Site Search

Entire (RSS)
Comments (RSS)

Archive Calendar

October 2009


How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Archive for October, 2009

Senate Confirms South Dakota and Alaska U.S. Attorneys


By Allan Lengel
WASHINGTON — The Senate on Thursday confirmed the U.S. Attorneys for Alaska and South Dakota.

Brendan Johnson, the son of Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.) was confirmed for South Dakota post, and Karen Loeffler for Alaska.


Terror Suspect Zazi Had ties to bin Laden’s Afghan Lt.

bin Laden/fbi photo

bin Laden/fbi photo

The more that comes out, the scarier this sounds.

By Brett J. Blackledge
Associated Press

The airport shuttle driver accused of plotting a bombing in New York had contacts with al-Qaeda that went nearly to the top, to an Osama bin Laden confidant believed to be the terrorist group’s leader in Afghanistan, according to U.S. intelligence officials.

Mustafa Abu al-Yazid, an Egyptian reputed to be one of the founders of the terrorist network, used a middleman to contact Najibullah Zazi, the Afghan immigrant charged in the plot, two intelligence officials said. Officials declined to say whether al-Yazid offered Zazi mere encouragement or substantive help with the alleged plot.

Bosnia Prosecutor Likely to Get U.S. Atty. Post in Utah

utahBy Allan Lengel
WASHINGTON — David Schwendiman, a war crimes prosecutor in Bosnia, is expected to get the nomination from President Obama for the U.S. Attorney post in Utah, the Salt Lake Tribune is reporting.

Citing political and legal insiders, the paper said Schwendiman will likely replace his former boss U.S. Attorney Brett Tolman who announced on Wednesday that he would step down Dec. 31.

He  briefly worked for Tolman before assuming the prosecutor post in Bosnia, the paper reported.

For Full Story

Justice Dept. Hopes to Avoid Another Ted Stevens Disaster

Assist. Atty. Gen. Lanny Breuer says he doesn’t think there’s widespread prosecutorial misconduct. Still, problems with sharing evidence with the defense has surfaced far too often. At least the department acknowledges that it’s an issue that needs to be addressed.

Sen. Ted Stevens/official photo

Sen. Ted Stevens/official photo

By Carrie Johnson
Washington Post Staff Writer
WASHINGTON — Justice Department leaders are pressing ahead with reforms to prevent lapses by prosecutors in sharing evidence in criminal cases, a series of changes spurred by failures that led the federal government to take a highly unusual step earlier this year and abandon the conviction of former senator Ted Stevens (R-Alaska).

The reforms come as new allegations emerge that cast doubt on the credibility of the key witness in the Alaska political corruption scandals, including the botched prosecution of Stevens.

Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer outlined in an interview and at a judges’ meeting in Seattle this week the fresh safeguards, such as new training programs for federal prosecutors on their evidence-sharing obligations and the hiring of an official at headquarters to review the process.

For Full Story

Ex-Atty. Gen. Janet Reno Lends Voice to Help Wrongfully Convicted Mariel Cuban

Ex-Atty Gen. Janet Reno

Ex-Atty Gen. Janet Reno

By Allan Lengel

The not-often heard from ex-Atty. Gen. Janet Reno is lending her name to help a Mariel Cuban refugee who was threatened with deportation after he was erroneously convicted and imprisoned in 1983 for sexual assault, the Miami Herald reports.

The paper reports that the attorney for refugee Orlando Boquete, a Cudjoe Key, Fla. resident, has filed legal paper’s to make Boquete a permanent citizen, which would eventually make him eligible for citizenship and remove the possibility of deportation.

Included in the packet submitted to Homeland Security was a letter signed by Janet Reno.

“While no official action can give him back those years, allowing him to earn a living and rebuild his life in his adopted country as a permanent resident without facing continued uncertainty about the risk that he will be deported, is an important step,” Reno wrote.

A 2006 DNA test cleared Boquete of wrongdoing. He was released from prison, then temporarily held by immigration authorities before being released, the Herald reported. Currently, he could still be deported without permanent citizenship.

Boquete had escaped for about 10 years after 2003 conviction and again in 1995 for about a year, according to Project Innocence. As part of his release in 2006, he was required to report regularly to immigration authorities.

To read more click here.

Ex-Flint, Mi. Police Chief Pleads Guilty in Fed Court to Fraud

David Dick/ nbc25 photo

David Dick/ nbc25 photo

By Allan Lengel

There’s little good news that comes out of the hard scrabbled town of Flint, a failing industrial city about an hour north of Detroit that General Motors once dominated.

Now comes more bad news. The ex-Flint interim Police Chief David Dicks, 42, pleaded guilty Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Detroit to illegally receiving public money through a no-show job at a security company run by his father, the Detroit Free Press reports.

Dicks, who had once vowed to fight the charges, got his 15 minutes of fame last year “when he urged officers to file disorderly conduct or indecent exposure charges against those whose saggy pants allowed too much underwear or their bottoms to show on city streets. The policy eventually died,” the Free Press wrote.

He could go off to prison for up to a year and will pay $46,000 in restitution, the paper reported.


Ex-Rep. Jefferson Sentencing Delayed until Nov. 13; Documents Show He Took the 5th at One Point

No matter the date, Jefferson is likely to get whacked at sentencing. Though the conviction was overwhelming — guilty on 11 of 16 counts — he’s not likely to show much remorse at sentencing because of his plan to appeal the conviction. He may either tell the judge he did some foolish things, but he’s not guilty of the charges he was convicted of. Or, he’ll just pass on making any statement in court. Either way, it’s not likely to impress the judge.

William J. Jefferson

William J. Jefferson

By Bruce Alpert
New Orleans Times-Picayune
WASHINGTON — Sentencing for former Rep. William Jefferson will be pushed back to Nov. 13, U.S. District Court Judge T.S. Ellis III ruled Wednesday.

Jefferson originally was scheduled for sentencing Oct. 30 after being found guilty by a Virginia jury on 11 of 16 corruption charges.

Also Wednesday, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals released a March 2007 ruling that allowed the Justice Department to use material taken from Jefferson’s congressional office.

The ruling had been sealed at Jefferson’s request because its release would have disclosed that he had invoked his 5th Amendment protection against self incrimination in trying to keep the documents out of the hands of investigators.

For Full Story

Six Members of Bonanno Crime Family Plead Guilty in the Sunshine State

The sun may shine bright in Florida, but these mobsters aren’t going to be around to enjoy it.


AP Legal Affairs Writer
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — One by one, members of a South Florida crew of the New York-based Bonanno crime family stood before a federal judge Wednesday to plead guilty to racketeering charges, including one enforcer who said it was impossible to escape the Mafia life.

Six of the 11 purported crew members indicted in May pleaded guilty to charges that carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. All 11 are charged under the federal Racketeering Influenced and Corrupt Organizations, or RICO law, which the FBI has used frequently to break up major criminal enterprises.

The enforcer, 43-year-old Pasquale Rubbo, told U.S. District Judge William Zloch that he’d already done prison time for his underworld ties and that he had some debts to pay after his release a few years ago

For Full Story