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Tag: New Jersey

FBI Identified Suspect Who Made Threats against New Jersey Synagogues

By Steve Neavling

The FBI has identified the man accused of making a “broad threat” against New Jersey synagogues, which prompted the bureau to issue a rare warning last week.

The FBI’s Newark Field Office said the man no longer poses a danger to the community. 

“Upon receipt of threat information against an unspecified New Jersey area synagogue, the FBI notified community leaders and our law enforcement partners,” the Newark office said in a statement. “We identified the source of the threat who no longer poses a danger to the community.”

It wasn’t immediately clear if the man was arrested. 

According to The New York Times, the man is from New Jersey and was acting alone.

“He expressed radical, extremist views and ideology, as well as an extreme amount of hate against the Jewish community,” James E. Dennehy, special agent in charge of the Newark Field Office, said. 

Threats and harassment of Jews and Jewish institutions have been on the rise nationwide since rapper Kanye West made antisemitic posts on social media.

FBI Finds No Signs of Jimmy Hoffa Under New Jersey Bridge

James R. Hoffa

By Steve Neavling

Once again, a search for the missing Teamsters boss Jimmy Hoffa uncovered no evidence of his whereabouts. 

In the latest search, the FBI searched land under a New Jersey bridge, the Pulaski Skyway, the bureau said Thursday.

Hoffa, one of America’s most powerful labor leaders, has been missing for 47 years. Hoffa was last seen outside of a Michigan restaurant in 1975 and was legally dead in 1982. There have been dozens of searches for his body since then. 

The latest search was prompted by a deathbed statement by a man who says he buried Hoffa’s body in a steel drum. 

Agents scoured for evidence in October and June. 

“Nothing of evidentiary value was discovered during that search,” Special Agent Mara R. Schneider, a spokeswoman for the FBI’s Detroit Field Office, told Deadline Detroit. “While we do not currently anticipate any additional activity at the site, the F.B.I. will continue to pursue any viable lead in our efforts to locate Mr. Hoffa.”

James E. Dennehy Named Special Agent in Charge of FBI’s Newark Field Office

FBI’s Newark Field Office. Photo via FBI

By Steve Neavling

James E. Dennehy has been appointed to serve as the special agent in charge of the FBI’s Newark Field Office in New Jersey. 

Most recently, Dennehy had been serving as the special agent in charge of the Counterintelligence and Cyber Division of the New York Field Office.

Dennehy began working as a special agent in 2002, when he was assigned to the New York office to handle counterintelligence cases. In addition, he was on the SWAT team and was certified as a crisis management coordinator. 

Dennehy was promoted to supervisory special agent of the counterintelligence and counter-proliferation squad in New York’s Hudson Valley and White Plains resident agencies in 2013. 

Two years later, he transferred to FBI headquarters, where he was a unit chief in the Counterproliferation Center. In 2016, Dennehy was promoted to an assistant section chief of the center. While at the center, Dennehy helped the bureau “thwart foreign adversaries trying to obtain export-controlled, sensitive technologies related to weapons of mass destruction and missile, space, and conventional weapons systems,” the FBI said in a news release.

In 2017, Dennehy was back in the New York Field Office as the assistant special agent in charge over crisis management, firearms, operations command, recruiting, private sector engagement, community outreach, and several other programs.

In 2018, Dennehy became chief of staff to the executive assistant director of the National Security Branch at FBI headquarters. In addition, he was the section chief of the NSB’s Executive Staff Section.

A year later, Dennehy was appointed special agent in charge of the Intelligence and Surveillance Division of the New York Field Office. He later became New York’s special agent in charge of the Counterintelligence and Cyber Division.

Dennehy received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Villanova University. Before joining the bureau, he served as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps for seven years and deployed to Haiti, Liberia, and the Adriatic Sea.

New Jersey Man Admits to Impersonating Federal Agents and Owning homemade Weapons

By Steve Neavling

A New Jersey man pleaded guilty Wednesday to unlawfully possessing a homemade short-barrel rifle, a silencer and five counterfeit federal law enforcement badges. 

Jeffrey Backlund, 57, of Waretown, is scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 13. 

Federal agents first learned of Backlund while investigating a domestic disturbance. Law enforcement officers obtained a search warrant for his house on Sept. 6 and found a gun with no serial number or branding, a silencer and fake ID badges.

The badges were for the U.S. Marshals Service, ATF and the DEA. 

Numerous agencies, including the FBI, ATF, DEA and U.S. Marshals Service, assisted in the investigation. 

Grand Jury Finds Federal Officer Justified in Killing Fugitive Who Shot at Him

By Steve Neavling

A grand jury found that a member of a U.S. Marshals fugitive task force did nothing wrong when he fatally shot a fugitive who shot at him and fellow officers at a New Jersey apartment, NJ Advance Media reports.

The New Jersey Attorney General’s Office of Public Integrity and Accountability investigated the case and presented it to the grand jury. 

The federal officer was identified as ICE Deportation Officer Sean Clayton. 

The shooting occurred on July 8, 2020, when Clayton and others on the U.S. Marshals Service NY/NJ Regional Fugitive Task Force arrived at an apartment to arrest Canty, who was wanted on a parole violation and was suspected of fatally beating his former girlfriend in Harlem.

Once inside the apartment, the task force took several occupants, including children, to a front room. 

“Officers then heard and observed a person in a rear bedroom, recognizing him as Mr. Canty. The officers asked Mr. Canty to walk towards them, but he did not comply. Instead he closed the bedroom door,” the attorney general’s office said in a statement.

When the task force opened a bedroom door, Canty was pointing a gun at officers. 

“Mr. Canty then fired in the direction of the officers. Officer Clayton returned fire, fatally wounding Mr. Canty,” the statement said.

Canty, who died at the scene, had a loaded 9mm handgun. 

“After considering the facts, evidence, and testimony from the (Office of Public Integrity and Accountability) investigation, the state grand jury found the actions of the officer were justified and therefore no charges should be brought against the officer,” according to the attorney general’s office statement. “An officer may use deadly force in New Jersey when the officer reasonably believes it is immediately necessary to protect the officer or another person from imminent danger of death or serious bodily harm.”

Deathbed Statement Revives Search for Jimmy Hoffa’s Body in New Jersey

James R. Hoffa

By Steve Neavling

Here we go again. 

The seemingly endless search for the body of union boss Jimmy Hoffa took FBI agents to a former landfill in New Jersey under the Pulaski Skyway, The New York Times reports.

The search on Oct. 25 and 26 was prompted by a deathbed statement by a man who says he buried Hoffa’s body in a steel drum. 

“F.B.I. personnel from the Newark and Detroit field offices completed the survey and that data is currently being analyzed,” FBI spokeswoman and Special Agent Mara R. Schneider said Thursday. 

Hoffa was last seen outside of a Michigan restaurant in 1975 and was legally dead in 1982. There have been dozens of searches for his body since then. 

Dan Moldea, an investigative reporter who has researched the Hoffa case for decades, said the latest search is “100 percent” credible.

“A very prominent person disappeared from a public place 46 years ago and was never seen again,” Moldea said Thursday. “This case has to be solved.”

The FBI searched the same location in the 1970s but found nothing. 

“They had no idea where to start looking,” Moldea said.

Trump Charged Secret Service $10,000+ for Agents to Stay in Rooms at Golf Club

By Steve Neavling

The Secret Service was billed more than $10,000 for guest rooms that agents used in May at former President Trump’s golf club in New Jersey, The Washington Post reports.

Although the bill wasn’t itemized, it appears that the Secret Service will pay $566.64 per night for 18 nights in a four-bedroom “cottage” at Trump Bedminster. 

In all, the Secret Service has spent more than $50,000 for agents to stay in rooms since Trump left office in January. 

The Secret Service also was charged nearly $35,000 to rent portable toilets for four months at Bedminster this year.

Since Trump took office, the Secret Service has been charged extravagant fees to protect him. 

In 2017, the Secret Service couldn’t afford to pay hundreds of agents who were responsible for protecting Trump’s large family.

Trump ordered the Secret Service to continue protecting 13 members of his family and at least three appointees beyond his first presidential term. 

FBI Agents Fatally Shoot Kidnapping Suspect, Rescue Boy at New Jersey Apartment

By Steve Neavling

FBI agents rescued a 17-year-old boy from a New Jersey apartment and fatally shot the man accused of kidnapping him early Wednesday. 

The raid was prompted by the abduction of a teenager who was reported missing after he failed to return home from work, The Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

The boy’s father told authorities that he received a ransom demand. 

FBI agents came under fire after they tracked the boy and suspect to the New Jersey apartment. They returned fire, killing the suspect. 

The boy was unharmed. 

The FBI’s Philadelphia Field Office is investigating the kidnapping.