17 months in prison yesterday for aiding the terrorist group Hezbollah by broadcasting its Lebanese television station to satellite users in the metropolitan area.

Saleh Elahwal, 56, of Matawan had admitted in December that he and another man accepted some $112,000 from Hezbollah’s television station, al Manar, to provide its satellite broadcasts through a company they operated, Brooklyn-based HDTV Limited, from September 2005 through August 2006.

He was sentenced yesterday to 17 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman for providing material support to Hezbollah, which the U.S. government regards as a terrorist organization.

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Rogue Atlanta Cop Busted by FBI Gets 18 Months in Prison

By Rachel Leven
A rogue Atlanta police narcotics officer is headed off to prison, the result of an FBI probe into police misconduct that arose from the fatal atlanta-policeshooting of a 92-year-old woman in a 2006 botched drug raid.

Sgt. Wilbert “Pete” Stalling was sentenced late last week to 18 months in prison and 80 hours community service for breaking into a private residence without a search warrant, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Atlanta. His sentence for a civil rights violation came after he spent 11 months cooperating in an FBI probe into police misconduct.

“For those who still don’t get it, today’s sentence should send a message that police officers are sworn not just to enforce the law but, like all citizens, to obey it,” U.S. Attorney David E. Nahmias of Atlanta said in a prepared statement.

Authorities say that Stalling, who is in his mid-40s, and the narcotics crew he supervised, was involved in a pattern of illegal activity, which came to light after the FBI began investigating the 2006 shooting of the 92-year-old Atlanta woman.

According to media accounts and the U.S. Attorney’s office,  some officers Stalling worked with got a bad tip about cocaine being stored in the home of Kathryn Johnston,92. Using a “no-knock” warrant, they tried breaking into the home. Johnston, using an old revolver, fired a shot through the door and officers returned fire with 39 shots, killing her.

Stalling was not involved in that botched raid. But one of his crew members Gregg Junnier, who supervised the raid, got 6-year prison term for his role and agreed to cooperate with the FBI probe into police misconduct.

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DEA Going After Taliban and Drugs and Cash

Bernie Madoff Gets to Be Sentenced in Style


By Allan Lengel

The bad news for swindler Bernie Madoff is that’s he’s going off to federal prison for a long time.

The Good News: He gets to wear his own clothes at sentencing on Monday instead of his nifty prison outfit.

In a one-sentence order filed in U.S. District Court in New York on Wednesday, Judge Denny Chin wrote:

“That defendant Bernard L. Madoff (inmate #61727-054) is permitted to receive clothing at the Metropolitan Correction Center, 150 Park Row, New York, N.Y., to be worn by the Defendant at sentencing on Monday June 29, 2009.”

Meanwhile, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Manhattan on Wednesday filed more than 200 pages in court that included angry letters and emails from investors.

Here’s an excerpt from one: “I am not sure what my entitlement is as far as speaking before the court,” wrote Rick Ashenfarb. “My wife and I lost 1 million dollars to this snake. It was all the money we had and now, we find ourselves in a dire financial position, especially because of the overall economy.

“As far as Madoff and his family, I can’t believe that one cent of his wife’s money did not come from this heinous crime. Therefore, his entire family should live under the same conditions as us, penniless!”

Congressman to the Rescue: Sidewalks too Hot For Fed Dogs


Just because they work like a dog,  doesn’t mean they have to suffer. Here’s Congressman Bob Brady to the rescue.

By Dan Gross
Philadelphia Daily News
CAPITOL Police dogs should soon be barking their gratitude to U.S. Rep. Bob Brady. Brady recently noticed that some of the bomb-sniffing dogs that inspect cars at the entrance to the Capitol were limping and was told it’s because of the hot pavement.

So Brady has arranged for the asphalt where the dogs work to be painted white.

The white paint is said to be 20 to 25 degrees cooler than blacktop, and Brady says the CIA, FBI, and Secret Service headquarters all have white paint to help their search dogs.

Brady says the painting will be done Saturday. He offered to provide paint, but the Capitol Police turned him down.

“The dogs are getting hurt and they can’t do their jobs. It’s hard to concentrate on smelling a bomb if their feet are burning,” Brady told us.

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Feds Arrest 53 in Nationwide $50 Mil Medicare Scam

Medicare fraud has been so pervasive for so long. With our health care costs spiraling out of control, this type of fraud doesn’t help. We need to do even more to crack down on this activity. It goes hand and glove with health care reform.

FBI Agent arrests Bernice Brown/channel 7 detroit

FBI Agent arrests Bernice Brown/channel 7 detroit

Detroit Free Press
DETROIT — Federal authorities unsealed indictments Wednesday that charged 53 people in an alleged nationwide $50-million Medicare scam.

Forty-one of the suspects were arrested Wednesday — including 35 in metro Detroit.

Federal authorities allege doctors, physical therapists and employees at 27 companies paid kickbacks to patients for fake Medicare claims.

“I just want to say to those of you who work diligently and ethically to provide medical care through the Medicare program, we will work with you to root out the few who corrupt the system and taint the good reputations of health professionals everywhere,” said U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder in Washington, D.C.

For Full Story

Read Summary of the Cases

Read Justice Dept. Press Release

Nigerian Executive Paid Ex-Rep. William Jefferson $100,000

This is some pretty damaging testimony for Jefferson. The FBI recorded Jefferson taking $100,000 in marked FBI bills from a business woman who was cooperating with the FBI. But this $100,000 payment is in addition to the FBI money, and was apparently made initially without the knowledge of the FBI. It may undercut some of the defense’s claim that the case was created by the FBI.

By Bruce Alpert
The Times-Picayune

The Jefferson trial/courtesy of Art Lien/NBC News

The Jefferson trial/courtesy of Art Lien/NBC News

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — A former Nigerian telecommunications executive testified Wednesday that his former business partners delivered $100,000 to then-Rep. William Jefferson after the Democratic congressman requested a percentage of profits and revenue in a joint venture with a Kentucky technology company he was promoting.

Dumebi Kachikwu, a part-owner of Nigeria Digital Television when Jefferson was trying to broker a deal between the company and Louisville-based iGate Inc., delivered the most damaging testimony yet in the trial, now in its third week, in which Jefferson faces charges of bribery, racketeering and violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

Jefferson’s attorneys are expected to cross-examine Kachikwu when the trial resumes today.

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