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FBI Chief: New York Times Gave Platform to Terrorists by Quoting Anonymous Source

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 
 
The New York Times’ decision to quote an anonymous source from a terrorist group about the bloody attacks last week in France was in poor taste and provided a platform for violent extremists, FBI Director James Comey said in a sharply worded letter to the Times, the newspaper reports. 

The front page story Thursday quoted a member of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula about the timing of the attacks.

“Your decision to grant anonymity to a spokesperson for Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula so he could clarify the role of his group in assassinating innocents, including a wounded police officer, and distinguish it from the assassination of other innocents in Paris in the name of another group of terrorists, is both mystifying and disgusting,” Mr. Comey said in a letter to The Times.

He added: “I fear you have lost your way and urge you to reconsider allowing your newspaper to be used by those who have murdered so many and work every day to murder more.”

Michael Slackman, the international managing editor for The New York Times, stood behind the decision to use anonymity.

“The individual quoted anonymously has for several weeks provided accurate insight and information into the thinking and actions of AQAP,” Mr. Slackman said. “The material was generally central to the news, in one case noting that Al Qaeda and the Islamic State had not jointly planned the attacks in Paris.”

FBI Agent’s Chronic Theft of Heroin Raises Questions about Bureau’s Evidence Rooms

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

An FBI agent’s ability to steal heroin from an evidence room without being detected suspicions for at least 14 months raises serious questions about the bureau’s checks and balances, the Washington Post reports.

By his own admission, Mathew Lowry repeatedly stole heroin from the evidence room at the FBI’s field office in Washington to support his addiction. The thefts have sabotaged drug cases, so far leading to the dismissal of 28 defendants.

The thefts didn’t catch up with Lowry until his colleagues found him incoherent next to his disabled bureau car.

The FBI has responded with an internal review to determine how better to handle evidence.

“It’s shocking that there was such little oversight,” said Steven H. Levin, a former federal prosecutor. “It’s something you would expect to see on a made-for-TV movie. . . . You’re thinking, there is no way that could ever happen. And that’s what happened.”

 

Lowry, 33, has been suspended and is undergoing drug treatment while the case remains under criminal investigation.

Ex-Border Patrol Agent Who Laundered Drug Money Sentenced to 2 Years in Prison

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

 A former Border Patrol agent who laundered drug money was sentenced to two years in prison Thursday, the Arizona Daily Star. 

Raimundo Borjas was convicted of money laundering after trying to conceal $61,600 in deposits. 

After he’s released from prison, Borjas was ordered to spend three years of supervision and to avoid all law enforcement jobs.

Borjas was fired in October 2014.

Other Stories of Interest


FBI: Unemployed Ohio Man Planned to Attack U.S. Capitol with M-15 Rifles

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI has monitored 20-year-old Christopher Lee Cornell for months because of troubling posts he made on social media about violent jihad. 

Then agents swept in Wednesday, arresting him in Cincinnati on allegations that he was about to hatch a horrifying attack at the U.S. Capitol, detonating pipe bombs and then shooting the lawmakers as they scurried, CNN reports.

Authorities said he planned to have a partner and bought two M-15 rifles with 600 rounds of ammunition. But the man he thought was his partner was actually an FBI informant.

Agents arrested Cornell after he bought the weapons.

FBI Creates Squads in 3 U.S. Cities to Tackle International Corruption

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI is increasing its arsenal against international corruption by creating three squads tasked with rooting out bribery cases that happen overseas but have repercussions for the U.S., the Associated Press report.

Corruption in foreign countries is becoming a bigger focus of the FBI’s because of the expansion of the global economy, where corruption can have a rippling effect.

The initiative calls for sending about 30 agents to squads based in New York, Washington and Los Angeles.

“Corruption leads to lack of confidence in government. Lack of confidence in government leads to failed states. Failed states lead to terror and national security issues,” said Jeffrey Sallet, chief of the FBI’s public corruption and civil rights section, in an interview with the AP.

The mission of the three squads is to enforce the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which bars the bribery of foreign government officials.

AG Eric Holder Expands Protections for Media, Sets New Standards

Eric Holder

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Prosecutors will have a more difficult time receiving subpoenas or search warrants for reporters under new protections for journalists announced Wednesday by Attorney General Eric Holder. 

McClatchy reports that prosecutors will be required to meet with the department’s Policy and Statutory Enforcement Unit before seeking court permission to take actions against members of the media working on “newsgathering activities.”

The protections include removing the word “ordinary” from the phrase “newsgathering activities.”

“These revised guidelines strike an appropriate balance between law enforcement’s need to protect the American people, and the news media’s role in ensuring the free flow of information,” Holder said.

Members of the media applauded the move.

“We are pleased that the new guidelines protect ‘newsgathering activities’ without qualification whenever the government seeks information related to a journalist’s work reporting and disseminating the news,” declared Bruce D. Brown, executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press.

Want to Be a Border Patrol Agent? Job openings in Texas, Arizona, New Mexico

istock photo

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Ever consider scouring the border for terrorists and drug dealers?

CBP is hiring for Border Patrol agent positions in Texas, New Mexico and Arizona.

Applicants will undergo a rigorous screening process and must meet physical demands of the job, KVIA reports.

Applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • You must be a U.S. citizen to apply for this position
  • Referred for selection prior to your 37th birthday (waiver for Veterans)
  • You must have resided in U.S. for the last 3 years
  • You must successfully pass a polygraph examination
  • You must successfully pass a background investigation
  • Convictions of misdemeanor crime of domestic violence are disqualifying
  • You will be required to carry a firearm and have a valid driver’s license
  • You will be required to work regular and recurring shift work
  • Entrance examination scores prior to December 1, 2014 are NOT valid
  • You must meet job-related medical, fitness and drug-testing standards

You may apply for a job at https://www.usajobs.gov/. The deadline is Jan. 22.

Washington Post Columnist: Homeland Security Fails to Protect Buildings from Cyber Attacks

By Josh Hicks
Washington Post

Federal buildings are unprepared for potential cyber attacks on their security systems, elevators, heating and cooling networks and other critical operations because the Department of Homeland Security doesn’t have a handle on the risks.

At stake are thousands of vulnerable facilities, including the offices of federal employees and structures that house high-risk items such as drugs and weapons.

Those are the findings from a Government Accountability Office report this week that said DHS lacks a strategy for protecting government buildings from hackers, terrorists, corrupt employees and criminal groups who might want to breach their networks.

Auditors determined that the increased digital connectivity with federal facilities “heightens their vulnerability to cyber attacks, which could compromise security measures, hamper agencies’ ability to carry out their mission, or cause physical harm.”

GAO released its findings on Monday, the same day President Obama gave a speech about national cybersecurity efforts and hackers took control of two social media accounts operated by the U.S. military’s Central Command, posting threatening messages and Islamist propaganda videos.

The watchdog report said the Department of Homeland Security, which is responsible for protecting federal buildings, has failed to formulate a plan for dealing with the vulnerability of government facilities.

“No one within DHS is assessing or addressing cyber risk to building and access control systems … in part, because cyber threats involving these systems are an emerging issue” the report said.

To read more click here.

Other Stories of Interest

FBI Raids Medical Supply Firm With Wall St. ‘Wolf’ Tie

Undercover Agent Explains How He Helped FBI Nab Silk Leader

House Bill Aimed at Blocking President Obama on Immigration

ATF Takes to Facebook to Interact More with Public

Is TSA Compromising Security for Popularity, Peaking at Your Records