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Archive for March 30th, 2016

Michael DeLeon to Head Up FBI’s Phoenix Office

fbi logo large

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Michael DeLeon, who served in the National Clandestine Service, Counterintelligence Center as the chief of the Counterespionage Group at the Central Intelligence Agency,  has been named special agent in charge of the  FBI’s Phoenix Division.

He’ll begin the new job in late April, the FBI said.

DeLeon joined the FBI in 1999 and started in the Tampa Division’s Fort Myers Resident Agency, where he worked criminal, counterterrorism, and counterintelligence matters, according to a press release.

After September 11, 2001, he served as the Joint Terrorism Task Force coordinator for the Fort Myers Resident Agency.

His duties in the bureau have included unit chief in the Espionage Section of the Counterintelligence Division, senior supervisory resident special agent of the Greensboro Resident Agency-Charlotte Division and assistant special agent in charge in the Counterintelligence Branch of Washington Field Office.

Before joining the FBI, he worked for Delaware State Police.

 

How the FBI Unlocked an iPhone without the Help of Apple

FBI headquarters

FBI headquarters

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

When Apple refused to help the FBI open an iPhone of one of the San Bernardino killers, the bureau sought help from experts worldwide.

They met with companies and hackers, but no one was able to bypass the security feature.

Then on March 20, a company came forward and demonstrated that they unlocked another iPhone. The FBI decided to give the San Bernardino phone a shot with the company this past weekend, ABC News reports. 

“The FBI has now successfully retrieved the data stored” on the phone, the Justice Department announced just days ago.

The FBI has declined to identify the company, saying they arrived at a “mutual agreement.”

The solution was “generated as a result of the media attention,” a source told ABC News.

Now forensic examiners are trying to gather evidence from the phone.

A Week Before the Brussel’s Terror Attack, FBI Warned Dutch Police about Jihadist Brothers

Brussels

Brussels

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A week before the Brussels terror attack, the FBI supplied Dutch police with information about two brothers who blew themselves up in the massacre.

Dutch authorities passed on the critical information about Ibrahim and Khalid El Bakraoui to their Belgian counterparts on March 17, the New York Post reports. 

“On March 16, the FBI informed Dutch police over the fact that both brothers were sought by Belgian authorities,” Dutch Interior Minister Ard van der Steur wrote after legislators asked about the Brussels residents.

The interior ministers said the FBI warned Dutch officials about Ibrahim’s criminal background” and that Khalad was wanted for “terrorism, extremism and recruitment.”

Although the interior minister said the information was shared with Belgian authorities, police there denied the brothers were part of the conversation.

The missed opportunity has provoked criticism about missteps and missed chances in the days before last week’s Brussels attacks.

Washington Times: Justice Department Forces Courts to Punish Lawbreakers by Ability to Pay

justice-dept-photo-with-woman-and-courtBy Editorial Board
Washington Times

The rule of law is meant to guide the administration of justice. But in an administration obsessed with race, not necessarily. The Obama Justice Department has instructed judges across the nation to lighten up on the poor, and especially poor minorities, or else. The lady with the blindfold and sword has tossed her blindfold aside and put the weight of her sword on the scale to favor those with the right connections.

The Obama administration is all about payback. The Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division has written to municipal and state judges from coast to coast warning them that federal funds for their courthouses could be cut unless they dial back fees and fines levied against “economically disadvantaged” defendants guilty of minor crimes, particularly those of ethnic minorities who don’t have the money to pay their fines.

The letter, dispatched March 14, was signed by Vanita Gupta, an assistant attorney general, and Lisa Foster, the director of the Office for Access, and lays out what they call “basic constitutional principles relevant to the enforcement of fines and fees.” Among them is a prohibition against jailing someone for failing to pay without first asking whether he is poor and whether the nonpayment was willful, together with a demand to consider alternatives to jail. Judges were warned that practices that “impose disparate harm on the basis of race or national origin” may violate the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

In the wake of Justice Department investigations into civil unrest in Ferguson, Mo., and Baltimore, municipal authorities are sensitive to racial discrimination, as they should be, but now judges are asked to be financial analysts and cut offenders a break if they’re broke. Who says crime does not pay?

To read more click here. 

Response

By James Burdick

What’s the point of printing the ka-ka that the Washington Times pouts out? This is their absurd take on a very serious problems. It’s not the assessment of costs, fines and fees that the economically disadvantaged suffer – typically black and other minorities – it’s putting them in jail “until” they can pay.

Which of course is never. How does that help society. Someone steals a pound of hamburger meat from a grocery store. What is he, a terrorist? A murdered? A rapist? No, he’s hungry and has no money for food for himself or his family. So order him to pay thousands in costs, court fees and fines and then jail him for not paying because he has no money? This the Washington Times thinks is evidence of race bias by the President’s administration. They should try living on $7.00 an hour with a few kids and see how long they can do that.

James Burdick, a former Wayne County prosecutor, is a criminal defense attorney who also handles health care cases at Burdick Law, P.C. in Bloomfield Hills, Mich.

Border Patrol Releases Photos of Latest Cross-Border Tunnel Discovered

Latest cross-border tunnel discovered by authorities. All photos by Border Patrol.

Latest cross-border tunnel discovered by authorities. All photos by Border Patrol.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Mexican authorities found a border tunnel in Nogales that stretched about 80 feet from Mexico to the United States.

The tunnel, which authorities said was “incomplete,” extended about 30 feet into the U.S.

The first illicit cross-border tunnel was discovered in Douglas in 1990. Since then, Border Patrol said it investigates more than 115 tunnels – all but five in the Nogales areas.

“The tunnels, typically primitive in nature, are generally used by transnational criminal organizations to smuggle narcotics into the United States,” the Border Patrol said. “Agents put themselves in dangerous, unnerving situations when they investigate tunnels.”

Here are photos, taken by Border Patrol, of the latest tunnel discovery.

border tunnel5

The pink marking indicates an access point.

Digging tools in the tunnel.

Digging tools in the tunnel.

Homeland Security Chief: Republicans Candidates Undermining National Security with Anti-Muslim Remarks

donald trump rallyBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Republican presidential candidates are undermining national security efforts by resorting to harsh rhetoric about Muslims, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Tuesday.

In an interview with MSNBC, Johnson said it’s dangerous to single out Islam as the federal government is trying to build connections with Muslims who could help thwart possible terror attacks.

“Inflammatory comments about patrolling and securing Muslim neighbors or barring Muslims from entering this country, having an immigration policy based on religion, is counterproductive to our homeland security and national security interests,” he said.

Some Republican candidates, especially Donald Trump and Ted Cruz, are sacrificing law enforcement relationships with law-abiding Muslims, Johnson said.

The rhetoric has heated up after last week’s Brussels attacks.

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