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Tag: Justice Department

Department of Justice Reaches Agreement on Consent Decree with Ferguson

ferguson logoBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An agreement was reached Wednesday between federal officials and leaders in Ferguson, Mo., to end unlawful arrests and excessive force.

The New York Times reports that the agreement still must be approved by the City Council after undergoing public scrutiny.

The pact comes in the aftermath of the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in 2014.

As a result of the consent decree, Ferguson would be spared an expensive, lengthy court battle.

The pact demonstrates the city’s “commitment to refocusing police and municipal court practices on public safety, rather than revenue generation,” Vanita Gupta, the department’s top civil rights prosecutor, said in a letter to Ferguson.

“It was a sweeping report and the settlement, too, is unusual in its breadth,” the New York Times reports. “It demands changes not only to how and when police officers use force, but to the city’s entire criminal justice system.”

Other Stories of Interest

Former House Majority Leader: FBI Wants to Indict Hillary Clinton in E-mail Scandal

Ex-Rep. Tom DeLay

Ex-Rep. Tom DeLay

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI wants to indict Hillary Clinton as part of the ongoing e-mail scandal, according to former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom Delay.

“I have friends that are in the FBI and they tell me they’re ready to indict [her],” former Texas Republican Congressman Tom DeLay told Newsmax TV.

Delay claims the FBI will be incensed if the Justice Department does not indict the Democratic frontrunner in the presidential campaign.

“They’re ready to recommend an indictment and they also say that if the attorney general does not indict, they’re going public,” DeLay warned.

Delay insists Clinton will be disciplined “one way or another.”

“One way or another, either she’s going to be indicted and that process begins, or we try her in the public eye with her campaign.”

Other Stories of Interest

To Capture Pedophiles Downloading Child Pornography, FBI Agents Turn into Hacker Spies

Data securityBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

FBI agents are turning into to hacker spies to capture pedophiles who hide anonymously on the Internet.

CNN reports that the Justice Department launched a massive investigation called Operation Torpedo, which began in 2011 and recently came to a close with the arrests of people downloading child pornography.

The case started when Netherlands police gained access to a large child pornography site whose web hosting service was located in Bellevue, Nebraska.

The FBI raided the home of the man who ran the site, PedoBook, where users could download photos of child pornography.

To break through Tor, which hides users’ location, the FBI was given a search warrant for a “network investigative technique” that allowed agents to use computer codes to track down people who downloaded photos and videos.

FBI Agent Jeffrey Tarpinian describes this hack as “the only available investigative technique with a reasonable likelihood of securing the evidence necessary to prove… the actual location and identity of those users” in court documents from 2012.

What the FBI found was more disturbing than they had realized: Some images were being viewed hundreds of thousands of times.

“They’re hiding in plain sight… we remain powerless to some extent,” said one senior Justice Department official who was authorized to speak without being named. “That’s what creates this sense of urgency.”

DEA Violated Policy by Offering to Pay TSA Screener to Help Seize Cash from Luggage

tsaBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The DEA recruited a TSA security screener to help seize cash from passengers’ luggage, according to a Department of Justice watchdog.

The DOJ’s Office of Inspector General officially condemned the DEA this month, saying the agreement, which allowed the agency to confiscate money, “violated DEA policy,” Huffington Post reports. 

The arrangement “could have violated individuals’ protection against unreasonable searches and seizures if it led to a subsequent DEA enforcement action.”

The idea was to pay a TSA agent to tip off the DEA about cash in travelers’ luggage.

State and federal agencies have relied on civil forfeiture to seize hundreds of millions of dollars in property each year.

Other Stories of Interest

FBI Operated Child Pornography Websites to Help Identify Thousands of Hidden Users

Data securityBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI took over one of the Internet’s largest child pornography websites last year, allowing users to download thousands of images and videos in an effort to identify the culprits.

The USA Today reports that the FBI has taken control of at least three child pornography sites while keeping them online to capture the users who have hidden behind behind an encrypted and anonymous computer network.

The FBI was able to identify hundreds of users by infecting the sites with security-busting software.

The Justice Department confirmed that the FBI operated a site known as Playpen from Feb. 20 to March 4, 2015. During that time, more than 215,000 registered users were able to access more than 23000 sexually explicit videos and pictures of children.

Authorities said the new tactic of maintaining the sites allowed them to identify people who otherwise couldn’t be tracked.

“We had a window of opportunity to get into one of the darkest places on Earth, and not a lot of other options except to not do it,” said Ron Hosko, a former senior FBI official who was involved in planning one of the agency’s first efforts to take over a child porn site. “There was no other way we could identify as many players.”

Sen. Marco Rubio Slams Justice Department, Says It Won’t Indict Hillary

Sen. Marco Rubio

Sen. Marco Rubio

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Sen. Marco Rubio earlier this week slammed the Justice Department and said he doubted prosecutors would bring an indictment in Hillary Clinton’s email scandal, according to a report in Newsmax.

Appearing on Fox News Sean Hannity show, said if he’s elected, “there will be real accounting with a real Justice Department and a real attorney general” and “we’re going to hold people accountable.”

He said he doubts the Obama administration’s Justice Department will indictment Hillary Clinton in the email case even though Clinton “didn’t care that she exposed classified and sensitive information.”

Congressman Demands to Know Why Justice Department Not More Involved in Oregon Standoff

Rep. Peter DeFazio, an Oregon Democrat.

Rep. Peter DeFazio, an Oregon Democrat.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Where is the Justice Department?

That’s what a Congressman from Oregon is asking about the standoff at a wildlife refuge in his state, The Hill reports. 

Rep. Peter DeFazio, a Democrat, said the federal government needs to act more aggressively to arrest the armed protesters.

“Well, the lights and the heat are on the Malheur Wildlife Refuge illegally occupied by ultra right-wing, anti-government extremists,” DeFazio said on the House floor Wednesday. “But you gotta wonder if the lights are on or anybody’s home down at the Justice Department.”

“Hello!” he yelled, waving his right hand. “I don’t think there’s anybody there.”

DeFazio said he doesn’t believe the Justice Department is doing enough to prevent armed protests against the federal government.

Justice Department Plans to Hire More Attorneys to Handle Clemency Cases

jail2photoBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President Obama’s push to grant early release to federal prisoners has prompted the Justice Department to announce it’s drastically increasing the number of attorneys to handle the clemency, The Daily Caller reports. 

The Office of the Pardon Attorney is looking for 16 attorney advisors to help handle the clemency cases.

The hiring would more than double the agency’s staffing level, which currently has seven permanent attorneys.

The Justice Department has encouraged federal prisoners to petition for early release.

Under the initiative, announced in April 2014, federal prisoners who served at least a decade in prison for non-violent crimes are eligible.

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