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FBI

Newark Star-Ledger: FBI Surveillance’s Lasting Impact Reminiscent of NYPD’s Snooping in Newark

Editorial Board
Newark Star-Ledger 

In its hunt for terrorists, the New York Police Department hid moles in Newark mosques and sent agents into Paterson bodegas. The spying stayed secret until boxes of documents were leaked to the Associated Press.

Here’s what was exposed: The NYPD’s surveillance of New Jersey Muslims never turned up a useful lead. But it bred mistrust in those neighborhoods — of police, the government and each other. The damager will outlast the cops’ cloak-and-dagger failure.

The American Civil Liberties Union has evidence of a nearly identical FBI program to
track and map racial, ethnic and religious groups across the country — under a 2003 law that protects the agency’s profiling. In 2011, ACLU lawyers sued for details about who, where and how the feds are watching these communities. This week, a federal appeals court ruled the FBI can keep its spy mission secret.

No one doubts the value of national security. But dangerous, discriminatory policies — particularly those directed at Muslim Americans since 9/11 — undermine trust between law enforcement and those communities. In the end, we’re all less safe.

To read more click here.

FBI, Police Take Novel Approach to Find Man Pointing Laser Beams at Descending Airplanes

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

When someone began pointing a high-powered laser beam at airplanes descending into Portland International Airport, police and FBI agents were determined to capture the perpetrator.

The Oregonian reports that agents and police flew planes over the area after dark until they could determine where the big green light was coming from.

After pinpointing an apartment building in Portland’s northeast side, authorities secretly installed surveillance until they could determine who was using the laser, which can be blinding to pilots.

The suspect, Stephen Bukucs, was arrested.

Woman Used Superglue to Repair Son’s Genitals After Trying to Pull them Off

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI arrested a civilian at a military base for nearly tearing off her son’s penis and testicles and then using superglue to try fix the injuries, the San Antonio Express-News reports.

Jennifer Marie Vargas, 34, was charged with assault resulting in serious bodily injury.

The father, who is enlisted in the Army, came home and found the boy’s bloody underwear on his son, who was crying in an upstairs bedroom.

There was a 4-centimeter-long laceration in the boy’s scrotum and bruising on his penis, the Express News reported.

“Due to the child’s extreme physical pain, the medical staff had to administer medication,” the affidavit said. “The child was taken into surgery to repair the damage to his scrotum.”

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST


Is FBI Racially Profiling? ACLU Loses Court Battle to Find Out

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI does not have to publicly release records on its use of ethnic and racial data, the Star-Ledger reports.

The ACLU sued for the records, worried that FBI guidelines foe 2008 were encouraging racial profiling.

The guidelines were revised to allow agents to engage in “limited” racial and ethnic profiling, the Star-Ledger reported.

The U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the ACLU’s claims, saying that the FBI had “amply justified” the withholding of the records.

“We are deeply disappointed by this decision, which denies the public’s right to know which New Jersey communities the FBI is spying on through its secretive racial mapping intelligence program,” said Nusrat Choudhury, an ACLU National Security Project attorney who helped litigate the case.

Another Former Detroit Public Official Is Accused of Stealing Millions from Taxpayers

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

In the latest raid against public corruption in Detroit, the FBI descended on the home and business of a former Detroit Public Schools official, WXYZ reports.

The FBI said Carolyn Darden was the district’s director of grants when she helped herself to millions of tax dollars.

A federal affidavit accuses her and her husband of mishandling $6 million in grant money from “No Child Left Behind.”

Charges have not yet been filed.

FBI Director Comey Names Bureau’s New National Security Chief

Andrew McCabe/fbi photo

 
Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI officially named Andrew McCabe to its top national security post.

The long-time terrorism investigator was promoted to assistant director of the National Security Branch, which oversees terrorism-related intelligence, the FBI announced.

McCabe, who began his career in 1996 with the bureau’s organized crime squad in New York, was the first director of the High-Value Interrogation Group, which was established by President Obama’s administration to crack down on terrorism.

AG: New Strategies Needed to Respond to Active Shooter Situations

Holder speaks in Philadelphia/doj photo

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

As police increasingly respond to “active shooter” situations, Attorney General Eric Holder said new strategies must be developed to limit the death toll, CNN reports.

Speaking at the International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference in Philadelphia, Holder said mass shootings are on the rise.

“Although research methods and results vary, it’s become clear that new strategies — and aggressive national response protocols — must be employed to stop shooters in their tracks,” Holder told the police chiefs, CNN reported.

Recent research, Holder said, indicates “an immediate, aggressive response to active shooters” is needed.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

New FBI Director Comey Warns of Impact of Impending Budget Cuts

FBI photo

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Speaking for the first time publicly about the budget challenges, new FBI Director James Comey said it will become increasingly difficult to fight crime because of the spending cuts, CBS Philly reports.

Congressional spending cuts may have catastrophic consequences for the FBI as it faces more pressure to fight violent crime and terrorism, Comey said during an International Chiefs of Police Conference.

“I’m required to cut 3,500 positions, to cut my operations to the bone, to do things like ration gas money and to stare at the prospect of sending my folks home for an extended period,” FBI Director James Comey said. He continued, “I don’t think folks understand the impact on the FBI, the other members of the justice family.”