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Archive for January, 2011

NY Cop Who Cracked Copycat Zodiac Killer Case Assigned to Homeland Security Committe in Washington


By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Star New York cop Joseph Herbert, who cracked the Zodiac copycat killer case in 1996, has been assigned to work as an expert on the Homeland Security Committee, the New York Daily News reported.

The Daily News reported that Herbert becomes the first New York cop to be assigned to a Congressional Committee.

“Inspector Herbert is just an incredible addition to the committee,” Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) , chair of the committee, told the Daily News. “He brings the expertise of the No. 1 counterterrorism police unit in the country. It gives us a tremendous source of knowledge.”

Inspector Herbert, 53, who heads the NYPD’s Intelligence Operations and Analysis Section, cracked the copycat Zodiac killer case as a detective in 1996. The killer Heriberto (Eddie) Seda, shot to death three people and wounded four others between 1990-1993.

Mi. Undercover FBI Agent Used Bogus Name on Militia Leader’s Marriage Certificate

Christian Militia Hutaree patch/from website

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

An interesting thing happened on the way to the alter: An undercover FBI agent who infiltrated the Hutaree militia in Michigan ended up signing the marriage certificate for the group’s leader using a bogus name, the website AnnArbor.com reported.

The site reported, citing an FBI 302 report, that the undercover agent was the best man at the small wedding of group leader David Brian Stone and his wife Tina Stone in 2009.

The FBI report said the agent signed the certificate so “not to cause a questionable scene” at the wedding at the bride’s home in Jefferson Township, Mi., AnnArbor.com reported.

Stone and eight other members of the militia face federal charges in Detroit of conspiring to kill cops and trigger a revolt against the government.

Attorney Jackie Garris of Ann Arbor, who specializes in family law, told AnnArbor.com that the marriage would still be valid despite the bogus signature.

Wayne State University Law School professor and former federal prosecutor Peter Henning told the website that the agent’s signature shouldn’t cause problems for the government.

“Normally, undercovers are not instructed to commit any illegal acts,” Henning said. “I would certainly believe this would fall into the area of permissible conduct an undercover could engage in.”

Die-Hard New Yorker George Venizelos Running Philly FBI

Acting Head Venizelos at gang arrests in Newburgh, N.Y./fbi photo

By John Shiffman
Philadelphia Inquirer Staff Writer

Several weeks after 9/11, the senior FBI agent in Harrisburg, George Venizelos, received an alarming tip: A terrorist planned to ride an Amtrak train from Philadelphia to the state capital, carrying an atomic bomb.

In response, Amtrak closed the rail line and began searching. Venizelos soon received another surprising call, this time from FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III.

Mueller wasted no time. “What’s the story?” he asked.

Amtrak had not found anything yet, Venizelos recalled telling Mueller, but he promised to call back. Venizelos dug deeper and quickly concluded that the tip, like most cases pursued in the fall of 2001, was spurious, based on a vague call to a U.S. embassy overseas.

For Venizelos, who became special agent in charge of the FBI’s Philadelphia Division late last year, the incident marked the beginning of his 10-year relationship with Mueller and his involvement with terror cases, imagined and real.

To read full story click here.

Movie Depicting J. Edgar Hoover As Being Gay Rankles Some in FBI

J. Edgar Hoover/fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
For AOL News

WASHINGTON — The bulldog-like mug of J. Edgar Hoover has long been synonymous with the FBI, a world-renowned law enforcement agency forever hyper-sensitive about its public image. Still, Hoover’s legend has taken its lumps over the years.

Now comes the latest: an upcoming movie directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Leonardo DiCaprio as Hoover, in which the iconic G-man reportedly has a romantic affair with FBI Associate Director Clyde Tolson, his constant companion and alter ego.

Word of the movie — with the working title “J. Edgar” and slated for release later this year — is already stirring feelings among current and former FBI agents and employees, and raises the question: What does the legacy of J. Edgar Hoover mean to today’s FBI?

“Obviously it upsets me when he’s commonly portrayed wearing a dress or having an alleged relationship with Clyde Tolson,” says Terry Booth, a retired FBI agent who works for the bureau as a contract employee for its Law Enforcement Online program. “There are those who choose to believe it and those who choose not to. I think 99 percent of the agents don’t believe it.”

Some agents don’t care how Hoover is sexually portrayed in the movie. But there are plenty of others who do, who admire Hoover and feel his reputation is being unfairly besmirched as head of an agency that is still considered conservative and male dominated.

To read more click here.

Column: FBI Dir. Mueller’s Presence in Arizona Sends a Strong Message

Allan Lengel

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — It’s a good thing that FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III hopped a plane to Arizona to deal with the aftermath of a mass shooting that killed a federal judge and seriously wounded a member of Congress.

Sure, Mueller could have stayed back in Washington and gotten briefed regularly and made statement back here. But President Obama sent him out there, and it sends a strong message to the American people– even if just symbolic — that this country won’t tolerate such violence, particularly when it strikes at the heart of our government and our system.

Sure, Arizona has FBI agents on the ground and a special agent in charge, Nathan Thomas Gray. But it can’t hurt to have the big guy there.

Chances are, the gunman acted alone. But FBI and other law enforcement have to make sure. The FBI says its working on that.

In the meantime, Mueller’s presence sends a message that no resources will be spared in investigating this senseless tragedy.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Court Calls Dead Judge John M. Roll a “Warm, Compassionate Judge and Inspirational Leader”

Judge John Roll/cbs news

By Allan Lengel
tickelthewire.com

The U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona issued a statement in honor of Chief Judge John M. Roll, 63,  who was shot and killed on Saturday in Tucson in a mass shooting that killed six and wounded 12 including Democratic Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.

The following is the statement:

“The U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona has suffered a grievous loss today with the untimely death of Chief Judge John M. Roll, who was shot and killed when a gunman opened fire on a crowd at an event hosted by Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Arizona.”

“Judge Roll was appointed to the federal bench in 1991, and served as chief judge of the district since 2006. The devoted husband, father of three, grandfather of five, and friend to all who knew him, will be greatly missed by his family and community.”

“He was a warm, compassionate judge and inspirational leader in what is one of the busiest districts in the country. His death will leave a significant void in the District of Arizona and the entire federal judiciary, and we are all deeply saddened.”

Roll Had Received Death Threats in 2009 (Arizona Republic)

ABOUT THE SHOOTER

UPDATED: Sunday, 3 p.m. :  FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III said at a press conference that he doesn’t believe a second person wanted for questioning is directly involved in the shooting.

“It was an attack not only against dedicated public servants but against citizens, one being a child,” Mueller said. “This was an attack on our institutions and an attack on our way of life.” CNN, citing sources, said the man has been interviewed and authorities have determined that he has nothing to do with this case.

UPDATED: Sunday 6:14 p.m. The FBI announced that charges have been filed against the shooter and the second person they were looking for is no longer a person of interest.

Fed Judge Killed and Congress Member Critically Wounded in Mass Shooting in Tucson; FBI Director Sent to Az

UPDATE: Sunday, 3 p.m. — FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III said at a press conference that he doesn’t believe a second person wanted for questioning is directly involved in the shooting.

“It was an attack not only against dedicated public servants but against citizens, one being a child,” Mueller said. “This was an attack on our institutions and an attack on our way of life.” CNN, citing sources, said the man has been interviewed and authorities have determined that he has nothing to do with this case.

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Arizona’s Chief U.S. District Judge John Roll was killed and U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Az) was gravely wounded Saturday morning at a mass shooting outside a Tucson grocery store,  authorities said.

Initially it appeared to be the work of a lone gunman, but authorities later said they were actively pursuing a second person, according to CNN.

Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. said in a statement that “FBI Director (Robert)  Mueller is traveling to Arizona to help coordinate the investigation.”

Robert Mueller

“The FBI is working jointly with local law enforcement to investigate today’s events, and I have directed Department prosecutors and law enforcement officials to use every resource necessary to investigate this tragedy, ” Holder said. “I want to assure the people of Arizona and every American that we will hold accountable anyone responsible for these heinous acts.”

CNN reported that in all six  died and 12 were wounded when a gunman opened fire outside a grocery store where the Congress member was conducting a “Congress on Your Corner” neighborhood meeting. A 9-year-old girl died in the attack.

Media outlets identified the shooter as Jared Lee Loughner, 22. A 9mm Glock handgun was recovered at the scene, CNN reported, citing senior law enforcement sources. He was taken into custody.

CNN reported that Dr. Peter Rhee of University Medical Center in Tucson said Giffords had undergone surgery for a single gunshot to the head that passed through her brain. He said he expected her to recover. The Tea Party had targeted her for defeat in this past election, and she barely won.  Giffords opposed Arizona’s controversial immigration law and was an ally of the White House.

Judge Roll was appointed to the federal bench by President George H.W. Bush in 1991. He had served as chief judge in Arizona since 2006.

President Obama issued a statement saying: “We do not yet have all the answers. What we do know is that such a senseless and terrible act of violence has no place in a free society. I ask all Americans to join me and Michelle in keeping Representative Giffords, the victims of this tragedy, and their families in our prayers.”

Related Stories

Some Criminal Politicians Are Disgraceful til the End

FBI photo of Wilkerson stuffing cash in bra

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Some criminal politicians  are disgraceful right up to the end.

Take former Massachusetts State Senator Dianne Wilkerson who was sentenced Thursday in Boston federal court to 3 1/2 years in prison  for taking $23,000 in bribes to help secure a liquor license for a nightclub and for legislation to grease the skids for commercial development in her district.

You might recall she was photographed in an FBI sting stuffing $100 bills in her bra at a restaurant near the state house. She could have at least asked for a doggy bag instead to sock away the cash.

On Thursday, she said, sure I did wrong but…..

State Sen. Dianne Wilkerson

Yes, But. But. But….After sentencing, she told reporters, according to Jonathan Saltzman at the Boston Globe, that federal prosecutors were corrupt and went after her and former Boston councilor Chuck Turner because they were outspoken. Turner was convicted of a taking $1,000 payoff in the same FBI sting.

“Chuck Turner and I have always been about the same business,” she said, according to the Globe. “Some in positions of power were threatened by our actions, and as a result we became targets.”

She went on to blast the “despicable actions of the government and its collaborators,” according to the Globe.

Sadly, Wilkerson was a crook, plain and simple. And sadly, she still can’t fess up to it. There was no noble thing going on. She was just stuffing her pockets (or her bra).  Another crooked politician — and perhaps a delusional one at that.

Sadly, she had had other problems in the past. In 1997, she was convicted for failing to file her income taxes for two years, the Globe reported. And she had other ethical lapses as well.

Maybe prison will give her time to rethink her noble gesture of taking bribes.

See Original Press Conference

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7FnEBm_F8xc