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Archive for November 4th, 2014

FBI Investigating College Student in Wisconsin for Allegedly Trying to Make Ricin

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A 21-year-old college student in Wisconsin is accused of trying to make ricin, prompting the FBI and police to block off a four-block area Friday after finding a white substance, the Associated Press reports.

Authorities became concerned after professors at University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh expressed concerns that the student was making the deadly toxin.

A professor told authorities that the student asked about extracting the toxin from castor beans. When told to ask a biology professor, the student allegedly said, “They are all interested in life and I am interested in, like, ending it,” according to the search warrant.

The substance was sent to the FBI’s lab for analysis.

Muslim Group Complains That FBI Is Pressuring Islamic Community to Spy on Each Other

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Muslim leaders nationwide are expressing frustration with what they describe as overzealous attempts to get some in the Islamic community to spy on fellow Muslims, the Los Angeles Times reports.

They describe increasing pressure and reported unannounced visits by FBI agents to mosques in California, Ohio, Texas, Minnesota and other states.

The Council on American-Islamic Relation (CAIR) issued a nationwide alert urging Muslims and community leaders to consult with an attorney if they are approached by the FBI.

“It’s happening all over the country,” said Ibrahim Hooper, a Washington-based spokesman for CAIR. “The agents are approaching these community leaders at mosques with basic questions that quickly turn into something different: pressure to become informants.”

The FBI declined to comment on the alert but said “we value our partnership with the Arab, Muslim and Sikh communities as they are partners in our effort to stem crime, violence and civil rights violations.”

Man Gets Probation for Taking Hostage by Knifepoint at FBI Office in Salt Lake City

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A man who took a hostage at gunpoint at the FBI’s office in Salt Lake City in an attempt to get help from the bureau has been sentenced to three years of probation, the Salt Lake City Tribune reports.

Robert Joseph Hibbard, 43, avoided jail in a plea agreement with prosecutors in which he pleaded guilty but mentally ill

Hibbard pleaded guilty but mentally ill to second-degree kidnapping, which is a reduced charge following the August 2012 incident.

Hibbard was found competent to stand trial.

The incident happened on Sept. 18, 2012, when Hibbard took a 61-year-old man hostage with a knife and demanded to talk to the FBI about his former wife’s death.

Homeland Security Boosts Security for European Travelers to U.S. Over Terror Concerns

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Travelers flying to the U.S. on Western passports will face increased screenings as Homeland Security officials express concern about European Islamic militants trying to launch attacks, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The idea is to “to learn more about travelers from countries from whom we do not require a visa,” Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said in a statement.

Concerns were raised over fighters coming from Germany, England, France and Belgium, where citizens from those countries aren’t required to apply overseas for a visa to enter the United States.

Since 2011, officials estimate that more than 3,000 Europeans have traveled to fight alongside extremists in Syria and Iraq.

 

 

 

Former FBI Agent Hired by School District to Scour Social Media Comments by Students

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

One school district in Alabama has taken the unusual step of hiring a former FBI agent to monitor students on social media, the Daily Intelligencer reports.

The idea was to catch students who make statements linking them to drugs, guns, sex and gangs.

The effort led to 14 expulsions last year.

Ex-FBI Agent Chris McRae was hired to look for expulsion-worthy transgressions.

The expulsions drew criticism because 12 of the 14 expelled students were black in a district where only 40% of the students are black.

“That is effectively targeting or profiling black children in terms of behavior and behavioral issues,” said Madison county commissioner Bob Harrison.

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