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Archive for December 22nd, 2014

The New Nazi Hunt: War Crime Sleuths Turn to Islamist Terrorists

By Del Quentin Wilber
Bloomberg Business Week

WASHINGTON — Federal agent Frank Hunter grabbed a cup of coffee, sat down at his kitchen table and fired up his laptop computer to begin his daily hunt for modern-day war criminals.

It didn’t take him long to come across a propaganda video posted by Islamic State. Hunter watched the slick 36-minute production on YouTube, grimacing at each execution and suicide bombing. Then he methodically captured photographs of the fighters, to be uploaded into facial-recognition databases that he hopes will stop the terrorists from ever coming to the U.S.

Hunter, a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent, is a key player in a little-known government effort to keep war criminals and human rights violators — including those fighting in Syria or Iraq — out of this country.

To read the full story click here.  

 

Report: FBI’s Investigation of 2001 Anthrax Attacks Was Flawed, Inaccurate

An Anthrax letter from 2001

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Anthrax Suspect Bruce Ivins

An investigation into the 2001 anthrax attacks that killed five people and sickened 17 more was flawed and cannot link the germs to the scientist that many thought was responsible, according to a government report, CBS Baltimore reports.

The 77-page GOA report took issue with evidence collected from the United States Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) where Army biodefense expert Bruce Ivins worked and was the lead suspect. Ivins killed himself days before he was to be indicted.

Now researchers are questioning whether there is a firm link between the evidence collected in his lab and the Anthrax that was mailed.

“From day one when they announced it and the way they announced it, I did not believe they had the right person,” University of Maryland law professor Michael Greenberger said. “You could not conclude from the scientific evidence that Ivins was really the person who perpetrated the anthrax attacks.”

 

Will First Woman on FBI’s Most Wanted List Be Extradited from Cuba?

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

As relations between Cuba and the U.S. continue to improve, a big question lingers: Will the first woman on the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists List be extradited to face life in prison in America?

The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that Assata Shakur, who was convicted of killing a New Jersey state trooper in 1973, may be extradited because of the improved relations.

Shakur was a member of the Black Liberation Army and the Black Panther Party and was welcomed into Cuba as a fellow socialist with asylum.

It remains unclear whether Cuba would turn over Shakur, but some legal experts said it’s unlikely since she was labeled a political refugee.

Obama Administration Plans to Nominate Sally Quillian Yates As Deputy AG

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Sally Quillian Yates, a U.S. attorney from Georgia, is expected to be the Obama administration’s choice for deputy attorney general, the Washington Post reports, citing U.S. officials.

The deputy attorney general position is the second-highest-ranking post in the Justice Department and is in charge of day-to-day operations.

When Yates became the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia in 2010, she became the first woman to serve in that position.

If all goes as planned, Yates would replace outgoing Deputy Attorney General James M. Cole, who is leaving the post in January for a job in the private sector.

U.S. Apprehends More Migrants Who Live Outside Mexico Than Live In Border Country

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

In a dramatic shift, more migrants from countries outside of Mexico were captured crossing into the U.S., which hasn’t been seen for at least two decades, the New York Times reports. 

The annual figures published by Homeland Security show a 15% rise in total apprehensions in the 2014 fiscal year, with a total of 486,651 caught. More than 250,000 of them were not Mexican, a 68% spike over the previous year.

The increase was fueled by the surge last summer of migrants from Central America.

While Mexicans continue to cross the border more than others, the apprehension of 229,178 people last year represents a 14% decline this year.

The report also found that ICE is handling fewer deportations.

Other Stories of Interest


Internal Investigation: FBI’s Evidence Collection Is Beset with Serious Errors

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

An internal investigation found widespread mishandling of FBI evidence in every region of the country, the New York Times reports.

The highly critical report found that the FBI’s evidence collection and retention system is beset by errors, either through mishandling, mislabeling or losing evidence.

The report also found that the FBI was storing more drugs and weapons and less money and valuables than indicated.

The errors were serious enough for the FBI to alert prosecutors on Friday that some of the errors may need to be disclosed. Even minor record-keeping discrepancies can prompt evidence to be tossed out of court.

“A majority of the errors identified were due in large part to human error, attributable to a lack of training and program management oversight,” auditors wrote in the report, which was obtained by The New York Times.