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Archive for July, 2009

Philly Fed Prosecutors in Sen. Fumo Case Worked Like Dogs For 137 Count Conviction

Every big case takes extraordinary time and effort. But in Philly, the federal prosecutors who convicted ex-Sen. Vince Fumo may have been more intense than most. It obviously paid off with the a conviction on all 137 counts.

Ex-Sen. Vincent Fumo
Ex-Sen. Vincent Fumo

By Robert Moran
Philadelphia Inquirer
PHILADELPHIA –– They were the Brains and the Bulldog, and they were unyielding.

Every day court was in session during Vincent J. Fumo’s nearly five-month corruption trial, Assistant U.S. Attorneys Robert A. Zauzmer and John J. Pease were never spotted at any of the nearby lunch spots.

They spent their breaks in a windowless room at the federal courthouse, prepping witnesses and plotting strategy, FBI Agent Vicki Humphreys recalled.

“John and Bob’s work ethic is incredible,” she said.

“It was not unusual to get an e-mail from John before 7 a.m. and one from Bob at 2 or 3 in the morning,” former FBI Agent Kathleen T. McAfee said. Both agents led the Fumo investigation.

Zauzmer and Pease had to be uncompromising to take down Fumo, the former state senator from Philadelphia with a reputation as a relentless politician.

Zauzmer was the strategist. “He’s one of the smartest people I’ve ever met,” Pease said.

“You know you can’t outwork him,” Zauzmer said of Pease.

For Full Story

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N.C. U.S. Atty’s Probe into Dems May Be Keeping Him on Board

After the mess with the U.S. Attorney firings under the Bush administration, the Dems are reluctant to make it look as if they’re interfering with Justice. That’s good for U.S. Attorney George Holding who’s investigating some high profile Dems. If it weren’t for that, he might have been gone already.

U.S. Atty. George Holding

U.S. Atty. George Holding

By The Associated Press
BEAUFORT, N.C. – Having swapped his hip-holstered Blackberry for fishing pliers, the U.S. attorney for eastern North Carolina watches closely from the captain’s chair aboard the 45-foot “Jolly Mon” as his crew prepares for a day on the water.

The team scans satellite images, examines water temperatures, sharpens hooks, packs reels and tests rods.

“If you get a big fish on here,” George Holding says from his perch, “you don’t want anything to go wrong.”

He might as well be talking about his day job.

A Republican appointee left in charge for an unusually long time by a Democratic White House, Holding has planned investigations into some of the state’s top political figures, including two-time presidential candidate John Edwards and former Gov. Mike Easley and his wife.

For Full Story

Carnival Elation Ship Loses Elation: FBI Arrests LA Man For Murder of Wife on Cruise Ship

It’s not really clear how people think they can off a spouse on a cruise ship and have no one notice. Nothing like turning a whole cruise ship into a crime scene.

Carnival Elation Ship
Carnival Elation Ship

BY CNN
A Los Angeles-area man has been charged with murder in the death of his wife while on a cruise along the Mexican coast, an FBI spokesman told CNN sister network HLN.

Shirley McGill, 55, was found dead in her cabin on the Carnival Elation on Tuesday as the ship, after a five-day cruise to Cabo San Lucas, was heading back to its origination point of San Diego, California, authorities said.

Robert McGill, who is in his mid-50s, is charged with murder on the high seas, FBI Special Agent in Charge Keith Slotter told HLN.

To Read More

FBI Trains on Excavating Human Remains

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5phc1VA37UU

Ex-FBI Director Louis Freeh Testifies That Sotomayor is Going to Be “An Outstanding Judge”

Louis Freeh

Louis Freeh

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
WASHINGTON — Former FBI director Louis Freeh testified Thursday at the hearings for Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, saying he mentored her as as a fellow U.S. District judge in New York in the early 1990s and found her to be the kind of “judge that I think we would all be proud of.”

Freeh, 59,  went on to speak of Sotomayor, 55,  in laudatory terms. The following includes some of his remarks.

“My association with her began in 1992. She was a new judge on the Southern District, and we had this tradition where the second newest judge would mentor the new judge.”

“Some of us didn’t think it was the wisest rule to have, since I had about nine months on the bench when she was entrusted to my care, so to speak.”

“And I actually sat with her in court. I sat with her during trials. I helped review opinions that she asked me to look at. My law clerks were encamped with her law clerks.”

“And I guess what I want to communicate to you in a very short period remaining is, you know, the enormous judicial integrity and commitment to finding the facts, to being open-minded, to being fair.

“She struggled and deliberated in making sure she had the facts, making sure she had the right law, following the law, and being the kind of judge that I think we would all be proud of.”

“You know, speeches are important, and it’s great the way you all have considered that so carefully. But, you know, when you enter the courtroom and you put the bench on, just as you assume the authority when you take your commitment, there’s a whole different set of influences and immense power and influence that takes over.”

“And when she’s been on the bench, when she’s written, when she’s argued, the way she’s conducted herself, I think we can very safely predict this is going to be an outstanding judge, with all the qualities I know that you would want. So I urge you all to support her.”

5 New Jersey Cops Shot and Wounded; 2 Suspects Killed

FBI Arrests White Va. Man for Threatening “To Start Killing Off White Judges”

U.S. District Judge Matthew Perry

U.S. District Judge Matthew Perry

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
WASHINGTON – The FBI arrested a Virginia man Wednesday for threatening to “start killing off white judges” and trying to intimidate a South Carolina federal judge hearing his civil case alleging wrongful arrest and malicious prosecution.

Stephen H. Rosenberg, 51, who is white, was arrested without incident at his home in Alexandria, Va., the FBI said. He was indicted on July 7.

According to a three-page indictment filed in Columbia, S.C., Rosenberg sent a rambling email on April 6, 2009 to Judge  Matthew Perry Jr., South Carolina’s first African American U.S. District Judge,  that included these excerpts:

“As you know, my father Col. (U.S. Army) Kermit H. Rosenberg will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery today…..I strongly urge you to immediately do your job as a U.S. District Court Judge and immediately provide me with Justice. I hope you don’t agree with the advice I received from many of my former fellow inmates who are of the same race as you that the “ONLY WAY” I am going to be able to achieve justice is “TO START KILLING OFF WHITE JUDGES.”.

An FBI press release said Rosenberg appeared before Judge Perry on his civil suit earlier this year and had sent him a number of emails including the threatening one on April 6.

According to federal court records, Rosenberg filed a lawsuit in 2006 against the state of South Carolina and the Beaufort Co. Sheriff’s Department and its members alleging false arrest and malicious prosecution.

Read Indictment

Woman Sentenced in Ill. to 10 Years for Traveling Interstate to Have Sex With Female Teen

illinois-map1By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

It has become all too common for federal authorities to arrest a man for traveling to another state to have sex with a minor.

But what’s unusual is for the feds to bust a woman for this crime.

Catharine L. Miller, 33, of Mechanicsburg, Pa., was sentenced earlier this week in U.S. District Court in East St. Louis, Ill. to 10 years in prison for traveling from Ohio to Wayne County, Ill. to have sex with a 14-year-old girl she met on the Internet.

According to an FBI affidavit, Miller met the teen on an Internet forum in July 2008. They subsequently communicated by email and cellphone.

Miller let the teen know she was interested in sex and on Nov. 11, 2008, sent her a text message saying she had reserved a hotel room in Flora, Ill., the FBI affidavit said.

A few days later, Miller traveled form Cincinnati to Flora, Ill. and met with the teen and “proposed marriage and “provided a diamond ring” and a baby bottle “because the juvenile would be Miller’s ‘baby’.”

The next few days, the two had sex. At one point, the teen’s stepfather and mother found out the two were in a car at Johnsonville Park and caught them kissing, according to the FBI affidavit.

“The juvenile’s step-father pulled Miller out of the vehicle and contacted law enforcement”, the affidavit said.  Miller was arrested and later pleaded guilty to interstate travel to have sex with a minor.

Read FBI Criminal Complaint

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