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Judge Jails FBI Agent Who Shot at Michigan Police Officer While Drunk

Former FBI Agent Ruben Hernandez

Former FBI Agent Ruben Hernandez

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An FBI agent who shot at a police officer in a Michigan fitness club was sentenced to 135 days in prison.

Ruben Hernandez, 35, of North Las Vegas, was in the Grand Rapids area conducting an investigation when police say he went on a drunken rampage that led to him shooting at an officer. No one was injured.

Judge Dennis Leiber ignored teams of the plea agreement, which included no jail time, and said anyone who shoots at police should be placed behind bars, the Associated Press reports. 

Hernandez, who was fired shortly after the shooting, had pleaded no contest to felonious assault.

Was Ex-Trump Aide Carter Page a Russian Agent? FBI Investigating

Carter Page, former campaign advisor for Donald Trump.

Carter Page, former campaign advisor for Donald Trump.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Three years before Carter Page became a foreign policy adviser to Donald Trump, FBI agents were already concerned about him being influenced by a Russian spy.

So when Page delivered a Russia-friendly speech at a prestigious Moscow Institute last July while working on Trump’s campaign, the FBI’s curiosity piqued. Agents began digger deeper to determine whether there were any ties between Russia and Trump’s campaign, current and former law enforcement and intelligence official told the New York Times.   

Page, a 45-year-old Navy veteran and businessman, had lived in Moscow for three years. When he stepped down from the Trump campaign in September, the FBI obtained a warrant from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to monitor his communications, suspecting he was a Russia agent.

Page is just the latest member of Trump’s campaign or administration to come under fire for connections to Russia.

The investigation is ongoing.   

CIA, FBI Search for Leaker Who Gave Classified Documents to Wikileaks

cia-lobby-sealBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The CIA and FBI are on the hunt for a traitor inside the spy agency who turned over a trove of classified documents to Wikileaks.

Government officials told CBS News that the leaker either works for the CIA or is a government contractor.

Making the investigation more difficult, hundreds of workers had access to the data, which was published by Wikileaks in March.

CIA Director Mike Pompeo criticized Wikileaks for releasing the documents.

“It is time to call out WikiLeaks for what it really is: A non-state hostile intelligence service often abetted by state actors like Russia,” Pompeo said while speaking to the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank.

President Trump, however, had a much different opinion of Wikileaks during the presidential campaign.

“I love Wikileaks!” Trump said to a rally of supporters in Wilkes-Barre, Penn. in October.

FBI Investigating Terrorism in All 50 States As Threat Reaches a High

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly warned that America is facing its “highest terror threat in years,” with active investigations in all 50 states.

“The threat to our nation and our American way of life has not diminished,” Kelly said during a speech at George Washington University on Tuesday, the New York Post reports. “In fact, the threat has metastasized and decentralized.” 

Kelly said the country is experiencing an “unprecedented spike” in homegrown terrorism.

“We are under attack from terrorists both within and outside of our borders,” he said.

Over the past year, the FBI has handled 36 cases of homegrown terrorists in 18 states.

Kelly said the radicalization of Americans is “notoriously difficult to predict and control.”

Border Patrol Agents Rescue 2 People from Drowning Near Mexico Border

border patrol 3By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Border Patrol agents are known for tracking down undocumented immigrants at the border with Mexico.

But they also save a lot of lives.

On Tuesday, Border Patrol agents rescued two drowning men in the Rio Grande near the Texas and Mexico border, Fox News reports. 

The two agents were alerted to the emergency by people on the Mexican side of the Rio Grande about 50 miles south west of McAllen and 175 miles southwest of Corpus Christi.

Agents Luis Gonzalez and Abel Flores pulled the men to safety and used a patrol boat to drop them back onto the Mexican side of the river.

“We are very proud of our agents [and] their actions which ultimately prevented the loss of human life,” said Manuel Padilla Jr., the chief Border Patrol agent in the Rio Grande sector. 

Number of ‘Dreamers’ Deported Soars under President Trump

Courtesy of ICE

Courtesy of ICE

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The number of “Dreamers” deported has soared in the first few months of Donald Trump’s administration.

From Jan. 20 to March 25, 43 immigrants who lost their protected status because of criminal behavior were deported, the Los Angeles Times reports. 

Under President Obama, about seven Dreamers were deported each month on average since the program was launched in September 2012.

The LA Times wrote:

President Trump has stated his administration will not target DACA, an Obama-era program that allows immigrants brought into the country illegally as children, who attend school or have graduated, to apply to the federal government for a two-year work permit and protection from deportation. An estimated 742,000 Dreamers have been given protection under the program.

At issue are those former DACA beneficiaries whose protected status was canceled either because of a criminal conviction or gang activity.

Immigrant advocates say the rise in deportations of former Dreamers is likely a result of Trump’s executive orders tightening border security and immigration enforcement.

The Obama administration prioritized deportation of immigrants who were deemed a danger to public safety, convicted of a serious crime, a threat to national security or who had recently crossed the border.

Trump’s Crackdown on Immigration Is Straining Already Backlogged Immigration Cases

File photo of a Border Patrol agent.

File photo of a Border Patrol agent.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

New federal immigration rules under President Trump are placing a heavy burden on Border Patrol agents, judges, prosecutors and defense attorneys who already had been swamped.

The USA Today reports that Trump’s crackdown on illegal immigration, which gives agents more leverage to deport undocumented immigrants, has been strain on “an immigration court system already juggling more than a half-million cases and ill-equipped to take on thousands more.”

“We’re at critical mass,” said Linda Brandmiller, a San Antonio immigration attorney who works with juveniles. “There isn’t an empty courtroom. We don’t have enough judges. You can say you’re going to prosecute more people, but from a practical perspective, how do you make that happen?”

The number of backlogged immigration cases have increased from 236,415 in 2010 to 508,036 this year, according to the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, a data research group at Syracuse University. 

The Border Patrol also is understaffed and having trouble hiring enough agents.

Other Stories of Interest

AG Jeff Sessions Has Yet to Replace A Single Dismissed U.S. Attorney

Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Photo by Gage Skidmore, via Wikipedia.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Photo by Gage Skidmore, via Wikipedia.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who has pledged a more aggressive crackdown on crime and illegal immigrants, has yet to replace a single U.S. attorney after he abruptly forced the resignation of dozens of them more than a month ago.

In all, 47 Obama administration attorneys resigned, and each position is still vacant, the Washington Post reports. Another 46 U.S. attorney positions are unfilled. 

“We really need to work hard at that,” Sessions said when asked Tuesday about the vacancies.

Sessions also has yet to appoint leaders to his top units, including criminal, civil rights and national security divisions.

Without U.S. attorneys, it’s difficult to implement a law enforcement agenda.

Acting U.S. attorneys have taken over temporarily, but that’s far from ideal.

“It’s like trying to win a baseball game without your first-string players on the field,” said former assistant attorney general Ronald Weich, who ran the Justice Department’s legislative affairs division during Obama’s first term.

“There are human beings occupying each of those seats,” Weich, now dean of the University of Baltimore School of Law, said of the interim officials. “But that’s not the same as having appointed and confirmed officials who represent the priorities of the administration. And the administration is clearly way behind in achieving that goal.”