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Camden, NJ Prosecutor Worries About DEA Taking Over Task Force

Prosecutor Warren Faulk/county photo

Prosecutor Warren Faulk/county photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Camden, N.J. in the past has been dubbed the most dangerous city in America.

So it might be seen as good news that the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration has decided to take over the the Philadelphia-Camden High Intensity Drug Trafficking task force from the local prosecutor.

But the Camden County prosecutor, according to the Philadelphia Daily News, isn’t exactly doing hand stands over the news.

County Prosecutor Warren Faulk told the Philly paper that he’s concerned the DEA will focus only on big cases and ignore street level dealers.

camden-map

“We’re a team player and will do what has to be done and we’ll get the job done,” Faulk told the paper. “But we certainly have concerns about this that we’re going to have to see about.”

“We don’t have thresholds,” Faulk said, “We’ll prosecute anyone.”

To read more click here.

N.C. Carolina Sen. Vows to Delay U.S. Atty Appointment Until 2 Major Probes Are Finished

U.S. Atty. George Holding
U.S. Atty. George Holding

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Heavy handed politics continues to play a role in some of the appointments of U.S. Attorneys around the country.

In North Carolina, Republican Sen. Richard Burr vowed Thursday to delay confirmation of Charlotte lawyer Thomas G. Walker until the current U.S. Attorney George Holding, a Bush appointee, finishes up his probes into ex-Sen. John Edwards and former Gov. Mike Easley, according to the News Observer.

Burr notified President Barack Obama of his decision through the White House counsel’s office, the paper reported. Obama nominated Walker last week.

Swindler Bernie Madoff Adjusting: He’s Finally Among His Own

Bernie Madoff/facebook photo

Bernie Madoff/facebook photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

At first blush it might seem a little surprising that world class swindler Bernie Madoff, who lived a life of luxury only few can ever realize, would adjust so well to prison life at a federal facility in North Carolina.

But when you think about it,  the 71-year-old con man is truly among his own: thieves, folks who have cheated and lied and tried to beat the system.

The Wall Street Journal reports that “he is adjusting to his new life behind rows of gleaming silver razor wire in this small Southern town.”

“Inmate No. 61727-054 shares an unlocked cell at the medium-security prison at Butner Federal Correctional Complex with a younger man named Frank,” the Journal reports. “He wears khaki prison garb and has been spotted walking on an outdoor track. He plays bocce, chess and checkers. He scrubs pots and pans in the prison kitchen.”

Inmates at the facility include Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard and Colombo crime-family boss Carmine Persico.

To Read More click here

Column: Urban Schools Prepare Kids for Life of Crime

Ross Parker was chief of the criminal division in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit for 8 years and worked as an AUSA for 28 in that office.

Ross Parker

Ross Parker

By Ross Parker
ticklethewire.com columnist

This fall someone near and dear to me began a job tutoring and counseling students at an inner-city Detroit high school.

Her daily reports over the dinner table range from disturbing to appalling. Despite the heroic efforts by some of the teachers and students, attending school consists mainly of fighting your way to and from school with limited learning in between.

Her school has been on “lock down” two days this week because of incidents involving firearms. Squabbling among politicians, bureaucrats, teachers, and parents, along with a pathetic state economy and financing system, have insured the escalation of this dismal situation.

Read more »

Ex-Detroit Deputy Mayor Milton Pleads Guilty to Bribery

detroitBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

If ever there was a major city that can’t afford corrupt public officials it would be Detroit, a place that is aching from the economic woes of our time.

That being said: How can anyone cheat the city?

Ask ex-Detroit Deputy Mayor Kandia Milton. He  stepped up before a federal judge in downtown Detroit on Thursday and pleaded guilty to bribery conspiracy.

“Today, your honor, I am accepting full responsibility for my actions, ” Milton said, according to the Detroit Free Press. “I betrayed the trust of many people — my family, my friends, citizens of Detroit … and the mayor.”

To read the full story click here.

Column: Ex-TSA Official Says Document Scandal “Not The Worst Breach of Security Since 9/11”

Ellen Howe served as Assistant Administrator for Strategic Communications & Public Affairs at the Transportation Security Administration from March 2006 until January 2009.

Ellen Howe/security debrief photo

Ellen Howe/security debrief photo

By Ellen Howe
Security DeBrief

Certainly the posting of the Transportation Security Administration’s screening procedures on the Internet was not the agency’s finest hour, but it was not the worst breach of security since 9/11, as I heard last night on CNN.

While some were quick to pounce and ridicule, most of what was in that document can be deciphered by studying procedures at the checkpoint, something terrorists are known to do before they execute an attack.

TSA is a complex organization, and its people and policies should not be underestimated. The agency bases its operations on intelligence, and the document that was revealed does not account for constant updates and tweaks made based on current intelligence.

To Read More

Gotti Jr. Optimistic Feds Won’t Try for 5th Trial; Hopes to Move from NY

John "Junior" Gotti/youtube photo
John “Junior” Gotti/youtube photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

John Gotti Jr., who walked free after his fourth mistrial on racketeering charges, is “optimistic” the feds won’t try for a fifth trial, the website Gang Land News reports.

The website, written by former New York Daily News mob writer Jerry Capeci, noted that Gotti could get word on the fed’s intentions at a Jan. 22 status conference hearing, if not sooner. A mistrial was declared on Dec. 1 after a New York jury said it was hopelessly deadlocked.

If all goes as planned, Gotti said, he hopes to move out of N.Y. and relocate his family to Florida or the Carolinas.

“I want to move on,” and change the surroundings, Gotti said, according to Gang Land.”To be here, it’s a little awkward at times. I’m not that far from Queens; I’m not that far from New York. You go to dinner in a restaurant with your wife, you tend to bump into old acquaintances.”

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Q6IWWEM_pw

5 TSA Employees Placed on Leave in Scandal Involving Published Document

airport-people-walking
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON – Five Transportation Security Administration employees have been placed on administrative leave in response to news that a 93-page confidential document on airport passenger screening was posted on the Internet, the agency said.

Assistant Homeland Security secretary David Heyman told senators on Capitol Hill Wednesday that a full investigation into the matter was underway, according to the Boston Globe.

The TSA has admitted that the document was posted online on a government procurement site in a redacted form. But people on the Internet were able to make copies without the redactions.

In a statement on Wednesday, the TSA said:

“TSA takes full responsibility for this improper posting and all individuals who may have been involved have been placed on administrative leave, pending the outcome of the review.”

Read more »