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Archive for November 9th, 2009

FBI Says No Information that Ft. Hood Shooter Plotted With Others

Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan/dod photo

Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan/dod photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON – The FBI issued a statement Monday on the Fort Hood, Tex., shooting, saying that “at this point there is no information to indicate Major Malik Nidal Hasan had any co-conspirators or was part of a broader terrorist plot.”

“ The investigation to date has not identified a motive, and a number of possibilities remain under consideration,” the statement said.

At the same time, the Washington Post reported that Hasan, who was hospitalized after being shot multiple times, was in  contact via email earlier this year with a  radical cleric in Yemen who has been critical of the U.S. for what he sees as a war against Islam.

“U.S. intelligence agencies intercepted between 10 and 20 e-mails from Maj. Nidal M. Hasan to Anwar al-Aulaqi, a U.S. citizen who once was a spiritual leader at the suburban Virginia mosque where Hasan had worshipped, Rep. Peter Hoekstra (Mich.), the ranking Republican on the House Intelligence Committee, said later Monday,” the Post reported.  “Aulaqi responded to Hasan at least twice, Hoekstra said, but he described the responses as “innocent.”

Read more »

Jefferson’s Lawyer Thinks He Should Get Less than 10 Years — Not the 27 to 33 Years Prosecutors Want

William J. Jefferson

William J. Jefferson

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Ex-Rep. William  Jefferson, who is painfully aware of “the stain on his honor”,  should get a sentence of less than 10 years, not the 27 to 33 years recommended by the prosecution, Jefferson’s lawyer wrote in a motion filed Monday.

“No court has ever imposed a sentence longer than 100 months in a case involving a United States Congressman, even a United States Congressman convicted of bribery after a trial,” Jefferson’s attorney Robert P. Trout wrote just days before Friday’s sentencing in Alexandria, Va.

” In light of all of the facts and circumstances set forth… the defense urges the court to impose a sentence of less than 10 years in this case,” Trout wrote. Jefferson was convicted in the summer of 11 of 16 counts of corruption.

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Prosecution in Closing Arguments Says Gotti Ran Massive Cocaine Trafficking Operation

John Gotti Jr./trutv.com

John Gotti Jr./trutv.com

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

It’s now down to the final lap: closing arguments in racketeering trial of John Gotti Jr. Prosecutors hope they can nail it this time after seeing the last three trials end in a mistrial.

On Monday, during closing arugments, the prosecution told a federal jury in New York that Gotti built and “ran a massive cocaine trafficking operation”, according to the New York Daily News.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jay Trezevant told jurors Gotti did “whatever was necessary” to run the drug operation, the Daily News reported. The defense was scheduled to deliver its closing in the afternoon.

To read more click here.

FBI’s Shawn Henry Talks About Prospects of Cyber Jihad Attacks

D.C. Delegate Pushes for Creation of DA to Take Away Local Duties From D.C. U.S. Attorney

Eleanor Holmes Norton/official photo

Eleanor Holmes Norton/official photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Under the category of “things that won’t go away” comes another bill to try and get a local prosecutor for the District of Columbia. Right now the U.S. Attorney handles both federal and local crimes.

D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton has once again introduced a bill  that would create a local district attorney post, according to BLT: The Blog of LegalTimes.

“There is no law enforcement issue of greater importance to our residents, or on which we have less say, than the prosecution of local crimes here,” the legal blog quoted Norton as saying in a statement while introducing the bill last week.

“A U.S. Attorney has no business in the local criminal affairs of a local jurisdiction,” she added. “This bill simply would make the District’s prosecutor accountable to the people by electing him or her, as elsewhere in the nation.”

BLT says Norton introduced similar bills in 2003, 2006 and 2007.

Column: Homeland Security Falling Behind By Resisting Social Media

Chris Battle

Chris Battle

By Chris Battle
Security DeBrief
WASHINGTON — I just returned from a fantastic briefing by Price Floyd, the principal deputy assistant secretary for public affairs at the Department of Defense.

Under his guidance, DoD has recently launched a new website — Defense.gov — that integrates all of the latest social media tools into DoD’s website and overall communications strategies.

More on that insightful presentation soon, but I wanted to comment on something that really stood out — just how far behind the Department of Homeland Security is falling in the public affairs arena by resisting the inevitable need to engage the social media landscape.

To Read More

FBI’s Rich Kolko and Brian Hale Leaving FBI Mothership

Rich Koko (left) and FBI's Jeff McCrehan at going away party
Rich Kolko (left) and FBI’s Jeff McCrehan at going away party/ticklethewire.com photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
WASHINGTON —  Two key people in the FBI’s National Press Office  have just left the mothership to take on duties elsewhere.

FBI special agent Rich Kolko, chief of the FBI’s National Press Office, is moving up to the FBI’s New York  office to head  the Office of Public Affairs
and work under assistant director in charge Joe Demarest.

Brian P. Hale of the National Press Office is moving over to U.S.  Immigration and Customs Enforcement to become Director of  the Office of Public Affairs.   Both  Hale and Kolko start their new jobs on Monday and celebrated their departure at a party at the Capitol City Brewing Company in downtown D.C. last Thursday night.

Brian Hale /ticklethewire.com photo

Brian Hale /ticklethewire.com photo

Kolko has had an interesting career path. He worked at CNN as an assignment editor and producer before joining the FBI.
He worked the FBI’s counterterrorism Fly Team and worked nearly 10 years in Atlanta primarily on terrorism issues.

In 2005, he was appointed chief of the FBI National Press Office under assistant Director John Miller, who recently left to move over to another agency. Earlier in his life, he served as an Aviator in the Navy.

At the FBI Press Office, Hale handled international and national media inquiries dealing with counterterrorism, weapons of mass destruction and operational technology.

He also served as the Office of Public Affairs primary media training instructor.

Before joining the FBI, he worked as the press relations manager for the D.C.-based international law firm Patton Boggs. Before that, he worked as a field producer for ABC News’ 20/20.