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Tag: IG

Justice Department Directs IG to Investigate Trump’s Claim of FBI Spying on HIs Campaign

President Trump, via White House

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Here’s the latest political storm in Washington.

The Justice Department on Monday directed, a the behest of President Donald Trump, the Inspector General to probe the president’s allegation that his campaign had been “infiltrated or surveilled” by the FBI, NBC News reports.

“The Department has asked the Inspector General to expand the ongoing review of the FISA application process to include determining whether there was any impropriety or political motivation in how the FBI conducted its counterintelligence investigation of persons suspected of involvement with the Russian agents who interfered in the 2016 presidential election,” Department of Justice spokeswoman Sarah Isgur Flores said in a statement.

As always, the Inspector General will consult with the appropriate U.S. Attorney if there is any evidence of potential criminal conduct,” she added.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein weighed in saying “if anyone did infiltrate or surveil participants in a presidential campaign for inappropriate purposes, we need to know about it and take appropriate action.”

While some see this as legitimate, others see it as a tactic by the Trump camp to try to discredit the Robert Mueller investigation.

 

Column: U.S. Attys Rip Off Taxpayers on Hotel Rooms

Allan Lengel

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The words “offensive” and “disgusting” and “criminal” best describe the findings of a Justice Department Inspector General report this week which found that five U.S. Attorneys stuck taxpayers with hefty hotel bills.

In other words, they went far beyond the allotted allowance for rooms.

And the worst offender, the report said, was the New Jersey U.S. Attorney Chris Christie — who is now the state’s governor — who has crusaded against corruption. This sounds rather corrupt to me.

He was U.S. Attorney from 2002 to 2008.

“After reviewing the travel documents and interviewing the U.S. Attorney’s secretary, we found insufficient justification for exceeding the government rate with respect to 14 of the 15 trips,” the report said of Christie.

“These 14 vouchers exceeded the government rate by $19 to $242 per night, for a total of $2,176 (excluding taxes for domestic travel). U.S. Attorney C’s lodging costs exceeded the government rate by more than $100 per night on 9 of the 14 vouchers.”

The report said Christie — considered a rising star in the Republican party – stayed at the Nine Zero Hotel in Boston for $449 per night and the $475-per-night Four Seasons Hotel in Washington at a cost of more than double the government rate for those cities.

Guess what. Go to Orbitz right now. Punch in hotels for  Boston and Washington.

The St. Gregory Luxury Hotel at 20th and M Streets NW in D.C. — a pretty darn nice neighborhood and a four-star hotel — is going this week for $211 a night. And guess what, it’s right near a Four Seasons Hotel where Christie spent $475 a night. And the five-star Langham hotel in Boston is going for $257 a night — far less than the $449 a night he spent at the Nine Zero Hotel.

Christie’s press secretary did not return a call when I called for comment. Not surprising.  There’s no justification for ripping off the taxpayers.

What Christie and the other four U.S. Attorneys need to do is take out a check book and reimburse the taxpayers. They also need to remember, while they’re presidential appointees, they are not the PRESIDENT. They can stay at an Embassy Suites or a Hilton.

It’s all about doing the right thing.

DEA’s El Paso Intelligence Center Pretty Much a Bust, IG Report Says

el paso map istockBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — An Inspector General report released Tuesday concludes that the El Paso Intelligence Center (EPIC), opened by the DEA in 1974 to identify drug dealers south of the border is pretty much a bust, the website Spy Talk reports.

Spy Talk’s Jeff Stein reports that the 86-page report “was a virtual laundry list of seemingly intractable problems at the border intelligence post.”

“EPIC could not produce a complete record of drug seizures nationwide because of incomplete reporting into the National Seizure System, which is managed by EPIC,” Glenn A. Fine, chief of the Office of the Inspector General, reported, according to Spy Talk.

“EPIC had not sustained the staffing for some key interdiction programs, such as its Fraudulent Document unit, its Air Watch unit, or its Maritime Intelligence unit….” Fine added.

To read more click here.

Read IG Report

Inspector Gen. Report Says FBI and ATF Sometimes Race to Be First to Explosive Scene

The Inspector General report simply confirms what’s already been reported and spoken of between agencies. In D.C., there  clearly have been turf battles between ATF and the FBI. One of those incidents occurred in 2003 when a North Carolina man with tractor threatened to set off explosives on the Mall in Washington. And that wasn’t the only one here.  It may build agency pride, but it’s bad for the public.

Burning car

By Terry Frieden
CNN Justice Producer
WASHINGTON – The inter-agency feuding between agents of the FBI and the ATF over handling of explosives investigations is so serious they sometimes race to be first on the scene of an explosives incident, a new report says.

The report – issued Friday by the Justice Department’s inspector general – found a major duplication of effort and strong disagreement about who has jurisdiction in investigations.

Both the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are agencies within the the Justice Department, and the department was sharply criticized by its inspector general, Glenn Fine, for failing to resolve the dispute.

“Our audit found, for example, that the FBI and ATF sometimes race to be the first federal agency on the scene of an explosives incident,” the report said. “Disputes have occurred when one agency arrives first and other agency believes the incident falls within its lead agency authority.”

For Full Story

Read Full Report

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