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September 2021


How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Tag: Justice Department

Justice Department Investigates Miami Police for Its Handling of Some Shootings

 Steve Neavling

The Justice Department will monitor the Miami Police Department because of several police-involved shootings over the past four years that didn’t appear to be justified, the Miami Herald reports.

The review, which included police shootings from 2008 to 2011, is part of a civil rights investigation of the Miami police force.

Of the 33 shootings reviewed, three were “unjustified” and an unspecified number involved excessive force, the Herald reported.

The excessive force “may have resulted from tactical and training deficiencies” within the police department, according to the letter of findings by Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez.


NSA Debate Likely to Extend to Confirmation Hearings of James Comey

James Comey

Steve Neavling

President Obama’s nominee to lead the FBI, James Comey, is likely to face scrutiny over government surveillance following the discovery that the NSA had access to virtually all Americans’ phones, The Wall Street Journal reports.

That’s because Comey, a former prosecutor, is intimately familiar with surveillance.

In 2004, Comey threatened to resign from the Justice Department after senior White House aides wanted to reauthorize a secret surveillance program over Comey’s opposition.

“I don’t think the Senate will hold up his confirmation, but I do think you’ll have these collateral issues becoming part of the confirmation process,” said Joe Whitley, a former senior lawyer with the Justice Department and Homeland Security Department during the Bush administration. “Both sides of the aisle, I think, will ask questions about it, and one or more senators could say they want answers on this before they move forward with the confirmation process.”

The Post and Courier Editorial: “Mr. Holder Should Spare the President That Overdue Task by Resigning”

file photo

By Post and Courier

A Justice Department official insisted Wednesday that Attorney General Eric Holder has a “long-standing belief that protecting and defending the First Amendment is essential to our democracy.” That’s hard to reconcile with the department’s wide-ranging wiretapping of Associated Press editors and reporters last year.

Also hard to reconcile is President Barack Obama’s decision to assign the investigation into that appalling Justice Department overreach to Mr. Holder. And this week’s offer by the attorney general to news agencies to discuss how his department should handle leaks investigations — but only “off the record” — was simply laughable.

Huffington Post’s Washington bureau chief, Ryan Grim, put it well to CNN: “A conversation specifically about the freedom of the press should be an open one.”

To read complete editorial click here.


Column: Focus Should be on Attorney General Holder’s Mediocre Performance

Atty. Gen. Eric Holder Jr.

By David Ignatius 
The Washington Post

People are looking for the wrong “scandal” about Attorney General Eric Holder.

The problem with Holder is the plain fact that, in the judgment of a wide range of legal colleagues, he has been a mediocre attorney general.

Holder’s mistakes in management and judgment are clear in the current controversy about leak investigations. He was silent as zealous prosecutors overrode the Justice Department’s guidelines for subpoenaing reporters; he recused himself from the case, but bizarrely doesn’t seem to have kept a written record of the recusal; and he failed utterly to anticipate the political flap that erupted when Justice informed the Associated Press that more than 20 of its phones had been tapped.

To read more click here.


Atty. General Eric Holder Jr. Says He Won’t Step Down

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Justice Department Spying has ‘Chilling Effect’ on AP Reporters

Steve Neavling 

The discovery that feds were spying on the Associated Press has had a “chilling effect” on the news agency, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter said, the U.S. News reports.

Reporter Martha Mendoza called the snooping “a massive and unprecedented intrusion” into the reporting of more than 20 reporters, the U.S. News wrote.

“These records obtained by the Justice Department listed incoming and outgoing calls with work and home phone numbers of individual reporters, the general AP office numbers in New York, Washington and Hartford, Conn., and the main number for the AP’s House of Representatives press gallery,” Mendoza told an audience at an award ceremony for journalists. “Has this had a chilling effect? It’s unbelievable. Yes it has.”

The AP believes the Justice Department seized phone records during an investigation related to a May 2012 story about the CIA preventing an al-Qaida plot to blow up a bomb about a U.S. plane.

Brian Fallon to Head up Justice Department Press Office

By Allan Lengel

The Justice Department is getting a new mouthpiece.

Devlin Barrett of the Wall Street Journal reports that Brian Fallon, a longtime spokesman for Sen. Charles Schumer (D., N.Y.) and the Senate Democrats, will head up the press office, replacing Tracy Schmaler who left in March.

Fallon steps in at an interesting time when the department has come under fire for its aggressive tactics in investigating media leaks.

To read more click here.


Justice Department Says It Alerted Fox News to Surveillance of Reporter in 2010

Steve Neavling 

The revelation last week that the Justice Department was spying on a Fox News reporter provoked a response of shock and outrage from the network.

Turns out, the news shouldn’t have been all that surprising.

The Washington Post reports that federal prosecutors alerted Rosen by email and sent a certified letter to Fox’s parent company in 2010.

“The government provided notification of those subpoenas nearly three years ago by certified mail, facsimile, and e-mail,” according to the law enforcement official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the case is ongoing.

News Corps. denies ever receiving a notice.

“We do not have a record of ever having received it,” a company spokesman told The Post.