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Archive for February 13th, 2012

Fed Trial Slated to Begin This Week for Mich. Militia Group Accused of Plotting to Kill Cops

Credit Card Counterfeiter Busted by Feds in New York

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

Agents with the FBI have arrested a group of individuals operating a fraud ring out of a luxury high-rise Brooklyn condo, reports the New York Post.

The alleged ringleader, Kwan Miller, used a European instant-messaging service to obtain stolen credit card numbers while chatting with contacts in Russia, according to the Post. Miller ran the operation from the BridgeView Tower, an opulent apartment building with a 24-hour concierge, a fitness room, indoor parking and free shuttle service to Manhattan.

More than a year ago an ID-theft probe began in which investigators intercepted e-mails sent by Miller containing more than 100 credit cards, according to the FBI. Miller had also bought a number of special printers which he used to emboss numbers and encoded information onto blank credit card plastic to create counterfeits, according to the FBI.

To read more click here.

900-Plus Law Enforcement Officers Involved in Arrests of 27 and Execution of Search Warrants in SF Bay Area

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

More than 900 law enforcement officers and agents followed through on arrests and search warrants in the San Francisco Bay Area on Tuesday, according to a press release, as part of a large-scale takedown of a narcotics trafficking ring.

Local, state and federal officers, including an FBI SWAT team, made 27 arrests and seized “a significant amount” of drugs, money and automobiles, mostly in East Palo Alto and Menlo Park, as part of “Operation Phallen Gardens.”

The operation was the result of a two-year investigation by the Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) and the San Francisco Safe Streets Task Force focusing on a group of individuals who supplied drugs to local gangs.

To read more click here.

Good Leads, Still No Suspects in FBI Search for “Potomac River Rapist” in D.C. Area

Sketch of Potomac River Rapist/fbi

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

It’s been more than a month since the FBI began publicly seeking a man dubbed “The Potomac River Rapist”, who suspected in a series of sexual assaults and a slaying in the D.C. area, reports the Associated Press, and, despite “multiple good leads and tips,” the bureau has not identified a suspect yet.

Investigators have met with a few men, according to the AP, and some have even volunteered DNA samples, yet still there are no suspects.

“We’re continuing to get very strong tips and good phone calls — and that’s all law enforcement, not just FBI,”  said Lindsay Godwin, a spokeswoman for the FBI’s Washington field office. She said that analysis is ongoing.

A website and digital billboards went up around the end of December along the East Coast seeking tips about a man believed to be connected to nine sexual attacks between 1991 and 1998, according to AP.

To read more click here.

Ex-IRS Employee Sentenced for Trying to Bilk IRS Out of Millions of Dollars

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Note to Thomas W. Richardson: Get your cash elsewhere.

Richardson, a former IRS employee form Mansfield, Tex., was sentenced in Dallas last week to 8 years and 9 months for scheme in which he tried bilking the IRS out of millions of dollars to start a real estate business, the Justice Department said.

He was also ordered to pay $30,649 in restitution, the amount that was not recovered by the government.

U.S. District Judge Jane Boyle said at sentencing that Richardson used his knowledge as a former IRS employee to commit his crimes.

Authorities said that Richardson admitted that within a two-day period, April 15, 2006 to April 17, 2006, he filed 29 fraudulent 2005 individual income tax returns. Each federal income tax return claimed a refund of between $215,801 and $473,832. Richardson admitted that the refunds claimed by all 29 tax returns totaled $7,922,657.

Authorities alleged in each instance the Social Security number reported on the tax returns was assigned to individuals who had not given him authorization to file anything.

In the end the IRS paid out seven refunds totaling $1,865,401 between May 12, 2006 and May 19, 2006 before Richardson was caught.

All but $30,649 was recouped by the IRS.

 

Uzbekistan Man Pleads Guilty to Terrorism Charges in Ala. and Threatening to Kill Pres. Obama in Fed Sting

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
 
Alabama isn’t exactly considered a hotbed of terrorism activity.

But on Friday, an Uzbek national living in the U.S. pleaded in Birmingham, Ala., to providing material support to terrorist activities and threatening to kill President Obama — all as part of a federal sting.

Ulugbek Kodirov, 22, of Uzbekistan, becomes the first person to be convicted of providing material support to terrorist activity in the Northern District of Alabama. He had been indicted on the charges in July.

U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance praised the investigative work and prompt action of the Joint Terrorism Task Force for the Northern District of Alabama. “Today, Ulugbek Kodirov became the first person to be convicted of providing material support to terrorist activity in this district,” U.S. Attorney Joyce White Vance said in a statement. “Kodirov was apprehended during an undercover operation in which he was attempting to obtain weapons and explosives that he intended to use to kill the president of the United States. Effective action by law enforcement protected our community and potentially our country.” she said.

“I also want to express my appreciation to the Muslim community of Birmingham, which was instrumental in helping law enforcement shut down this threat,” Vance said.

Authorities charged that Kodirov was in communication with someone he thought was a member of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), which has been declared a terrorist organization by the State Department. Kodirov had a student visa, but never enrolled in school.

The case was investigated by the FBI, ATF, ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations and Secret Service.

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