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Tag: Charlotte

FBI’s Chris Briese Who Oversaw Interrogation Team for Saddam Hussein to Head Up Charlotte Division

Chris Briese/fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

M. Chris Briese, the deputy assistant director for the FBI’s Critical Incident Response Team at Quantico, and who once oversaw  the interrogation team for Saddam Hussein,  is headed south to take charge of the bureau’s Charlotte Division, the FBI announced Monday.

Briese joined the FBI in 1987 and was first stationed in Los Angeles where he worked bank robberies, interstate theft, foreign counterintelligence and international terrorism matters.

In February 1996, he was promoted to the National Security Division in the Counterterrorism Planning Section at FBI headquarters, the FBI said. He was a founding member of the Weapons of Mass Operations Unit, and specialized in chemical and biological terrorism issues.

Two years later, he transferred to the Minneapolis Division in a supervisory role, and oversaw international and domestic terrorism, foreign counterintelligence programs and the St. Cloud Resident Agency.

He established the Minneapolis Joint Terrorism Task Force, which was responsible for the arrest of Zacarias Moussaoui, who was convicted of crimes related to the 9/11 attacks.

In July 2001, he became the assistant special agent in charge of the Minneapolis Division.

In August 2003, Briese returned to the mothership in Washington as a section chief in the Counterterrorism Division. His duties included oversight of half the FBI’s global terrorism operations, including the FBI’s deployment in Iraq and the Saddam Hussein interrogation team.

In January 2005, he headed up the Pittsburgh Division. The following year, he returned to FBI Headquarters and worked in multiple executive positions within the National Security Branch, the FBI said.

He has a law degree from Louisiana State University Law School. He is married and the father of two teenage boys.

Fed Judge Reduces Convicted Terrorist’s Sentence by More than 100 Years

Mohamad Hammoud/mecklenburg co. sheriff’s photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

They say federal judges have plenty powers, and in fact, they can make a century or more disappear with the snap of a finger.

That’s just what happened Thursday when U.S. District Judge Graham Mullen in Charlotte, N.C. reduced the 155 year sentence of Hezbollah supporter Mohamad Hammoud to 30 years in prison, the Associated Press reported.

“The crime represented here was not as serious as other terrorism cases,” Mullen said, according to AP.

Hammoud, 37, a North Carolina businessman, was convicted in 2002 of financing suspected Hezbollah terrorists in Lebanon with profits from a multimillion-dollar cigarette-smuggling operation he ran with his brother. Prosecutors at the time accused him of being the leader of a terrorist cell.

AP reported that Hammoud, from Lebanon, will likely spend 20 more years in prison and then be deported.

His attorneys wanted the sentence reduced to the 10 years served, saying the money Hammoud raised was for a wing of Hezbollah that helps provide clean water and good housing to communities.

Charlotte FBI Agent Jerry Senatore — “Mr Relentless” — Dies at Age 46

Jerry Senatore/charlotte observer

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The Charlotte Observer noted of Jerry Senatore: “As a boy, Jerry Senatore turned to his mother after an episode of the TV cop show ‘Dragnet’ and proclaimed: ‘Mom, I am going to be an FBI agent one day’.”

Last week, Senatore, who spent 20 years in the FBI’s Charlotte Division — the last seven lead a SWAT team, died from non-Hodgkins lyphoma at Duke University Hospital in Durham, N.C., the Charlotte Observer reported. He was 46.

The paper noted that his friends and colleagues referred to him as “Mr. Relentless,” because of his toughness to battle his disease and the way he went after criminals.

“Jerry was a natural-born leader and protector,” FBI special agent Jim Page of Raleigh, Senatore’s second in command on the SWAT team told the Charlotte Observer. “He cared for everybody. He invested in you… Whenever we were on a mission, he’d pull the team together and say: ‘OK guys, it’s 5:30 in the morning, it’s cold out and we’re going after a very bad man. There’s no place I’d rather be.’

“And he meant it.”

The funeral for the father of three is Monday.

To read more click here.

Race is On For U.S. Atty. Job in Charlotte

All around the country ambitious attorneys are throwing their names into the race for U.S. Attorney. Here in Charlotte the race is on.

Attorney Anne M. Tompkins

By Gary L. Wright
Charlotte Observer
CHARLOTTE — Three former federal prosecutors from Charlotte – Pete Anderson, Anne Tompkins (photo to left)  and Thomas Walker – are among at least four people hoping to become the next U.S. attorney for Charlotte and the Western District of North Carolina.
Each would have to gain the support of incoming Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan to have a chance of replacing Republican U.S. Attorney Gretchen Shappert, who was selected for the post in 2003 by President Bush.
Hagan will recommend Shappert’s successor to President Obama. The Democratic president will nominate the replacement, who must then be confirmed by the Senate.
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