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Tag: files

Anti-Gay Westboro Leader Fred Phelps Has Extensive FBI File

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Fred Phelps, the founder of the anti-gay Westboro Baptist Church, was no stranger to the FBI.

In fact, The Hill reports that Phelps was “well known to the FBI,” according to his newly released 250-page bureau file.

Phelps, who died in March 2014, first came on the FBI’s radar in 1967 when a confidential informant said Phelps was ““in need of psychiatric care” while he was leading Westboro.

Between 1993 and 2006, Phelps gained the attention of the FBI virtually every year.

In some cases, Phelps made claims that he was threatened by terrorists.

“It would appear that Mr. Phelps is intentionally provoking these types of responses,” the FBI wrote to a U.S. district attorney in 1993 regarding reported death threats against Phelps. “Large amounts of money and investigative time can potentially be wasted investigating these threat letters. Historically, very few, if any, of these types of cases have been prosecuted in the District of Kansas.”

“The FBI does have the responsibility to investigate and prevent potential violence against any person regardless of their religious or political views, however,” continued a supervisory senior agent, whose name is redacted.

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FBI Releases 3,600 Pages on the Late Sen. Ted Stevens

Ex-Sen. Ted Stevens before his defeat

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The FBI on Friday released about 3,600 pages on the late Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens, about 2,700 of which were from media reports.

The files included complaints received by the FBI Anchorage office alleging “instances of Stevens being involved in corruption or other illegal activities” and Stevens accepting free services.

The files also detail threats made against Stevens over the years including in 1985 when he was among a number of members of Congress members who received threatening letters, the FBI said.

Stevens was convicted on public corruption charges in 2008,just before he was up for re-election. He lost the election. But a federal judge, at the request of the Justice Department, ended up vacating the conviction because of prosecutorial misconduct.

Stevens died in a plane crash last August. He served in the Senate from 1968 until Jan. 3, 2009.

Some of the information contained in the files, according to the FBI, included:

* Letters back and forth between Stevens and FBI Directors and other executives, the U.S. attorney general, and the Anchorage special agents in charge discussing legislation, constituent concerns, crime reporting, and news articles of interest;

* Letters of complaint from the public and political organizations regarding alleged corruption, which tie in other Alaskan political figures;

* References from the 1950s when Stevens was the U.S. Attorney (involving his appointment to the position and participation in U.S. Attorney conferences); and

* Correspondence between Hoover and other FBI executives regarding Stevens’ relationship with the FBI and the Anchorage Field Office as a U.S. Attorney.

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Relatives Get Rare Opportunity to Raise Objections to Release of Certain FBI Files of Ted Kennedy

Late Sen. Ted Kennedy

Late Sen. Ted Kennedy

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON – In a rare move, the family of Edward M. Kennedy will be allowed to raise objections before thousand of pages of the late Senator’s FBI file are released, the Boston Globe reports.

The paper reports that the the FBI is providing the “uncommon” opportunity so that the privacy rights of living relatives will not be violated, the Globe reported.

“In certain circumstances [such as] the family of victims of crimes or, as in this case . . . a public official, [the FBI] may coordinate the release of certain material with the family,” Dennis Argall, an FBI spokesman told the Globe, noting that the practice was rare. “The family of a deceased person may have a privacy interest.”

“But the reason [for objecting] can’t simply be that it is embarrassing” Argail told the Globe.

To read more click here.

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Sen. Kerry Wants to Force FBI to Release More Files on MLK

mlkBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kerry plans to introduce legislation requiring the FBI to release more records relating to Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., the Boston Globe is reporting.

The bill would require that all the files be “located, reviewed, and released by a review board at the National Archives similar to those established for the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and for Nazi war criminals,” the paper reported.

The move is part of a broader effort to find out what the government did or didn’t do about violence against blacks during the civil rights movement, the Globe reported.

“There are a lot of unanswered questions,” Representative John Lewis, a Georgia Democrat and former King aide who was brutally beaten during a civil rights march in 1965 told the Globe. “The American people have a right to know what happened.”

The paper reported that a social studies teacher researching a book about plots to kill King discovered that the FBI files included information about a Ku Klux Klan leader “who claimed to have a played a role” in the 1968 assassination, the Globe reported.

To read the full story click here.

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FBI Has More than 3,000 Files on Sen. Ted Kennedy

PR NEWSWIREUlrich Boser, editor of the website The Open Case, could be in for some interesting reading if the FBI doesn’t redact too much.

By Ulrich Boser
The Open Case
What does the FBI have on Ted Kennedy? A lot, apparently. I filed a FOIA to get any documents related to the lion of the Senate shortly after the Senator’s death. I received a letter late last week, and the FBI told me that they had over 3,000 files on Kennedy.

To put that in context, Michael Jackson’s FOIA turned out to be only 600 pages.

To Read More

FBI Destroyed Files on Newsman Walter Cronkite

Walter Cronkite/asu photo

Walter Cronkite/asu photo

Someone should have saved these historical records. It’s a shame the records are gone.  Fortunately the memory of Walter Cronkite can’t be destroyed.

By Matt Kelley
USA TODAY
WASHINGTON — The FBI destroyed its files on former CBS News anchorman Walter Cronkite two years ago under a policy that has been criticized by researchers for allowing potentially valuable records to be wiped out.

A search of the agency’s main index of the subjects of FBI investigations found some records tied to Cronkite’s name were destroyed in October 2007, the FBI said in response to a Freedom of Information Act request by USA TODAY. Cronkite’s death in July at age 92 made any FBI files about him available for release under the federal law.

The FBI should have preserved records about Cronkite, who anchored CBS’ newscasts from 1962 to 1981, said Scott Hodes, a former top lawyer in the FBI’s records office. All FBI records on such a prominent person should have been saved under the FBI’s policies, Hodes said.

For Full Story

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