Get Our Newsletter



Links

Columnists



Site Search


Entire (RSS)
Comments (RSS)

Archive Calendar

May 2010
S M T W T F S
« Apr   Jun »
 1
2345678
9101112131415
16171819202122
23242526272829
3031  

Guides

How to Become a Bounty Hunter



Archive for May 19th, 2010

D.C. U.S. Attorney’s Office #2 Prosecutor Channing Phillips Off to the Justice Dept. to Help With Diversity Management

Channing Phillips/doj photo

Channing Phillips/doj photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Channing Phillips, the number two person in the D.C. U.S. Attorney’s Office, is heading off to the Justice Department several blocks away to become Deputy Associate Attorney General for Diversity Management.

A Justice Department memo announcing the move said Phillips will be responsible for the implementation  of Attorney General Eric Holder Jr.’s Diversity Management Plan, which calls for greater diversity in such areas as hiring, promotions and retention at the Justice Department, U.S. Attorney’s Offices and agencies including the FBI, DEA, ATF and Marshals.

Phillips will also serve as Executive Director for the Attorney General’s Diversity Management Advisory Council.

Phillips first joined the Justice Department in 1990 and was hired by then-U.S. Attorney Eric Holder Jr. in 1994 as an assistant U.S. Attorney in the D.C. office. He held a variety of posts over the year, including chief of staff,  but was best known to reporters as the affable and very able person who dealt with the media.

Last May, he was appointed interim U.S. Attorney and tossed his hat into the ring to be considered for the permanent post, which is a presidential appointment.  But he lost out to a private attorney and former federal prosecutor Ronald Machen, who was confirmed by the U.S. Senate in February.  Phillips subsequently became the second in command of the office.

Many believed that Phillips was clearly capable of handling the U.S. Attorney job, but because he had been a career prosecutor, he wasn’t able to build up the political capital necessary to close the deal.

Kansas City Used Car Dealer Pleads Guilty to Supporting al Qaeda and Sending $$$

kansas cityBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Smack in the middle of the heartland, in an area better known for its steak and barbecue than its links to al Qaeda, comes a little bit of news.

Khalid Ouazzani, 32, a used car and parts dealer from Kansas City, Mo., pleaded guilty Wednesday to providing material support to al Qaeda by sending it $23,000 and swearing an oath of allegiance to the group, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced. He also pleaded guilty to bank fraud and money laundering.

“Citizens in the heartland should be alert to suspicious activity and never hesitate to report their concerns to law enforcement,” Brian Truchon, special agent in charge of the Kansas City FBI, said in a statement.

Ouazzani, a native of Morrocco and a natural U.S. citizen, admitted that between August 2007 and February 2010 he was out to help al Qaeda in different ways including talking to people about plans for them to fight in Afghanistan, Somali and Iraq, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Ouazzani also pleaded guilty to money laundering and bank fraud by stealing about $175,000 from Union Bank by using false and fraudulent financial information.

Kansas City U.S. Attorney Beth Phillips said in a statement: “Federal prosecutions not only result in long prison sentences, but yield valuable intelligence that can be used in the fight against al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations.”

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Man Charged With Trying to Take Stun Gun, Box Cutters, Pepper Spray, Knife, Electric Charge on JetBlue Flight

jetblue2By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Think of anything you’re not supposed to bring on an airplane — short of a gun.  Now think of  Jose Pol.

Authorities charged that Pol tried to take a stun gun, four box cutter knives, pepper spray and a switch blade on a JetBlue flight from Puerto Rico to Boston on Monday, according to Reuters news service.

But that’s not all. An FBI affidavit also said his luggage contained two lighters, a device that gives an electric charge via a wire when a button was pressed, scissors, matches, a flight simulator program and information about New York City, Reuters reported.

He was  arrested at Luis Munoz Marin International Airport on Monday after the items were discovered in his luggage by security, the news service reported. Reuters first reported that the man was from Puerto Rico, but other reports later had him hailing from Rhode Island.

“We will continue to investigate this matter vigorously until we determine the defendant’s motives in attempting to board an airliner with the dangerous weapons he was carrying,” U.S. Attorney Rosa Emilia Rodriguez-VØlez said in a statement.

Rep. Wolf Pushes Bill to Make Top TSA Post 10-Year Term Like FBI

Rep. Frank Wolf/gov photo

Rep. Frank Wolf/gov photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON –– Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) on Tuesday renewed his call for the Obama administration to support his legislation that would make the top post at the Transportation Security Administration a 10-year term.

In a letter to the president, posted on his website, he applauded Monday’s presidential nomination of deputy FBI director John Pistole to head TSA and urged the President to consider the bill.

He said the 10 year term — which is what the FBI has for its top spot — would provide stability to the agency.

“It is troubling that since its creation following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, TSA has had six administrators, averaging terms of just 1.5 years,” he wrote.

“As you know, I have written you and members of your administration numerous times since January urging you to support four bipartisan proposals to strengthen our national security, including making the TSA administrator position a 10-year term of service.

“To date, none of these proposals have been adopted – in spite of the recent attempted terrorist attacks on Christmas Day and in Times Square in New York City. I would appreciate an explanation about why proposals made by members of Congress continue to be downright ignored by this administration.”

Feds Charge Canadian Doctor With Treating Pro Sports Figures With Illegal Drugs

Rumor Mill: No 3 FBI Agent Tim Murphy Could Jump to Number 2

rumor millBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON —  Timothy Murphy, the FBI’s number three person, seems to be a name circulating in the agency’s rumor mill as a strong prospect to replace deputy director John Pistole, the number two man at the FBI, sources say.

The rumor mill  kicked into gear on Tuesday, one day after President Obama nominated Pistole to head the Transportation Security Administration. Pistole is expected to remain at the FBI until the confirmation process is completed.

In 2008, Murphy rose to the number three spot — Associate Deputy Director in charge of FBI personnel, budget, administration and infrastructure. He was previously assistant Director of the FBI’s Finance Division.

He began his FBI career in 1988 Murphy. He served in four field offices, including Newark, Tampa, Washington  and Cincinnati , where he worked cases in a variety of areas including counterterrorism, organized crime and drugs and as a pilot in the aviation program.

In the Washington field office, he worked  an assistant special agent in charge and he served as a special agent in charge in Cincinnati.

At headquarters, some of his posts included supervisory special agent in the Executive Development and Selection Program,  unit chief  of the Senior Executive Service Unit,  unit chief of the Director’s Research Group and special assistant to FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III, according to an FBI bio.

4 Ex-U.S. Attys. Win Republican Primary Bids; Fifth Gets Trounced

Bush Holdover U.S. Atty. Mary Beth Buchanan

Bush Holdover U.S. Atty. Mary Beth Buchanan

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Four ex-U.S. Attorney’s won Republican primary bids Tuesday for public office. But perhaps in the most interesting race,  a  fifth ex-U.S. Attorney, Republican Mary Beth Buchanan —  a controversial figure during her reign as the top Pittsburgh prosecutor — got trounced in a contentious battle for the 4th Congressional District seat.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that Buchanan was defeated by a relative unknown, attorney and ex-Bush official Keith Rothfus. The paper called it an upset that “was the culmination of a surprising campaign characterized by stinging attacks on both sides.”

Buchanan blamed her defeat on the anti-incumbent sentiment in the nation, even though she was not an elected official, the Post-Gazette reported. She was appointed by President Bush and stayed on for a while under the Obama administration. She got about a third of the votes.

Tom Corbett/ pa. state photo

Tom Corbett/ pa. state photo

Elsehwere around the country, according to the website Main Justice, which closely tracks U.S. Attorneys, former Arkansas U.S. Attorney Tim Griffin won the Republican primary for the 2nd Congressional District in Arkansas.

Three former Pennsylvania U.S. Attorneys won their contests in that state, according to Main Justice.  Pennsylania Attorney General Tom Corbett, a former U.S. Attorney,  won the Republican bid for Pennsylvania governor; Pat Meehan was unopposed in the Republican primary for a Congressional seat held by Democratic Congressman Joe Sestak, who defeated Sen. Arlen Specter in the primary; and  Tom Marino won his bid in the Republican primary for a Congressional seat.

Detroit Fed Judge Sets Some Hutaree Militia Members Free

Christian Militia Hutaree patch/from website

Christian Militia Hutaree patch/from website

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Three members of the Hutaree Christian militia in Michigan charged with plotting to kill cops were released Tuesday and a fourth was expected to go free Wednesday, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit said.

U.S. District Judge Victoria Roberts on Tuesday released Tina Stone 44, David Stone Jr., 19, and Jacob Ward, 33, after the U.S. Attorney’s Office dropped it’s legal battle to keep them behind bars.

Kristopher Sickles, 27, is expected to be released Wednesday, but five others will remain behind bars pending their appeal before the U.S. Court of Appeals to go free pending trial.

Judge Roberts had ordered all nine free, saying they did not appear to pose a danger to the community, a ruling that raised questions about the strength of the case. But U.S. Attorney’s Office appealed that ruling.

Court records show all three released Tuesday must adhere to number of restrictions. For one, they must live with their parents and refrain from drinking alcohol, using a police scanner and associating with members of a militia or paramiltary group.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST