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Archive for July 30th, 2013

Updated: U.S. Soldier Faces Up to Life in Prison for Release of 700,000 Classified Documents

Update: CNN reports that a military judge found Pfc. Bradley Manning not guilty of aiding the enemy, but guilty of most of the other charges.

 
Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

U.S. soldier Bradley Manning, who is accused of the biggest leak of classified information in U.S. history, could be sentenced to life in prison today, Reuters reports.

A judge is expect to render a verdict in the case against Army Private First Class Manning, 25, who’s charged with aiding the enemy by releasing 700,000 classified documents to WikiLeaks.

Judge Colonel Denise Lind ruled that Manning was appropriately trained to understand that releasing the sensitive information put the U.S. at risk.

Others say the case is overblown.

“He’s just a dumb kid who got himself into a situation where he felt he was saving the world,” said Joseph Wippl, a professor of international relations at Boston University and a former CIA officer. “I think he should be convicted and they should be easy on him. They need to do more on limiting access to classified information.”

FBI Nabs More than 150 Men for Forcing 105 Teenage Girls into Prostitution

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI arrested more than 150 men over the past few days as part of a nationwide crackdown on child prostitution, the New York Times reports

The men are accused of forcing more than 100 teenage girls – some as young as 13 – into prostitution.

The arrests are part of a Justice Department program called the “Innocence Lost National Initiative,” which aims to end prostitution rings, The Times reported.

Most arrests occurred in Detroit, where 18 pimps were arrested and 10 girls rescued.

The arrests spanned across more than 70 cities.

Ex-Figure in Boston’s Underworld to Testify in ‘Whitey’ Bulger Murder Trial

 
 

Whitey Bulger/fbi

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Patrick Nee literally wrote the book on mob life.

And despite serious allegations that he was involved in drugs, guns and even helping bury a body, Nee remains free of jail.

The Boston Globe reports that Nee is expected soon to testify in the murder and racketeering trial of reputed mobster James “Whitey” Bulger.

The one-time well-known figure in Boston’s underworld has indicated he will invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

But Bulger’s attorneys said they have no plans to ask self-incriminating questions, the Globe reported.

 

Homeland Security Returns Saddam Hussein’s Gold-Laden Sword to Iraq

Saddam Hussein

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

When the U.S. invaded Iraq, Saddam Hussein’s personal office was looted.

One of those items was a gold-laden, 43-inch sword with an embellished blade and Arabic writing to the Iraqi ambassador, the Associated Press reports.

The AP wrote that an American combat historian brought back the sword, which DHS said was a gift to Hussein, not a battlefield weapon that could bee deemed a war trophy, according to the AP.

The sword sold at an auction for $15,000, but it was later seized by DHS.

The AP reported that the sword has been returned to Iraqi authorities.

 

Homeland Security Supervisor Pleads Guilty to Possession of Child Porn

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Homeland Security supervisor who has been suspended pleaded guilty Monday to possession of child pornography in U.S. District Court in Buffalo, The Buffalo News reports.

Steven Metz, 41, faces up to 10 years in prison after he was busted with more than 600 images and videos of child porn on his computer. Metz also is accused of sharing them images.

“Some of the files contained sadistic or masochistic conduct or other depictions of violence, and some of the children shown in the images and videos were prepubescent and under the age of 12,” U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. said.

Metz’s attorney said his client is extremely remorseful.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Senate Overwhelmingly Approves James Comey as Next FBI Director

James Comey

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

No surprise here.

The Senate, by a vote of 93 to 1 gave the nod Monday to make James Comey the next FBI director. He’ll replace Robert S. Mueller III, who headed the agency for a dozen years, according to the Washington Post.

Comey, 52, was a senior Justice Department official under the Bush administration.

The FBI Agents Association issued a statement in response:

 “FBIAA, representing more than 12,000 active duty and retired Agents, congratulates James Comey on his confirmation by the Senate to be the next FBI Director. There are a number of significant issues facing the Bureau that may affect public safety and national security, including challenges resulting from sequestration and other budget cuts. We look forward to working with Mr. Comey to address these and other challenges.”