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Archive for May 15th, 2018

Ex-Border Patrol Agent Gets 7 1/2 Years For Taking Bribe

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

An ex-Border Patrol agent was sentenced Monday in Tucson to 7.5 years in federal prison for accepting bribes and acting as a scout for drug smugglers near Marana.

Alberto M. Michel pleaded guilty earlier this year to taking $12,000 in exchange for providing counter-surveillance for marijuana smugglers while on duty in November, The Arizona Daily Star reports. 

Michel, 41, joined the Border Patrol in 2009 and was promoted to the Tucson Sector Border Patrol Intelligence Unit in 2016, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Does Robert Mueller Have A Conflict of Interest With The Russian Probe and an Oligarch?

Special counsel Robert Mueller

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Life is complicated.

In 2009, when Robert S. Mueller III ran the FBI, the bureau asked Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska to spend millions of his own dollars funding an FBI-supervised operation to rescue a retired FBI agent, Robert Levinson, captured in Iran while working for the CIA in 2007.

John Solomon writes in The Hill that’s  the same Deripaska who has surfaced in Mueller’s current investigation and who was recently sanctioned by the Trump administration.

The Levinson mission is confirmed by more than a dozen participants inside and outside the FBI, including Deripaska, his lawyer, the Levinson family and a retired agent who supervised the case, Solomon writes.

 

Electronic Frontier Foundation Wants to Know About the 7,800 Phones the FBI Says It Can’t Hack

mobile phone in hand vector silhouette on white background

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The Electronic Frontier Foundation is curious about the FBI’s claim that it had nearly 7,800 phones it couldn’t hack into while investigating crimes in 2017.

So, the foundation has submitted a FOIA request to the FBI, as well as the Offices of the Inspector General and Information Policy at DOJ, asking the FBI to tell the public how they arrived at that 7,775 devices figure, when and how the FBI discovered that some outside entity was capable of hacking the San Bernardino iPhone, and what the FBI was telling Congress about its capabilities to hack into cellphones.

The Foundation writes:

When law enforcement argues for legally mandating encryption backdoors into our devices, and justifies that argument by claiming they can’t get in any other way, it’s important for legislators and the public to know whether that justification is actually true.