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Tag: Milwaukee

FBI Foils Terrorist-Style Plot to Kill Dozens of People in Milwaukee Masonic Center

Samy Mohamed Mamzeh

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI foiled a terrorist-style plot by three Muslims to use automatic weapons to kill dozens of people at a Masonic center in Milwaukee, the Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel reports. 

Authorities arrested Samy Mohamed Mamzeh, who is accused off planning the attack and “eliminating everyone” in the building.

The 23-year-old was charged with possessing a machine gun and silencer, but no terrorism counts were included, at least not yet.

“We are Muslims, defending Muslim religion, we are on our own, my dear, we have organized our own group,” Hamzeh said, according to the criminal complaint.

“Such operations will increase in America, when they hear about it. The people will be scared and the operations will increase, and there will be problems all over,… this will lead to people clashing with each other. This way we will be igniting it. I mean we are marching at the front of the war,” he said, according to the complaint.

It was a “detailed plan to commit a mass shooting intended to kill dozens of people,” said acting U.S. Attorney George J. Hannstad.

“(Hamzeh) also said that he wanted this mass shooting to be ‘known the world over’ and to ‘ignite’ broader clashes. It is difficult to calculate the injury and loss of life that was prevented by concerned citizens coming forward and by the tireless efforts of the FBI and the Joint Terrorism Task Force.”

Hamzeh didn’t appear to be working with an established terrorist group and instead said, “We have our own group, not with Hamas, … we are here defending Islam, young people together join to defend Islam, that’s it, that is what our intention is.”

FBI Task Force Cracks Down on 2 Gangs in Milwaukee

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI teamed up with police to crack down on gang activity in Milwaukee, resulting in eight search warrants and more than a dozen arrests beginning just after dawn Tuesday.

The MPD-FBI Gang Task Force recovered 10 guns, drugs and tens of thousands of dollars in alleged drug money, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports. 

By Tuesday night, authorities were still searching for four men.

The focus of the task force was ATK, or Atkinson Ave., and HPT, or Hustlers, Pimps and Thugs.

“The hope is to significantly impact these two violent street gangs, to disrupt their operations, so we can restore some order to the neighborhoods where they operate,” said Capt. Thomas Stigler of the Milwaukee Police Department.

Justice Department Investigating Milwaukee U.S. Attorney for Alleged Misuse of Credit Card

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

U.S. Attorney James Santelle is under investigation on accusations that he misused the government-assigned credit card and violated a law barring federal employees from some political activities, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

The Department of Justice is leading the investigation, which started more than a  year ago following a routine audit.

Investigators are trying to determine whether the credit card was used for non-official use, like food.

Santelle, who works in Milwaukee, declined to comment.

“I am not in a position to comment other than those matters are both with the Department of Justice,” he said Monday.

ATF Investigates Alleged Affair Between Agent, Prosecutor During Storefront Investigations

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An ATF agent and a prosecutor had a secret affair while working together on controversial storefront operations in Georgia and are under investigation following allegations they illegally helped in informant, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports. 

The storefront investigations were the subject of intense scrutiny following alarming reports by the Journal Sentinel that showed numerous problems.

ATF said it is investigating the relationship between Assistant U.S. Attorney Cameron Ippolito and ATF Special Agent Lou Valoze.

“The department takes these allegations seriously and is taking active and appropriate steps with regard to the employees involved,” said ATF spokesman Patrick Rodenbush, who declined to elaborate further because it is a personnel matter.

According to the Journal Sentinel, the ATF is investigating whether Valoze and Ippolito presented false information to Homeland Security for a visa for an informant.

Other Stories of Interest

Ex-Head of Milwaukee Office Resigns Amid Allegations of Encouraging Agent to Lie

Teresa Carlson/fbi photo

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Teresa L. Carlson, the former Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Office in Milwaukee, has retired from the bureau while facing serious allegations that she encouraged an agent to lie under oath and lied when asked about it, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports.

Carlson is under investigation for her handling of the case of Justin Slaby, a wounded veteran who was trying to become an FBI agent but was denied and later sued.

Carlson is accused of encouraging an underling to lie about the case in court.

She was facing termination proceedings when she retired.

Ex-Special Agent in Charge of Milwaukee’s FBI Office Accused of Pressuring subordinate to lie under oath

Teresa Carlson/fbi photo

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The former head of the Milwaukee FBI office is accused of urging an agent to commit perjury and grilling subordinates for talking with investigators, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

The Office of the Inspector General believes Teresa Carlson likely lied when she was questioned and may have violated federal law by telling an agent to lie under oath.

Despite the findings, the FBI declines to discuss whether she was disciplined, and the Justice Department opted not to prosecute.

Carlson is the acting deputy assistant director of Facilities and Logistics Services Division.

According to Inspector General Michael Horowitz, Carlson “conducted herself unprofessionally and exhibited extremely poor judgment” when she allegedly told Special Agent Mark Crider to lie under oath.

 

Robert J. Shields Becomes Head of FBI’s Milwaukee Office

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Robert J. Shields, who began his FBI career as a special agent in Chicago, is the newest head of the FBI’s Milwaukee office.

The Associated Press reports that Shields, who most recently served as chief inspector at FBI headquarters, officially began his job Monday.

He replaces Teresa Carlson, who was moved to Washington last year.

Shields began his career tackling white-collar crime and later handled computer forensics.

ATF Comes Under Investigation for Handling of Undercover Storefront Stings in 4 Cities

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The ATF is under fire for botched storefront stings and other undercover operations across the country.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Inspector General Michael Horowitz opened an investigation into storefront stings in Milwaukee, Pensacola, St. Louis and Wichita, Kan.

The agency is already under investigation for its handling of a controversial drug-running probe, Operation Fast and Furious

Horowitz said the investigation will “examine possible systemic deficiencies in ATF’s storefront operations policies, and evaluate the effectiveness of the Monitored Case Program as an oversight tool in these operations.”

One of the problems with Operation Fast and Furious, he said, was the lack of oversight.