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Archive for September, 2010

Justice Lawyer Criticizes Agency for Failing to Protect White Voters

blackpantherptylogoBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — In a controversy that won’t seem to go away for the Obama administration, a veteran Justice Department lawyer on Friday accused his agency of being unwilling to go after racial discrimination cases on behalf of white voters, the Washington Post reported.

Christopher Coate testified before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights relating to the department’s failure to aggressively pursue a case against the New Black Panther Party, which was accused of intimidating some whites from voting at the polls in 2008 in Philly. One member was carrying a night stick, Post reported.

Coates, former head of the voting section that brought the case, criticized the department’s “gutting” of the case for “irrational reasons”, the Post reported. He transferred to the U.S. Attorney’s in South Carolina in January and has been given whistleblower status.

“I had people who told me point-blank that [they] didn’t come to the voting rights section to sue African American people,” Coates testified. “When you are paid by the taxpayer, that is totally indefensible.”

To read more click here.

Weekend Series on Crime: The Detroit Mob

Drug Dealer Whose Wife Killed Pitts. FBI Agent Gets 25 Years

Slain FBI Agent Sam Hicks/fbi photo

Slain FBI Agent Sam Hicks/fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The convicted drug dealer whose wife shot and killed a Pittsburgh FBI agent in 2008 during a raid at their home was sentenced Friday in federal court to 25 years in prison, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.

The paper reported that Robert Korbe, who pleaded guilty to drug trafficking, gun and insurance fraud charges, faced a mandatory 20-year term, but could have gotten life.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Troy Rivetti said Korbe threatened witnesses in his case from jail even after pleading guilty, the paper reported.

Law enforcement agents raided his home in November 2008. Korbe ran in the basement to get rid of cocaine and his wife Christina opened fire from upstairs and shot and killed FBI agent Sam Hicks, the paper reported. She faces charges in the shooting.

Korbe reportedly laughed when learning that the agent had been shot.

More TSA Workers to Get “Secret” Clearance

John Pistole/dhs photo

John Pistole/dhs photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The Transportation Security Administration, which protects our airports, will be giving more employees secret clearances so they’ll have more access to intelligence, CNN reports.

CNN reports that the number of employees with “secret” clearances will go to 10,000 or one sixth of the agency’s workforce.

TSA Administrator John Pistole, formerly the number two person at the FBI, said the access will give frontline workers more information when trying to stop terrorists, CNN reported.

Pistole, who spoke before a House Homeland Security Subcommittee this week, said “a key lesson I took from my 26 years at the FBI is that one of the best tools we possess in our effort to combat terrorism is accurate and timely intelligence. Our enemies constantly evolve their methods and their tools…and it’s our job to stay ahead of them.”

Clint Eastwood Movie on J. Edgar Hoover Likely to Stir More Speculation

J. Edgar Hoover/fbi photo

J. Edgar Hoover/fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Speculation over the lifestyle of J. Edgar Hoover is likely to heat up again as Clint Eastwood prepares to make a film at Warner Bros. on the legendary FBI director.

New York magazine’s website Vulture reports that that actor Joaquin Phoenix “is said to be the director’s top choice to play J. Edgar Hoover’s reputed paramour and protégé, Clyde Tolson.” Leonardo DiCaprio, at this time, is supposed to play Hoover.

In other words, the website is saying Tolson, the associate director of the FBI, will not  only play Hoover’s good buddy, but his lover as well.

For decades now there have been persistent  rumors about Hoover that some insist are simply that — just rumors with no basis or fact.

Still, the site reports: “For those unfamiliar with Tolson and Hoover, they really were the original “Ambiguously Gay Duo”: As the associate director of the FBI from 1947 to 1972, Tolson was in daily close contact with Hoover at the office, but even more interesting, the pair also dined, socialized in night clubs, and even vacationed together.”

“Neither man ever admitted to being gay, and Hoover was known for hunting down and intimidating those who dared questioned his sexual preference while he was alive,” the website reported.

“But Hoover’s actions in death seem to suggest they were more than simply pals in life: When Hoover died, Tolson was not only the beneficiary of Hoover’s life-insurance policy, he also inherited Hoover’s estate and moved into his house.”

2 Men Charged in Okla. With Buying Weapons to Smuggle Into Mexico

oklahomaBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Two men have been indicted in Oklahoma on charges of illegally buying weapons including military type semi-automatic rifles and smuggling some into Mexico, authorities announced Thursday.

Gregorio Morales-Martinez, 34, an illegal immigrant from Lewisville, Tex. and Jorge Alexis Blanco, 25, of Stillwater, Ok. were charged with illegally purchasing 43 firearms, including military type semi-automatic rifles.

Authorities alleged that many of the weapons were bought through “straw purchasers” — people who were simply buying the weapons for the men, not for themselves.

Federal law requires each buyer to complete a Firearms Transaction Record (ATF Form 4473) certifying they are the “actual buyer of the firearm.” The form warns that they are not the actual buyer if they’re buying it for someone else.

“The illegal trafficking of firearms from the United States to Mexico is a serious problem,” U.S. Attorney Sanford C. Coats of Oklahoma said in a statement. “It is fueling a lot of the violent drug cartel activity there.”

The case was investigated by ATF.

Feds Sell Off $67.8 Million in Madoff’s Belongings So Far

Bernie Madoff/facebook photo

Bernie Madoff/facebook photo

By Allan Lengel
For AOL News

While 72-year-old swindler Bernie Madoff serves a 150-year sentence behind bars, federal authorities are working to use his ill-gotten gains to repay his many victims.

On Wednesday, in the latest court filing in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said the government so far has recouped about $67.8 million through the sale of his belongings, though the figure obviously falls far short of the $50 billion or so Madoff swindled from investors.

The government tally so far, according to court documents, includes $7.3 million from the sale of his New York City co-op; about $59 million from the sale of his four-bedroom, 1.2-acre home in Montauk, N.Y.; $1.4 million for his Cap d’Antibes apartment in the French Riviera; and cars, boats, a securities account and personal property.

To read more click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Conn. Man Charged With Sending 50-plus Anthrax Hoax and Bomb Threat Letters

connect 2
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Federal authorities in Connecticut have charged Roland Prejean with allegedly sending more than 50 anthrax hoax and bomber threat letters to judges, government officials and citizens around the country.

“This defendant is alleged to have sent more than 50 letters nationwide, in which he threatened to kill numerous victims, by shooting them, bombing the buildings in which they work or exposing them to a substance that he claimed was, but was not, anthrax,” U.S. Attorney David Fein said in a statement.

“The letters victimized both private citizens and public servants, and resulted in the evacuation of a post office, a town hall and a public school. Such threats cause significant diversions of law enforcement resources, inflict fear in the victims, and result in substantial disruption of public and government services, and they will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

Prejean turned himself into law enforcement authorities in North Dakota on Sept. 7, authorities said.