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Tag: Florida

An Interesting Omission in Press Release About Head of Fla. ICE Being Busted for Child Porn

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The press release issued Wednesday out of the Justice Department seemed a little peculiar if only because of a glaring omission.

“Florida Man Indicted for Transportation, Receipt, and Possession of Child Pornography” the headline of the press release read.

It went on to mention the name of the person, Anthony Mangione, 50, of Parkland, Fla., but made no mention anywhere in the 7-paragraph press release that he happened to be the head of Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Florida,  a very prominent position in law enforcement.

Contrast that press release headline to the one that appeared in the Miami Herald website on Wednesday:

“Top immigration official pleads not guilty to child-porn charges in federal court.”

The Justice Department may not have seen the point in including the job title. But it might be germane considering that ICE has been involved in some of the biggest child porn busts in the nation. In fact, in August ICE was involved in a major child porn takedown involving charges against 72 people worldwide.

Laura Sweeney, a spokeswoman for the Justice Department, responded by saying: “We include information in the release that is reflected in the public record. The indictment doesn’t mention his position or employer, therefore neither does the release.”

What the release did say was that Mangione was arrested Tuesday after an indictment was unsealed on charges that alleged that between March 2010 and September 2010, Mangione “transported and received visual depictions of minors engaging in sexually explicit conduct. The indictment also alleges that Mangione possessed electronically stored messages that contained additional images of child pornography during the same time period.”

The Miami Herald reported that he showed no emotion during his initial court appearance in West Palm Beach.

He had headed the Florida regional ICE office since 2007.  The Herald, citing sources, said he had not received any child porn in connection with an ICE investigation.

 

Ten Year Anniversary of Anthrax Attacks; Congressman Holt Still Not Satisfied With FBI Probe

Rep. Rush Holt

By Rep. Rush Holt (D-N.J.)
Ashbury Park Press

Ten years ago, America was a nation shaken by grief and terror. Nearly 3,000 people had perished in the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and in the thwarted attack on the Capitol. Federal authorities were warning the public that additional al-Qaida “sleeper cells” still might be at large in the United States. We were living through a national nightmare.

Less than a week later, the nightmare deepened.

Sometime on Sept. 17 or Sept. 18, someone deposited five envelopes — four addressed to media outlets in New York, and one addressed to the National Enquirer in Florida — in a central New Jersey mailbox. Later, two more letters would be mailed to members of the U.S. Senate. Each contained a highly refined dry powder containing spores of Bacillus anthracis, which can cause deadly anthrax infection in humans.

Unlike the attacks of Sept. 11, which erupted over a few terrible hours, the anthrax attacks unfolded in slow motion over several weeks. First, news reports surfaced that a Florida man had died after entering the hospital with an unknown respiratory illness. Then, the public learned he had contracted anthrax, an infection that occurs naturally but has long been explored as a biological weapon.

It was possible, at first, to believe that the Florida infection was just a freak accident, much as it was possible early on Sept. 11 to believe that the first plane crash in New York was simply a catastrophic mistake.

To read the full column click here.

 

3 TSA Agents Busted in Prescription Drug Ring

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

More bad publicity for the Transportation Security Administration.

Three of its agents, along with a police officer and a state trooper were among 20 people arrested in connection with an interstate prescription drug ring that shipped oxycodone to New York and Connecticut from Florida and relayed the profits back to Florida, Reuters news service reported.

Federal authorities in Connecticut on Tuesday announced the arrests.

Reuters reported that suspects Christopher Allen and John Best were TSA agents assigned to the Palm Beach International Airport in Florida, and the third accused TSA agent, Brigitte Jones, worked at Westchester County Airport in New York.

Other charged included Michael Brady, a police officer with the Department of Public Safety in Westchester County, N.Y. and Florida State Highway Patrol Trooper Justin Kolve.

 

 

FBI Never Publicly Disclosed Saudi Couple Abandoning Home With New Car Right Before Sept. 11

Ex-Sen. Graham/meet the press

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Is there even more about the Saudi connection to 9/11 that we didn’t know about?

Well, ex-Sen. Bob Graham, former co-chair of a Congressional inquiry after the September 11, 2001, seems to think so and is calling for the U.S. government to reopen its probe in wake of a news report that says a Saudia Arabian couple in Sarasota, Fla., abruptly abandon their home two weeks before the attacks, leaving behind a full refrigerator, clothes, and a new car, Reuters reported.

Reuters reported that the report was published by BrowardBulldog.org., a nonprofit Internet news site and was simultaneously published on the news website of the Miami Herald.

Reuters said the report, if true, indicates the FBI never disclosed the matter to the public or the 2002 joint Congressional intelligence committee investigating the attacks.

Reuters reported that the FBI office in Tampa issued a statement on Monday saying the Sarasota case was one of many leads that “were resolved and determined not to be related to any threat nor connected to the 9/11 plot.”

 

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FBI Informant Who Infiltrated KKK Dead at Age 94

fbi photo

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

FBI informant Stetson Kennedy, who infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan, passed away this weekend near St. Augustine, Fla., at the age of 94, reports the International Business Times. Kennedy had been in hospice care at a nearby hospital.

Kennedy, using the name of a deceased uncle and former klansman, gained membership and trust within the Ku Klux Klan throughout the 1940s and 50s, spilling secrets about and ridiculing in books and radio the secret rituals and views of the klan, the publication reported. Rejected for military service, Kennedy sought to fight “homegrown racial terrorists” instead.

Kennedy provided information to the FBI, IRS, the Anti-Defamation League and Washington Post columnists Drew Pearson, and testified in the grand jury about the klan’s involvement in the bombing death of NAACP leader Harry T. Moore, all of which helped to weaken the racist organization, the publication reported.

Fla. Completes Ted Bundy DNA Profile for FBI Data Base

Ted Bundy /fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Serial killer Ted Bundy’s DNA profile was uploaded to the FBI’s DNA data base on Friday, opening the way for police investigators around the country to see if Bundy was responsible for any other murders, the New York Times reported.

Bundy, who was executed in Florida in 1989, confessed to 30 murders, but hinted there were more, the Times reported.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement assembled a complete profile of Bundy recently after extracting DNA from a vial that had been stored in the court house for three decades, the Times reported. Up until now, no complete DNA profile had been available.

David Coffman, chief of forensics at the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, said his department began searching for enough DNA to create a profile after being contacted by the police in Tacoma, Wash., this year, the Times reported.

Authorities in Tacoma are hoping to solve the case of Ann Marie Burr, an 8-year-old girl who disappeared from her house in 1961, Times reported. Bundy was 14 at the time.

Coffman told the Times he receives four or five calls a year from investigators inquiring about Bundy’s DNA in connection with unsolved cases.

Authorities to Add Ted Bundy’s DNA to FBI Database

fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Florida authorities are working to add serial killer Ted Bundy’s DNA profile to the FBI’s national database by mid-August, a move that could help detectives in Tacoma, Wash., determine if Bundy was responsible for the abduction of 8-year-old girl Ann Marie Burr in 1961, The News Tribune reported

The paper reported that Tacoma detectives hope to compare the DNA to evidence that was never analyzed. Authorities say it could also help solve other murders.

“From a historical standpoint, there is this belief that Ted Bundy could be responsible,” said detective Gene Miller, who leads the Tacoma Police Department’s cold case unit, told the Tacoma paper.

The paper reported that it took years for authorities to come up with a complete DNA profile of Bundy.

To read more click here.

Justice Dept. Filing Casts Doubt on Guilt of Anthrax Suspect Bruce Ivins

Anthrax Suspect Bruce Ivins

By Mike Wiser, PBS FRONTLINE, Greg Gordon, McClatchy Newspapers, and Stephen Engelberg, ProPublica

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department has called into question a key pillar of the FBI’s case against Bruce Ivins, the Army scientist accused of mailing the anthrax-laced letters that killed five people and terrorized Congress a decade ago.

Shortly after Ivins committed suicide in 2008, federal investigators announced that they had identified him as the mass murderer who sent the letters to members of Congress and the media. The case was circumstantial, with federal officials arguing that the scientist had the means, motive and opportunity to make the deadly powder at a U.S. Army research facility at Fort Detrick, in Frederick, Md.

On July 15, however, Justice Department lawyers acknowledged in court papers that the sealed area in Ivins’ lab — the so-called hot suite — did not contain the equipment needed to turn liquid anthrax into the refined powder that floated through congressional buildings and post offices in the fall of 2001.

The government said it continues to believe that Ivins was “more likely than not” the killer. But the filing in a Florida court did not explain where or how Ivins could have made the powder, saying only that the lab “did not have the specialized equipment’’ in Ivins’ secure lab “that would be required to prepare the dried spore preparations that were used in the letters.”

To read more click here.