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Tag: dismissed

FBI Agent Became Addicted to Heroin After Dependence on Pain Meds

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An FBI agent accused of stealing heroin from evidence in cases to feed his addiction was first hooked on pain medication, The Washington Post reports.

Matthew Lowry, 33, of the Washington Field Office told investigators that he first took heroin in 2013 after stealing a small amount obtained during an undercover sting.

He said he became addicted to pain medication in 2012 for reasons that aren’t clear.

Lowry’s eventual dependence on heroin led him to steal heroin from suspects, authorities said in reports. The theft resulted in the dismissal of charges for 28 defendants because the evidence was deemed tainted.

Lowry has been suspended but not charged.

Prosecutors Dismiss Charges Against Man After Questionable Handling by FBI

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Questionable ties between FBI agents and probation officers preceded Thursday’s decision by Cook County prosecutors to dismiss felony gun charges against a Chicago man Thursday, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Orangelo Payne, 34, was on probation for felony possession of marijuana when his probation officer turned up at Payne’s home with an FBI agent in tow. Using the probation as a pretext to search his apartment, he said an FBI agent squeezed him for information about a murder suspect, and a shotgun was found.

Before Payne could even challenge the charge in court, State Attorney Anita Alvarez declined to pursue the weapons charge.

Instead of facing up to decades in prison, he was charged with a lesser count that will allow for his release from jail within a few days, the Tribune reported.
“They dropped the charges because they didn’t want to air dirty laundry in open court,” Payne’s lawyer, J. Scott Arthur, said. “Under the ruse of probation officers conducting curfew checks, law enforcement is tagging along and illegally gaining access to homes.”

Eighth Case Dropped in ATFs Botched Gun-Buying Sting in Milwaukee

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The ATF’s botched gun-buy sting in Milwaukee took another turn for the worse, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Milwaukee County Assistant District Attorney Karen Loebel said two more cases related to the sting need to be dismissed because the lead agent cannot be called as a witness.

The case is the eighth of 18 that Loebel dismissed.

It’s unclear why the lead agents can’t be called as a witness because of “the manner in which I received the information,” Loebel said.

The cases stem from a sting that went seriously wrong. Guns were stolen. A brain-damaged man was promoted to set up drugs in the case. And evidence was lost

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L.A. Judge Drops Key Convictions in Racketeering Case After Feds Discover Tape Beneficial to Defense

George Torres

George Torres

This case was considered a tough one, which made it all the more gratifying for federal prosecutors when they emerged victorious. Now it’s an embarrassment. The prosecution said it just discovered a tape recording that was helpful to the defense. On Tuesday, the judge took action.

By Scott Glover
Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
LOS ANGELES — A federal judge  today tossed out two of the most serious convictions in the racketeering case against supermarket mogul George Torres, dramatically reducing the amount of time Torres faces behind bars.

U.S. District Judge Stephen V. Wilson ordered Torres released immediately on the condition he sign papers stating he would attend future hearings in the case.

The judge issued the order after federal prosecutors over the weekend turned over tape recordings of at least one key informant in the case that contained potentially exculpatory evidence.

The judge’s ruling marks a serious blow to prosecutors who last month won a conviction against Torres. Before the judge’s action, Torres faced a potential life sentence. With two of most serious convictions dismissed, Torres potential sentence will likely be significantly shorter. Authorities could not immediately say how much prison time he might face.

The convictions voided by Wilson were at the heart of the government’s case — racketeering and conspiracy, including murder.

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