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FBI

Long Island Man Charged With Shifting Pakistan Funds to Times Square Bomber

times square artBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A 44-year-old Long Island man was arrested on Wednesday on charges of unwittingly helping fund the Times Square bomber Faisel Shahzad, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced.

The indictment charged that Mohammad Younis transferred thousands of dollars from Pakistan to the U.S. to Shahzad through an unlicensed money transfer business known as a hawala.

Authorities said Younis was unaware of the plot. He was arrested at his Long Island home by the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force.

“By engaging in the alleged conduct, Mohammad Younis unwittingly funded a terror plot that, if successful, would have caused mass casualties in New York City,” U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said in a statement.

3 FBI Agents and Analyst Lied About Taking Steroids, Feds Charge

steroid-needle
By Allan Lengel
For AOL News

WASHINGTON — Three FBI agents and an agency analyst in the Washington area were charged with providing false statements after they allegedly failed to disclose on government forms the use of anabolic steroids and human growth hormones commonly taken in the sports and bodybuilding world, authorities announced today. One agent is a former bodybuilder.

Authorities said the FBI employees received different diagnoses from a doctor, including “pituitary dwarfism” — a stunted-growth condition normally diagnosed in children — and then got numerous prescriptions for the steroids and growth drugs for “which there was no known medical necessity.”

Those charged are James Drew Barnett, 42, and Katia Litton, 42, both FBI agents in the Washington field office; Litton’s husband, FBI agent Matthew Litton, who works for the bureau’s Critical Incident Response Team in northern Virginia; and Ali Sawan, 45, an intelligence analyst with the Counterterrorism Division at FBI headquarters. The FBI did not immediately disclose the status of the four employees, who were arrested today at FBI facilities.

If convicted, each would face up to five years in prison and $250,000 in fines.

To read more click here.

FBI’s Shawn Henry Gets Bureau’s Number 4 Spot

Shawn Henry /fbi photo

Shawn Henry /fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Shawn Henry, who took over in February as head of the FBI’s Washington field office, is returning to headquarters to  fill the number four spot in the bureau, ticklethewire.com has learned.

Henry will take the post of Executive Assistant Director of the Criminal Cyber Response and Services Branch. Prior to going to the Washington field office, he served at headquarters as assistant Director of the Cyber Division.  He’s been with the bureau 21 years.

He replaces Thomas J. Harrington who was recently named to the number three spot at the FBI, replacing Timothy P. Murphy, who moved up to the number two spot.

It was a short reign for Henry at the Washington field office, who is considered a rising star in the bureau.  His replacement at the field office has NOT  been named.

To read his bio click here.

Blago Defense Asks Judge to Dismiss his Conviction

Ex-Gov. Blago while in office/official photo

Ex-Gov. Blago while in office/official photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Just when you thought you’d get a break from some Rod Blagojevich news.

The latest: The Chicago Tribune reports that the ex-Illinois governor’s lawyers have asked the judge who presided over the trial to dismiss the one conviction for lying to the FBI.

The Tribune reports that the lawyers filed a motion claiming the conviction was the result of a “plethora of errors”. Blago was convicted on only one of 24 counts. The jury deadlocked on the remainder.

The defense claims prosecutors served up an overly complicated case that confused jurors, and the judge limited the defense during trial at every turn.

“To be sure, the burden was on the government and the defendant had no obligation to put on a case,” the defense motion said, according to the Tribune. “However, the defendant’s fundamental right to defend himself through cross-examination was stomped upon by obstructionist (and continuous) objections that were sustained by the Court.”

Border Patrol Agents Fire Shots into Mexico After Coming Under Attack

Border PatrolBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The latest sign in the U.S. that there’s a drug war in Mexico: U.S. Border Patrol agents fired gunshots into Mexico Saturday after coming under attack in south Texas along the Rio Grande, the Associated Press reports.

Authorities said the incident happened during a half-ton drug bust that involved Border Patrol agents chasing a truck in Mission, Tex., along the Rio Grande on the U.S. side, the AP reported. No agents were hurt.

Authorities said that several Border Patrol agents — some of whom were patrolling in boats — were seizing a half-ton of marijuana when they came under gunfire.

“We’re obviously concerned with what happened, that they would be shooting from the Mexico side to us,” FBI spokesman Jorge Cisneros said, according to the AP.

“Original Civil Rights Photographer” Was FBI Informant

cameraBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The late “original civil rights photographer” Ernest Withers snapped shots of history: the motel where Martin Luther King Jr. was shot; King riding one of the first desegregated buses in Alabama.

But there was a little known side to the man who had a front row seat in the civil rights movement: He was an FBI informant, according to the Tennessee Commercial Appeal.

The paper reported that he marched with King and sat in on some of the civil rights movement’s sensitive strategy meetings.

He died in 2007 at age 85, the paper reported.

FBI Stats Show Violent Crime Down for 3 Years in Row

crime 2009By Allan Lengel
For AOL News

Despite a sour economy and disturbingly high unemployment, property crime dropped in 2009 for the seventh year in a row, according to FBI statistics released today. Violent crime also declined for the third consecutive year.

The FBI statistics show the murder and non-negligent manslaughter rate dropped by 7.3 percent from 2009 compared to 2008 and robberies slipped by 8 percent. Aggravated assaults dipped 4.2 percent, and rape dropped by 2.6 percent.

The FBI said there were an estimated 1.3 million violent crimes reported in 2009 and 9.3 million property crimes.

Criminologist Lawrence Kobilinsky, chairman of the Department of Sciences at New York’s John Jay College, credits the drop to improved police methods, including use of DNA and crime databases to solve burglaries and similar crimes that are often perpetrated by people who “commit 10, 20, 30 burglaries before they’re caught.”

To read more click here.

D.C. Mayoral Challenger Vincent Gray Turns to FBI Before Primary

Mayor Fenty/campaign photo

Mayor Fenty/campaign photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Allegations of political misdeeds in the nation’s capital more often than not center around some politicos on Capitol Hill.

But not to be outdone, D.C. City Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray is stirring some controversy on the local political scene.

Gray and his advisers said they have asked the FBI to investigate allegations that incumbent Mayor Adrian Fenty offered offered young adults jobs in exchange for votes, a possible violation of fed election laws, the Washington Post reports.

“We are deeply concerned,” Gray said at a news conference in front of his campaign headquarters in Chinatown, according to the Post. “There are very few things that are more sacrosanct, sacred, than the voting process, and we want to make sure it’s fully preserved in the city.”

The Post reported that the FBI referred questions to the Justice Department, which declined comment. The Democratic primary is set for Sept. 14.