Links

Columnists



Site Search


Entire (RSS)
Comments (RSS)

Archive Calendar

September 2021
S M T W T F S
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930  

Guides

How to Become a Bounty Hunter



Tag: Miami

Detroit Fed Prosecutor Doesn’t Want Names in Escort Service “Black Book” Released

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A good old fashion “black book” prostitution scandal is brewing in U.S. District Court in downtown Detroit.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Blackwell has filed papers urging the court to deny a Florida defense attorney access to tens of thousands of customers’ names on a list of a Miami escort service that wound up getting busted in Detroit last summer, the Detroit Free Press reports. Customers paid up to $500 an hour.

The list also includes dates, phone numbers and sexual preferences, the Free Press reported.

The paper reported that the attorney wants the names to interview and check backgrounds of customers to prepare for the case. The prosecution is not buying that.

“In fact, it is quite conceivable that the sole purpose of this request is not to adequately prepare for trial, but only to intimidate, threaten or harass potential witnesses for the government … and that he is seeking to exploit this matter in the media with such aim,” the prosecutor wrote, according to the Free Press.

To read more click here.

Palestinian Pleads to Plotting to Buy Stolen Military Weapons in FBI Sting

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A Palestinian man pleaded guilty Thursday in Miami in a plot to acquire and transport stolen military weapons in what turned out to be an FBI sting.

Abdalaziz Aziz Hamayel, 23, of the West Bank, pleaded guilty to trying to buy from an undercover agent what he thought were stolen M-16s, AK-47s and explosive materials, including hand grenades and improvised explosive devices (IEDs), the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced.

Sentencing is set for Feb. 22. Another conspirator in the case still faces trial, authorities said.

Authorities said were told by a confidential source in April 2009 that the two men wanted to purchase large quantities of automatic weapons. The source then introduced them to an undercover agent who posed as a weapons supplier.

At their first meeting with the undercover agent the following month, the men requested 200 to 300 fully-automatic assault rifles that they planned to ship out of the country, authorities charged. They also asked for grenades and homemade bombs with remote detonation capabilities.

More on the Miami Fed Prosecutor Who Got in Hot Water for Jumping in Pool With Boxers

Boiling Water on GasBy Allan Lengel
For AOL News

Depending how you look at it, Miami federal prosecutor Sean Cronin landed in hot water when his privates went public. Or when he first plunged into a cool pool at a watering hole wearing just his boxer shorts.

Whatever the case, one thing led to another on Sunday afternoon at a beer, chicken wings and sushi joint overlooking the Miami River. A mother covered her daughter’s eyes. Then the Miami cops showed up and arrested Cronin, 35, on a felony charge of lewd and lascivious exhibition and a misdemeanor count of resisting a police officer without violence.

Now it’s in the hands of the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office, which is trying to figure out whether to move forward or drop the whole matter.

Sean Cronin/miami-dade corrections

Sean Cronin/miami-dade corrections

“It’s too early to tell if any charges are going to be filed,” Terry Chavez, a spokeswoman for the State Attorney’s Office, told AOL News. “We have to bring witnesses in and see if [Cronin] and his lawyer want to make statements. It’s a brand-new case. Our lawyers are looking into it like any other case.”

Cronin’s lawyer, Joel Denaro, told The Miami Herald the charges are “beyond absurd. He went swimming in his boxer shorts, for God’s sake. He did nothing wrong.” Attempts to reach Denaro and Cronin, who works in the U.S. Attorney’s Appellate Division, were unsuccessful. The U.S. Attorney’s Office did not return calls for comment.

To read more click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

A Costly Dip in the Pool for Fed Prosecutor Who is Arrested

miami-mapBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean Cronin’s decision to take a little dip in the pool has created a major headache.

The Miami Herald reports Cronin was arrested Sunday in Miami  after a mother and young girl accused him of being indecent when he jumped into the pool at Finnegan’s River, a local bar overlooking the Miami River and downtown, wearing his boxers.

The Herald reported that the 35-year-old prosecutor was charged with a felony — lewd and lascivious behavior in front of a minor.

The arrest form said the girl and her mother, who were in the pool, said Cronin’s privates were exposed after getting out of the pool and the mother had to cover up her daughter’s eyes, the Herald reported.

Cronin, who is assigned to the appellate division in Miami, tried fleeing, but officers caught him, the Herald said. He was arrested about 2:30 p.m.

Cronin’s lawyer, Joel Denaro, told the Herald that the charges are “beyond absurd.”

“He went swimming in his boxer shorts, for God’s sake,” Denaro told The Miami Herald. “He did nothing wrong.”

The U.S. attorney’s office in Miami declined comment, according to the Herald.

Jury to Begin Deliberating in Trial of Ex-Miami DEA Chief Tom Raffanello

miami map istockBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

And now comes the jury deliberations.

A Miami jury will begin deliberating Thursday in the trial of Tom Raffanello, the former head of the Miami DEA, who is accused of conspiracy and obstructing an SEC investigation by shredding thousands of records to protect his boss — accused swindler Allen Stanford, according to the Miami Herald.

Rafanello, the former chief of security for Stanford Financial group, is on trial along with the company’s technology officer Bruce Perraud. He has denied wrongdoing.

To read the full story click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

FBI Accuses Miami Officer of Scamming Crime Stoppers Program

We always hope members of law enforcement can be innovative and industrious. But not in this way.

miami-crime-stoppers

BY JENNIFER LEBOVICH AND JAY WEAVER
Miami Herald
MIAMI — Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers doles out cash for tipsters who turn in criminals.

But one of their own — a Miami officer taking tips — used the inside information to rip off thousands of dollars in reward money, authorities said.

Officer Wayne Fortella, an 11-year Miami police veteran, was charged Wednesday with wire fraud and conspiracy in Miami federal court. Two of his friends, who allegedly collected the Crime Stoppers payments at Wachovia banks, were also charged. One is at large.

Cellphone calls and text messages between Fortella and each of the two other men — with details for picking up the rewards — helped authorities track the trio.

For Full Story

Madoff May be Gone But Scammers Still Abound

handcuffedBernie Madoff may have had the most infamous Ponzi scheme of all time (short of Charles Ponzi), but there are still investors out there getting bilked of their retirement savings and other funds by scammers. First, we have Ponzi schemer Donald Manning sentenced to over 5 years in prison for taking $4.5 million in cash from retirees. Then we have Eric Hauser, former head securities trader and founder of the Lancer Group, manipulating stock values to the tune of $200 million in investor losses. Kudos to the prsoecutors  in these two – this is the last thing our economy needs right now.


By Mike Allen
San Diego Business Journal
Donald Manning, a former president of an investment firm that bilked some $4.5 million from retirees including members of Manning’s family, was sentenced April 15 to 63 months in federal prison by federal Judge Barry Ted Moskowitz, federal prosecutors said.

Manning, 71, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and fraud charges Jan. 16 in the case that involved two other defendants, Joseph Wayne McCool and Cameron Campbell.

For Full Story

South Florida Business Journal

A former head securities trader pleaded guilty on Tuesday (April 28)  in Miami to charges he participated in a scheme to manipulate trading of stocks owned by the Lancer Group hedge funds.

Investors are estimated to have lost $200 million.

Eric Hauser, 65, was founder and primary manager of the Lancer Group.

It was alleged that, between 1999 and 2003, Lauer and others manipulated the closing market price of thinly traded shell company securities to falsely inflate the value of the Lancer Group hedge funds.

For Full Story

Law Professor Says Justice Dept. Needs a Better Compliance Program

By Professor Ellen S. Podgor
White Collar Crime Prof Blog

justice-logo1A “not guilty” verdict was returned on a drug case in Miami, but what happened during the investigation and prosecution of this case has now resulted in an award of $601,795.88 under the Hyde Amendment.

The Hyde Amendment allows for attorney fees when a “prevailing criminal defendant” can demonstrate “that the position the government took in prosecuting him was vexatious, frivolous, or in bad faith.” (see Order, infra, citing U.S. v. Gilbert).

Hon. Alan S. Gold, in the Southern District of Florida, issued an Order awarding these attorney fees and enjoined the US Attorneys who practice in that court from “engaging in future witness tampering investigation of defense lawyers and team members in any ongoing prosecution before [this judge] without first bringing such matters to [the judge’s] attention in an ex parte proceeding.”

The judge also issued a public reprimand against the US Attorneys office and specifically 2 AUSAs. And it does not end there, as the judge also makes it clear that a disciplinary body needs to review this matter. (Court’s Order – Download 08-20112 (Shaygan) Prosecutorial Misconduct FINAL )

The judge presents a thoughtful Order that gives credit to the USA’s office for taking “immediate efforts to investigate” this matter when it came to light.

To Read More