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Archive for March 21st, 2017

Retired FBI Official on President Trump: ‘How In The World Can I Ever Believe Him on Matters of Substance?’

Kevin Kendrick was an FBI agent for 25 years. A native Detroiter, he worked as assistant special agent in charge of the Detroit field office from 1999-2002. He retired from the FBI in 2006 as head of the Charlotte Division. He currently works in private industry in Michigan. This column first appeared on Facebook and is being reprinted with permission.


President Donald Trump

By Kevin Kendrick

Does the truth matter to you?

It matters to me. As a Bureau Agent for 25 years, it certainly mattered. In so many cases, I saw employees who had violated simple rules, which might have resulted in what we call a letter of censure (reprimand).

The telling of a lie was officially called “lack of candor.” And a lack of candor finding in the FBI meant automatic suspension for a period of days with loss of pay at the very least, and it quite possibly could lead to being terminated.

Why so severe? Because an Agent who has found to have lied during an investigation, even if not originally something substantive, would be deemed to be an unreliable witness in any subsequent criminal case. That agent need only be asked by a defense attorney if he or she had ever been determined to have demonstrated a lack of candor and instantly, their credibility as a witness is impugned. Telling the truth mattered very much to Bureau employees.

Now, we have someone who is a few pay grades higher than a lowly FBI Agent, and who woke up one morning and decided to accuse his predecessor of something truly reprehensible – wiretapping his telephone.

When confronted with information to the contrary, rather than admit this was something completely made up, this administration doubled-down and even said the tapping had been committed by this country’s strongest ally in the world today, an assertion which has been completely rebuked by the U.K.

Fast forward to yesterday (Monday) and we have sworn testimony from the Director of the FBI that says this simply did not occur. Period.

If I cannot believe the President of the United States to tell a simple truth about something as small as a paranoia-induced early morning tweet, how in the world can I ever believe him on matters of substance?

The reality is I simply cannot. And that is because in my world, he has displayed a remarkable and substantial lack of candor.

Does the truth matter to you?

Laptops Will Be Banned on Flights From 10 Airports From 8 Muslim-Majority Nations

laptop-photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Traveling to the U.S. just got more restrictive.

Passengers traveling to the U.S.  from 10 airports in eight Muslim-majority countries will no longer be aloud to bring laptops, tablets and other portable electronic devices on board, Lori Aratani of the Washington Post reports. The devices must now be packed in checked luggage.

The Post reports that senior U.S. administration officials said the rules were prompted by “evaluated intelligence” that terrorists continue to target commercial aviation by “smuggling explosives in portable electronic devices.”

“Based on this information, Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly and Transportation Security Administration acting administrator Huban Gowadia have determined it is necessary to enhance security procedures for passengers at certain last-point-of-departure airports to the United States,” officials said late Monday, according to the Post story.

Dylann Roof’s Friend to Be Sentenced to 27-33 Months for Lying to FBI

Dylann Roof

Dylann Roof

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A week before Dylann Roof killed nine people at a historically black church in South Carolina, he shared his plans with a friend as they drank vodka and snorted cocaine about a week earlier.

Now his friend, Joey Meek, is expected to be sentenced today to 27 to 33 months in prison for lying to the FBI, the New York Post reports.

Authorities say Meek lied to the FBI about the plot and even encouraged friends not to alert authorities about it.

Roof was sentenced to death for the June 2015 shooting.

Roof, an admitted racist, shot people inside an Emanuel AME church.

Sun Sentinel: Trump Should Welcome FBI Investigation into Russian Interference

Donald TrumpBy Editorial Board
Sun Sentinel

If he’s got nothing to hide, President Trump should welcome the fact that the FBI is investigating possible links between Russia and the Trump campaign during the 2016 presidential election.

Trump should be the first one saying “Bring it on” after FBI Director James Comey said Monday he’s been authorized to discuss the ongoing investigation because of the extreme public interest in the case.

Ever since Trump was inaugurated on Jan. 20, there have been questions and rumors about links between members of Trump’s campaign and the Russian government. The public deserves answers, and the president should also want to finally clear the air on an issue that has dogged his campaign for months. There has been enough speculation, and Trump should be pushing for facts and information to be made public.

Instead, what we got from Trump on Monday were early morning tweets slamming the idea that there was any collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. The tweets came before Comey appeared in front of a House panel and confirmed for the first time the FBI is investigating possible Russian efforts to interfere in the 2016 election.

“. . . there is no evidence Potus colluded with Russia,” Trump tweeted at 6:35 Monday morning. “This story is FAKE NEWS and everyone knows it!”

Trump tried to put the attention on leaked classified information, rather than the information itself.

“The real story the Congress, the FBI and all others should be looking into is the leaking of Classified information,” Trump tweeted at 7:02 a.m. “Must find leaker NOW.”

About two hours later, Trump asked in a tweet, “What about all of the contact with the Clinton campaign and the Russians?”

Trump’s propensity for deflection won’t be successful now. The world knows the FBI is investigating, and facts are needed — not tweets, and not speculation.

To read more click here. 

Trump Sticks to His Unfounded Surveillance Claims Despite FBI, NSA Remarks

FBI Director James Comey, via Wikipedia

FBI Director James Comey, via Wikipedia

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Donald Trump and the White House are sticking to their unfounded claims that President Obama wiretapped Trump Tower during the 2016 election, despite zero evidence from the FBI and NSA.

On Monday, FBI Director James Comey and NSA Director Mike Rogers both told the House Intelligence Committee that they’ve seen no evidence to back up Trump’s claims, which were first made in a March 4 tweet.

“There’s a lot more questions that need to be asked about what was being done in terms of surveillance,” White House press secretary Sean Spicer said at a press briefing today. “Who was being surveilled? Why were they being surveilled? What were the techniques? I get that you guys want to know the end of the book right now, but we’re in the first chapter of this process.”

Hours earlier, Comey said, “The department has no information that supports those tweets.”

Trump continues to show little faith in the country’s intelligence agencies, repeating unfounded claims.

“I’ve seen nothing on the NSA side that we’ve engaged in such activity nor that anyone ever asked us to engage in such activity,” the NSA director said.

Ex-Border Patrol Agent Sentenced to 13+ Years for Smuggling Cocaine

border patrolBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A former Border Patrol agent was sentenced to more than 13 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to charges that he tried to smuggle cocaine in Arizona.

Juan Pimentel, of Rio Rico, was arrested in November 2015 after authorities say he thought he was smuggling 110 pounds of cocaine, the Associated Press reports. He actually was unwittingly part of a sting operation and was carrying a white powder.

Pimentel, who also pleaded guilty to receiving a bribe by a public official, took cash in exchange for looking up a license plate from a database used only by law enforcement.

Pimentel served as an agent in Arizona since 2001 before resigning after his arrest.

DHS Releases List of Jails, Municipalities That Won’t Cooperate with Immigration Officials

jail2photoBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Homeland Security fired back at municipalities that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration officials, releasing a list of jails and jurisdictions that have denied immigrant detainer requests. 

Those requests are directed at cities and counties that are holding an inmate who is in the country illegally.

The so-called “sanctuary jurisdictions” have stated various reasons for not cooperating, including the fear that it would undermine policing and cooperation with law enforcement.

The list was published Monday and includes more than 200 unnamed individuals who ICE says committed “countable criminal activity.” Also listed are the jails where the undocumented immigrants are lodged.

Overall, less than 10% of municipalities refused to cooperate.

“When law enforcement agencies fail to honor immigration detainers and release serious criminal offenders, it undermines ICE’s ability to protect the public safety and carry out its mission,” Acting ICE Director Thomas Homan said.

Other Stories of Interest