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Baton Rouge U.S. Atty. David Dugas Stepping Down This Week

baton rouge mapBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Baton Rouge U.S. Attorney David R. Dugas, a Bush appointee who took office five weeks after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, announced he is stepping down at the end of the week to join a national law firm with offices in Louisiana.

“Serving as United States Attorney has been the greatest honor and most rewarding experience of my professional career,” Dugas said in a statement. “I have had the privilege of serving alongside dedicated and professional public servants in the United States Attorney’s Office and in the federal, state and local law enforcement agencies in this district and across the country. I owe a deep debt of gratitude to President Bush and to President Obama for allowing me to serve the cause of justice in their administrations.”

Duggas noted in his press release that he was appointed Director of the National Center for Disaster Fraud (formerly the Hurricane Katrina Fraud Task Force National Command Center) in December of 2005 “and personally directed the design, creation and operation of the Command Center since its inception.”

Dugas also noted that “he spearheaded the creation of a dedicated FBI Public Corruption squad in Baton Rouge as well as the FBI’s Public Corruption and White Collar Crime Task Force.”

FBI Appoints Sean Joyce to Key Post as Exec. Assist Dir. of National Security Branch

Sean Joyce/fbi photo

Sean Joyce/fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Sean Joyce, a Boston native, has been named executive assistant director of the FBI’s National Security Branch (NSB), a key post that oversees a number of divisions including counterterrorism, counterintelligence, Directorate of Intelligence and the Weapons of Mass Destruction Directorate.

His last post was as assistant director of the FBI’s International Operations Division. He replaces Arthur M.  Cummings II, a widely respected agent and supervisor, who is retiring.

“The NSB oversees the FBI’s national security and intelligence operations,” FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III said in a statement. “As EAD, Sean will be responsible for the continued development of a specialized national security workforce and will serve as the FBI’s lead intelligence official.

“Sean brings a wide range of operational and leadership experience to this position, which he has demonstrated during more than 20 years of service to the FBI.”

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Obama Administration Ready to Name James Cole as New Dep. Atty. General

James Cole/law firm

James Cole/law firm

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The Obama administration, which still has more vacant positions to fill than a department store chain before Christmas, is apparently getting ready to name a new deputy attorney general.

The investigative news website ProPublica reports that the administration is ready to nominate white collar defense attorney James A. Cole, 57 a partner at Bryan Cave, a D.C. law firm. He would replace David Ogden who stepped down last February. He didn’t appear to be a good fit.

Cole previously served as deputy chief of the Justice Department’s public integrity section, ProPublica reported. He was special counsel to the House ethics committee in 1997.

Pres. Obama Cuts Loose: Nominates 7 U.S. Attorneys

Pamela C. Marsh/law firm photo

Pamela C. Marsh/law firm photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

President Obama announced a slew of nominations Wednesday for U.S. Attorney spots around the country.

The U.S. Attorney nominations include:

  • Donald J. Cazayoux Jr. for the Middle District of Louisiana.
  • Pamela Cothran Marsh for the Northern District of Florida;
  • Zane David Memeger for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
  • Peter J. Smith for the Middle District of Pennsylvania.
  • Edward L. Stanton, III, for the Western District of Tennessee.
  • John F. Walsh for  the District of Colorado.
  • Stephen R. Wigginton for the Southern District of Illinois.

President Nominates 6 U.S. Marshals

u.s. marshal patch
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

President Obama, appearing as if he’s trying to play catch up, nominated six  U.S. Marshals. They include:

  • Arthur Darrow Baylor for the Middle District of Alabama.
  • Michael Robert Bladel for the Southern District of Iowa.
  • Kevin Anthony Carr for the Eastern District of Wisconsin.
  • Kevin Charles Harrison for the Middle District of Louisiana.
  • Darryl Keith McPherson for  the Northern District of Illinois.
  • Henry Lee Whitehorn, Sr. for the Western District of Louisiana.

Former Secret Service Agent Alfred Wong Who Supervised Installation of Taping System in Nixon White House Dies at Age 91

Secret-Service-Badge
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Alfred Wong, a former Secret Service official who reportedly oversaw the installation of the taping system at the Nixon White House, and whose job at one point was to prevent the White House from being bugged, died last week of mesothelioma, a form of cancer, the Washington Post reported. He was 91.

Wong, of Potomac, Md., spent 24 years in the Secret Service before retiring in 1975 as deputy assistant director in charge of White House security, the Post reported.

Wong told USA Today in 1994, because his job was to prevent bugs from being installed in the White House, he was reluctant to install the tape recording system ordered by Nixon, the Post reported.

“My first response was that we shouldn’t do it, but then it was that we have to do it,” Wong told USA Today. “They wanted it done surreptitiously.”

Of course, the rest is history. The tapes ended up harming Nixon.

After leaving Secret Service, Wong was Marshal of the U.S. Supreme Court from 1976 to 1994, where he served as general, paymaster and chief security officer, the Post reported.

Key FBI Official Arthur Cummings Retiring: Head of FBI Memphis Office Coming to Washington

nsb_logo_med
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON —    A key FBI official,  Arthur M. Cummings II, executive assistant director for the FBI’s National Security Branch at headquarters– which includes weapons of mass destruction, counterintelligence and counterterrorism — is retiring soon to work for a financial institution in Connecticut.

Cummings, who has been an agent for 22-years, had served in his latest position since January 2008. Over the years, he held a number of posts in the FBI including special agent in charge of the Counterterrorism and Intelligence Branch at the Washington field office.  He is former Navy Seal and speaks Mandarin Chinese.  His replacement has not been announced.

In other developments in the FBI, Memphis’ top FBI agent My Harrison, who has headed the office for the past five years,  is moving to Washington to take over as as deputy assistant director for the FBI’s Security Division, which includes FBI background checks and building security, authorities said. Her replacement in Memphis has not been announced.

“One of a Kind” James Cavanaugh –Head of ATF’s Nashville Office — Retires

James Cavanaugh/photo by atf's carolyn wallace

James Cavanaugh/photo by atf's carolyn wallace

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

During his colorful career with ATF, which spanned more than three decades, James Cavanaugh found himself in the thick of some of nation’s biggest cases: The D.C. sniper murders, the Unabomber, white supremacist Eric Rudolph, church burnings and the deadly shootout at the Branch Davidian in Waco, Tex. involving leader David Koresh.

“Ninety-nine percent of him thought he was David Koresh, but the 1 percent of him really knew he was Vernon Wayne Howell, just a two-bit thug from the country in Texas,” said Cavanaugh, special agent in charge of the ATF Nashville office, commenting on Koresh during a lengthy interview in October 2009 with ticklethewire.com. He was one of the negotiators during the standoff.

On Wednesday, Cavanaugh, a New Jersey native who kept his Jersey street sense about him while acquiring a Southern charm during his many years working in the south, retired from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives after 33 1/2 years. He’s reached the mandatory retirement age of 57.

His retirement party is Thursday night in Nashville where he headed the ATF office for 12 years.

“Jim is one of a kind, all the way from this ability to do the job, to his passion for the mission and his professionalism,” said Mark Potter, special agent in charge of the ATF Philadelphia office. “He’ll create a huge void in the organization.”

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