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Archive for January 30th, 2015

Weekend Series on Crime: Russian Prison Tattoos

Federal Judge Suspects ATF Attorneys of Fraud in Lawsuit Involving Ex-Agent Jay Dobyns

Jay Dobyns/his website

By Paul Giblin
The Republic

A federal judge suspects that seven attorneys representing the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives committed fraud in the case of a retired federal agent who infiltrated the Hells Angels motorcycle gang in Arizona.

Court of Federal Claims Judge Francis Allegra banned the attorneys from filing documents in his court, and he ordered additional hearings to investigate the attorneys’ actions, essentially creating a trial within a trial.

The accusations are spelled out in newly unsealed court documents in the case involving former federal agent Jay Dobyns, a onetime University of Arizona football star who sued the ATF for improperly handling threats against him following his undercover stint with the Hells Angels.

The judge previously ruled in Dobyns’ favor, but withdrew his own decision after learning about the ATF attorneys’ conduct.

To read more click here. 

Secret Service Unable to Make Reforms, Hire New Agents Because of Budget Impasse

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Congressional dispute over Homeland Security’s budget means the Secret Service cannot hire new agents or reform the beleaguered agency until the impasse is over, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said, Reuters reports.

Johnson expressed deep concerns about the impasse, saying a lot is at stake – the security of borders, airports and coastal waters.

The agency’s spending authority ends Feb. 27, and Republicans are showing no signs of backing down until they block President Obama’s executive orders that would protect about 5 million undocumented immigrants already in the U.S.

“This means we cannot invest in the things the independent panel recommended to improve the Secret Service; we cannot hire new Secret Service agents for the coming presidential election cycle,” Johnson said of the budget uncertainty.

Other Stories of Interest

Ex-D.C. Cab Driver Lands on FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorist List

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A former Washington D.C. cab driver accused of providing material support to a group linked to al Qaeda has landed on the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists list, CNN reports.

A $50,000 reward has been offered for the capture of the 29-year-old Somali-born U.S. citizen, Liban Haji Mohamed.

The FBI said Mohamed provided material support to Al Shabaab, which has launched numerous deadly terrorist attacks.

Investigators believe Mohamed left the U.S in the summer of 2012.

“Not only did he choose to go to Somalia and fight with Al Shabaab, he took a prominent role in trying to recruit people to fight for Al Shabaab,” said Carl Ghatas, special agent in charge of the counterterrorism division at the FBI’s Washington field office.

Head of FBI’s Newark Division Retiring to Take Job with PSE&G

Aaron Ford

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Aaron Ford, the special agent in charge of the FBI’s Newark division, is retiring and taking a job with PSE&G, NJ.com reports.

Ford, who also served as the agent in charge of the FBI’s Memphis division, will finish his 30-year FBI career today.

He will be in charge of PSE&G’s internal investigations, serving as the head of the utility’s Business Assurance and Resilience department.

“Even though I am leaving a top notch agency, I am confident I am joining a great company in PSE&G that shares similar values of integrity, which is due to the outstanding workforce they have,” Ford said.

Ford became head of the Newark division in April 2013.

CNN Opinion: Improving Border Security Means Passing Comprehensive Immigration Reform

By Todd Rosenblum
CNN Opinion

America’s immigration debate has become red hot because President Obama’s critics not only believe that he lacks the authority to act without the consent of Congress, but also that he must not change internal enforcement priorities before first “securing the border.”

The truth is, the single most important thing Congress can do to meaningfully improve our border security is pass comprehensive immigration reform.

Too often, border security is viewed as preventing the illegal entry of people and goods across state lines. However, border security also is about ensuring the safe, efficient flow of commerce and increasing international trade. Comprehensive reform will do both, while our current approach serves neither objective.

I say this as someone who has made countless trips to the U.S.-Mexico border. I’ve seen firsthand how our current approach to policing the border is based on muddled objectives and unmeasurable benchmarks that mask failure.

Our failure to secure the border is not for a lack of trying. Congress has passed at least four laws since 1986 authorizing increases in Border Patrol personnel. In 1980, there were 2,268 Border Patrol agents at the southwest border; under President Obama, that number grew to an all-time high of 21,730. There was 14 miles of fencing on the border in 1990; under this administration, we’ve erected nearly 651 miles of new fencing and dramatically increased our mobile surveillance capabilities.

Yet there is scant evidence that we can spend our way out of this problem.

Former FBI Agent Who Shot, Killed Wife Gets Emotional During Trial

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

A former FBI agent who shot his estranged wife in the chest four times at their home testified that he had no choice but to pull the trigger, Fredericksburg.com reports.

An emotional Arthur Gonzalez insisted Wednesday that he was forced to protect himself when his estranged wife attacked him with a knife.

“Everything was such a blur. I was in disbelief, shock,” Gonzales testified. “Even though we were apart, I still loved her as the boys’ mother.”

Gonzalez, who is charged with second-degree murder, spoke of his turbulent marriage, which led to him filing for divorce in 2012. He said his relationship with his wife was cordial during the separation because of their two sons.

The jury is expected to deliberate today.