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Murder Trial Underway for ex-FBI Agent in Las Vegas

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Trial is underway in Las Vegas for retired FBI agent Edward Preciado-Nuno, who is accused of murdering his son’s girlfriend in November 2008.  His son had been trying to evict the girlfriend from the home.

Preciado-Nuno, 63, claims he killed girlfriend Kimberly Long after she attacked him with a hammer. He claims he then picked up a hammer in self defense and hit her, according to the Las Vegas Sun.

Preciado-Nuno retired from the bureau’s San Diego office in 2003 and has worked in New York, Puerto Rico, Las Vegas and Argentina, according to The San Diego Union-Tribune.

To read about the trial click here.

Bernie Madoff Won’t Attend Son’s Funeral

 

Mark Madoff/facebook photo

 
 
 
 
 
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Convicted swindler Bernie Madoff won’t be attending the funeral of his son Mark, who committed suicide in his  Manhattan home over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“Mr. Madoff will not be attending the funeral out of consideration” for his family, attorney Ira Sorkin told the Journal.  Madoff will have his own private ceremony at his North Carolina prison.

Details of the funeral were still unclear and Mark Madoff’s  body remained in the New York City morgue on Monday, the Journal reported. In the Jewish faith, a body is buried as quickly as possible.

NBC’s Today Show reported that the son had not talked to the parents in a long time and that Ruth Madoff, Bernie’s wife, was angry at her husband over the suicide, saying he had blood on his hands.

Mark Madoff and his brother denied ever knowing that their father ran a sham operation, though some are skeptical of those claims.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

 

Texas Guns Dealers Top U.S. Suppliers List to Mexican Cartels

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — America profits from the murderous ways of the Mexican cartels when it comes to supplying weapons.

Washington Post reporters James V. Grimaldi and Sari Horwitz, in a year long investigation, uncovered the names of the top 12 U.S. gun dealers of guns traced to Mexico in the past two years, with eight coming from Texas, three from Arizona and one from California.

The Post reports that Houston appears to be the number one city for guns traced to Mexican crimes.

“One of the reasons that Houston is the number one source, you can go to a different gun store for a month and never hit the same gun store,” J. Dewey Webb, special agent in charge of the Houston field division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives told the Post. “You can buy [a 9mm handgun] down along the border, but if you come to Houston, you can probably buy it cheaper because there’s more dealers, there’s more competition.”

To read more click here.

FBI Director’s Chief of Staff and Senior Counsel W. Lee Rawls Dead at Age 66

W. Lee Rawls/ u of va. photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — W. Lee Rawls, who served as chief of staff and senior counsel to FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III until 2009, died earlier this month of acute leukemia in Washington, the Washington Post reported. He was 66.

The Post reported that he had previously served as assistant attorney general for legislative affairs under President George H.W. Bush and, from 2003 to 2005, as chief of staff to then-Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.)

In the course of his career, Rawls also served as  vice president of the lobbying firm Van Scoyoc Kelly, and led government relations efforts for Pennzoil and the Biotechnology Industry Organization, the Post reported.

He also taught at the National Defense University in Washington and the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, the Post reported.

To read more click here.

Daniel Ellsberg of the Pentagon Paper Fame Defends WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Daniel Ellsberg, who leaked the Pentagon Papers about the Vietnam War in 1971,  defended WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

“If I released the Pentagon Papers today, the same rhetoric and the same calls would be made about me,” Ellsberg said, according to the news organization Democracy Now! “I would be called not only a traitor—which I was then, which was false and slanderous—but I would be called a terrorist… Assange and Bradley Manning are no more terrorists than I am.”

Ellsberg, a former U.S. military analyst who was working for the RAND Corporation, ignited a controversy when he released the Pentagon Papers, a top secret document that discussed government policy about Vietnam.

He was charged under the Espionage Act of 1917. He was put on trial in federal court in Los Angeles in 1973, but U.S. District Judge William Matthew Byrne, Jr. ended up dismissing the case due to government misconduct.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Atty. Gen. Holder Forcefully Defends FBI Stings in Terrorism Cases

Eric Holder Jr./ticklethewire.com file photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Attorney Gen. Eric Holder Jr. delivered a forceful speech Friday night before the Muslim Advocates’ Annual Dinner in suburban San Francisco, strongly defending the FBI stings involving terrorism.

“Our nation’s law enforcement professionals have consistently demonstrated not just their effectiveness, but also their commitment to the highest standards of professional conduct, integrity, and fairness,” he said at a ballroom before hundreds of people.

Holder particularly honed in on an FBI sting in which a Somali born teen  Mohamed Osman Mohamud  tried to detonate a car bomb at a Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Portland, Ore., only to learn the plot was part of a sting.

“Those who characterize the FBI’s activities in this case as ‘entrapment’ simply do not have their facts straight – or do not have a full understanding of the law.”

“I make no apologies for the how the FBI agents handled their work in executing the operation that led to Mr. Mohamud’s arrest,” Holder said, according to a text of the speech distributed by the Justice Department.

“Their efforts helped to identify a person who repeatedly expressed his desire and intention to kill innocent Americans. As you may have read – and as the affidavit alleges – Mr. Mohamud chose the target location months in advance; provided FBI operatives with bomb components and detailed operational instructions; and repeatedly refused to change course when he was reminded that a large crowd – including children – would be in harm’s way.”

“Because of law enforcement’s outstanding work, Mr. Mohamud is no longer plotting attacks. He is now behind bars. And he will be brought to justice.

But he offered a conciliatory message as well, adding: ” But you also have my word that the Justice Department will – just as vigorously – continue to pursue anyone who would target Muslims, or their houses of worship.”

Holder then went on to defend law enforcement.

“Our nation’s law enforcement officials deserve our gratitude – and respect. Without their work – and their willingness to place public safety above personal security – government simply could not meet its most critical responsibility of protecting American lives.”

“Meeting this responsibility has never been more difficult. Our nation faces a determined and sophisticated enemy. As I’ve said repeatedly, I am committed to using every available tool to protect the American people. But I will not sacrifice or compromise our civil liberties.”

Read full text of speech

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