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FBI Raids Office of Puerto Rico-Based Doral Bank Following Regulatory Struggles

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI raided the Puerto Rico headquarters of Doral Bank in search of evidence related to “several ongoing investigations” Tuesday following questions about the lender’s ability to meet regulatory mandates, Bloomberg reports.

The FBI confirmed it collected computers and documents from the San  Juan bank’s offices but declined to elaborate on the investigation.

Doral has been under pressure to maintain compliance with capital requirements and reportedly was looking for a buyer for some of its business, Bloomberg wrote.

Doral spokeswoman Miriam Warren said the bank is fully cooperating with the investigation.

“We look forward to sharing more on the focus of the investigation as we learn more,” she said in a statement.

Google Helps FBI Track Down Colorado Man for Online Threats to Police Officers

Jeremiah Perez

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Google alerted authorities to a Colorado Springs man who threatened to “hunt” and kill police officers in the comment sections of a YouTube video, leading to the man’s arrest Monday, the Colorado Spring Gazette reports.

Jeremiah M. Perez was arrested after Google contacted the FBI Office in San Francisco.

“SINCE DARREN WILSON our group has killed 6 retired sheriffs and cops……because of this event we will hunt two more in colorado this week…..for every innocent citizen that cops kill WE, VETERANS WILL KILL RETIRED HELPLESS COPS,” the threat read. “COPS ARE THE REAL ENEMIES OF FREEDOM LOVING AMERICANS and TIME TO STRIKE BACK IN ALL OUT WAR IS NOW.”

The user name of the commenter was “Vets Hunting Cops.”

Perez told authorities he didn’t like police and his anger was intensified after an officer shot Michael Brown in Ferguson.

Homeland Security Officer Accuses Police of Harsh Treatment Because He’s Muslim

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

At least a dozen officers swept into his Santa Clara home, their assault weapons and service guns drawn.

This wasn’t a drug bust. Police were looking for a stolen $300 dashboard camera that was never found.

The subject of the search, Homeland Security Agent Mohammed Moneeb, is accusing Santa Clara police of targeting him and using excessive force because he is Muslim, ABC7 News reports.

Police dismiss the claims, saying such a search isn’t unusual when a federal employee is accused of theft.

“This response was within our procedures in investigating law enforcement officers, especially in this case, being a federal law enforcement officer. We have the public trust in this case and we believe the public holds us to a higher standard and theft in this case is pretty serious,” Santa Clara Police Department’s Lt. Kurt Clarke said.

Federal authorities said an internal investigation is ongoing.

Moneeb said he was shocked by the police response.

“This has been a pretty traumatic experience for our family,” Moneeb said, who believes that the police were out of line.

Homeland Security to Track Some Immigrants with GPS Devices to Test Reporting Compliance

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

GPS-enabled ankle bracelets are an effective way to keep track of parolees and others in trouble with the law.

Now Homeland Security is beginning to give the bracelets to some parents captured crossing the Mexican border illegal with their children, the Associated Press reports.

The parents were ordered to report back to immigration officials.

About 70% of parents fail to report to immigration officials, Homeland Security officials said in September.

Under the pilot program, Homeland Security will track about 250 “heads of household.”

Other Stories of Interest


David Bowdich to Head Up FBI’s Los Angeles Office

David Bowdich

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

David Bowdich is moving up.

The special agent in charge of Counterterrorism in the FBI’s Los Angeles office has been named the assistant director in charge.

Bowdich,  who was named ticklethewire.com Fed of the Year in 2013, had served as the SAC since 2012.

Bowdich became an agent in 1995 and was assigned to the San Diego Field Office, where he investigated violent crimes and gangs and served as a SWAT team member and sniper, the FBI said. He led a yearlong wiretap investigation that culminated in the first federal racketeering convictions ever to be brought against street gang members in the Southern District of California.

In 2003, he went to headquarters where he served in the Safe Streets and Gang Unit. In late 2005, he returned to San Diego and supervised a multi-agency gang task force. In 2009, he was named assistant special agent in charge of the San Diego Field Office in 2009.

In 2011, Bowdich was selected to handle the transition of a new FBI Director. After Robert Mueller got a two-year extension, he was named special assistant to the associate deputy director.

 

Ex-FBI Agent Robert Lustyk Pleads Guilty in Scheme to Sell Confidential Info

Robert Lustyik

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Former FBI agent Robert Lustyk agent pleaded guilty Tuesday in New York federal court to bribery charges, admitting that he provided internal law enforcement documents and other confidential information about a prominent citizen of Bangladesh for use by a political rival in exchange for cash, authorities said.

“Robert Lustyik discarded the FBI’s principles of ‘fidelity, bravery, and integrity,’ and sold his badge to the highest bidder,” said Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell in a statement. “Greed has no place in public service or law enforcement. The Department of Justice will root out corruption wherever it takes hold, and hold accountable those who abuse the public’s trust for personal gain.”

Lustyik, 52, of Westchester County, N.Y., pleaded guilty to conspiracy to engage in a bribery scheme, soliciting bribes by a public official, conspiracy to defraud the citizens of the United States and the FBI, theft of government property and unauthorized disclosure of a Suspicious Activity Report, authorities said in a press release.

Sentencing is set in New york for April 30.

The press release states:

According to the complaint, indictment, court hearings, and today’s plea proceeding, Lustyik was an FBI special agent who worked on the counterintelligence squad in the White Plains Resident Agency. Johannes Thaler was Lustyik’s friend, and Rizve Ahmed, aka, “Caesar,” was an acquaintance of Thaler. From September 2011 through March 2012, Lustyik, Thaler and Ahmed engaged in a bribery scheme.

As part of the scheme, Lustyik and Thaler solicited payments from Ahmed, in exchange for Lustyik’s agreement to provide internal, confidential documents and other confidential information to which Lustyik had access by virtue of his position as an FBI special agent. The documents and information pertained to a prominent citizen of Bangladesh (Individual 1), who Ahmed perceived as a political rival. Ahmed sought, among other things, to obtain information about Individual 1, to locate and harm Individual 1 and others associated with Individual 1.

As part of the scheme, Lustyik and Thaler exchanged text messages, including messages about how to pressure Ahmed to pay them additional money in exchange for confidential information. For example, in text messages, Lustyik told Thaler, “we need to push [Ahmed] for this meeting and get that 40 gs quick . . . . I will talk us into getting the cash . . . . I will work my magic . . . . We r sooooooo close.” Thaler responded, “I know. It’s all right there in front of us. Pretty soon we’ll be having lunch in our oceanfront restaurant . . . .”

As another example, in late January 2012, Lustyik, upon learning that Ahmed was considering using a different source to obtain confidential information about Individual 1, sent a text message to Thaler stating, “I want to kill C . . . . I hung my ass out the window n we got nothing? . . . . Tell [Ahmed], I’ve got [Individual 1’s] number and I’m pissed. . . . I will put a wire on n get [Ahmed and his associates] to admit they want [a Bangladeshi political figure] offed n we sell it to Individual 1].” Lustyik further stated, “So bottom line. I need ten gs asap. We gotta squeeze C.”

Thaler and Ahmed previously pleaded guilty to bribery and conspiracy to commit fraud, and are scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 23, 2015.

FBI Warns of Alleged ISIS Threat to Blow Up Bridge Over Mississippi River

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI is investigating an anonymous threat that ISIS plans to blow up the Memphis-Arkansas Bridge over the Mississippi River sthis month, FOX13 News reports.

The FBI sent a letter of warning to local law enforcement.

“According to an anonymous complainant, as of December 2014, ISIS instructed an ISIS member, a presumed USPER (U.S. person) in Memphis, with a direct order to blow up the Memphis-Arkansas bridge on an unknown date, activating ISIS terror cells in the United States,” the warning reads.

The FBI said there’s no evidence yet that the threat is legitimate.

“Although we received an anonymous threat, there is no actionable intelligence regarding an attack on the bridge. We take every threat seriously and whenever we receive a threat like this we take steps to inform all of our law enforcement partners,” Supervisory Special Agent Joel Siskovic, spokesman for the FBI Memphis Division, told FOX13 News.

About 56,000 cars and trucks use the bridge daily.

FBI to Help Train 30,000 Officers to Handle Active Shooters in Public Places

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI plans to train 30,000 officers nationwide how to handle an active shooter in schools, businesses and other public places, the USA Today reports.

More than 200 agents are helping with the training, which was hatched after the 2012 Newton, Conn., school massacre.

“We have found a block of training that, in a short period of time, provides the best investment in saving lives,” FBI Deputy Director Mark Giuliano said.

The training, which is in partnership with Texas State University, is critical and aimed at shaving time to respond, identify and “eliminate” suspects.

“If we don’t get the initial response right, it’s always going to be a train wreck,” said Terry Nichols, assistant director of Texas State’s Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training Center. “You have to stop the threat. That means urging first responding officers to move quickly toward the gunfire. That’s hard to do, even if you are a law enforcement officer.”