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Archive for December, 2010

Dallas Drug Dealer Pleads Guilty to Shooting ATF Agent

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A Dallas Man nicknamed “G-Bone” pleaded guilty Monday to shooting and wounding an ATF agent who had come to arrest him, authorities said.

Gary Montgomery,39, who now faces up to 20 years in prison, also pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Sidney Fitzwater in Dallas to distributing crack cocaine and being a felon in possession of a firearm. Authorities said he is associated with the Highland Hill Posse street gang.

Court document indicate that on Sept. 2 at around 6 a.m. ATF agent tried to enter Montgomery’s Dallas home to execute an arrest warrant.

After a number of agents identified themselves by yelling “Police With a Search Warrant”, two of the ATF agents tried to enter through the front door, authorities said.

Montgomery responded by firing off shots from a 9 mm handgun through the front door. One agent was hit in the abdomen.

Robert R. Champion, head of the ATF in Dallas said “we are relieved and pleased that” the agent ” was able to recover from the shooting and was able to return to work.”

FBI Warns “Video Girl” Barbie Has Potential for Child Porn

ATF Whistleblower Edgar Domenech to Become NY City Sheriff

Edgar Domenech

Edgar Domenech/ticklethewire.com photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Who knew New York City had a sheriff?

Well, native New Yorker Edgar Domenech, the whistleblower who was Deputy Director of ATF until he was demoted in 2007 after raising questions about financial mismanagement in 2007, has been named the city’s new sheriff, according to the New York Daily News.

Domenech is retiring from ATF as head of its Washington field office.

“Most people don’t realize that New York City has a sheriff,” Mayor Michael Bloomberg said, according to the Daily News. “He does not ride around on a horse, carry a six-shooter and look for cattle rustlers, but as the city’s chief civil law enforcement officer, he really is vitally important to the safety and well-being of New York.”

Domenech duties will include collecting from dead-beat dads. The New York City Sheriff’s Office is the civil law enforcement division of the New York City Department of Finance.

He said his whistleblower background will reinforce “the importance that I believe management has to have in protecting the taxpayers,” the Daily News reported.

D.C. Judge Nixes Suit Against U.S. Which Put Cleric on Kill or Capture List

Judge John Bates

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The U.S. scored a little victory in the battle against terrorism.

The Washington Post reports that a federal judge in Washington tossed out a lawsuit by the ACLU and the Center for Constitutional Rights challenging the administration’s legal right to place  Yemen cleric Nasser al-Aulaqi, who is also a U.S. citizen, on the kill-or-capture list.

U.S. District Judge John Bates acknowledged the important issue, but said the court lacked the jurisdiction to address the matter, the Post reported.

“The serious issues regarding the merits of the alleged authorization of the targeted killing of a U.S. citizen overseas must await another day or another (non-judicial) forum,” Bates wrote, according to the Post.

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Ky. Man Gets 33 Months in Prison For Poem Threatening Pres. Obama

white house photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

T.S. Eliot he’s not.

A Kentucky man who posted on the Internet a poem threatening President Obama was sentenced Monday in Louisville federal court to 33 months in prison, the Associated Press reported.

AP reported that Johnny Logan Spencer, 28, apologized for writing the poem entitled “The Sniper”, which described a sniper killing the president.

He told the judge he was upset over his mother’s death and that he started associating with a white supremacist group that helped him kick a drug habit.

The poem was posted on a website in 2007 and again in 2009 after Obama became president, AP reported.

Navy Sailor in N.C. Arrested for Selling Classified Documents to Undercover FBI Agent

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

In this turbulent era of WikiLeaks, this hardly seems shocking.

Authorities are alleging in a search warrant that a Navy sailor based at Fort Bragg passed classified documents to an undercover FBI agent posing as a foreign intelligence agent, the Associated Press reports. In exchange, he was given cash.

AP reported that Navy Reserve Intelligence Specialist Third Class Bryan Minkyu Martin, 22, of Mexico, N.Y., was arrested last week, but has not been charged.  He is, however, being held in the naval brig in Norfolk, Va.

AP, citing a search warrant filed in the Eastern District Court in North Carolina, reported that Martin received a total of $3,500 “from an undercover FBI agent in exchange for dozens of pages of documents that were classified either secret or top secret.”

At an initial meeting on Nov. 15, Martin told the undercover agent that his current assignment focused on Afghanistan and that he planned to work for the Defense Intelligence Agency, and would one day be very valuable, AP reported.

The Feds Say in This Story Spiderman is the Bad Guy

Spiderman, Spiderman, Does whatever a spider can.
Spins a web, any size, Catches thieves just like flies.
Look Out! Here comes the Spiderman.”

Theme song to Spiderman

Tarantula/doj photo

By Glynnesha Taylor
ticklethewire.com

In this case,  the feds spun a web to capture a German man in a probe dubbed “Operation Spiderman.”

Late last week, special agents with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and U.S. Postal Inspectors — like spiders waiting for the prey — arrested German resident Sven Koppler, 37, after he arrived in Los Angeles on charges of  smuggling hundreds of tarantulas into the U.S. using the U.S. Mail, the Justice Department said. Some of the spiders were protected by international law.

The investigation began in March when a routine search of an international package turned up about 300 live tarantulas that were being shipped to Los Angeles.

The Fish and Wildlife agents intercepted a second package that had about 250 live tarantulas wrapped in colored plastic straws, and another package with 22 Brachypelma red kneed tarantulas, which are protected under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species treaty.

The Fish and Wildlife agents set up an undercover investigation and ordered additional tarantulas from Koppler. They received several of the tarantulas dead and alive, including the Brachypelmas.

Authorities estimated that Koppler earned about $300,000 peddling tarantulas to people around the world, including about nine individuals in the U.S.

A spokeswoman from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife services said that the issue when shipping animals is whether or not the animals are permitted and if the person has an import/ export license.

“There are a lot of illegal shipments,” said the spokeswoman.

Koppler could face up to 20 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine if convicted.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Hundreds Charged in Crackdown on Investment Fraud

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — A 3 1/2 month operation involving the  nation’s “largest ever” crackdown on  financial fraud,  has resulted in the arrest of hundreds of people who swindled investors out of  billions of dollars, the Justice Department announced Monday.

Dubbed “Operation Broken Trust”, authorities said they have taken criminal action against 343 people and civil action against 189 in a crackdown that involved more than 120,000 victims. Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. said losses exceeded more than in $8 billion in the criminal cases alone and more than $2 billion in the civil cases.

“While there is nothing new about conducting nationwide operations and sweeps – this one is different in that it brought together a broad array of criminal and civil enforcement tools, at both the federal and state level, to attack investment fraud schemes collectively,” Holder said at a press conference here.

“Operation Broken Trust is the first national operation in history to target the many different types of investment fraud schemes that prey directly on the investing public.”

“All of these victims can tell a tragic and cautionary story of being misled and exploited – often by someone they trusted,” Holder said. “In fact, many of the scam artists we’ve identified were preying on their own neighbors – and on the most vulnerable members of their communities.

“Several of those prosecuted during this operation solicited victim investors from their own churches. One man in Texas allegedly targeted his fellow parishioners, asking them to invest with him and claiming that his success in foreign exchange trading was ‘a blessing from God’.”

Holder specifically gave a shout out at the press conference to:  FBI Executive Assistant Director Shawn Henry, SEC Director of Enforcement Robert Khuzami, U.S. Postal Inspection Service’s Chief Postal Inspector, Guy Cottrell; IRS Criminal Investigation Deputy Chief Rick Raven; and Commodity Futures Trading Commission Acting Director of Enforcement Vincent McGonagle.