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News Story

Defense Lawyers Say Lead FBI agent Lavished Defendants with Tens of Thousands of Dollars

California State Sen. Leland Yee

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A key FBI agent who helped nab a state senator and 19 others lavished his targets with tens of thousands of dollars, lawyers for one of the defendants argued last week.

The Associated Press reports that the agent was removed from the case over financial improprieties.

One of the defendant’s lawyers called the behavior “outrageous.”

The case involves state Sen. Leland Yee, who is accused of organized crime and political corruption in San Francisco’s Chinatown.

According to the defense, the undercover agent was involved in a case “related to the financing and financial record-keeping” by the agent in the Chinatown sting.

Further details weren’t available.

Weekend Series on Crime History: A Preview of a Documentary on the Rise of the Cleveland Mob

httpv://youtu.be/iwwbUES2Rgc

Government Watchdog: FBI Spies on Wrong Americans Because of Routine Typography Errors

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI has unintentionally spied on Americans who were not the targets of investigations because of routine, avoidable mistakes, the National Journal reports.

The Justice Department’s inspector general discovered that the FBI sometimes collected data on the wrong people because of typographical errors.

“We found that the FBI’s corrective measures have not completely eliminated potential intelligence violations resulting from typographical errors in the identification of a telephone number, email address, or social security number in an NSL,” the report reads. “These typographical errors cause the FBI to request and, in some instances receive, the information of someone other than the intended target of the NSL.”

Despite those problems, the inspector general concluded that the FBI is doing a better job handling national security letters.

Accused Stock Fraudsters Make FBI History by Making First Recorded Post-Arrest Statements

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Matthew Bell and Craig Josephburg have made FBI history.

The accused fraudsters were the first suspects to have their confessions electronically recorded under a new Justice Department policy, the New York Daily News reports.

The pair is accused of a massive pump-and-dump stock scheme.

The new policy is intended to get a more accurate look at confessions. Previously, confessions were written down and open to scrutiny.

Justice Department Increases Involvement in Investigation of Shooting in Ferguson

Michael Brown

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A day after zealous police clashed with protesters and fired tear gas at demonstrators and the media, the Justice Department announced it’s increasing its involvement in the review of an officer who shot an unarmed teenager in Ferguson, Mo., Time reports.

The efforts include sending advisers to meet with local law enforcement, government leaders and local faith leaders.

The Justice Department also is sending its head of the criminal section of the department’s civil rights division.

Holder suggested in a letter that local police may be escalating tensions.

“The law enforcement response to these demonstrations must seek to reduce tensions, not heighten them,” Holder said.

Michael Brown was killed Saturday by a police officer who witnesses say shot the young man while he was not posing a threat.

Ex-Internal Affairs Official: Border Patrol Altered Details of Reports on ‘Highly Suspect’ Deaths

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Border Patrol agents have tried to alter details of at least seven “highly suspect” deaths since 2010, a former internal affairs official for CBP told the Center for Investigative Reporting.

“In nearly every instance, there was an effort by Border Patrol leadership to make a case to justify the shooting versus doing a genuine, appropriate review of the information and facts at hand,” James Tomsheck told reporter Andrew Becker in a story published online Thursday.

The interview raise serious questions about the culture of secrecy and impunity at CBP.

Since 2005, on-duty Border Patrol agents and CBP officers have killed at least 45 people, and 15 of them were Americans, the Arizona Republic reports.

None of those case led to discipline for a federal official.

Disgruntled Ex-Cop Gains Access to FBI Office Carrying Gun, Fake Badge, Inactive ID Card

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A disgruntled ex-cop with a loaded gun managed to bypass metal detectors and enter an FBI office using a fake police badge and inactive ID card, ABC News reports.

The ease with which the man entered the building has concerned federal authorities.

“He could’ve shot up half the office by that point,” one law enforcement expert told ABC.

Still, the Justice Department insists no one was in danger.

Lawmakers aren’t convinced.

“This latest report of a security breach at a federal building is concerning,” the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., told ABC News in a statement. “After our committee’s close review of the security practices and procedures at federal facilities in the wake of the tragic shooting at the Washington Navy Yard [last year], it became clear that the quality of the physical security at our federal buildings is in need of improvement, and this incident underscores that finding.”

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

FBI Sends 65 Agents into High-Crime Areas of Chicago to Crack Down on Gangs

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI has dispatched 65 agents across high-crime areas of Chicago to help crackdown on gang crime, Sneed reports.

“This is a new tactic the FBI is using in fighting crime,” an FBI spokeswoman said, “by working in a concentrated area and a concentrated time on the street — although the FBI has been working hand in hand and day in and day out with the police department.”

FBI agents will work with the Chicago Police Department to go after gangs on Thursdays and Fridays for the next three to four weeks, Sneed reported.

The agents plan to conduct surveillance on drug-dealing.

“They will be going after the worst of the worst, looking for people wanted on murder warrants. The fugitives may be wanted on the South Side, but who knows where in the city they’re hiding,” a top police source said.