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News Story

7 Charged With Terrorism in North Carolina

The U.S. Attorney in North Carolina said it was a reminder that terrorists “can grow and fester right here at home.” The question is, how much of a threat were these people? Hopefully in coming days and weeks we’ll get a sense.

fbi map

fbi map

By The Associated Press

A North Carolina man trained in Pakistan and Afghanistan has been charged along with six of his alleged recruits with conspiring to support terrorism and traveling overseas to participate in “violent jihad,” according to an indictment unsealed Monday in Raleigh, N.C.

Daniel Patrick Boyd, 39, and the six other men were arrested Monday and made their first appearances in Raleigh, charged with providing material support to terrorism.

“These charges hammer home the point that terrorists and their supporters are not confined to the remote regions of some far away land but can grow and fester right here at home,” U.S. Attorney George E.B. Holding said in a statement. He declined further comment.

For Full Story

Read FBI Press Release

Justice Dept. Hopes to Close Anthrax Case Soon

One year after scientist Bruce Ivins killed himself, the department is trying to close up the case. But there are still some folks who believe that Ivins was not the culprit. Is this one of those cases that will continue to produce conspiracy theories that go far beyond this one scientist?

Suspect Bruce Ivins
Suspect Bruce Ivins

By Devlin Barrett
The ASSOCIATED PRESS
WASHINGTON — A year after government scientist Bruce Ivins killed himself while under investigation for the lethal anthrax letters of 2001, the Justice Department is on the verge of closing the long, costly and vexing case.

Several law enforcement officials told the Associated Press that the department tentatively planned last week to close the case but backed away from that decision after government attorneys said they needed more time to review the evidence and determine what further information can be made public without compromising grand jury secrecy or privacy laws.

For Full Story

EX-Fed Prosecutor Who Monitored Detroit Police Resigns After Justice Dept. Alerts Judge of Improprieties

No one will disagree if you were to say the city of Detroit doesn’t need any more scandals — particularly any involving the former Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.  The monitor that stepped down was a former federal prosecutor in Washington and a former district attorney in N.Y.

Sheryl Robinson Wood/law firm photo

Sheryl Robinson Wood/law firm photo

BY DAVID ASHENFELTER and JOE SWICKARD
DETROIT FREE PRESS
DETROIT –– The Department of Justice dropped another bomb on the scandal-plagued city of Detroit this week by alerting a federal judge that his court-appointed monitor overseeing Detroit Police Department reforms had “meetings of a personal nature” with former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.

The episode came to light Friday when U.S. District Judge Julian Cook issued an order that announced Sheryl Robinson Wood’s resignation but raised more questions than it answered. Cook didn’t describe the nature of the meetings, when they occurred, whether they affected Wood’s performance or whether he demanded she resign.

The order said Wood “engaged in conduct which was totally inconsistent with the terms and conditions of the two consent judgments.”

For Full Story

Read Judge’s Order

Back Off New Jersey: Illinois Still Pretty Corrupt and Has 2nd Most FBI Agents Assigned to Corruption

There’s some badge of pride for being the most corrupt state. Illinois doesn’t want to conceded defeat to New Jersey or any other state for that matter. With 42 Illinois FBI agents assigned to public corruption, only D.C. has more, the Sun-Times points out.

illinois-map1

BY NATASHA KORECKI
Chicago Sun-Times
CHICAGO — Hey, back off, New Jersey.

Just as Illinois basks in the shameful glow of its most-corrupt reputation, the Garden State wants to one-up us.

Sure, we’ve had two consecutive governors, an army of alderman and a posse of political fund-raisers under indictment — not to mention two current members of Congress facing ethics inquiries.

But in New Jersey last week, 44 people, including three mayors, two state lawmakers and a slew of rabbis were rounded up in a corruption scheme replete with allegations of organ sales, $97,000 stuffed into a cereal box and plenty of good, old-fashioned bribes.

There were so many arrestees, the FBI had to herd them onto a bus.

For Full Story

Another High Profile Justice Dept. Case Crumbles

This high profile case is another embarrassment for the Justice Department, which has seen some big setbacks in cases like the one involving ex-Sen. Stevens. The conviction in that was voided.

Mike Scarcella
National Law Journal

In the eyes of the Justice Department, Zhenli Ye Gon   dea is a major player.

The one-time fugitive allegedly amassed a fortune importing and selling ingredients to methamphetamine producers in Mexico. A March 2007 raid on his mansion in Mexico City turned up $207 million in bundled cash – the single largest seizure of alleged drug money in the world. When federal drug agents arrested him in an Asian restaurant in suburban Maryland in July 2007, they were certain they had nabbed a kingpin.

“With the arrest of Zhenli Ye Gon, we’ve apprehended not only the man behind the money, but the man behind the meth,” Karen Tandy, then administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration, declared in a statement. The case was heralded as a collaborative feat by the governments of Mexico and the United States.

This week, Justice Department lawyers will head to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, where a judge is expected to dismiss the government’s case against Ye Gon.

Two years after indicting Ye Gon on a single conspiracy count, prosecutors admitted they didn’t have much of a case

For Full Story

Read 2007 DEA Press Release on His Arrest

Immigration Officials Locking Up Hundreds of the Wrong People

iceIt seems when you have hundreds of people wrongfully locked up, there’s a big problem. When people are being put behind bars for the wrong reasons, something is very very wrong.

By Tyche Hendricks
San Francisco Chronicle
SAN FRANCISCO — The son of a decorated Vietnam veteran, Hector Veloz is a U.S. citizen, but in 2007 immigration officials mistook him for an illegal immigrant and locked him in an Arizona prison for 13 months.

Veloz had to prove his citizenship from behind bars. An aunt helped him track down his father’s birth certificate and his own, his parents’ marriage certificate, his father’s school, military and Social Security records.

After nine months, a judge determined that he was a citizen, but immigration authorities appealed the decision. He was detained for five more months before he found legal help and a judge ordered his case dropped.

“It was a nightmare,” said Veloz, 37, a Los Angeles air conditioning installer.

For Full Story

FBI Probing D.C.’s Marion Barry’s City Council Contracts

It’s sad how this guy cannot steer clear of the law. As  Roseanne Rosannadanna on Saturday Night Live used to say “It’s always somethin. If it’s not one thing it’s another”.

Gilda Radner''s Quote Applies Here "It's always somethin. If it's not one thing it's another".
Roseanne Rossandanna’s Quote Applies Here. “It’s always somethin. If it’s not one thing it’s another”.

By Bill Myers
Examiner Staff Writer
WASHINGTON — Federal prosecutors and FBI agents have opened a wide-ranging investigation into whether former D.C. Mayor Marion Barry broke federal laws by lavishing contracts on a girlfriend and on a host of questionable nonprofit groups, The Examiner has learned.

Barry, 73, was arrested by U.S. Park Police earlier this month on stalking charges after a confrontation with estranged girlfriend Donna Watts-Brighthaupt.

It later emerged that Barry had given Watts-Brighthaupt a $5,000-per-month city contract shortly after they began dating. The Watts-Brighthaupt scandal led to further revelations that Barry had steered even more taxpayer dollars into dubious nonprofit groups operating in his stricken Ward 8.

For Full Story

Homeland Security Worker Sues Agency Over Illegal Search

It’s not good p.r. when someone from your own agency sues because of a goof. In Arizona, the U.S. Attorney’s Office is trying to make this go away via a legal motion.  In the end, the government might just have to end up forking some money over to make it vanish.

arizona-map

By Dennis Wagner
The Arizona Republic

A Department of Homeland Security employee in Yuma is suing his own agency over an illegal search by immigration officers who he said mistakenly stormed his home in search of an undocumented immigrant.

Jimmy Slaughter, a K-9 handler at the U.S. border crossing in San Luis, said in District Court papers that he and his wife, Sheila, have lived in their home for more than a decade and did not know the woman sought by a half-dozen agents who came to his door with guns drawn.

“Is this the agency which protects our country?” Slaughter asked in an affidavit attached to the lawsuit. “… Now my neighbors are wondering or believe I am just another ‘DIRTY COP!’ I have served my country proudly for 23 years in the Marine Corps and six years as a Customs K-9 handler. I bleed Red, White and Blue.”

The U.S. Attorney’s Office has asked a judge to dismiss the complaint, arguing that agents left the house once they realized their mistake, so the Slaughters have no basis for a claim.

For Full Story

Read Lawsuit