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Archive for March 25th, 2009

Hollywood Comes to D.C. to Film FBI Pilot Show

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
WASHINGTON — They often call Washington Hollywood on the Potomac.

But Wednesday Hollywood came to the Potomac, just north of the Key Bridge in Georgetown to film an explosion in a boat for a tv pilot “Washington Field”.

The tv drama centers on the FBI’s specialty unit the National Capital Response Squad. To read more about the show click here.

Relationship Between FBI and Arab and Muslim Communities Continues to Slide

The relationship between the FBI and the Muslim and Arab communities has been deteriorating as of late. Too bad. So much progress hasd been made in the post 9/11 era. It’s of no benefit to either side for this relationship to continue on the down slide. No benefit at all. It’s time to have constructive dialogue and patch things up.

la-mosque2

By Alexandra Marks
The Christian Science Monitor

Law enforcement efforts to root out home-grown terrorists are jeopardized by deteriorating relations between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Muslim and Arab-American communities.

The situation began last fall when the FBI quietly withdrew formal relations with all local chapters of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), one of the largest Muslim American civil rights organizations. The FBI cited “a number of distinct narrow issues” that it has refused to make public.

The situation worsened in February, when it became public that the FBI had planted an informant at a California mosque who, a coalition of more than a dozen Muslim American groups charges, actively tried to recruit terrorists.

Last week, the coalition accused the FBI of engaging in “McCarthy-era tactics” and announced it was considering suspending all ties with the FBI unless it made public its concerns with CAIR and “reassessed its use of agent provocateurs in Muslim communities.”

The FBI would not comment, except to issue a statement saying: “Limiting honest dialogue, especially when complex issues are on the table, is generally not an effective advocacy strategy.”

For Full Story

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Security For Federal Judges Improves

us-marshall2Good news for federal judges who put their lives on the line going up against some of the nation’s toughest criminals and angry litigants who can get unhinged. Protection has improved. Not long ago the Marshal Service was under attack for not promptly investigating threats against judges.

Matthew Barakat
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Four years after the husband and mother of a federal judge were murdered in their home by a disgruntled litigant, federal marshals have dramatically increased resources dedicated to judicial security to keep pace with an increased number of threats.

At a ceremony Tuesday, the U.S. Marshals Service highlighted the new efforts to protect federal judges and prosecutors. Since September 2007, the work has been coordinated out of a secure Threat Management Center at its headquarters in Crystal City.

U.S. District Judge Joan Lefkow of Chicago prodded Congress to increase funding for security after her husband and mother were killed in 2005 by an unemployed electrician whose lawsuit had been thrown out. She had also received death threats from a white supremacist.

Judge Lefkow said at the ceremony that judicial security is “so much improved over what it was before. … I can only hope this will prevent another incident such as ours.”

The ceremony formally dedicated the Threat Management Center’s conference room in Judge Lefkow’s name and in memory of her husband, Michael Lefkow, and mother, Donna Humphrey.

The Marshals Service said its judicial security efforts have improved significantly the past few years, thanks in part to millions of dollars in new funding from Congress.
For Full Story

Homeland Sec. Adviser Admits ICE Needs To Improve Treatment of Immigrant Detainees

ice2By Dora Schriro
For USA TODAY
WASHINGTON — For some time, concerns have been expressed about immigration detention, medical care and the general treatment of ICE detainees. We are beginning to see progress, even in the midst of ICE’s swift ramp-up since its inception in 2003, but I believe we have a good deal more we can do.

Fortunately, my boss agrees with me. Shortly after being confirmed, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano recognized an urgent need to closely examine immigration detention.

She created a new position within ICE to focus exclusively on the significant growth in immigration detention over the last five years and the conditions of detention, including detainee health care.

Secretary Napolitano selected me to serve as her special adviser to review detention strategies and detainee health care. I will conduct a thoughtful review, drawing from my extensive experience. My charge is to work with others to identify and capitalize on opportunities to improve the detention operations of ICE.

To Read More

Mexico’s Public Enemy #1; “Shorty” Guzman

FBI Investigating Cicero Police in Illinois

cicero_header1This town has a history. Yes, this is where infamous gangster Al Capone set up shop to escape the Chicago Police. Now the FBI is looking at the Cicero Police and the allegations are none too flattering. Al Capone would be proud of the department.

By STEVE WARMBIR
Chicago Sun-Times
CHICAGO — Federal authorities are investigating several Cicero police officers for allegedly trying to thwart FBI agents running surveillance on an Outfit associate and high-ranking member of the Outlaws motorcycle gang who ran a pawn shop in town, the Chicago Sun-Times has learned.

Cicero police allegedly ran car license plates, pulled over cars they suspected were driven by federal agents and tried to find hidden surveillance cameras around the business of Mark Polchan, according to recently unsealed court records.

Polchan is awaiting trial on charges he bombed a business for the Outfit.

Cicero officers and Polchan also are accused by prosecutors of engaging in sexual acts with prostitutes in Polchan’s business, called Goldberg’s, which was under video and audio surveillance by federal authorities. Prosecutors brought the matter up to counter Polchan’s claim that he is a good family man.

The Cicero police officers under investigation are not named in the court documents.

In one secretly recorded conversation between Polchan and one of the officers in 2007, the officer is quoting telling him, “Alright, I got good news. We ran all the f – – – – – – plates on all the f – – – – – – cars over here. They all came back to f – – – – – – people,” meaning not federal agents.

For Full Story