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FBI

Ex-FBI Dir. Freeh to Head Up Penn State Probe

 

Louis Freeh

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
Ex-FBI director Louie Freeh, father of six, will head up Penn State University’s own probe into the child sex abuse scandal rocking that school, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

The Inquirer reported that Freeh’s appointment was announced Monday morning by Ken Frazier, president and CEO of Merck and Co. who is the chair of the special investigative committee created by the Penn State Board of Trustees.

“The scope of our probe will be broad, covering a lengthy period of time,” said Freeh, promising to “leave no stone unturned” to get to the root of the scandal, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Freeh will review the university’s policies and internal controls, the paper reported. Freeh said he has put together a team of investigators which includes former FBI agents and fed prosecutors.

“The allegations that have been raised and the charges that have been brought are extraordinarily serious,” said Freeh, according to the Inquirer.

 

FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force Probing Book of Apocalypse Sent to Tex. Judges by Polygamist

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

Talk about a lousy holiday gift.

Warren Jeffs, the polygamist and cult leader imprisoned in Texas, sent judges throughout the state copies of his book “Proclamations” last week. Now local authorities and the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force are looking into the gift giving as a possible threat, according to the Houston Chronicle.

The book is full of apocalyptic prophesies about natural disaster and the fall of the United States.

“I looked at this and thought, either they sent this to every judge or I got some bad stuff coming my way,” said Susan Criss, a district judge in Galveston County, according to the Chronicle.

Jeffs is the president of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints that was convicted this year on two counts of felony child sexual assault.

To read more click here.

Are the Feds Helping Crackdown on Occupy Wall Street?

Robert Mueller/file fbi photo

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

Many are wondering whether or not the feds are helping crack down on the Occupy Wall Street movements spreading throughout the country, reports the Huffington Post.

Federal agencies deny any involvement, but that doesn’t seem to satisfy all. The Partnership for Civil Justice Fund and the National Lawyers Guild Mass Defense Committee, two civil rights groups, filed freedom of information requests regarding communications between federal law enforcement agencies and local police concerning the protests, according to the Huffington Post.

At a recent appearance in San Francisco FBI director Robert Mueller did little to clear things up. Speaking to the Commonwealth Club, reports SF Appeal, Mueller refused to answer any questions about FBI involvement in the crackdowns. “Many attendees of the talk were eager to ask the FBI director about the Occupy protests, but at the mention of the word, Mueller promised he would duck the question,” SF Appeal reports.

Mueller said the protesters are walking a fine line between exercising their first amendment rights and denying the rights of others to use public spaces. “I’m not going to get too deep in these waters,” he said. Occupy demonstrations are “largely” being dealt with by local authorities, he told listeners, and it has been working differently in various cities.

This comes shortly after an Associated Press report officials from nearly 40 cities discussed via conference calls how to deal with protestors.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST:

 

Retired FBI Agent Gregg Schwarz — a Second Generation Agent — Disputes Betrayal of J. Edgar Hoover in Film

Washington Post Editorial: PITY The 17,300 Workers and Contractors Assigned to FBI Headquarters

By The Washington Post
Editorial Page

WASHINGTON — PITY THE 17,300 workers and contractors assigned to FBI headquarters. Divided between the J. Edgar Hoover Building on Pennsylvania Avenue, where about half of them work, and 21 annexes in leased office buildings scattered over the Washington area, they are a beleaguered lot, judging from a report by the Government Accountability Office. Security is below par. Lacking super-secret conference facilities to discuss highly classified material, they are forced to shuttle from location to location. And, since the explosion of FBI hiring following the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, usable office space is at a premium.

Nowhere are the problems more dire than at the Hoover Building, a crumbling, obsolete, concrete pile of Brutalist architecture that opened for business in 1974. Surrounded by a dry moat but, owing to its mid-city setting, still plainly vulnerable to attack, the FBI headquarters is an efficiency expert’s nightmare: horribly configured; stunted by endless interior corridors and, as countless sun-starved FBI office workers have learned, all but impervious to natural light.

Built as a fortress for the ostensible protection of citizens, the building now stands as an imminent threat to pedestrians, who risk being brained by wind-blown chunks of falling concrete.

To read more click here.

Are FBI Terror Tactics Just?

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

Undoubtedly the public has been grateful when terrorist plots have been foiled by the FBI. But some are questioning the tactics, not just asking if the ends justify the means but if the means are creating false ends, reports The Guardian.

“Critics say the FBI is running a sting operation across America, targeting – to a large extent – the Muslim community by luring people into fake terror plots,” reads the Guardian article. The FBI sends informants to “trawl through Muslim communities,” spending time at mosques and community centers talking about radical Islam in an attempt to identify possible sympathizers, the paper reports.

“Most of these suspect terrorists had no access to weapons unless the government provided them. I would say that showed they were not the biggest threat to the US,” Mike German, a former FBI agent who worked in counter-terrorism but is now employed by the American Civil Liberties Union, told the paper.

To read more click here.

Judge Rules FBI Must Pay Muslim Groups Legal Fees for Lying About Existence of Records in Freedom of Information Case

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

After five years of legal wrangling, a federal judge in California ruled Thursday that the FBI must pay the legal fees of Muslim activist groups that sued the agency over a Freedom of Information Act case.

U.S. District Judge Cormac Carney, in a written ruling, said his decision was not based on the merits of the case, but rather to “punish a government that chose to lie to its own judicial system,” reports ABC News. “The Court must impose monetary sanctions to deter the Government from deceiving the Court again,”

The FBI had denied the existence of files the group was asking for and had claimed that admitting the files in question existed would have compromised national security.  The court refuted that claim.

“And the Court rejects the Government’s suggestion that it initially had to deceive the Court to protect national security. The Government could have availed itself of routine court procedures without compromising national security,” Carney wrote.

The case was decided in favor of the Islamic Shura Council, a group composed of six Muslim-American community organizations and five community leaders.

To read more click here.

Utah Man Throws Molotov Cocktail at Bank, Ignites Bush

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

We’ve all been annoyed to find a hidden banking fee lurking in the shadows of our bank statements from time to time. But a Utah man took that frustration to another level, according to an Associated Press report out of West Jordan, Utah.

Joshua Raymond Townsend, 20, is facing a federal count of attempting to destroy a building used in interstate commerce after throwing Molotov cocktails at a Wells Fargo Branch. Townsend was arrested about 15 miles south of Salt Lake City.

Townsend began planning a bank bombing about two months, according to federal officials. He had ordered explosive chemicals but decided earlier this week to instead use Molotov cocktails instead. He called police immediately before throwing the first cocktail. That one failed to ignite and a second bounced off a window and set fire to a nearby bush.

To read more click here.