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Smoke detectors alerted the family to the problem

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ATF’s Scott Sweetow Heads North to Minnesota

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Scott Sweetow, head of the Atlanta ATF Division, is moving on to the Midwest to head up the St. Paul Division, which includes Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota and South Dakota.

Sweetow, who began his career with ATF in 1990 in Los Angeles, spent several years assigned in the Arson and Explosives group, and served as a Certified Explosives Specialist. His duties included being part of ATF’s elite National Response Team, which investigated such high-profile crimes as the Oklahoma City bombing and the Centennial Olympic Park bombings.

He also spent several years working criminal intelligence matters, including a weapons case targeting the “The Blind Sheikh” Omar Abdel-Rahman’s one time driver and bodyguard, Hikmat Alharahshah.

Specifically, in 1999, Sweetow became a supervisory special agent in the Phoenix Field Division, serving in operations and as violent crime enforcement group supervisor.

In 2003, he went to ATF headquarters where he served in the Policy Development and Evaluation branch, eventually becoming its chief. In July of that year, he became the first ATF agent to “deploy operationally to Iraq”, assisting the Defense Intelligence Agency as part of the Iraq Survey Group.

In 2004, Sweetow was promoted to a deputy division chief and later chief in the Arson, Explosives and International Training Division in ATF’s Training and Professional Development directorate. He remained there until December 2006.

While division chief, Sweetow was instrumental in establishing ATF’s $50 million National Center for Explosives Training and Research at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama.

In January 2007, Sweetow became an Assistant Special Agent in Charge in the Atlanta Field Division and later went on to become the SAC in Atlanta.

He has a bachelor’s degree in Russian and Soviet Area Studies and a masters in Strategic Intelligence. He is a graduate of Harvard University’s Senior Executives in National and International Security program and the FBI’s Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar.

In 2009, Scott he published an article in “Homeland Security Today” entitled “After Mumbai: Facing the Flames” which dealt with the use of fire as an asymmetric warfare tool by terrorists.

 

Fed’s Star Witness Testifies That he Delivered Kickbacks to Ex-Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick

Ex-Mayor Kilpatrick with ex-friend Derrick Miller (inset)

By Allan Lengel
Deadline Detroit

DETROIT — Kwame Kilpatrick fidgeted in his chair, sometimes leaning to the left, sometimes smirking, looking worried and shaking his head in disbelief, as he watched ex-close friend Derrick Miller deliver some damaging testimony on the 49th day of trial Monday.

Miller, who was part of Kilpatrick’s inner circle at city hall, and who was billed as the prosecution’s star witness, testified in Detroit federal court that he regularly took cash kickbacks from a real estate firm that did business with the city and shared half with Kilpatrick. He did not specify how much he shared.

In his three hours of testimony, Miller painted Kilpatrick as someone who lied to the public, pocketed bribes, steered money to friends and family, and was so paraonoid of the feds that he had his office swept for bugs. Specifically, Miller said Kilpatrick publicly claimed he properly used funds from the nonprofit Kilpatrick Civic Fund while he appeared to have violated the law by using the money for his campaign and personal expenses, including lavish resort vacations, golf clubs and yoga classes.

The long-awaited testimony seemed to help prosecutors connect the dots and corroborate testimony, but may have fallen a little short of the drama some had anticipated. But there is more to come Tuesday, as the prosecution indicated it planned to question Miller for about two more hours.

To read more click here.

San Antonio Cop Accused of Planting Drugs, Demanding Cash from Crime Victim

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A San Antonio Police officer faces federal charges after his own department arrested him on accusations of planting false evidence and demanding cash from a crime victim, KHOU.com reports.

The joint sting operation by the police department and FBI led to Officer Curtis W. Lundy’s arrest Thursday .

The incident happened on Dec. 15 after Kumail Jusab of East Africa told authorities he was assaulted at an apartment.

When Lundy arrived, he demanded money and searched Jusab’s car, where he planted pot and threatened to arrest the man, police allege, according to KHOU.com.

“He kept telling me also, ‘You want your license? You know, you want your record to be clean? It’s only $400,’ and he wanted $400 on the spot. And I didn’t have the money on me.” Jusab told KHOU.com.

Editorial: ATF Needs More Authority to Stop Illegal Gun Sales

Newsday
Editorial

Congress should unshackle the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in the fight against illegal guns. Restrictions on the bureau’s activities are hobbling efforts to combat firearms trafficking and reduce the day-to-day gun violence plaguing the nation.

Americans have a constitutional right to own guns. And licensed gun dealers who operate legally must have nothing to fear from regulators. But most guns that find their way into the hands of madmen and criminals begin that journey in a legal sale. Better policing of the border between legal and illegal ownership is just common sense.

The first thing the Senate should do is confirm a permanent director for the ATF. It hasn’t had one since 2006, when Congress, nudged by gun-rights lobbyists, made Senate confirmation necessary. Since then neither Republican George W. Bush nor Democrat Barack Obama managed to find a nominee who could successfully run that gantlet.

To read more click here.

STORIES OF OTHER INTEREST


“60 Minutes” Correspondent Mike Wallace Was Trailed by FBI During Cuba Visit

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI kept a close eye on late “60 Minutes” correspondent Mike Wallace during a 1970 trip to Cuba, recently released files show, CBS News reports.

The documents detail the luggage and travel information of Wallace and “60 Minutes” creator Don Hewitt, according to CBS News.

The FBI also investigated a threatening letter sent to Wallace in 1977 by a World War II veteran. The letter “claims to have solid proof that” Wallace is “a pro-communist anti-American traitor.

Charges were never filed because the FBI said there was no criminal intent, the CBS News wrote.

FBI Changes Firearm Training to Adapt to Close-Quarters Shooting

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI’s firearm training has begun focusing on close-quarters combat after a review found that most agent-involved shootings are within point-blank range, the USA Today reports.

The new training protocol is a dramatic shift for an agency that has relied on long-range marksmanship training.

After reviewing about 200 shootings during a 17-year period involving FBI agents, the bureau found that 75% were within 3 yards when gunfire was exchanged, the USA Today reported.

“The thing that jumps out at you from the (shooting incident) research is that if we’re not preparing agents to get off three to four rounds at a target between 0 and 3 yards, then we’re not preparing them for what is likely to happen in the real world,” FBI training instructor Larry “Pogo” Akin told the USA Today.

The new training also requires agents to draw their guns from holsters shielded by jackets or blazers to replicate real-life scenarios.

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