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Tag: phones

Border Agents Searched More Phones in February Than All of 2015

cell-phone-app-fbiBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Customs and Border Protection officers have demanded that American citizens turn over their phones and passwords in 25 cases examined by NBC News. 

The phones are being seized at the border and airports.

A New York couple said it happened to them twice while returning from a trip to Canada. Akram Shibly and his wife Kelly McCormick said Shibly was assaulted by officers to get their phone.

In February, 5,000 phones were searched, which is more than all of the phones searched in 2015. Homeland Security data show that Border Patrol agents searched nearly 25,000 phones in 2016, a five-fold increase over 2015.

NBC wrote:

The travelers came from across the nation, and were both naturalized citizens and people born and raised on American soil. They traveled by plane and by car at different times through different states. Businessmen, couples, senior citizens, and families with young kids, questioned, searched, and detained for hours when they tried to enter or leave the U.S. None were on terror watchlists. One had a speeding ticket. Some were asked about their religion and their ethnic origins, and had the validity of their U.S. citizenship questioned.

What most of them have in common — 23 of the 25 — is that they are Muslim, like Shibly, whose parents are from Syria.

Senators Request Information on Trump’s Claims of Wiretapping Ordered by Obama

Trump Tower

Trump Tower

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Senators from both sides of the aisle want the Justice Department and FBI to release any information about Donald Trump’s unsubstantiated claims that President Obama had wiretapped phones at Trump Tower during the presidential election.

Sens. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., and Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., sent a formal request for information on any action taken to tap Trump’s phones at his New York home and offices, ABC News reports. 

“Congress must get to the bottom of President Trump’s recent allegation that President Obama wiretapped President Trump’s phones during the 2016 election,” wrote Graham and Whitehouse in a letter to FBI director James Comey and Acting Deputy Attorney General Dana Boente.

“As Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism, we would take any abuse of wiretapping authorities for political purposes very seriously,” the letter adds.

“We would be equally alarmed to learn that a court found enough evidence of criminal activity or contact with a foreign power to legally authorize a wiretap of President Trump, the Trump Campaign, or Trump Tower.”

On Saturday, Trump claimed on Twitter that President Obama had directed federal authorities to tap Trump’s phones.

4 People Plead Guilty in Prank to Tamper With Sen. Landrieu’s Phones

Sen. Mary Landrieu/govt photo

Sen. Mary Landrieu/govt photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Four conservative activists including political prankster James O’Keefe,  pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court to misdemeanor charges stemming from their prank in January to tamper with Sen. Mary Landrieu’s office phones in New Orleans, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reported.

O’Keefe, the group leader and the most prominent of the four, was sentenced to three years probation, 100 hours of community service and fined a $1,500 fine, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reported.

He gained notoriety for wearing a pimp costume in a video that embarrassed ACORN and exposed some less than admirable traits — or at least less than admirable employees — of the non-profit organization.

The other three people were sentenced to  two years probation, 75 hours of community service and fined them $1,500, the paper reported.. They pleaded guilty to entering real property belonging to the United States under false pretenses.

O’Keefe tried using his cell phone to capture two men posing as telephone repairmen in the Senator’s office.

The defendants said in court they did not intend to commit a crime, the Picayune reported.