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FBI

Group Says FBI Using Outdated and Deliberately Limited Search Process in Freedom of Information Act

Anyone who has ever filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the FBI knows it can take forever to get the results. They also know they may not ever get the results they want. A private group, the National Security Archives, is now giving the agency grief about this — and deservedly so.

By MICHAEL J. SNIFFEN
The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — If information were a river, the FBI would be a dam.

Two out of every three people who ask for FBI records under the Freedom of Information Act are told by the bureau no such documents exist — a failure rate five times higher than at other major federal agencies, a private study finds.

The FBI is using an outdated and deliberately limited search process to avoid full compliance with the records law, the National Security Archive asserts. The Archive is a private group that publishes declassified government documents and files many FOIA requests.

The Archive awarded the FBI its Rosemary Award for the worst Freedom of Information Act performance by a federal agency.

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Retired FBI Agent Jerry Breidenfeld Dead At 83

By Joe Holley
Washington Post Staff Writer

Jerry H. Breidenfeld, 83, a retired agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, died March 6 at Reston Hospital Center of congestive heart failure. He moved to Ashburn in 2006 after living in Reston for many years.

Dr. Breidenfeld joined the FBI in 1951 and served in Knoxville, Tenn., Chicago and Butte, Mont., before being transferred in 1970 to Washington, where he worked with the agency’s radio engineering facility.

His duties involved checking for bugs at embassies and other government facilities. He retired from the FBI in 1980 but continued to do de-bugging work for the Central Intelligence Agency, the State Department and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

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Fed Judge Gives ex-Chicago Cop 12 Years in Mob Case

Here’s a police department that could use an upgrade when it comes to its reputation. Previously allegations of torture. Citizen beatings. And now a conviction like this. Not good.

By STEVE WARMBIR
Chicago Sun-Times
CHICAGO –A man can be a good cop one day, a corrupt one the next, a federal judge noted as he sentenced a former Chicago Police officer to 12 years in prison for helping mob killer Frank Calabrese Sr. get critical information about a federal investigation into an Outfit hit.

Anthony “Twan” Doyle, 64, was once a Chicago Police officer of the month, and while he had a decent career, “he picked the wrong people to try to help,” U.S. District Judge James Zagel said in giving Doyle a break from the 15 years or more in prison he could have received.

Doyle repeatedly visited Calabrese Sr. when the mob killer was in prison in Michigan and took messages to the man running Calabrese’s street operations back home.

More important, Doyle told Calabrese Sr. when the FBI retrieved a bloody glove from a police evidence warehouse where Doyle worked.

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FBI Arrests ex-D.C. Official in Bribery Sting

The D.C. government is just recovering from its Tax office scandal in which about $50 million was stolen. Now we have another scandal, though thankfully it doesn’t match up to the tax scandal.

By Del Quentin Wilber and Nikita Stewart
Washington Post Staff Writers
WASHINGTON — A D.C. government official and a business executive were arrested yesterday on bribery charges involving city technology contracts that included “ghost” workers and kickbacks, federal authorities said.

Raiding offices in the hunt for documents, FBI agents carted away boxes and envelopes throughout the day from the Office of the Chief Technology Officer, the center of the alleged fraud.

In court documents released yesterday, FBI agent Andrew Sekela laid out the complicated and audacious schemes allegedly orchestrated by a mid-level manager who approved many contracts involving the city government’s technology needs.

Authorities said the conspiracy was uncovered with the help of a D.C. government employee who recorded conversations with the executive and the city official.

The ultimate cost to the city is not known, but the disclosure comes as it is trying to recoup its losses from an embarrassing tax swindle that siphoned almost $50 million from its coffers over almost two decades.

Until recently, the technology office was headed by Vivek Kundra, who has taken a job as President Obama’s chief information officer. A White House official confirmed last night that Kundra has taken a leave of absence.
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B

FBI Agent Says Recent Terrorism Attacks Could Encourage al Qaeda and Others

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
WASHINGTON — The FBI’s James McJunkin told a Congressional Committee Thursday that the “principal lesson from the Mumbai attacks remains that a small number of trained and determined attackers with relatively unsophisticated weapons can do a great deal of damage.”

“Last week’s attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahaore, Pakistan is another example of a low-tech, but potentially high impact operation,” McJunken, deputy assistant director of the FBI’s Counterterrorism division told the House Committee on Homeland Security, Subcommittee on Transportation Security and Infrastructure Protection.

“We are concerned about the possibility that the other terrorist groups, including al Qaeda or its affiliates, will take note of these attacks and attempt to emulate them,” he said.
The attacks in Mumbai last Nov. 26 killed more than 170 people including six Americans.
McJunkin lauded the cooperation between the American and India’s investigative agencies.

“The unprecedented collaboration we developed with our Indian law enforcement and intelligence counterparts in this investigation has strengthened our relationship with the Government of India.”

To Read Full Speech

Dead Detroit FBI Agent’s Work Leads to Bust

Unfortunately FBI Agent Paul Sorce won’t be around to see this case through, but his work helped bring about the charges. The funeral for the father of four is set for Saturday.

BY ZLATI MEYER
Deroit Free Press
DETROIT — Four Detroit men have been charged as part of a $1.4-million cocaine bust in western Pennsylvania, a case the Detroit FBI agent who died after a car wreck Monday had been working on.

The Michigan men, along with four from Pennsylvania’s Westmoreland and Allegheny counties, helped distribute an estimated 20 kilograms of cocaine last year, Pennsylvania Attorney General Tom Corbett said Tuesday. Three of the Detroiters are said to be members of a gang called the A-Team.

FBI Agent Paul Sorce, 44, killed in Harper Woods while on duty, was the Michigan point man for the investigation, Corbett’s spokeswoman Lauren Bozart said. It was unclear if the married father of four was working on the case when his Chevrolet Trailblazer rolled over about noon Monday.

Julio Olivo, 23; Andre Thomas, 23; Charles Edwards, 30; and David Bailey, 23, are charged with possession with the intent to deliver cocaine, delivery of cocaine and criminal conspiracy. Olivo, allegedly the A-team’s second-in-command, is also charged with criminal use of a communication facility.

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The New Face of the FBI: The Intelligence Analysts

DEA Informant Admits Taping Defense Attorney Chats

This trial in the sunny state of Florida isn’t looking so sunny.  In fact, it’s getting darn right messy. A DEA informant admitted  tape recording the defense attorney. The U.S. Attorney admits it failed to follow policy, but is opposed to a mistrial or dismissal of the case. The defense says the recordings may have helped the prosecution figure out its trial strategy. A federal judge has yet to rule on the matter. It should be an interesting decision. Stay tuned.

BY JAY WEAVER
The Miami Herald
MIAMI — The federal trial of a Miami Beach doctor accused of illegally prescribing painkillers morphed Tuesday into a courtroom clash between his lawyer and prosecutors.

The attorney for Dr. Ali Shaygan accused two government witnesses of tape-recording him and his private investigator — at the direction of the prosecution — and then keeping it all secret during their testimony last month.

‘These people there said, `Tape-record the defense,’ ” defense attorney David O. Markus declared, pointing to prosecutors Sean Cronin and Andrea Hoffman.

The government witness, Trinity Clendening, agreed, admitting he recorded Markus on his home phone two times in December.
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