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Archive for September, 2013

Inspector General: FBI Used Drones Domestically Since 2006

istock photo

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI has been using drones domestically since 2006, longer than previously known, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The findings come from the inspector general’s audit of drones, which found that the FBI flew unmanned planes weighing less than 55 pounds to track suspects and examine crime scenes.

The FBI declined to comment on the findings.

In June, outgoing FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III revealed to Congress that the FBI had a drone program.

 

 

Man Accused of ‘Sextorting’ Miss Teen USA, Others Is Arrested

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

A California man’s decision to hack the phone of the reigning Miss Teen USA turned out to be a bad one.

ABC News reports that police arrested 19-year-old Jared James Abrahams of Temecula on charges that he hacked her phone to obtained nude photos, which he threatened to reveal unless she sent him additional nude pictures or videos.

Abrahams is accused of trying to extort Miss Team USA Cassidy Wolf, 19, and other women.

“Abrahams used malicious software to disguise his identity in order to capture nude photos or videos of victims through remote operation of cameras on their home computers without their consent,” according to the criminal complaint.

Off-Duty Homeland Security Agent Arrested For Shooting at Car During Road Rage Incident

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An off-duty Homeland Security agent is accused of shooting at a car with a 2-year-old child on it during a road-rage incident in Boca Raton, NBC Miami reports.

Police disclosed the Sept. 7 arrest on Thursday, saying Angel Echevarria, 40, claimed he pulled out the gun in an attempt to shoot out a tire after a Toyota struck him and his wife.

The officer at the scene indicated Echevarria did not have a justifiable reason to discharge his gun, NBC reported.

Inside the other car were Alla Juma, 27, Mahde Juma, 18, and a 2-year-old child.

ICE: Crackdown on Crime Makes Puerto Rico, U.S. Safer

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The U.S. and Puerto Rico are safer today because of an anti-crime initiative aimed at putting more federal agents in Puerto Rico, Reuters reports.

Dubbed “Operation Caribbean Resilience,” the effort started in July 2012 but increased markedly over the last three months, according to Reuters.

In the past year, the operation has netted 320 arrests and the seizure of 170 guns, drugs and ammunition.

“Through our joint efforts … we have not only made the streets of Puerto Rico much safer, but also improved security in the mainland United States,” said John Sandweg, acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The operation has begun to target drug gangs and criminal enterprises, Reuters reported.

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Lawmakers Propose Changes To Close Gap When Terror Suspect Enters U.S.

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Lawmakers are trying to expand the surveillance powers of intelligence agencies to make spying more seamless when a terror suspect enters the U.S., the Associated Press reports.

The idea is to close the gap between NSA and FBI electronic surveillance, which occurs because of different legal standards between the two agencies.

That gap poses challenges in keeping surveillance uninterrupted as suspects enter the U.S.

The AP reports:

The chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., told The Associated Press that her committee is drafting a bill that would amend the law’s Section 702 provision, which authorizes targeting non-Americans outside the U.S., to allow uninterrupted spying on a suspect for “a limited period of time after the NSA learns the target has traveled to the United States, so the government may obtain a court order based on probable cause.”

 

The proposed changes will include testimony from top intelligence officials.

 

 

FBI Releases Chilling Footage of Navy Yard Gunman Stalking the Building

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI has released footage of the Navy Yard gunman stalking the corridors in search of victims.

The shooter, Aaron Alexis, 34, believed he was being controlled by low frequency radio waves, an FBI spokeswoman said, BBC reports.

“At this point I can confirm that there are multiple indicators that Alexis held a delusional belief that he was being controlled or influenced by extremely low frequency, or ELF, electromagnetic waves,” spokeswoman Valerie Parlave said.

Alexis, who killed 12 people and was shot fatally by police, appeared calm when he entered the complex in Washington D.C.

On his gun, Alexis had written, “Better off this way!”

Authorities don’t believe Alexis was looking for anyone in particular.

Young Somali Americans Continue to Join Terror Group in Africa

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The stream of young Somali Americans joining terrorists in Somalia continues to flow despite an attempt by authorities to cut off money to support terrorism, the Associated Press reports.

The population is concentrated in Minnesota, where Somali Americans have been leaving to join al-Shabab in Somalia for six years. At least 22 young men have left Minnesota for Somalia in that period, the AP reported.

The Somali community is worried about reports that allege Somali Americans were involved in a deadly attack at a mall in Nairobi, the AP wrote.

“One thing I know is the fear is growing,” said Abdirizak Bihi, whose nephew was among at least six men from Minnesota who have died in Somalia, the AP wrote.

 

 

ATF Misplaced 420M Cigarettes, Misuses $162M in Profits

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Bad news continues to follow ATF.

This time, the federal agency lost 420 million cigarettes, misused $162 million in profits from stings and conducted dozens of unauthorized investigations of illegal tobacco sales, the inspector general said, according to the Associated Press.

Investigators were unable to locate 2.1 million cartons because of shoddy documentation and poor oversight over the span of 20 tobacco stings, according to the AP.

The audit also found that the ATF gave a confidential informant $4.9 million from the sale of $15 million in cigarettes.

“ATF’s guidance regarding churning investigations lacked breadth and specificity, and managers at ATF headquarters as well as managers and special agents at ATF field offices often disregarded it,” Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz wrote in the 53-page audit.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST