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News Story

Retired U.S. Secret Service Agent Recalls Driving Pres. Clinton

Chicago U.S. Atty Fitzgerald’s Office Accidentally Releases Names of Nearly 20 Confidential Witnesses in Fraud Probe

Well, in the midst of a rather busy period, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Chicago apparently goofed. What more can you say?

By The Smoking Gun
In a remarkable screw-up, a Department of Justice official today accidentally distributed to the media a document containing the names of nearly 20 confidential witnesses interviewed during a federal probe targeting the operators of a fraudulent investment scheme.
In announcing felony charges against two men for their roles in an alleged $15 million Ponziesque swindle, the spokesman for Chicago U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald (he of Rod Blagojevich- and Scooter Libby-prosecuting fame) e-mailed reporters a 62-page U.S. District Court complaint filed against John Walsh and Charles Martin, principals of the now-defunct One World Capital Group.
Read More Including Document With Blurred Out Names

Pilot Program in Indiana is Collecting DNA Evidence From Firearms

In Indiana a pilot program could help pave the way for cracking more gun-related crimes.

IndyChannel.com
INDIANAPOLIS — A new program that collects DNA evidence from firearms is already on its way to putting more criminals behind bars, police said.
The Marion County Crime Lab has several gun cases investigated under the new DNA pilot program heading to court right now, Indianapolis police spokesman Lt. Jeffrey Duhamell told 6News’ Jack Rinehart.
The program, which just entered its fifth month, makes Indianapolis the only place in the country where street officers routinely collect DNA evidence from firearms, linking the guns to the suspects 80 percent of the time.
For Full Story

Feds Indict 3 Men For Racist N.Y. Beating on Election Night

A Liberian immigrant teen was beaten by three men hunting for blacks on a historical night that broke a racial barrier in America.

By TOM HAYS
Associated Press Writer
NEW YORK — Three men, riled by Barack Obama’s victory, spent election night hunting down black people to beat up and yelling insults about the president-elect, federal prosecutors said Wednesday.
The men beat a Liberian immigrant teen, pushed a black man to the ground and drove their car over a white man they thought was black, according to the indictment.
Ralph Nicoletti, 18, Michael Contreras, 18, and Brian Carranza, 21, were arrested early Wednesday. All three pleaded not guilty to charges of conspiracy to interfere with voting rights.
“Violence and intimidation aimed at interfering with the constitutional rights of every citizen, including the right to vote, will not be tolerated,” U.S. Attorney Benton Campbell said in a statement.

for Full Story

Report Says Inauguaration Attractive Target For Terrorists but Authorities Know of No Specific Threats

The internal intelligence assessment offers no surprises. We all know the inauguration or any gathering of that magnitude — or for that matter any big sporting event like the Super Bowl or the Olympics — is an attractive target for terrorists.   As NBC’s Chris Matthews would say: Tell me something I don’t know.

By EILEEN SULLIVAN
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON – The upcoming inauguration of Barack Obama is an attractive target for international and domestic terrorists, but U.S. intelligence officials have no information about specific threats to the Jan. 20 event.
An internal intelligence assessment, obtained by The Associated Press on Wednesday, says the high visibility of the event, the presence of dignitaries and the significance of swearing in the country’s first black president make the inauguration vulnerable to attacks.
What concerns analysts most, the report says, is the potential use of improvised explosive devices, a hostage situation or suicide bombers.
While security will be tight around the U.S. Capitol, the joint FBI and Homeland Security assessment says nearby hotels, public gatherings, restaurants and roads could be vulnerable to some kind of attack.
For Full Story

CNN Video of Secret Service’s New Prez Hybrid Limo

Embedded video from CNN Video

Feds Inquiring About Gov. Richardson’s Ex-Chief of Staff

This has the makings of a full-fledged scandal with plenty political repercussions.

By Martin Z. Braun and William Selway
Bloomberg

Federal prosecutors are asking if New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson’s former chief of staff told a state agency to hire a bond adviser that donated $100,000 to Richardson’s political committees, people familiar with the matter said.
A witness who testified before a federal grand jury in Albuquerque last month said he was asked if David Contarino, the former chief of staff, ordered New Mexico Finance Authority officials to hire Beverly Hills, California-based CDR Financial Products Inc. Another person familiar with the investigation said Contarino, 47, is a subject of the inquiry and that prosecutors are looking at whether he solicited contributions from firms that worked on finance authority bond deals.
Contarino “is a very effective political professional,” said Edward Romero, a former U.S. ambassador to Spain and the national finance chairman for Richardson’s 2008 presidential campaign. “He’s a hard worker.” Romero said he would be surprised if Contarino did anything improper.
For Full Story

Secret Service to Unveil Hybrid Limo for Obama

Good to see there’s some sense of energy conservation going on.

By Mike M. Ahlers and Eric Marrapodi
CNN
WASHINGTON
— As a candidate, Barack Obama promoted hybrid cars.
As president, he’ll be handed the keys to one. Sort of.
Shortly after taking the oath of office, Obama will climb into the Mother of All Hybrids — part car, part truck and, from the looks of it, part tank.
In keeping with recent tradition, the Secret Service will place a brand-new presidential limousine into service January 20 to drive the new president on the 2-mile jaunt down Pennsylvania Avenue during the inaugural parade.
Already, spy photos of the limo — with patches of gray primer — have leaked out. And already, the reviews:
“Ugly as sin,” says one car enthusiast on an auto Web site. “Can’t we make a hotter ride for our pres?”
For Full Story

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