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FBI

Sixty-Something Man Arrested In Bogus Anthrax Mailings

Some people need to get a hobby.

By Sudhin Thanawala
Associated Press Writer
San FRANCISCO – A California man was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of sending hoax letters labeled “anthrax” to scores of media outlets, the FBI said Wednesday, warning that many of the threats may still be in the mail.
Marc M. Keyser, 66, sent more than 120 envelopes containing a compact disc that had a packet of sugar labeled “Anthrax Sample” along with a biohazard symbol, the FBI said in a news release. The CD was titled “Anthrax: Shock & Awe Terror.”
Keyser was taken into custody without incident at his home in Sacramento on three counts of sending a hoax letter, the FBI said. At least some of the packages had Keyser’s return address on them, said FBI agent Steve Dupre.
For Full Story

FBI Informant Takes Stand in Ft. Dix Terrorism Trial

The informant in the Ft. Dix trial, whose credibility has been attacked, was on the stand Tuesday. Jurors heard tapes of him while wearing an FBI wire.

By Geoff Mulvihill
Associated Press Writer
CAMDEN, N.J. — The paid informant who helped build the case against five men accused of plotting to attack soldiers in New Jersey took the witness stand Tuesday, but much of what jurors heard from him came in the form of secretly taped conversations with one of the accused.
“We have talked a lot and we are still talking. What can we do?” informant Mahmoud Omar asked defendant Mohamad Shnewer during a 2006 discussion in which both decried U.S. treatment of Muslims.
Omar kept asking similar questions in Arabic at Shnewer’s family’s home in Cherry Hill. Once, Shnewer’s answer was to seek help from God, saying he had helped the cause by unleashing Hurricane Katrina.
A moment later, Shnewer, then 21, had another idea.
“Here, if you want to do anything, there’s Fort Dix,” he said. “I am not exaggerating how easily you can strike an American base.”
For Full Story

Mass. State Senator Busted In FBI Bribery Sting

As the FBI has learned by now, there always some politician somewhere waiting to cash in.

State Sen. Dianne Wilkerson/official photo

State Sen. Dianne Wilkerson/official photo

By Jessica Fargen and Mike Underwood
The Boston Herald
BOSTON — State Sen. Dianne Wilkerson was arrested this morning following an 18-month, “painstaking” undercover investigation, during which she was allegedly caught on tape stuffing a cash bribe into her bra and taking payoffs to push through a Roxbury nightclub liquor license, according to a complaint.
“Dianne Wilkerson accepted these cash payments in exchange for her official duties and responsibilities,” said U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan during a morning news conference at the federal courthouse.
Wilkerson will be charged this afternoon in federal court with attempted extortion and theft of honest services as a state senator, stemming from a money-for-legislation sting operation, officials said.
A federal criminal complaint alleges that Wilkerson was busted for accepting eight brides, totaling $23,500, in exchange for her influence on Beacon Hill.
For Full Story

Read Complaint

Look At Exhibits

FBI Reports Drop In Hate Crimes in 2007

Any decrease in crime is welcome news. The bad news is there’s still plenty of hate of crimes to go around.

By Matt Apuzzo
The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — Hate crime incidents decreased slightly last year, despite a surge in crimes targeting gays and lesbians.
The FBI reported more than 7,600 hate crime incidents in 2007, down about 1 percent from last year. The decline was driven by decreases in the two largest categories of hate crimes _ crimes against race and religion.
But prejudice against sexual orientation, the third-largest category, increased about 6 percent, the report found.
For Full Story

See FBI Hate Crime Statistics For 2007

OTHER STORIES IN THE NEWS:

  • FBI Director Robert Mueller III Responds To Editorial In New York Times On New Guidelines (Read Letter)

Scientists Took Long Winding Trail To Anthrax Suspect

In one of the more perplexing FBI cases in the 21st Century, science played a key role. It just took time to get results. Here’s why.

Suspect Bruce Ivins

Suspect Bruce Ivins

By Joby Warrick
Washington Post Staff Writer
WASHINGTON — In late October 2001, lab technician Terry Abshire placed a tray of anthrax cells under a microscope and spotted something so peculiar she had to look twice. It was two weeks after the country’s worst bioterrorism attack, and Abshire, like others at the Army’s Fort Detrick biodefense lab, was caught up in a frenzied search for clues that could possibly lead to the culprit. Down the hall, Bruce E. Ivins, the respected vaccine specialist, was looking, too.
Abshire focused her lens on a mold-like clump. Anthrax bacteria was growing here, but some of the cells were odd: strange shapes, strange textures, strange colors. These were mutants, or “morphs,” genetic deviants scattered among the ordinary anthrax cells like chocolate chips in a cookie batter.
Unknowingly, Abshire had discovered a key to solving the anthrax case. But it would take nearly six years to develop the technology to allow FBI investigators to use it.
Ultimately the evolving science led investigators to Ivins and a strikingly original collection of anthrax spores that became the focus of the FBI’s probe.
For Full Story

See Latest FBI Documents On Case

FBI Joins Search For Jennifer Hudson’s Nephew

Jennifer Hudson’s life was so good. How did it turn so bad? The FBI has now entered the picture.

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
CHICAGO (AP) – The Federal Bureau of Investigation joined the search on Saturday for the 7-year-old nephew of the actress Jennifer Hudson, still missing a day after the bodies of Ms. Hudson’s mother and brother were found in her childhood home.
William Balfour, a suspect in the deaths, was arrested Friday but has not been charged, The Chicago Tribune and The Chicago Sun-Times reported, citing law enforcement officials.
Mr. Balfour remained in custody, but the nephew, Julian King, has not been seen since the bodies of the mother, Darnell Donerson, 57, and the brother, Jason Hudson, 29, were found Friday.
For Full Story

Authorities Mistake Canadian Man For Infamous Boston Mobster

Warning to the  James “Whitey” Bulger look-a-likes of the world. Authorities could end up arresting you as Canadian Angelo Plytasas, 69, discovered on Thursday.

The Real "Whitey" Bulger/fbi photo

The Real

Nick Aveling and Alex Cooper
Toronto Star
TORONTO — James Bulger is a man of simple pleasures.
When the 79-year-old bookworm isn’t indulging his passion for history at libraries and historical sites, he can be found walking on the beach with his companion Catherine Elizabeth Greig. Sure, he’s not as healthy as he used to be, but all that exercise keeps him spry.
Which comes in handy, when you’re running from the FBI.
The international manhunt for James (Whitey) Bulger warmed up Thursday, after a tip from Interpol indicated he may be in Toronto. The alleged former boss of Boston’s notorious Winter Hill Gang, and the oft-cited inspiration for Jack Nicholson’s Frank Costello character in The Departed, has been on the lam since 1995.
That’s where he stays, at least for now, after the RCMP came up empty-handed twice Thursday.
RCMP Sgt. Marc LaPorte said officers first went to an address where an Interpol tipster said they would find Bulger. He wasn’t there. They then received a report of a man matching Bulger’s description at a restaurant in Centerpoint Mall near Yonge St. and Steeles Ave. Police arrested the man – 69-year-old Angelo Plytas – in front of his wife and 2-year-old granddaughter.
“It strikes me as an extraordinarily heavy-handed use of police power in the absence of even the most minimal investigation beforehand,” said Scott Fenton, Plytas’ legal counsel.
For Full Story

The FBI’s Wiseguy: More Video On His Life

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QBxsJwLyL10