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Tag: NBC

NBC’s Lester Holt: FBI Agent for a Day

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Files Show FBI Investigated Death Threat Against the Late Tim Russert and His Family

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The hard-charging late Tim Russert, who hosted NBC’s “Meet the Press” for more than 16 years, may have been beloved, but apparently not be everybody.

The Hill newspaper reports that FBI files show that someone left a threatening voicemail for Russert at the tv station on March 7, 2001 at about 9:20 p.m. Authorities suspected a 75-year-old World War II veteran in poor health.

“Yeah, Tim Russert, Mr. Clinton’s, uh, polls are down and yours is down. We haven’t forgotten I’ve called you a couple years ago and we still got you on the f—king platter,” the caller said, according to FBI transcript of the message.

“Believe you me, motherf—ker. That goes for your 15- or 16-year-old kid, too. You protect him, you motherf—ker. You’re no good, you’re absolutely no good, and nothing would treat me or do me any better than to put a bullet right between your f—king eyes, you p—k,” said the caller, according to an FBI transcript of the voice mail.

The D.C. police reported that a similar telephone call was made to Russert roughly four months. Authorities believed it may have been the same person, the Hill reported.

In that call,  the person said he “didn’t like the way someone had been treated, possibly ALBERT GORE, and advised he knew where RUSSERT lived and where his son attended school,” according to FBI documents, the Hill reported.

The files showed, according to the Hill, that the FBI’s San Francisco office tracked down a likely suspect — a 75-year-old World War II veteran who was “extremely difficult” to live with. The man suffered from diabetes and arthritis and had suffered a heart attack and a stroke.

The Hill reported that the Justice Department declined to prosecute, but the FBI warned him he’d be prosecuted is he continued his shenannigans.

Justice Dept. Gives Green Light to Indict John Edwards, NBC Reports

John Edwards

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Once a presidential hopeful, John Edwards now faces far less hopeful times.

NBC News reports that the Justice Department has given the OK to file charges against Edwards, 57,  for alleged violations of  campaign finance laws stemming from a cover up of an extra-marital affair with Rielle Hunter.

NBC reported that a plea bargain is possible.

A federal grand jury in North Carolina is looking into the case.

Edwards ran as vice president in 2004 and also campaigned for president in 2004 and 2008.

Will Spike TV Spike Reality Show “DEA”?

deashow2By Matt Castello
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — NBC weatherman Al Roker predicts the weather, but his production company, which produces  the reality TV show “DEA”,  has been reluctant to predict whether there will be a third season for the program featured on Spike TV.

By most accounts, the forecast for a third season looks doubtful.

The show, which helped boost the profile of the agency and interest from prospective recruits, last aired on March 31,  2009, more than a year ago.  Both seasons featured agents in gritty, high-crime cities; the first year in Detroit, the second in Newark.

Debra Fazio, a spokeswoman for Spike TV, told ticklethewire.com “no decision has been made yet about a 3rd season.” And Tom Chiodo, a spokesman for Al Roker Entertainment Inc., the producer of the show, echoed similar sentiments, saying he was uncertain as well.

The show, which  followed DEA agents and task force members around as they busted down doors, made arrests and gathered info from informants, played to mixed reviews inside and outside the agency. On the upside, it gave the DEA, which is too often overshadowed by the FBI,  a higher profile and helped boost recruiting.

Read more »

Ex-Gov. Blagojevich Wants a Delay in Chicago Trial

Ex-Gov Blago poses with Celebrity Apprentice group

Ex-Gov Blago poses with Celebrity Apprentice group

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Ex-Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich wants more time to prepare for his public corruption case that was set for June 3. His attorneys want the trial moved to November.

The Chicago Tribune reports that his attorneys said they can’t properly prepare a defense in time “without knowing whether they have to defend against charges of ‘honest services’ fraud.”

The U.S. Supreme Court could take up the matter of the honest services law by June and could strike down part or all of the law, the Tribune reported.

The lawyers also said they’ve been inundated with government materials they need to review, the paper reported. The government turned over almost 33,000 pages of evidence since February.

The seldom-quiet ex-Gov is scheduled to make his debut appearance on NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice on Sunday.

To read more click here.

The Media Sucked Up To Gov. Blago For Interviews After FBI Arrest

Ex-Gov Blagojevich

Ex-Gov Blagojevich

The media just assumes its letters to politicians won’t be made public. Wrong. It happens. In this case, the media shamefully sucked up to ex-Ill Gov. Blago to get interviews.

By John Cook
Gawker

On the morning he was arrested on corruption charges last December, Rod Blagojevich was the nation’s biggest greaseball. So obviously, the national press was willing to say anything to land an interview. And we’ve got their emails to prove it.

We reported a little over a month ago that the Today show had booked Blagojevich to appear on the morning he happened to be arrested by the FBI, but bumped the interview so they could flack for Jay Leno’s new show.

We found that out through a Freedom of Information Act request to the state of Illinois asking for e-mails from representatives of the media to Lucio Guerrero, Blagojevich’s press secretary (we got the idea from South Carolina’s The State, which did the same thing-to comic effect-after Mark Sanford’s Argentinian Rhapsody).

For Full Story


Indicted Ex-Gov. Blago Wants to Go on NBC Reality TV Show: Needs Judge’s Permission

This guy was a born entertainer. After his arrest, he worked the television circuit like a tv star. Now he’s taking it up one notch with reality tv.  The real name of the reality TV show should be: “Is this Guy For Real?”

Blago When He was still Gov

Blago when he was still Gov

BY NATASHA KORECKI
Chicago Sun-Times
CHICAGO — When he was indicted, former Gov. Rod Blagojevich went to Disney World. Now that he’s been arraigned on federal corruption charges, Blagojevich wants to head off to the jungles of Costa Rica.

Blagojevich has signed on to do the “Survivor”-style reality show “I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here” that’s to be filmed in June in Costa Rica.

The prime-time NBC program will pay contestants up to $80,000 an episode. Until they’re voted off, anyway.

Among the others on the show: Nancy Kerrigan, of ice-skating / knee-thrashing fame.

But first the former governor needs permission from U.S. District Judge James Zagel to travel outside the country. He’s expected to ask for that next week.

Blagojevich, who went on a national TV and radio blitz earlier this year, is doing the NBC show to bring in some money, sources close to the ex-governor say. He’s been unemployed since the Illinois Legislature booted him from office in January. His wife, Patti Blagjevich, is also unemployed after she was let go from her fund-raising job with the Chicago Christian Industrial League.

Blagojevich is also trying to finish writing his book, which is due in May. He signed for a six-figure advance for the book earlier this year. It’s expected out in the fall.

For Full Story

Tv Station Reports that Police Are Close to an Arrest in Chandra Levy Murder

Chandra Levy

Chandra Levy

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com
WASHINGTON — NBC’s Washington affiliate is reporting that D.C. Police are close to making an arrest in the slaying of intern Chandra Levy, whose remains were found in Rock Creek Park in Northwest Washington in 2002 one year after she vanished.

WRC-TV reported that police have submitted evidence to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Washington seeking an arrest for long-time suspect  Ingmar Guandique, who is serving a 10- year sentence for attacking two female joggers in Rock Creek Park.

No arrest warrant has been issued at this point, and nothing is expected to happen until at least after the weekend, sources told ticklethewire.com. The U.S. Attorney’s office, which needs to review the materials and have a judge sign off on the arrest warrant,  declined comment Saturday morning.

ABC News had reported Saturday morning that an arrest could come as early as today in the murder of the 24-year-old intern who hailed from Modesto, Calif.

However, police chief Cathy L. Lanier in an telephone interview with ticklethewire.com denied that report that there would be an arrest today.  She declined to comment beyond that only to say that new detectives had been assigned to the cold case about a year ago, and that the department had been actively pursuing the investigation and had  regular contact with Chandra’s parents, Bob and Susan Levy.

WRC-TV reported that an inmate serving time with Guandique told investigators that Guandique had confessed to him about the murder.

One source familiar with the case said that the investigation had been heating up for some time.

The investigation eventually derailed the promising political career of ex-Congressman Gary Condit, who was a suspect after word surfaced that he had been having an affair with Levy. Eventually, law enforcement concluded that he had nothing to do with the case.