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Sec. Napolitano Visits Africa to Discuss International Airline Security

nigeria mapBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano met Sunday in Nigeria with top officials from Africa and the International Civil Aviation Organization to discuss ways to improve aviation security worldwide, the Department of Homeland Security announced Monday.

“The attempted terrorist attack on Dec. 25 demonstrated that international terrorist threats must be countered with a coordinated, global response through enhanced security standards, increased information sharing and stronger screening measures,” Napolitano said in a statement. “My meetings with our African partners underscore our commitment to working together to strengthen global aviation security measures and better protect the traveling public.”

In Abuja, Nigeria, Napolitano addressed more than 30 African ministers and representatives and stressed the importance of working together to prevent terrorists from boarding commercial flights, the agency said.

The agency also said Napolitano “applauded the measures taken since Dec. 25 to strengthen aviation security in Africa—including Nigeria’s installation of advanced imaging technology units at Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos, the nation’s busiest airport.”

Relatives Get Rare Opportunity to Raise Objections to Release of Certain FBI Files of Ted Kennedy

Late Sen. Ted Kennedy

Late Sen. Ted Kennedy

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON – In a rare move, the family of Edward M. Kennedy will be allowed to raise objections before thousand of pages of the late Senator’s FBI file are released, the Boston Globe reports.

The paper reports that the the FBI is providing the “uncommon” opportunity so that the privacy rights of living relatives will not be violated, the Globe reported.

“In certain circumstances [such as] the family of victims of crimes or, as in this case . . . a public official, [the FBI] may coordinate the release of certain material with the family,” Dennis Argall, an FBI spokesman told the Globe, noting that the practice was rare. “The family of a deceased person may have a privacy interest.”

“But the reason [for objecting] can’t simply be that it is embarrassing” Argail told the Globe.

To read more click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

John Gotti Jr: Dad Probaby Had Hand in Neigbhor’s Disappearance; Says Dad Loved Being a Gangster

Retired G-Man Operates Website to Pay Tribute to FBI Agents Who Went After the 1930s Outlaws

Agent George H. Franklin at shooting range/photo from Wack's website
Agent George H. Franklin at shooting range in 1930s/ photo from Wack’s website

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Sure, there’s been endless stories about the many gangster of the 1930s like John Dillinger, Baby Face Nelson and Bonnie and Clyde.

But what about the FBI agents who battled the criminals of that era, says Larry Wack, who worked as a special agent from 1968 until 2003 and who lives in New York state.

“So much has been written about the Dillingers of the era, I wanted to ensure the memories and more of the Agents who pursued these outlaws,” Wack said.

Wack has launched a website “Faded Glory: Dusty Roads of an FBI Era” to find relatives of the agents of that era to share stories and photos of their loved ones.

Read more »

Jurors in Ex-Cong. William Jefferson Said Mundane Documents — Not $90,000 in FBI Money or FBI Tapes — Convinced Them to Convict

Jefferson stands next to attorney Robert Trout during sentencing /Sketch by Art Lien/NBC News
Jefferson stands next to attorney Robert Trout during sentencing last November /Sketch by Art Lien/NBC News

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Rep.William Jefferson was hardly a household name — that is until FBI agents found $90,000 in his freezer at his Capitol Hill home on Aug. 3, 2005.

In the public’s eye, that seemed to be the center piece of the government’s case against Jefferson.

But  jurors who convicted the ex-Congressman of 11 of 16 public corruption charges last August have broken their silence and told the New Orleans Times-Picayune that it was the mundane documents that convinced them of his guilt, not the cash or photos or FBI secret recordings.

The Times-Picayune, in a story published Sunday by reporter Bruce Alpert, wrote that “particularly compelling, the jurors said, were letters and contracts outlining the payments that businesses were to pay to companies controlled by Jefferson’s family in return for the congressman’s assistance in brokering deals in West Africa.”

Read more »

Homeland Security Chief Janet Napolitano Reportedly on Supreme Court List

Gov. Napolitano/official photo

Gov. Napolitano/official photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON —  Janet Napolitano, who has served as Secretary of Homeland Security since January 2009, is reported to be among the top candidates to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens.

Napolitano has a pretty deep resume. She served as Governor of Arizona, Attorney General of the state and as U.S. Attorney for Phoenix under the Clinton Administration.

Other top choices reportedly being considered include Elena Kagan, 49, the U.S. Solicitor General, the fourth highest ranking post at the Justice Department,  Diane Pamela Wood, 59, a U.S. Court of Appeals judge in Chicago and Merrick B. Garland, 57, a U.S. Court of Appeals judge in D.C.

Other longer shots include Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm.

New D.C. U.S. Atty. Ron Machen Speaks Out About Mass Shooting in D.C. Where 4 Died and 5 Were Wounded

FBI Tapes, 3 Aging Chicago Mobsters and a Plan to Rob

mafia33By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The arrest of three Chicago area mobsters on Thursday — all senior citizens — had the makings of a movie, from the FBI surveillance and listening devices to the plan to knock off an armored car and rob the home of the late mob boss Angelo “The Hook” LaPietra.

The Chicago Sun-Times reported that authorities arrested Jerry “The Monk” Scalise, 73, Art Rachel, 71 and Robert Pullia, 69, all of the Chicago area. Scalise and Rachel were both convicted in the infamous 1980 heist in London in which the men made off with jewelry including a famous Marlborough Diamond. They appeared in federal court Friday afternoon and were detained, the paper reported.

The Sun-Times reported that the feds charged all three men with planning to rob an armored car that was going to pick up money at a bank in LaGrange, a Chicago suburb.

The paper reported that the FBI had been surveilling the crew since December and learned that they also planned to rob the home of feared mobster boss LaPietra, who died in 1999.

“All my client has told me so far is this is nonsense,” Terry Gillespie, who represents Scalise said, according to the Sun-Times.

The paper reported that the FBI secretly recorded Scalise’s conversations via listening devices in his van. In one instance, the FBI recorded him talking  about killing a cooperating witness in a mob trial..

“We got to spare some time [and] a bullet for that f—— piece of s—,” Scalise is quoted as saying about the unnamed witness, according to the Sun-Times.

The Sun-Times reported that  director Michael Mann hired Scalise as a consultant for the Johnny Depp film, “Public Enemies”.

To read more click here.