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Tag: Albuquerque

FBI Mulls Criminal Probe over Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research

Anti-Planned Parenthood rally. File photo by Steve Neavling.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is considering criminal investigations over the use of aborted fetus tissue in medical research at the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center and the Southwestern Women’s Options abortion clinic in Albuquerque.

The FBI is looking into a request by the Republican-led House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives to investigate Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers, including the Southwestern Women’s Options in Albuquerque, the Albuquerque Journal reports.

“We can confirm that the Criminal Investigative Division of the FBI Headquarters has received this information, including the two referrals made to the New Mexico Attorney General regarding practices of the UNM HSC and SWO, and sent the materials to the relevant FBI field offices for review and any action deemed appropriate,” Steven E. Boyd, assistant attorney general for legislative affairs in Washington, wrote in a letter on Friday to Rep. Steve Pearce, R-N.M.

Pearce, who raised concerns about the use of fetal tissue research, said he was encouraged by the letter.

“I applaud today’s action by Attorney General Jeff Sessions to take up the criminal referrals in New Mexico regarding violations made by the University of New Mexico and the Southwestern Women’s Options,” Pearce wrote on his Facebook page. “Even more, DOJ will be investigating all fifteen criminal referrals that were sent out but not acted upon at the conclusion of the Select Panel’s investigation.”

Health Sciences Center spokeswoman Alex Sanchez said the organization is aware of the letter.

“The UNM Health Sciences Center has not been contacted by the FBI and only today became aware of the assistant attorney general for legislative affairs’ letter to Rep. Pearce,” Sanchez said. “As is our practice, if we are contacted, we will cooperate fully.”

Other Stories of Interest

DOJ Threatens to Withhold Crime-Fighting Help to 4 Cities over Immigration Policies

ICE agents, via ICE.

ICE agents, via ICE.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Justice Department is stepping up pressure on four cities to cooperate with immigration enforcement, threatening to stop providing federal help to crack down on crime.

To continue receiving crime-fighting assistance, San Bernardino, Stockton, Baltimore and Albuquerque must help federal agents with inmates who are undocumented immigrants.

But the Los Angeles Times says the threat “appeared poorly thought out” because neither of the four cities operate a jail, and two have no sanctuary policies. 

The Justice Department didn’t respond to the Times’ questions about the selection of the four cities.

FBI Arrests Suspect in Attack on 3 Starbucks Stores in Albuquerque

Suspect in vandalism of a Starbucks store in Albuquerque.

Suspect in vandalism of a Starbucks store in Albuquerque.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI arrested a suspect accused of vandalizing three Starbucks stores and leaving behind suspicious devices, including one that detonated, early Friday in Albuquerque.

The suspect, who has not yet been identified, was arrested Saturday.

The ATF also is investigating.

The stores appear to have been struck with bullet holes, and glass doors were shattered.

“We heard gunshots go off. At least four rounds of gunshots go off, and then we heard a large explosion,” a witness who lives near the Starbucks in Albuquerque’s Nob Hill told KOAT-TV. “It was like a big flash — like, orange and white — just smoke everywhere.”

The explosive device that detonated caused minimal damage to a Starbucks in southeast Albuquerque.

Lawsuit Claims DEA Informant Improperly Monitored Albuquerque Man Who Snapped

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A man accused of fatally shooting an Albuquerque man last year was an active DEA informant despite his criminal background, according to a lawsuit filed against the agency, the Associated Press reports.

The lawsuit claims the DEA did not properly supervise Jason Estrada, who was killed when he confronted a man accused of sexually assaulting a child.

The man, 31-year-old Edward Quintana, is charged with killing Estrada and criminal sexual penetration of a child under 13.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office declined to comment.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

 

Troublesome Picture Emerges of Police Brutality Within Albuquerque Police Department

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Criticizing the Albuquerque Police Department for a well-documented history of police brutality and unjustified deadly force, the U.S. Justice Department painted a disturbing picture of the department.

CNN reports that the report details police officers killing an unarmed drug store robber, a 19-year-old who was “motionless on his back” and a 25-year-old veteran who was threatening to commit suicide.

Click here for the full report.

City officials didn’t immediately respond to the findings.

The report could result in long-term oversight of the department.

DEA Albuquerque Office Gets New Leadership Role As Assistant Special Agent in Charge

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

Sean R. Waite, a longtime DEA agent, has been appointed as a new agent in charge of the agency’s Albuquerque, NM, office, the Republic reports.

Waite replaces Keith Brown, who left to become the agent in charge of the DEA’s New Orleans field office last year.

The office is part of the El Paso Field Division, which has been busy with synthetic drug trafficking.

Sharp Rise in Border Patrol Apprehensions along New Mexico Border

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Border Patrol is experiencing a sharp increase in apprehensions at the New Mexico border, the Albuquerque Journal reports.

The Border Patrol took into custody nearly 8,000 people for illegally crossing the border in fiscal 2013 – compared to about 5,700 in fiscal 2012.

Although the New Mexico numbers were on the rise, Texas and Tucson saw declines, Albuquerque Journal wrote.

It may be the success in places like Tucson that are prompting immigrants to try the New Mexico border, said Joe Romero, acting special operations supervisor in the Border Patrol El Paso sector’s public affairs office..

“The success of neighboring sectors, such as Tucson Sector, may lead people away from that area in hopes of possibly finding a greater chance for success in our area,” Romero said in an emailed response to questions from the Albuquerque Journal.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST


Man Arrested After Threatening to Detonate Explosive-Laden Burrito at FBI Office

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A man convinced that the FBI had implanted a tracking device into his head threatened to detonate an explosive burrito at the bureau’s Albuquerque field office, the Albuquerque Journal reports.

Brian DeMarco, 50, called up the FBI from his Super 8 motel room to warn that he planned to blow up a explosives-rigged Mexican lunch wrap, the FBI told the Journal.

Additionally, DeMarco, who also complained that the FBI was beaming photos into his brain, said he had placed a bomb at the Albuquerque Social Security Administration building.

DeMarco, who said he’d been diagnosed with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, was arrested at a bus station and no explosives were found.