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Tag: John Conyers

Justice Dept. Conducting Routine Probe of FBI Fatal Shooting of Imam in Michigan

michigan11By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department has launched a routine investigation into the fatal FBI shooting in Michigan of a Muslim imam in October, the Detroit News reported.

Rep. John Conyers (D-Mi), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, who had asked the Justice Department to probe the matter, announced the news at a press conference Tuesday.

The paper reported that Justice Department spokesman Alejandro Miyar confirmed the investigation, but said it would have happened regardless of Conyers’ request.

“The FBI’s inspection division conducted a review,” Miyar said, according to the Detroit News. “The civil rights division has received the FBI’s report and is now conducting an independent review of the shooting.”

An autopsy report on Monday showed Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah was shot 21 times during a raid on a Dearborn warehouse. The FBI was conducting a probe of the trafficking of stolen goods.

The FBI says that the imam opened fire first and shot an FBI dog before agents returned fire.

Read Autopsy Report

N.Y. Times Editorial Urges Authorities to Keep Digging into U.S. Atty. Firings

Karl Rove

Karl Rove

By The New York Times
Editorial Page

Documents released by Congress, including testimony from Karl Rove, offer powerful new evidence that the Bush administration fired top prosecutors who refused to use their offices to promote the electoral fortunes of Republicans.

Turning law enforcement into a tool of partisan politics is a serious offense, and a Justice Department investigation is under way. Congress must also continue its investigation and call Mr. Rove and others to testify publicly so the American people can hear for themselves how the justice system was hijacked.

The materials released on Tuesday paint an ugly picture of fair-minded prosecutors under siege by the White House for refusing to politicize their offices. And it puts Mr. Rove, former President George W. Bush’s chief political operative, at the center of it.

To Read More

Read Kansas City Star Editorial on Firing of Local U.S. Attorney

Conservative Legal Group Wants House to Probe Rep. Conyers in Wake of His Wife’s Guilty Plea For Corruption

It appears John Conyers, who lives in Washington, and his wife who lives in Detroit, are apart far more than they are together. Does that mean Conyer’s didn’t keep tabs on his wife’s corrupt way? Either way, his wife’s activities have certainly cast a cloud over him. Is that enough to trigger a House ethics investigation? The prosecutors say they have nothing to suggest Conyers knew. Is that good enough?

Rep. John Conyers

Rep. John Conyers

By Carrie Johnson
Washington Post Staff Writer
WASHINGTON — A conservative legal foundation this week urged the House ethics panel to investigate Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.) as new details emerged about his wife’s involvement in a Detroit bribery scheme.

Though Monica Conyers, a Detroit City Council member, pleaded guilty last month and admitted taking several thousand dollars in the scheme, charges filed Wednesday against one of her former top aides allege that the councilwoman took at least $65,000 from people seeking contracts from the council or a pension board on which she sat in 2006 and 2007.

Federal prosecutors in Michigan accuse Conyers and the aide of using their positions in government to engage in a “persistent and continuing pattern of extortion and bribery.” Prosecutors said last month that they had “no suggestion” the congressman was aware of his wife’s activities.

For Full Story

Karl Rove Deposed in U.S. Attorney Firing Probe

Karl Rove

Karl Rove

If anyone can shine light on the matter, it’s Karl Rove. He loves to talk as a regular on Fox News. Let’s see if he was as talkative during this deposition.

By JOHN BRESNAHAN & JOSH GERSTEIN
The Politico
WASHINGTON — Former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove was deposed Tuesday by attorneys for the House Judiciary Committee, according to Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), the panel’s chairman.

Rove’s deposition began at 10 a.m. and ended around 6:30 p.m, with several breaks, Conyers said.

Conyers would not comment on what Rove told congressional investigators, what the next step in the long-running Judiciary Committee investigation would be or whether Rove would face additional questioning.

For Full Story

Cong. John Conyer’s Wife Pleads Guilty to Taking Bribes

Monica Conyers had become such a divisive figure in the city. Frankly, it’s no loss to the city and it’s a disgrace that politicians in such a poor city like Detroit are lining their pockets, looking out  for what’s best for themselves. The acting U.S. Attorney said this marks the end of the FBI probe into the  city council and a  sludge hauling contract. But this certainly isn’t the end of public corruption indictments that some say could come this October.

Monica Conyers/council photo

Monica Conyers/council photo

Paul Egan
Detroit News Staff
DETROIT — Detroit City Council President Pro Tem Monica Conyers pleaded guilty to a felony today in connection with the city sludge contract hauling scandal. Detroit’s top federal prosecutor said no other City Council members would be charged in connection with the contract.

Conyers, 44, spoke softly in federal court as she admitted taking bribes in connection with the $1.2 billion Synagro Technologies Inc. contract the Detroit City Council awarded in 2007.

Conyers changed her position from opposing to supporting the deal to cast the deciding vote.

Conyers could be facing about three years in prison under her plea agreement. Her attorney, Steve Fishman, believes federal sentencing guidelines of 30-37 months apply.

For Full Story

Read  charging document and plea agreement.

FBI Looking into More Allegations Involving Rep. John Conyer’s Wife

Council Member Monica Conyers is not only the subject of public corruption probe involving a sludge hauling contract, but she’s also the target of other suspected payoffs including ones from a Detroit pawnshop.

Monica Conyers/council photo

Monica Conyers/council photo

By Leonard M. Flemming, Paul Egan and Charlie LeDuff
Detroit News
DETROIT — Federal agents are investigating allegations that Councilwoman Monica Conyers received thousands of dollars in jewelry from a pawn shop whose owner urged the council to ease off on plans to increase regulation of his business, people familiar with a City Hall corruption investigation told The Detroit News.

One estimate pegged the value of the jewelry from Zeidman’s Jewelry and Loan at about $40,000, sources said.

Agents also are investigating allegations that Conyers was to receive payment for favorable consideration of an investment proposal or proposals submitted to the General Retirement System, where Conyers was a trustee, by Detroit businessman Melvin Washington and his Phoenix Group companies, sources said.

Conyers, who is the wife of U.S. Rep. John Conyers, D-Detroit, has yet to respond to federal prosecutors’ offer to plead guilty to a five-year bribery-related felony charge, the sources said, adding that an indictment could be looming. Conyers doesn’t want to plead to anything more than a misdemeanor, they said.

For Full Story

Feds Offer Detroit Councilwoman Monica Conyers — Rep. John Conyer’s Wife — A Plea in Corruption Probe

Monica Conyers/council photo

The FBI has been probing public corruption in Detroit for quite a while now. This latest involving Councilwoman Monica Conyers (in photo)  is only the tip of the iceberg.

By JIM SCHAEFER, M.L ELRICK, BEN SCHMITT and JOE SWICKARD
Detroit Free Press

DETROIT — Federal prosecutors have offered Detroit City Councilwoman Monica Conyers a plea deal as part of their wide-ranging investigation of City Hall corruption, but she has not accepted it, the Free Press learned today.

The development comes a day after the U.S. Attorney’s Office revealed that two key figures in a sludge-disposal deal admitted paying Conyers thousands of dollars in bribes to secure her support for a $1.2-billion city contract with Synagro Technologies. Conyers, who initially opposed the 2007 deal, switched her position as the council voted 5-4 to let Synagro dispose of wastewater sludge.

A source familiar with the inquiry said federal investigators also are talking to Conyers about investments by Detroit’s public pension funds. Conyers is a former trustee for the city’s general retirement fund.

For Full Story

The Big Question is Whether Congress Should Go After Misdeeds of Bush Administration

The big question will be whether Congress wants to explore some misdeeds of the past or move forward. With all the confusion in Washington and the economy in the dumps, it may be a little harder to get the American people behind them to go after the those misdeeds.

Rep. John Conyers

Rep. John Conyers

By Zachary Roth
TalkingPointsMemo

Over the weekend, President-Elect Obama said we should “look forward as opposed to looking backwards” on the question of prosecuting Bush administration officials for torture, illegal wiretapping, and other possible crimes committed in the name of national security.
But yesterday, the House Judiciary committee got behind a very different approach, releasing a nearly 500-page report that recommends establishing a blue-ribbon commission — along the lines of the 9/11 commission, but with subpoena power — to investigate whether crimes were committed. (Last week, as we reported over at Election Central, Judiciary chair John Conyers and nine other lawmakers introduced a bill to set up such a commission.)
Read More

The full report

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