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Archive for September 12th, 2016

Arson Suspected at Florida Mosque Where Orlando Nightclub Shooter Worshiped

fire via pixabayBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Local law enforcement is asking the FBI and ATF to join the investigation into a suspicious fire early Monday morning at the Fort Pierce, Fla., mosque where the Orlando nightclub shooter Omar Mateen had worshiped.

“Evidence has revealed that this fire was set intentionally,” St. Lucie County Sheriff’s Maj. David Thompson told reporters, the Orlando Sentinel reports. 

The fire broke out at about 12:30 a.m. at the Islamic Center of Fort Pierce. No injuries were reported.

Surveillance video shows someone approaching the mosque.

“Immediately after the individual approached, a flash occurred and the individual fled the area,” Thompson said.

News Virginian: No Jail Time for Former Gov. McDonnell Doesn’t Mean He Escapes Disgrace

Ex-Gov. Bob McDonnell

Ex-Gov. Bob McDonnell

By Editorial Board
The News Virginian

After four years of dragging Virginia and his family through the mud with tawdry tales of what any layman would recognize as bribery, it turns out the punishment of former Gov. Bob McDonnell will not be prison time, but abject disgrace.

That’s the effect of the Justice Department’s decision last week to drop the official corruption case against McDonnell, despite recommendations by federal prosecutors in Virginia, who still believed they could secure a felony conviction against him.

The case’s resolution also lifts the threat of further prosecution against McDonnell’s wife, Maureen, whose brief tenure as Virginia’s first lady endowed her with a titanic sense of entitlement.

The Justice Department’s decision follows a decision by the Supreme Court in June vacating McDonnell’s conviction and leaving prosecutors with little realistic chance of securing a conviction under the court’s crabbed definition of official corruption.

The court’s ruling provides comfort for future sticky-fingered politicians, who will find it easier to line their pockets while leading supplicants and suitors by the nose. The McDonnells’ story is as hackneyed as any in America’s lurid history of political graft. A politician of some talent and unobjectionable views, whose good looks and respectable bearing are judged worthy by voters, is elevated by stages to lofty office. Once installed, he performs his official duties competently while, hidden from public view, he rubs shoulders with a conga line of well-heeled, solicitous and ethically agnostic favor seekers.

In the McDonnells’ case, one of them, businessman Jonnie R. Williams Sr., saw advantage in plying the first couple with tens of thousands of dollars in loans, gifts, favors and vacations, a potpourri of generosity in return for which he clearly hoped for favorable state treatment for his company’s tobacco-based nutritional supplement.

To read more click here. 

Homeland Security Chief: Threats of Lone-Wolf Attacks Keep ‘Me up at Night’


By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Speaking on the 15th anniversary of 9/11, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said America remains “challenged when it comes to the prospects of the lone-wolf actor, the home-grown violent extremist.”

The good news is, Johnson said he believes the U.S. is less likely to see a similar coordinated attack on the level of 9/11, NBC News reports.

Johnson’s concerns relate to the kind of mass shootings in San Bernardino and Orlando, which “is upper most on our minds. It is the thing that keeps me up at night the most.”

“But we’ve got threats from, you know, cyber-security. We’ve got a mission devoted to the potential for bio threats, a dirty bomb. We’ve got to keep our eye on all of it. But obviously, there are things that are higher probability, there are things that are lower probability, but higher impact. And we’ve got to keep our eye on all of it.”

Border Patrol Officer Accused of Taking Bribes of Money, Sex for Helping Smugglers

Border Port of Entry.

Border Port of Entry.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Border Patrol officer is accused of receiving money and sexual favors from undocumented immigrants entering the U.S. from Mexico.

The FBI said it arrested CBP Officer Jose Luis Cota, 50, last week for allegedly helping undocumented immigrants enter the United States in exchange for favors, the bureau said in a statement.

Also arrested were Gilberto Aguilar-Martinez, 31, and Miriam Juerez-Herrera, 31, who allegedly received help from Cota. Both had been demoted from the U.S. in the past.

The FBI said Aguilar-Martinez is a “two-time convicted felon” and that he and Juerez-Herrera were operating an “alien smuggling operation.”

Juerez-Herrera said he bribed Cota with cash and sexual favors for allowing illegal immigrants to be smuggled into the U.S.

The FBI said “large sums of cash were deposited into Cota’s bank accounts”

CIA Director Warns That Russian Hackers May Try to Disrupt U.S. Electoral System

CIA Director John Brennan

CIA Director John Brennan

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

CIA Director John Brennan is worried Russian hackers may try to disrupt the U.S. electoral system.

Brennan on Sunday warned that Russia has “exceptionally capable and sophisticated cyber capabilities,” and the U.S. must stay vigilant.

Speaking to CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Brennan said Russian hackers are “quiet active.”

“I think that we have to be very, very wary of what the Russians might be trying to do in terms of . . . collecting information in that cyber realm as well as what they might want to do with it,” Brennan said.

The comments come as the FBI investigates cyberattacks of the Democratic Party, which has suggested that Russia is trying to help Donald Trump.

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