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Archive for February 8th, 2010

Fed Judge’s Tough Message to China: “Stop Sending Your Spies Here”

confidential-photo
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A former aerospace engineer for Boeing was sentenced Monday in California to 15 years and 8 months  in prison for stealing restricted technologies and trade secrets on behalf of China that included information related to the Space Shuttle program and the Delta IV rocket, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

U.S. District Judge Cormac J. Carney in Santa Ana, Calif.,  handed down the tough sentence to Dongfan “Greg” Chung, 73, of Orange, Calif., saying he wanted to send a message to China to “stop sending your spies here,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Authorities charged that Chung had acted as agent for China for more than three decades while first employed by Rockwell in its space and defense unit, which was later acquired by Boeing.

Chung, a native of China who is a naturalized United States citizen, held a “secret” security clearance. He retired from the company in 2002, but returned a year later to Boeing as a contract until 2006, authorities said.

“The FBI and our partners in the intelligence community are committed to stopping those intent on stealing American technology, whether they are motivated by money or allegiance to their native country, as in the case of Mr. Chung,” Steven M. Martinez, head of the Los Angeles FBI office,  said in a statement.

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Detroit Airport Police Taser Ticketless Man Who Ran Past Checkpoint

Detroit airport/michigan.org photo
Detroit airport/michigan.org photo

Update: Tuesday 12:40 a.m.: The FBI charged Kaylan Policherla, 27, of  Ohio with violating airport security requirements, according to the Detroit News.
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

In the wake of the Christmas Day incident, an ounce of trouble at Detroit airport gets a whole lot of notice.

The Detroit News reports that at  7:45 a.m. on Monday airport police at the McNamara Terminal at Detroit Metropolitan Airport  tasered a ticketless man who ran past a security checkpoint  and refused to stop.

The Paper reported that authorities “activated the breach alarm, causing metal gates to snap down, isolating the section around Concourse A.”

“It worked really well. This guy had no place to go,” said Michael Conway, airport spokesman, according to the paper.

The paper reported that authorities were questioning the man.

Gotti “Thought He was Dead Meat”; Fired Off Letter to Judge

John Gotti Jr./cbs news

John Gotti Jr./cbs news

By Allan Lengel
For Aol News

John Gotti Jr.’s fourth racketeering trial was a disaster for the prosecution, ending up in another mistrial. But he thought he was going to get convicted and wrote the judge at the onset of jury deliberations in November, griping about his rulings and his attorney’s refusal to let him testify during trial.

“He thought he was dead meat,” said one knowledgeable source, according to the Web site Gang Land News, which requested that the letter be released. “He felt that everything had gone against him and he would be convicted. That’s what spurred him to write the letter.”

The letter was just unsealed Feb. 2 in federal court in New York. In it, Gotti also complained about the judge not granting funding for transcripts and a decision not to allow a witness to testify.

The government tried four times in five years to convict Gotti, the son of the late John Gotti, the boss of the Gambino crime family. Each time the juries deadlocked, resulting in mistrials. Last month, the U.S. attorney’s office officially announced that it would not pursue a fifth trial.

As part of his defense in his trials, Gotti claimed he had left the mob long ago. The prosecution insisted he was lying.

“Make no mistake, I committed crimes in the past, but I left my former life behind over 10 years ago,” Gotti wrote to U.S. District Judge Kevin Castel. “I have served my time and paid my debt to society (I’ve served over 7 years in prison; I’ve paid a $13,000 fine; I forfeited $1.5 million as well as 90 acres in the Poconos and a farm in upstate New York; I paid approximately $400,000 in restitution; I paid back hundreds of thousands of dollars in back taxes …).

To read more click here.

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Obama Terrorism Adviser John Brennan Tiring of Terrorism Being Used as Political Football

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Christmas Incident May Have Had Brief Impact on Airport Gun Seizures

tsa photo

tsa photo

By Allan Lengel
For Aol News

WASHINGTON — It looked as if the Christmas Day bombing attempt in Detroit just may have — at least for a fleeting moment — raised the consciousness of air travelers in the U.S. about bringing guns to the airport.

After finding 37 firearms at airport checkpoints the week of Dec. 21-27, the Transportation Security Administration discovered only 12 the week after. Things were looking hopeful.

Then it jumped back to 20 the week of Jan. 4-10. Not so hopeful.

And then came Jan. 11-17. The TSA said it found only eight guns, the lowest number since it began posting the figures on its Web site May.

But sure enough, the next week TSA reported finding 21 guns. And last week, from Jan. 25-31, it found 17.

For Full Story

Ex-Mo. State Rep. Faces One Last Indignity After Fed Bribery Sentencing

Talibdin El-Amin/state photo

Talibdin El-Amin/state photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

What’s one last indignity after already ruining your political career?

The St. Louis Post Dispatch reports that former Missouri State Rep. T.D. El-Amin, who pleaded guilty to bribery charges last year, has bounced a $100 check that was supposed to cover court costs.

A Jan. 20 letter from the U.S. District Courthouse noted that there were “insufficient funds” to cover the cost and that “it is imperative that this check is covered immediately,” according to the paper.

He was sentenced to 18 months in prison and ordered to pay $2,100 in restitution to cover the bribes he took.

U.S. Sends a Message and Cracks Down on Foreign Business Bribes

Unfortunately, in so many foreign nations, bribes are an accepted, and often necessary part of doing business. But the Justice Department isn’t accepting the business as usual. The Washington Post Carrie Johnson takes a snapshot of the latest effort to crackdown on the practice.

Pocketing Some Cash

By Carrie Johnson
Washington Post Staff Writer

WASHINGTON — Federal authorities want companies to know that the cost of paying bribes to win overseas contracts is growing steeper by the day.

Long a priority of the FBI and the Justice Department, efforts to police corrupt business payments have intensified in recent weeks, with multimillion-dollar corporate settlements and coordinated arrests of individual executives accused of attempting to grease the skids.

On Friday, BAE Systems, the world’s second-largest defense contractor, agreed to pay $400 million to resolve decade-old allegations that it misled the Defense and State departments about its efforts to comply with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The law bars companies from bribing government officials to win lucrative contracts and other favorable treatment.

The BAE deal came weeks after the FBI unveiled its first FCPA sting operation, which culminated in the arrests of nearly two dozen businessmen employed in the defense and law enforcement equipment industry.

For Full Story

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