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Archive for August 8th, 2018

FBI Agent Wounded, Suspect Killed, in Exchange of Gunfire in L.A.

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

An exchange of gunfire wounded an FBI agent and left the suspect in a slaying dead during an attempted arresting Los Angeles on Tuesday morning.

LAPD officers fatally show the suspect, a man in his 70s, in the parking lot of a hotel about 11 a.m., the Los Angeles Times reports.

Police said the suspect opened fire on law enforcement with a handgun when they tried to garret him. Det. Meghan Aguilar, a spokeswoman for the LAPD, said police immediately returned fire.

The FBI agent was struck in the hand by shrapnel from a bullet and was taken to a hospital for treatment.

“He is undergoing surgery. He is in good spirits,” said FBI Special Agent Scott Garriola, who oversees the FBI’s hunt for dangerous fugitives in the L.A. region. “It was a gun battle.”

GSA May Have Lied to Congress about White House’s Involvement with New FBI Headquarters

President Trump, via White House

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

The GSA administrator who is overseeing the construction of a new FBI headquarters is accused of misleading Congress about the role the White House played in the project, the Washington Post reports, citing a soon-to-be-published report from the agency’s inspector general.

GSA Administrator Emily Murphy downplayed the White House’s involvement while testifying before the House Appropriations Committee in April.

The GSA last year scrapped a plan to build a new FBI headquarters in the Washington suburbs in favor of building a smaller headquarters in downtown D.C., which would require some staff to relocate to Alabama, Idaho and West Virginia.

The inspector general’s report concluded that Murphy’s testimony “was incomplete and may have left the misleading impression that she had no discussions with the President or senior White House officials about the project.”

During the hearing, Rep. Mike Quigley, D-Ill., asked Murphy, “To your knowledge, was the president or anyone else at the White House involved in those discussions, either with your predecessors, people you’re working with now, or yourself?”

Murphy responded, “The direction that we got came from the FBI. It was the FBI that directed to GSA as to what its requirements would be. We obviously did coordinate, given that it is a substantial budget request, we coordinated that request with OMB to provide for funding but the requirements were generated by the FBI.”

The Post reports that Murphy had discussed the project with Trunmp, White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly, senior White House adviser Jared Kushner and other White House officials

Some Congressional members accused Trump of intervening because his hotel is a stone’s throw from the FBI headquarters, and the president doesn’t want a competing hotel to replace the brutalist building.

Manafort’s Lawyers Tried to Discredit Star Witness Rick Gates During Fraud Trial

Former Trump campaign aide Rick Gates with Trump.

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Defense lawyers for Paul Manafort grilled the special counsel prosecutors’ star witness, Rick Gates, trying to discredit him as he testified against President Trump’s former campaign chairman.

Attorney Kevin Downing tried to make Gates look like an unreliable witness who agreed to testify for less time behind bars for crimes he admits he committed.

“You knowingly and intentionally lied?” Downing asked. 

Gates answered, “Uh, yes. I provided false information tot he special counsel office prior to my plea agreement.”

Downing said Gates led a “secret life” that included an apartment in London to hide an extramarital affair.

Gates, who served as a campaign aide to President Trump, also acknowledged “it’s possible” that he submitted person expenses to the president’s inaugural committee for reimbursement. In fact, Gates worked on the president’s inauguration after Manafort quit his job as the campaign chairman.

If convicted of bank and tax fraud, Manafort could spend the rest of his life behind bars.

Gates is expected to continue testifying Wednesday.

Michael Cohen Under Investigation for Potential Tax- And Bank-Fraud

Longtime Trump attorney Michael Cohen.

By Steve Neavling
Ticklethewire.com

Federal prosecutors aren’t just investigating Michael Cohen over his working and personal relationship with President Trump.

Trump’s former lawyer also is facing scrutiny over potential tax fraud from his taxi-medallion business, the Wall Street Journal reports

Prosecutors in New York are trying to determine whether the company underreported federal tax returns over the past five years and whether Cohen obtained loans by inflating the values of his assets.

Bank employees also are under investigation for possibly allowing Cohen to obtain the loans for he which didn’t qualify or didn’t have the proper paperwork.

If charged with tax- and bank-fraud, Cohen could face a signifiant time behind bars, which has the potential to scare the lawyer into cooperating with prosecutors.

The charges would be similar to those filed against Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who’s on trial now.