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News Story

R.I. U.S. Attorney Robert Clark Corrente Stepping Down

Robert Clark Corrente
Robert Clark Corrente

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

U.S. Attorney Robert Clark Corrente of Rhode Island, whose office landed some high profile convictions of state lawmakers during his tenure, is resigning, effective June 26.

According to a press release issued by his office Monday, Corrente will join a private law firm on July 1. He was appointed U.S. Attorney by President Bush in 2004.

“It has been a great privilege to have served the country, the Department of Justice, and especially the people of Rhode Island,” he wrote in a resignation letter to President Obama and Atty. Gen. Eric Holder.

During his tenure, his office convicted state lawmakers John Celona and Gerard Martineau. The office also convicted Roger Williams Medical Center CEO Robert Urciuoli and executives from the former Lincoln Park slot parlor, according to the press release.

The state’s U.S. Senators have recommended that assistant U.S. Attorney Peter F. Neronha replace Corrente.

Arthur Balizan to Head FBI’s Portland, Or. Division

portland-mapBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Arthur Balizan, an inspector in the FBI’s Inspection Division, has been named special agent in charge of the Portland, Or., Division.

Balizan replaces David Ian Miller, who will retire at the end of the month, the FBI said.

Balizan started his career in the FBI in the early 1980s in the San Francisco Division and went on to the San Juan office in 1983 to work on “terrorism matters”, the FBI said.

He bounced around to the Albuquerque Division and then became a supervisory special agent assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia as the assistant project director for the U.S. Department of Justice International Criminal Investigative Training and Assistance Program, the FBI said.

He later took on other duties in Colombia. After returning to the states, taking on various jobs, he became assistant special agent in charge of the Sacramento office.

In 2006, he served as one of eight inspectors at FBI headquarters.

Before coming to the FBI, he worked as a police officer in northern California, the FBI said. He has three adult children.

Bureau of Prisons Blocks 60 Minutes Interview With Mobster John Gotti Jr.

John Gotti Jr./trutv.com

John Gotti Jr./trutv.com

CBS’s 60 Minutes knows Mobsters make good tv whether they’re real people or fictional characters like Tony Soprano.  In this case, it was worth a shot.

By Gangland News

John Gotti died in prison seven years ago yesterday. His son Junior, who has been behind bars for 10 months now, no longer has any clout with the Gambino crime family. But the mob prince is still a big ticket item when it comes to 60 Minutes, the godfather of television news shows.

Recently, 60 Minutes, which has interviewed numerous jailed mobsters in its 40-plus years, and which aired a talk with rogue cop Stephen Caracappa before his trial, reached out to the former Junior Don. Lo and behold, sources say, he agreed to an on-camera, one-on-one interview.

The first Sunday after Labor Day was the perfect time – for both 60 Minutes and Junior – to take viewers inside the Metropolitan Detention Center to see and hear Gotti talk about his plight, his relationship with his father, and with the entire Gotti family, including his sister Victoria, the author and onetime reality TV star.

That Sunday is the traditional start of the fall season for the award-winning news magazine. And Junior’s fourth federal racketeering trial in four years begins the following day, September 14.

For Full Story

Monday’s UPDATE

Holocaust Museum Shooter Still Not in Good Enough Condition to Be Arraigned (Washington Post)

Ex-Fed Prosecutor Paul Fishman Returning to the Fold in New Jersey as U.S. Attorney

Paul Fishman, an ex-federal prosecutors has unquestionably been a formidable opponent for the government as a defense attorney. Now the government is bring him back on its side. Couldn’t hurt.

By Joe Ryan
Newark Star-Ledger
Paul Fishman for N.J. U.S. Atty.

Paul Fishman

NEWARK — In 2001, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Newark held a press conference trumpeting the arrests of three Chinese immigrants, saying their company stole software from Lucent Technologies in a major instance of high-stakes corporate espionage.

Yet after prosecutors spent four years working the case, it ended with a whimper. Charges were dropped against two of the men, including one represented by Paul J. Fishman, an ex-federal prosecutor with a reputation as one of New Jersey’s most erudite and aggressive attorneys.

“Paul was certainly a very, very important part of that defense team,” said Robert Fettweis, an attorney who worked alongside Fishman on the Lucent case. “He is a very smart lawyer.”

After 12 years as a white-collar criminal defense lawyer, Fishman is poised to become a prosecutor again. President Obama nominated him June 4 to become U.S. attorney for the District of New Jersey, and the U.S. Senate is expected to vote on his confirmation within weeks.

For Full Story

Justice Dept. Honing in On Crime Issues Involving Native Americans

The Justice Department is stepping up to address problems of a forgotten segment of  America.  This is something long overdue.

native-american-sign1

By Carrie Johnson
Washington Post Staff Writer
WASHINGTON — Justice Department leaders, responding to pleas from lawmakers and community groups, are training their attention on efforts to reduce crime and substance abuse on land controlled by the nation’s roughly 560 Native American tribes.

Federal law enforcement officials investigate and prosecute the bulk of serious criminal activity in Indian territory. But workers responsible for policing crime on reservations, where domestic violence and drug-fueled offenses have been on the rise, are overwhelmed and “grossly underfunded,” according to a memo submitted by the National Congress of American Indians as part of the presidential transition effort.

Associate Attorney General Tom Perrelli, the department’s third in command, will appear at a conference hosted by the National Congress of American Indians in Niagara Falls, N.Y., today to address the issues and promise more grant money for youth mentoring, victim assistance and crime prevention.

For Full Story

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

FBI Probing Foreclosure Scam That Involves Bogus Rental Units

Visit msnbc.com for Breaking News, World News, and News about the Economy

Some Legal Observers Say Ex-Rep. William Jefferson Trial No Sure Thing

Some legal observers are starting to raise questions about the Rep. William Jefferson case. Some say there’s no guarantee of victory for the prosecution. Jefferson has some top notch defense attorneys. Even so, with the former Congressman facing 16 counts, there’s a good chance, even if the jury is conflicted, it might strike up a compromise and convict on only a few counts, thinking its giving Jefferson a break, not realizing it will only take one felony conviction to send him off to prison. Whatever the case, we’ll soon know the answer. Opening statements begin Tuesday.

By Bruce Alpert
New Orleans Times-Picayune
Rep. Jefferson/official photo

Rep. Jefferson/official photo

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — When Peter Zeidenberg, a Washington lawyer and former prosecutor, read about the 2007 indictment of then-Congressman William Jefferson, he figured the Justice Department had a pretty strong case.

Now, he and some other prominent legal experts believe that the Jefferson corruption trial, although unlikely to end in acquittal, could produce a hung jury. A guilty verdict requires all 12 jurors to agree.

After three days of jury selection last week, the trial begins in earnest Tuesday with opening statements from the prosecution and defense.

When the government filed its 16-count corruption indictment in June 2007, alleging that the New Orleans Democrat had demanded and, in some cases, received bribes in return for his help promoting projects in Western Africa, Jefferson’s prospects looked grim.

For Full Story

Weekend History Series: J. Edgar Hoover Testifies About Communism

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6kD0uFOLng