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Tag: midland

31 Charged in Texas DEA Bust

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

A three-month-long DEA operation ended with federal drug and firearm charges filed against 31 people, CBS reports. The charges were made in the Texas towns of Midland and Odessa by the DEA’s Mobile Enforcement Team.

Most defendants were arrested Thursday morning or were already in custody, according to CBS. The charges include conspiracy, possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance, distribution of a controlled substance and possession of firearms by prohibited persons. The controlled substances involved in the charges include crack cocaine, powder cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, BZP and hydrocodone.

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Member of Aryan Brotherhood Gets 37.5 Years for Fires and Trying to Murder Disabled African American

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

For guys like Steven Scott Cantrell, hate never goes out of style. Luckily in this case, either does justice.

The 26-year-old member of the Aryan Brotherhood, who hails from  from Crane, Tex. was sentenced Wednesday in fed court in Midland, Tex., to 37.5 years for a hate crime stemming from a series of arsons last December including one at a historic African-American church, the Justice Department said. Cantrell was also ordered to pay $550,780 in restitution to the victims.

As part of the arson of the historic church, he tried to murder a disabled African-American man, the Justice Department said.

Authorities said that Cantrell admitted that on Dec. 28, 2010, he set fire to Faith in Christ Church, a predominantly African-American church, as part of an effort to murder a disabled African-American man who he saw passing by the church in his wheelchair.

Authorities said Cantrell admitted that he started the fire with the intent of killing the disabled African-American man whom he believed lived at a shelter inside the church.

The man was not hurt.

Authorities said Cantrell ransacked the church, wrote a series of threatening and racist messages in large letters across the wall of the church next to the pastor’s office, and “tagged” the church with references to the Aryan Brotherhood.

Authorities alleged that the arson was part of a series of racially-motivated arsons that Cantrell set that day to gain status with the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas. In addition to the church, Cantrell admitted that he set fire to the house of someone he believed was Jewish.

“Today’s sentence reflects the vile nature of this defendant’s actions. Every person, regardless of race, national origin, religion or disability, should have the opportunity to live without fear of threat or harm,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division in a statement.

Chinese National Pleads to Theft of Trade Secrets and Economic Espionage

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com
 
In Indiana, in the heart of the Midwest, a Chinese national working for two major U.S. companies pleaded guilty Tuesday to stealing trade secrets about food products and pesticides and giving them to people in China and Germany, the Justice Department announced.

 It marked the first time ever that the feds in Indiana had prosecuted a trade secret case.
 
Authorities pegged the losses from the criminal deeds of Kexue Huang, who lived in Carmel, Ind., at more than $7 million, but less than $20 million. He pleaded guilty to theft of trade secrets and economic espionage.
 
Huang worked as a research scientist for Dow Chemical, based in Midland, Mi.  from January 2003 until February 2008, a company that  provides agrochemical and biotechnology products. After Huang left Dow, he was hired in March 2008 by Cargill, an international producer and marketer of food, agricultural, financial and industrial products and services.

Huang admitted that he sent  trade secrets to  Germany and the Peoples Republic of China, the Justice Department said.  He and his collaborators then used the information to conduct unauthorized research in an effort to benefit foreign universities serving the Peoples Republic of China.

Authorities said he also  sought to use the trade secrets to establish sites in China from which he could compete directly with Dow in the organic pesticide market.

Court documents show that after his employment with Dow, Huang worked for Cargill beginning in 2008, again disclosing trade secrets, this time to a student at Hunan Normal University in China.

From that company, the Justice Department said, he stole a company trade secret — a key component in the manufacture of a new food product, which he later gave to a student at Hunan Normal University in China.

“Among the various economic espionage and theft of trade secret cases that the FBI has investigated in Indiana, the vast majority involve an inside employee with legitimate access who is stealing in order to benefit another organization or country,” Robert J. Holley, head of the Indianapolis FBI said in a statement.

“This type of threat, which the FBI refers to as the Insider Threat, often causes the most damage. In order to maintain our competitive advantage in these sectors, industry must identify their most important equities, realize that they are a target, implement internal protection mechanisms to protect their intellectual property, and communicate issues of concern immediately to the FBI.”

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