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Archive for November 20th, 2009

Will Gotti Prosecutors Face Legal Dilemma: Try Try Try Try Try Again???

John Gotti Jr./youtube

John Gotti Jr./youtube

By Allan Lengel
For Sphere.com (A New AOL News Site)

Legally, there’s no limit. But all the same, prosecutors in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New York working the case of mobster John Gotti Jr. must be wondering: When a defendant gets off thanks to repeated mistrials, how many times can you retry him before it’s time to concede defeat?

Gotti’s ongoing trial, which began Sept. 21, is his fourth in five years; the previous three ended with their juries deadlocked. And on Thursday, prosecutors got some unsettling news. The jury, which has been deliberating for seven days, wrote U.S. District Judge Kevin Castel to inform him that “we are unable to reach a unanimous verdict,” according to the New York Daily News.

As is typical, the judge directed the jury to keep deliberating on the three counts facing Gotti, which include allegations of racketeering and murder. The jury was off Friday and plans to resume deliberations Monday.

For Full Story

SATURDAY UPDATE

Teen Pleads to Killing Border Patrol Agent in California

Border PatrolBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A 17-year-old pleaded guilty Friday in San Diego to fatally shooting  a Border Patrol Agent during a robbery attempt on July 23 at the U.S.-Mexico border, the San Diego Tribune reported.

Christian Daniel Castro-Alvarez admitted  in U.S. District Court that he  crossed the  Mexican border into the U.S. and tried to rob Border Patrol Agent Robert Rosas near the town of Campo, Calif., court documents show.

To Read more details click here.

Read Guilty Plea

UPDATE ON OTHER STORIES

FBI to Probe Ark. Cop’s Use of Taser on 10-Year-Old Girl

taser gunBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

What do you get when you have a cop, a stun gun and an unruly 10-year-old girl who doesn’t want to take a shower?

Answer: An FBI investigation.

The Associated Press is reporting that the Ozark, Ark., Mayor Vernon McDaniel and the city Police Chief Jim Noggle announced on Friday that the FBI was investigating a Nov. 11 incident  in which officer Officer Dustin Bradshaw allegedly used a stun gun on a 10-year-old girl.

He was been suspended with pay for a week for not having a video camera attached to his Taster.

The AP reported that the mother had summoned police because her daughter refused to take a shower. The mother supposedly suggested the officer use the stun gun after the girl became violent and verbally combative. He apparently complied with the request.

Atty. Gen. Eric Holder Tells Detroit Crowd Arab-American and Muslim Rights Must be Protected

The Justice Department and FBI need to continually work on the relationship with the Arab-American and Muslim communities no matter how strained things get. It’s good for both sides. And no better place to make a speech like this than in the Detroit area, home to one of the largest, if not thee largest, Arab-American populations in the country.

detroit1

BY NIRAJ WARIKOO
FREE PRESS STAFF WRITER

DETROIT — Reaching out to Arab Americans and Muslims, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said in a Detroit speech Thursday night that their full rights must be protected as the country battles security threats.

“This is not blind adherence to political correctness,” Holder told hundreds at the Detroit Marriott in the Renaissance Center. “It is devotion to our founding documents.”

He said that it’s vital that all ethnic and religious groups in America be treated equally. He also said racial profiling was bad policy that breeds mistrust and division.

“For the last nine months, I’ve heard from Muslim and Arab Americans who feel uneasy about their relationship with their government, who feel isolated and discriminated against by law enforcement,” Holder said. “It is inconsistent with what America is all about.”

For Full Story

FBI and Postal Investigators Arrest 26 in Scheme to Defraud FCC’s Program for Hard of Hearing and Deaf

fcc
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Twenty six people around the nation were indicted in a scheme to rip off millions of dollars from the Federal Communications Commission’s program that allows the deaf and hard of hearing to communicate with the hearing through special video equipment.

FBI agents and Postal Inspectors from states including New York, Florida, Oregon, Texas and Maryland arrested the defendants in the case on Thursday, federal authorities said.

The defendants were people involved in companies that got reimbursed for providing the FCC’s  Video Relay Service, authorities said, adding that they allegedly filed tens of millions of dollars in bogus bills.

Read more »

2 More Philly Cops Stripped of Police Powers in Ongoing FBI Probe

philly police badge
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
Two more Philadelphia cops have been stripped of their police powers as part of an ongoing FBI/local probe into perjury and misconduct in the department, the Philadelphia Daily News reported.

The department’s Internal Affairs Bureau took the action against the officers,  bringing to five the number of cops who have been stripped of their police powers since February, the Daily News reported.

The paper reported earlier this year that one of the officers allegedly told an informant to lie about drug buys so he could obtain search warrants for homes of suspected dealers.

To read more click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Column: 9/11 Trials in NY Really About the “Word War”

Morning in ManhattanBy Eugene Robinson
The Washington Post

WASHINGTON — Critics of Attorney General Eric Holder’s decision to bring the self-proclaimed mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks and four other accused terrorists to New York for trial can’t seriously believe the city will have trouble handling the expected “trial of the century” hoopla.

The critics can’t really think a judge is going to give Khalid Sheik Mohammed an open microphone to spew his jihadist views, or fear that a jury — sitting just blocks from Ground Zero — will look for reasons to let an accused mass murderer off on some technicality.

Everyone knows that the bloodthirsty blowhard — whom officials often refer to by his initials, KSM — is never going to see the light of day. The uproar is really about the word “war.” Outrage is being voiced by those who worry that Holder and President Obama are abandoning the Bush-era doctrine of a “war on terrorism” that must at all times be conducted by military means.

To Read More