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Atty. Gen. Holder Sends Memo to Justice Dept. Employees on Possible Shutdown; FBI’s Mueller Complains About Potential Budget Shortfall


By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The prospect of a government shutdown over the budget is causing some unease at the Justice Department, which includes the FBI, DEA and ATF.

“Should it become necessary to implement our contingency plans, you will receive notice from your manager no later than Friday April 8th regarding the designation of your position and status,” Atty. Gen. Eric Holder Jr. wrote in a memo to Justice employees, who number more than 100,000. The memo was obtained by CNN.

That being said,  CNN reports that the Justice Department has unofficially said all employees involved in public safety will be considered essential employees who will continue to work.

That means all FBI personnel will work, and all 116 federal prisons will continue to operate, CNN reported.

But CNN reports that the Justice Department “will be forced to stop or curtail activities including most civil litigation, community outreach to victims of crime and the processing of grants.”

CNN said Holder told employees Wednesday that “as soon as funding lapses federal departments and agencies will not be permitted to incur further financial obligations performing activities funded by annual appropriations except those related to the orderly suspension of operations or performance of excepted activities.”

FBI Dir. Mueller testifies on Hill/ file photo

Meanwhile, FBI Director Robert Mueller told Congress Wednesday that the proposed short-term funding measure for the remainder of the year would create problems for the FBI in the area of intelligence, CNN reported.

“I can only say that under the proposed CR (continuing resolution) the FBI would be the only major partner in the intelligence community that is NOT fully funded. And while our intelligence community partners would be able to proceed with planned initiatives and programs, the Bureau (FBI) could not,” Mueller said, according to CNN.

CNN reported that Mueller also said: “We simply cannot afford to return to the pre-9/11 days where hiring and staffing at the FBI was a roller-coaster that left most field offices understaffed.” Mueller blamed pre-9/11 funding uncertainties for “degradation of the FBI’s physical and information technology infrastructure that contributed to shortcomings in our capabilities.”

Lawyer Accused of Insider Trading Tried Hiding Evidence from FBI Like his iPhone

By David S. Hilzenrath
Washington Post Staff Writer

WASHINGTON –By mid-March, as the government tells it, Matthew H. Kluger knew the FBI was closing in.

As a lawyer for three of the nation’s premier corporate law firms, most recently in the Washington office of Wilson Sonsini, he had allegedly stolen secrets that yielded tens of millions of dollars of insider trading profits. Now he was trying to eliminate the evidence.

Out went his computer, and his iPhone.

“Those are gone. I mean history,” he allegedly told a friend and co-conspirator.

But he was still worried.

Matt Kluger/wsgr

“If they start looking at me and look at my bank records and all that other stuff . . . it could get ugly,” he said.

To read more click here.

Rapper Notorious B.I.G. Was Killed With Rare Armor Piercing Ammunition, FBI Files Show


By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Brooklyn-born rapper Christopher Wallace — aka Notorious B.I.G. or Biggie Smalls — was killed on March 9, 1997 in Los Angeles with a “very rare” Gecko 9 mm armor piercing ammunition seldom found in the U.S., newly released FBI files show.

ABC News  reported that information, which is included in hundreds of heavily redacted FBI files on the rapper’s unsolved murder probe, which was closed in 2005.

Notorious B.I.G., an east coast rapper, was part of an ongoing east coast-west coast beef involving rappers.

The FBI documents also show at the time of his murder he was carrying a plastic baggie of marijuana, an asthma inhaler and three Magnum condoms, ABC reported, and he was wearing  size 48 Karl Kani jeans, size 13 Timberlands and a size 54 Bernini sweater. He was murdered six months  after the Los Angeles-based rapper Tupac Shakur was murdered.

The FBI documents showed that a search warrant of  Wallace’s home after his murder showed a “shrine of TUPAC SHAKUR and numerous 9mm guns and ammunition, LAPD radios, scanners and other tactical items.”

According to the FBI files, Biggie was murdered after he left the Peterson Automotive Museum in Los Angeles after attending a post Music Awards ceremony.

“Wallace was in the middle car of a 3-car caravan when a dark Chevy SS Impala pulled next to him and fired several times into the passenger area where Wallace was sitting,” the FBI document said. “Wallace died minutes later at a local hospital.”

“Several sources identified the shooter as a light skinned black male wearing a suit and bow tie,” the FBI file said.

Read FBI files.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

FBI Dir. Robert Mueller Says U.S. On Guard From Attacks That Might Emanate from Libya

Robert Mueller/file fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III assured a Congressional committee Wednesday that the FBI is working to make sure the homeland is safe from attacks emanating from Libya, Fox News reported.

Mueller, testifying before the House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies, said the U.S. is “on guard” for Libyan operatives who “may well” be in the United States a result of crossing the Mexico or Canada border, Fox reported.

“We also want to make certain that we are on guard [for] the possibility of terrorist attacks emanating somewhere out of Libya, whether it be Qaddafi’s forces or, in eastern Libya, the opposition forces who may have amongst them persons who in the past have had associations with terrorist groups,” Mueller said.

He also noted that “there may be intelligence officers that are operating with different types of cover in the United States.”

“We want to make certain that we’ve identified these individuals to ensure no harm comes from them, knowing they may well have been associated with the Qaddafi regime,” he added.

His testimony came just days after word surfaced in the media that the FBI was interviewing Libyans in the U.S. in response to the Libyan conflict.

Fed Judge Bothered that Justice Dept. Didn’t Appeal Death Penalty Ruling in NYPD Cop Killing Case

Judge Nicholas Garaufis/wikipedia

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A Brooklyn fed judge is none too happy with the Justice Department and Atty. Gen. Eric Holder Jr. in a case involving the murder of two New York police detectives,  the NY Daily News reported.

U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis “bristled” on Tuesday when expressing his displeasure that the Justice Department failed to  appeal to the Supreme Court a ruling by the Court of Appeals that tossed out the death penalty conviction phase for the convicted cop killer because of prosecutorial error, the Daily News reported.

The murder conviction still stands, but the U.S. Attorney’s Office wants to retry the penalty phase to go after the death penalty again for convicted cop killer Ronell Wilson , the Daily News reported. The judge, bothered that the prosecutors simply didn’t appeal the ruling to the Supreme Court, said he would not let the retrial for the penalty phase  go forward until he got a letter from Atty. Gen. Eric Holder Jr. pledging the department’s intent to seek the death penalty, the Daily News reported.

The Daily News reported that the demand for the letter was the judge’s way of taking a shot at Holder   “in view of the fact that the attorney general failed to exhaust all appeals and abandoned the appeal of the case.”  The judge expressed concern about the emotional effects a second trial would have on the victims’ families.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office has repeatedly said in the past that it is committed to retrying the death penalty phase of the case, the Daily News reported.

The attorney general must sign off when prosecutors seek the death penalty. The case was first prosecuted when  Roberto Gonzales was the attorney general.

Robert Nardoza, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn, declined comment Wednesday morning. The Justice Department in Washington also declined comment.

EX-FBI Agent Mike Clark Running for Congress in Conn.


By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

An ex-FBI agent who led the investigation into then-Conn. Gov. John Rowland, is jumping into the political race for Congress, NBC Connecticut is reporting.

Michael Clark, a 22-year veteran of the FBI who retired in 2004, is currently on the Town Council in Farmington, Conn., the station reported. He is running as a Republican.

“I am running for Congress because I love and respect this country and am proud to serve it,” Clark said. “I believe we need a smaller, more efficient government that delivers core services to its citizens and respects the fact that we are a nation founded on free market principles.”

Gov. Rowland, who served from 1995 to 2004,  eventually resigned and pleaded guilty to a federal corruption charge.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E2mhi9L1O4E

Man Who Shot And Wounded Pa. Cop Identified Himself as FBI Agent in Home Invasion

Ex-ABC Reporter Says He Never Disclosed Name of Confidential Source to FBI; Calls Allegations “Outrageous and Untrue”

Chris Isham/cbs photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The Washington bureau chief for CBS News says reports that he gave up a confidential informant to the FBI in the 1990s while he worked at ABC simply aren’t true, according to the Huffington Post.

A story by the Center for Public Integrity said declassified memo suggested that the then-ABC reporter disclosed the name of a confidential source to the FBI in the wake of the Oklahoma bombing.

But the reporter, Christopher Isham, whose name was not in the memo, but who was identified by the website Gawker, issued a statement, according to the Huffington Post, saying the allegations were ” “outrageous and untrue” and that he would have talked to the FBI to verify info or warn of a potential terrorist attack.

“This is consistent with the policies at every news organization,” Isham said, according to the Huffington Post. “But at no time did I compromise a confidential source with the FBI or anyone else.”

The news reports said the source in question was Vincent Cannistrarto, a former CIA official who was working for ABC News at the time as a paid consultant, Huffington Post reported.  Cannistrato passed on a tip that ended up being untrue: that the Iraqi Special Services were linked to the Oklahoma bombing.

“Mr. Cannistraro was not a confidential source, but rather a colleague–a paid consultant to ABC News who had already spoken to the FBI about information he had received,” Isham said, according to the Huffington Post.

The New York Times reported that Cannistraro, “said in an interview that Mr. Isham had done something discourteous, perhaps, but not improper.”

“I was working for ABC as a consultant,” he said. “I was not a confidential source.”

The Times reported that said he would have preferred if Isham told him about passing on the tip.

“I was not told that Chris was also going to talk to them. And he certainly didn’t tell me,” Cannistraro said, according to the Times.