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Ex-FBI Contract Linguist Loses NY Law License

legal
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A contract linguist with the FBI in Maryland who pleaded guilty in December to disclosing classified information to a blogger,  has had his law license suspended in New York, according to the New York Law Journal.

The Law Journal reported that the Appellate Division, 3rd Department declined to set aside the suspension recommended by a disciplinary committee for Shamai Kedem Leibowitz, an Israeli-American lawyer, who had been translating intercepted phone calls for the FBI from Hebrew to English.

Leibowitz claimed his crime was “not motivated by venality, but rather by misguided patriotism.” The 39-year-old said he does contract work for N.Y. law firms to support his wife and 6-year-old twins, the Journal reported.

He pleaded guilty in December to leaking five classified documents to a blogger. His guilty plea calls for him to get 20 months in prison at the time of sentencing.

Following his guilty plea in December, Richard McFeely, head of the Baltimore FBI said in a statement: “As a trusted member of the FBI ranks, Leibowitz abused the trust of the FBI and the American public by using his access to classified information for his own purposes.”

To read more click here.

Senior Administration Officials Privately Dismayed Over Atty. Gen. Holder’s Job Performance, Washington Post Reports

Atty. Gen. Holder

Atty. Gen. Holder

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The Washington Post is reporting that senior administration officials aren’t all that happy with Atty. Gen. Eric Holder Jr and have privately expressed dismay about his job performance.

The Post reports that administration officials have complained about Holder’s “tin ear in his decision-making and his public remarks.”

The paper went on to report that some people have predicted Holder might not last much longer in the job.

“But Holder has shown no signs of getting ready to leave, and he remains a close friend of President Obama’s, advisers said,” the Post reported. “If anything, his careful statements Wednesday seemed to suggest that he is adapting to the White House’s desire that he make less news.”

The information was included in a report on Holder’s appearance Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee where he was able to side-step some of the Republican committee members hostile questions.

He fielded questions about the delay in shutting Guantanamo Bay and said he expected Osama bin Laden would never be taken alive, the Post reported.

“If anything, his careful statements Wednesday seemed to suggest that he is adapting to the White House’s desire that he make less news,” the Post reported.

To read full story click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

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.

Column: The History of April 19th: American Revolution, Waco, Oklahoma Bombing

Greg Stejskal, a columnist for ticklethewire.com. , was an  FBI agent for 31 years before retiring as resident agent in charge of the Ann Arbor, Mi. office. He was one of the FBI SWAT team leaders who searched the Michigan farm of James Nichols, brother of convicted Oklahoma bomber Terry Nichols, in 1995 after the bombing.
Greg Stejskal

Greg Stejskal

By Greg Stejskal

Listen my children, and you shall hear

Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere,

On the eighteenth of April, in Seventy Five….

Longfellow’s poem forever immortalized Paul Revere’s ride. What the poem does not say is that Revere’s mission that night was to warn Samuel Adams and John Hancock that British soldiers were coming to Lexington to arrest them.

It was after midnight, April 19th, when Revere arrived in Lexington and warned Adams and Hancock. Revere also aroused the country side, and that morning the “Minute Men” met the British regulars on Lexington green. No one knows who fired the first shot- “the shot heard around the world”. But on that morning, April 19, 1775, the American Revolution began.

In a perverse twist of fate, on April 19, 1993, it is the 51st day of a siege at the Branch Davidian compound, also known as Mt Carmel, outside of Waco, Texas. It is to be the last day of the siege, a culmination of a series of bad decisions and missed opportunities.

waco-branch-davidians

The siege began on February 28th. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) had gone to the Davidian compound to execute search warrants. The warrants were based on affidavits stating the Davidians possessed certain illegal weapons to include fully automatic weapons and components to convert semi-automatic weapons into fully automatic. Some of the Davidians were known to have a propensity for violence including their leader, David Koresh, who had changed his name from Vernon Howell.

Read more »

Feds Allege Ex-Gov Blago Was in Fundraisers’ Hip Pocket

hippocketBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The more that comes out, the worse things look for ex-Ill. Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

In the lastest, the feds paint the ex-Gov as being in the hip pocket of his fundraisers.

The Associated Press reports that a federal prosecution document unsealed Wednesday alleges that crooked Democratic fundraiser and Chicago businessman Antoin “Tony” Rezko paid Blago’s wife Patti tens of thousands of dollars for work she didn’t do.

The AP reported that  91-page document alleges that Rezko gave Patti Blagojevich $40,000. Two days later she spent more than $38,000 on home renovations.

Rezko claimed it was commission on a real estate deal involving two properties, but the feds allege she had nothing to do with the sale, AP reported.

Rezko has been convicted of bribery and other charges.

The document says that fundraisers Christopher Kelly and Rezko “were part of the informal kitchen cabinet that Blagojevich used to make decisions, and had complete access to Blagojevich and/or Monk (Blagojevich’s Chief of Staff during this period).”

“Rezko and Kelly recommended and/or interviewed many people who were selected to top positions in Balgojevich’s administration and were actively involved in awarding state contracts,” the document said.

Just asjan aside, it’s shocking with all of Blago’s business acumen that Donald Trump still fired him from the “Celebrity Prentice”.

DEA Case in Baltimore Alleges Prison Gang Infiltrating Non-Profit Anti-Gang Organizations

The line between good and evil can be awfully blurred in the criminal world. Baltimore City Paper investigative reporter Van Smith lays out a DEA case which alleges that the Black Guerrilla Family (BGF), a violent nationwide prison gang with hooks in Baltimore, is infiltrating the ranks of non-profit, anti-gang organizations. It’s a disturbing revelation.

baltimore

By Van Smith
Baltimore City Paper

BALTIMORE — “I need you down here. Cause I’m down here with the brothers, Meech and all them,” Todd Andrew Duncan tells someone known as “Killa” over his cell phone on the afternoon of March 27.

“Where at?” Killa asks. Duncan replies, “Down by my job.”

Duncan’s job was as a youth counselor for Communities Organized to Improve Life Inc. (COIL), a nonprofit whose mission is to provide job-skills training and anti-violence intervention in the West Baltimore neighborhoods it serves.

But law enforcers, who were listening in on Duncan’s conversation with Killa, say Duncan is also the city-wide commander for the Black Guerrilla Family (BGF) on the streets of Baltimore. The BGF, a nationwide prison gang known for its violence, radical political philosophy, and disciplined organization, has been increasingly noted in recent years for its influence outside of prison in Baltimore.

To read the full story click here.

Atty. Gen. Holder Vows Admin. Will Use Both Civilian and Military Courts to Fight Terrorism

doj photo

doj photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Atty. Gen. Eric Holder Jr. told the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday morning that the administration planned to use both civilian and military commissions to fight terrorism.

In a prepared statement, he said:

“Let me be clear: this Administration will use every tool available to fight terrorism. That includes both civilian courts and military commissions. Indeed, we have already referred six cases for prosecution in commissions. We will no doubt refer other cases, as well. We have deployed the full extent of our intelligence, military and law enforcement resources to defeat terrorists, and we have achieved significant results.

“It would jeopardize those results to prohibit the use of the criminal justice system to prosecute terrorists, as some in Congress have proposed, and it would seriously weaken our national security. Instead of pursuing a narrow approach to fighting terrorism, we must be flexible, pragmatic and aggressive. And in every circumstance, we must choose the weapon that will be most effective.

“That said, I know you all have questions about the prosecution of those charged with plotting the 9/11 attacks. No final decision has been made about the forum in which Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his co-defendants will be tried.

“As I’ve said from the outset, this is a close call. It should be clear to everyone by now that there are many legal, national security and practical factors to be considered here. As a consequence, there are many perspectives on what the most appropriate and effective forum is. In making this decision, I can assure you that this Administration has only one paramount goal: to ensure that justice is done in this case. In the pursuit of justice, we will enforce the law and protect the American people.”

“Today, I want you all to know that I continue to value, and will work to uphold, the trust this Committee has placed in me. I also want to reassert my pledge that, so long as I have the privilege of serving as Attorney General, the Department of Justice will be an instrument of our Constitution and a servant of the American people — not of any party or political ideology.