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Archive for July 11th, 2013

Justice Department Accused of Supporting Anti-Zimmerman Protests After Martin Shooting

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Justice Department has spent tax dollars supporting a campaign against George Zimmerman following the shooting of Trayvon Martin, Fox News reports, citing a conservative watchdog group.

The Justice Department has a branch, called the Community Relations Service, that handles conflicts over race.

According to documents cited by Fox News, the CRS agency filed a series of expenses related to late March and early April demonstrations.

One filing, for $674, shows federal officials went to a Sanford, Fla, to “work marches, demonstrations and rallies related to the shooting and death of an African-American teen by a neighborhood watch captain.”

A Justice Department spokesman said the CRS was “fulfilling their mandated mission.”

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST


Boston Marathon Bombing Suspect Appeared in Court, Yawned As He Pleaded Not Guilty

 Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev yawned Wednesday as he pleaded not guilty on 30 charges in federal court, the New York Daily News reports.

At times, the 19-year-old appeared to be fidgety; other times he appeared to be nonchalant, the News wrote.

One victim expressed feeling uneasy at the hearing.

“It was kind of eerie. Kind of upsetting,” said Mildred Valverde, 44, who was on crutches and suffered torn leg ligaments, nerve damage and hearing loss when one of the bombs detonated as she waited for her son to cross the finish line. “But it felt good I could be there.”

WikiLeaks Hints That NSA Leaker Snowden Is on Verge of Being Granted Asylum

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

NSA leaker Edward Snowden may soon be granted asylum, and the “obvious choice” is Venezuela, WikiLeaks hinted Wednesday, the USA Today reports.

If true, that would end weeks of an international stalemate that left Snowden in legal limbo at a Moscow airport.

WikiLeaks, which has advocated for Snowden’s asylum, tweeted on Wednesday: “The first phase of Edward Snowden’s ‘Flight of Liberty’ campaign will be launched.”

Guardian columnist Glenn Greenwald, who revealed NSA’s widespread surveillance following meetings with Snowden, said the leaker’s best chances for asylum are Venezuela, Bolivia and Nicaragua.

Lawyers for ‘Whitey’ Bulger Ask for Postponement in Murder, Racketeering Trial

 

Whitey Bulger

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Attorneys for accused mobster James “Whitey” Bulger said they are not prepared to defend their client during the racketeering and murder trial, CBS Boston reports.

“Simply put, the defendant’s counsel have hit a wall, and are unable to proceed further without additional time to prepare for upcoming witnesses,” Bulger’s attorneys J.W. Carney and Hank Brennan wrote in the filing Thursday. “Counsel have struggled mightily to be ready for each day of the trial since it began on June 3, 2013, working seven days a week and extraordinarily long hours.”

Much of the problem, the attorneys complained, is the prosecution’s delay in discovery.

“These discovery lapses may not be intentional, and may reflect that the prosecution team is overwhelmed as well. Nonetheless, it has put the defense team in an untenable position, especially as it continues to review earlier-produced discovery that now amounts to almost 400,000 pages. There is a physical and mental limitation on how much work can be done by the defense team, and a brief adjournment of the trial will allow counsel to be prepared for the upcoming witnesses,” Carney and Brennan wrote.

Also inconvenienced by the trial is Bulger himself, they said.

House Committee Grows Impatient with FBI, Justice Department’s Handling of Boston Bombing Case

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

If the U.S. wants to stop an attack similar to the Boston Marathon bombing, the Justice Department and FBI must do a better job sharing information with local law enforcement, officials told lawmakers Wednesday, The Hill reports.

“We can no longer deal with this by not sharing information. We’re going to miss other Bostons if the federal government doesn’t engage the local police department in a very, very big way,” said Rudy Giuliani, who was mayor of New York City during the 9/11 attacks.

“They’re our only asset to finding these isolated single individuals and small groups,” Giuliani said. 

Wednesday was the second day of a hearing by the House’s Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee to determine how the suspected bombers managed to escape capture.

“The FBI has refused to appear, and continues to refuse this committee’s appropriate requests for information and documents crucial to our investigation into what happened in Boston,” House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Mike McCaul, R-Texas, said.

“The information requested by this committee belongs to the American people. It does not belong solely to the FBI, and I sincerely hope they do not intend to stonewall our inquiry into how this happened.”

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