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Archive for December 14th, 2010

15 People Extradited From Mexico


By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — One of the things Colombian drug lords hated most back in the day — getting extradited to the U.S. — is now happening with the Mexican cartel members with more frequency since they took over the distribution networks in the U.S.

The Justice Department on Tuesday announced that 15 people from Mexico have been extradited over the past week from Mexico to the U.S. to either stand trial, be sentenced or serve sentences. Twelve of the 15 are charged with federal narcotics-related offenses and the remaining three are accused of violent crimes in state-prosecuted cases.

“Extraditions are an important tool we have to ensure that criminals are brought to justice in this country,” said Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer.

“Over the past decade, the Department of Justice has established stronger partnerships with Mexico in many areas of law enforcement, including extraditions to and from each country. With these extraditions of individuals who committed or stand charged with violent and dangerous crimes, we look forward to seeing those partnerships continue to strengthen.”

Authorities said three of the people are charged in the Northern District of Illinois and were arriving Tuesday in Chicago. Nine others left Mexico and arrived in Houston Saturday morning and three others arrived in the United States over the course of the past week.

The Justice Department said the U.S. Marshals Service and the FBI are involved in transporting the defendants to jurisdictions where they face charges.

The extradited defendants are the following, as stated in a press release:

Oscar Jacobo Rivera Peralta, Ricardo Valdez Torres and Alfredo Molina Garcia: Northern District of Illinois; According to court documents, from approximately 2001 until 2006, Peralta, Torres and Garcia were members of a drug trafficking organization responsible for the importation of cocaine, heroin and synthetic heroin into the United States for distribution. The defendants are charged with narcotics trafficking-related offenses.

Read more »

Jack Abramoff Finishes Sentence; Stops Working at Baltimore Kosher Pizzeria

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — Disgraced Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff, who made his fair share of doe working politicians on the Hill, is finished working at a kosher Baltimore pizza joint now that he’s finished his sentence and is on supervised release, the Associated Press reported.

AP reported that Abramoff, who was convicted on corruption, fraud and conspiracy charges, was released from fed prison on June 8, and then went on home confinement, which just ended on Dec. 3, according to the Bureau of Prisons records.

While on home confinement, he worked for Tov Pizza on marketing and customer outreach. The Hebrew word “tov” means good in English.

Tov Pizza owner Ron Rosenbluth told AP that Abramoff might occasionally stop by.

GAO Report Finds U.S. Attorneys Declined 50% of Cases in Indian Country

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — A government report found that U.S. Attorney’s Offices declined 50 percent of the cases from American Indian reservations from 2005-2009, the Associated Press reported.

The Government Accountability Office report found that Federal prosecutors resolved 9,000 of the 10,000 cases they got during that period. Half were declined for prosecution and the others were prosecuted or administratively closed, AP reported.

“The most frequent reason for declining cases was weak or insufficient admissible evidence, followed by no evidence of a federal crime, witness problems and a lack of evidence that a suspect had criminal intent,” AP reported.

AP reported that the report came as a result of congressional inquiries in the declination rate.

AP reported that H. Marshall Jarrett, director of the Department of Justice’s executive office of U.S. attorneys, said the declination rates was not indicative of the efforts to imrpove public safety in Indian Country.

“Each case must be evaluated on the evidence available to the prosecutor,” he said in a letter responding to the findings. “Accordingly, it would not be appropriate to use the data contained in this report to promote any kind of prosecutorial quota system or incentives to prosecute a higher number of individuals.”

U.S. attorneys in Arizona, South Dakota, New Mexico, Montana and North Dakota received 73 percent of all Indian Country criminal matters, AP reported.

To read report click here.

Filmmaker Michael Moore Defends WikiLeaks Founder and Posts $$$

Michael Moore/m.m. website

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Controversial and seldom-at-a-loss-for-words filmmaker Michael Moore is stepping into the fray and defending WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange — and putting up money too.

In a statement posted on his website Tuesday morning, Moore wrote:

“Yesterday, in the Westminster Magistrates Court in London, the lawyers for WikiLeaks co-founder Julian Assange presented to the judge a document from me stating that I have put up $20,000 of my own money to help bail Mr. Assange out of jail.”

“Furthermore, I am publicly offering the assistance of my website, my servers, my domain names and anything else I can do to keep WikiLeaks alive and thriving as it continues its work to expose the crimes that were concocted in secret and carried out in our name and with our tax dollars.

“We were taken to war in Iraq on a lie. Hundreds of thousands are now dead. Just imagine if the men who planned this war crime back in 2002 had had a WikiLeaks to deal with. They might not have been able to pull it off. The only reason they thought they could get away with it was because they had a guaranteed cloak of secrecy. That guarantee has now been ripped from them, and I hope they are never able to operate in secret again.”

Some Congressional lawmakers have called Assange a traitor and a spy and have demanded that he be prosecuted. Attorney Gen. Eric Holder Jr. recently announced that a criminal investigation into the leaks was underway.

To read Moore’s full statement click here.

Murder Trial Underway for ex-FBI Agent in Las Vegas

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Trial is underway in Las Vegas for retired FBI agent Edward Preciado-Nuno, who is accused of murdering his son’s girlfriend in November 2008.  His son had been trying to evict the girlfriend from the home.

Preciado-Nuno, 63, claims he killed girlfriend Kimberly Long after she attacked him with a hammer. He claims he then picked up a hammer in self defense and hit her, according to the Las Vegas Sun.

Preciado-Nuno retired from the bureau’s San Diego office in 2003 and has worked in New York, Puerto Rico, Las Vegas and Argentina, according to The San Diego Union-Tribune.

To read about the trial click here.

Bernie Madoff Won’t Attend Son’s Funeral

Mark Madoff/facebook photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Convicted swindler Bernie Madoff won’t be attending the funeral of his son Mark, who committed suicide in his  Manhattan home over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“Mr. Madoff will not be attending the funeral out of consideration” for his family, attorney Ira Sorkin told the Journal.  Madoff will have his own private ceremony at his North Carolina prison.

Details of the funeral were still unclear and Mark Madoff’s  body remained in the New York City morgue on Monday, the Journal reported. In the Jewish faith, a body is buried as quickly as possible.

NBC’s Today Show reported that the son had not talked to the parents in a long time and that Ruth Madoff, Bernie’s wife, was angry at her husband over the suicide, saying he had blood on his hands.

Mark Madoff and his brother denied ever knowing that their father ran a sham operation, though some are skeptical of those claims.

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