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Tag: President Clinton

Former DEA Head Thomas A. Constantine dies at age of 76

Thomas A. Constantine

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

 Thomas A. Constantine, the former tough-talking chief of the DEA, died May 3 at a hospice in Pinehurst, N.C., the Washington Post reports. 

He was 76.

Constantine. who died after getting a staph infection, was chosen as the head of the DEA by President Bill Clinton in 1994 after the former cop and investigator led successful crackdowns on drugs in New York.

The n0-nonsense leader of the DEA launched aggressive campaigns to knock down some of the drug operations in Mexico and Central America. But he quickly found out that the well-connected and well-financed drug cartels were ruthless, determined and capable of influencing police and politicians.

Constantine was born in Buffalo on Dec. 23, 1938 and began his law enforcement in 1960 as a sheriff’s deputy.

Other Stories of Interest


Secret Service Threatened to ‘Go for Kill Shot’ if New York Mets Mascot Approached President Clinton in 1997

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Secret Service threatened to shoot the New York Mets’ mascot with a sniper if he approached then-President Bill Clinton in 1997, the New York Daily News reports.

AJ Mass, who once wore the Mr. Met costume, detailed the account in his new memoir, “Yes, It’s Hot in Here — Adventures in the Weird, Wooly World of Sports Mascots.”

The threat came after he couldn’t squeeze his costume’s dome-sized head through a metal detector at Shea Stadium, where the president was honoring Jackie Robinson.

“We have snipers all around the stadium, just in case something were to happen,” the agent warned. “Like I said, do whatever it is you normally do. But approach the President, and we go for the kill shot. Are we clear?”

Mass said he couldn’t believe the reaction.

New Acting ATF Director Todd Jones No Stranger to Fed Law Enforcement; Considered Pro ATF

U.S. Atty. Jones, new acting ATF Dir.

 By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The new acting director of ATF, B. Todd Jones, is no stranger to federal law enforcement.

In fact Jones is on his second go around as U.S. Attorney in Minnesota.

Jones, who will remain the U.S. Attorney in Minnesota while serving as acting head of ATF, was first appointed to the U.S. Attorney job by President Clinton in 1998. He remained on the job until January 2001.  He was again nominated in 2009, this time by President Obama, and was confirmed in August of that year.

One ATF agent on Tuesday told ticklethewire.com that Jones has a reputation as being pro-ATF, an issue that’s of obvious concern to agents.

After leaving the U.S. Attorney post in 2001, Jones went on to work as a partner with a major national law firm in Minneapolis, Robins, Kaplan, Miller and Ciresi,, where he focused on complex business litigation. He represented a number of organizations and individuals in both criminal and civil regulatory matters.

President Obama nominated him in 2009 as the U.S. Attorney and he was confirmed by the Senate in August of that year.

After taking office, Attorney Gen. Eric Holder Jr. appointed Jones to serve as Chair of the Attorney General Advisory Committee (AGAC), a body that consists of 18 U. S. Attorneys. The committee is responsible for advising the Attorney General on a broad array of Department of Justice policy issues.

Jones earned his law degree from  the University of Minnesota Law School in 1983.  After being accepted by the Minnesota bar, he went on active duty in the United States Marine Corps, where he served as both a trial defense counsel and prosecutor in a number of courts martial proceedings.

In 1989, he and his family returned to Minnesota, where he developed a civil litigation practice encompassing a wide variety of legal matters, ranging from products liability defense and insurance coverage disputes to environmental and labor and employment controversies in both a private and public sector setting.

A  Sept. 19, 2009 story in the Minneapolis Tribune, reported that Jones, as a Marines Corps office, was recalled to active duty in 1991 during the Persian Gulf War, where he learned lesson on juggling multiple responsibilities of national security, law enforcement and justice.

“I learned the importance of focus, of working as a team,” he told the paper.

“Everything cannot be a priority,” he was quoted as saying. “Or nothing is a priority.”

 

Ex-Fed Prosecutor Remembers James K. Robinson as “One of the Finest Lawyers of His Generation”

Ross Parker was chief of the criminal division in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Detroit for 8 years and worked as an AUSA for 28 in that office.

Ross Parker

Ross Parker

By Ross Parker
ticklethewire.com

Every young lawyer remembers the guy who gave him his first real job. For me and some others, it was a mark of distinction that that guy was Jim Robinson.

His death last Friday from cancer evokes a painful loss but also many happy memories about a man who was one of the finest lawyers of his generation.

Although Jim’s long and successful career as a litigator, public servant, author and teacher included many of the highest achievements available in the legal profession, it was for many of us his term as a 34-year-old U.S. Attorney in Detroit which we remember most fondly.

James K. Robinson

James K. Robinson

During his three-year term from 1977 to 1980, he set a framework for the modern federal prosecutor’s office and inspired dozens of young lawyers along the way.

Jim re-organized and modernized the U.S. Attorney’s Office in ways that are still followed today in this and other districts around the country.

He convinced the Justice Department to let him hire several dozen new lawyers and support staff, and he filled the positions with a diverse group, including women, African Americans and former defense counsel, three groups which had been greatly under-represented.

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