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Archive for August, 2009

A Conversation With OK U.S. Atty. John Richter Who Steps Down Friday

Ex-FBI Agent Jack Borden Going Strong as Private Atty at Age 101

weatherford-tex-map

Jack Borden, who was an FBI agent in the 1940s, is still going strong as a private attorney at 101. Impressive feat. Impressive man.

By DAVID FLICK
The Dallas Morning News
WEATHERFORD, Tex. – At 101 years old, Jack Borden often gets asked two questions: What’s the secret to a long life? and When are you going to give up chewing tobacco?

He dismisses the first (“Not dying”) and simply ignores the second.

“I’ve been hearing for 91 years that it’s going to kill me,” he said, projecting juice into a brass spittoon by his desk. “When you’re old, you have to have something to give you pleasure.”

For Full Story

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YlXmz4LKZTA

An Amusing Tale of How a Son Wrote J. Edgar Hoover to Help his FBI Agent Dad

Washington Post magazine

Washington Post Sunday magazine

A young son wanted to help his overworked dad who was an FBI agent. So he secretly wrote J. Edgar Hoover to get help. The rest is a very amusing story.

By Anthony Edward Schiappa Jr.
Washington Post Sunday Magazine

I grew up revering two men: J. Edgar Hoover and my dad. I was elated when Dad joined the FBI in 1962; it was as if the Yankees had hired him to pitch. My father had been job-hopping, having worked at five newspapers over the previous eight years. While my parents were pleased with the job security and benefits of the FBI, I had ecstatic visions of my father as a commie-fighting, crime-busting G-man. John Dillinger, the Karpis-Barker gang and “Machine Gun” Kelly were as familiar to me as Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris. “The FBI Story” was the first book longer than a comic book I ever read. When I was 7 years old, I couldn’t name the president, but I knew

who the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation was. I still have letters my father wrote during his training at the FBI Academy in Quantico: “Daddy is working and studying very hard to become a good FBI agent. I will be home in August and I will show you my badge and my gun.” What could be cooler?

J. Edgar Hoover/fbi photo

J. Edgar Hoover/fbi photo

Through my boyhood eyes, my father personified the FBI motto of Fidelity, Bravery, Integrity. Six feet tall with looks like Cary Grant, he made the dark suit, white shirt, subdued tie and homburg hat of FBI fame appear stylish. As my father’s new-agent training report noted, “This man makes a very substantial initial impression.” Reticent, he wielded the driest of wits. He signed my fifth-grade autograph book: “To my son, Eddie; may his father lead a long and prosperous life.”

As for Hoover, his career turned out to be stunningly inconsistent. His leadership alternated between brilliant and boneheaded; his tremendous accomplishments sometimes have been overshadowed by his idiosyncrasies. Forty years ago, my family got a taste of the best and worst that Hoover had to offer.

To Read the Rest

Weekend Series on History: Rise and Fall of Mobster John Gotti

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQccyQbCHEg

Convicted Priest Called Before Fed Grand Jury Probing LA Archdiocese Cardinal’s Handling of Abuse

The scandal that ripped through the Catholic church is not over. And anyone, regardless of rank, should be held accountable for committing acts or covering them up.

Cardinal Roger Mahoney/ archdiocese photo

Cardinal Roger Mahoney/ archdiocese photo

By Richard Winton
Los Angeles Times
LOS ANGELES — A former Los Angeles priest convicted of molesting boys has been called before a federal grand jury investigating how the L.A. archdiocese and Cardinal Roger Mahony handled priest abuse cases, a source told The Times.

Former priest Michael Stephen Baker informed Mahony two decades ago of his abusive acts but was allowed to remain in the ministry.

His case has become a symbol of how the church transferred priests who abused young boys. He is now in U.S. federal custody, said the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the case is ongoing.

For Full Story

It’s About Time: New Orleans Hires Ex-Fed Prosecutor and Another Atty to Deal With Ethics and Fed Probes

Better late than never. New Orleans could have used something like this a long long long time ago.

David Laufman/law photo

David Laufman/law office photo

Karen Sloan
National Law Journal

New Orleans has hired two attorneys from New York’s Kelley Drye & Warren to advise it on ethical issues and regarding a myriad of federal investigations targeting the city.

Washington-based partner David Laufman will lead the firm’s efforts with the assistance of associate Andrew Wein, according to the city contract. Laufman, formerly an assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, specializes in white collar crime and federal investigations.

“In essence, I will help guide the city with its compliance through the course of this investigative action,” Laufman said. “I have counseled many individuals and companies grappling with investigations, but this is the first time I’ve provided this type of advice to a municipality.”

Laufman’s contract with the city extends from August through the end of October, and it appears there will be no lack of work. Federal authorities are investigating at least three matters involving City Hall, according to reports by The Times-Picayune of New Orleans and other published accounts.

For Full Story

No Surprise Here: Auditors and Regulators Failed to Double-Check Madoff’s Bogus Info

The bottom line was: the government was lax, and consequently people lost millions. Maybe if there were consequences for those lax people– like a big fat fine — others might not be so lax in the future.

Bernie Madoff

Bernie Madoff

By Greg Farrell and Brooke Masters
The Financial Times

Bernard Madoff’s $65bn Ponzi scheme was able to evade detection for years partly because auditors and regulators failed to double-check the information his firm gave them, court documents filed in the case of Madoff lieutenant Frank DiPascali suggest.

Mr DiPascali, 52, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to 10 criminal charges and is co-operating with prosecutors and the Securities and Exchange Commission. Based partly on his information, US authorities filed documents alleging how

Mr Madoff repeatedly deceived regulators and auditors with fake documents and false explanations that they apparently never questioned.

For Full Story

Justice and Homeland Officials Look At Mich. to House Guantanamo Inmates

michigan11In a state where the economy just plain old sucks, this will help out a little. And besides, these prisoners have to be held somewhere.

By JOHN FLESHER
Associated Press Writer
STANDISH, Mich. — Federal and state officials visited a maximum-security prison in rural Michigan on Thursday to begin assessing its suitability to house Guantanamo Bay detainees.

About a dozen state officials were joined by 18 representatives from the Defense, Justice and Homeland Security departments and the Bureau of Prisons on the tour of the lockup in Standish, said Russ Marlan, a spokesman for the Michigan Department of Corrections.

The prison in Standish, 145 miles north of Detroit, and a military penitentiary at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., are being considered to house the 229 suspected al-Qaida, Taliban and foreign fighters currently at the Guantanamo Bay prison, if it is closed by 2010 as President Barack Obama has ordered.

For Full Story