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Tag: Whistleblower

FBI Launches Probe of Death Threats Targeting CIA Whistleblower

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The FBI is investigating death threats leveled against the CIA whistleblower whose complaint prompted the U.S. House of Representatives’ impeachment inquiry.

Since the whistleblower’s identify is still anonymous, the threats were sent to the legal team representing the CIA official, a person with direct knowledge of the matter told the New York Daily News.

Several of the death threats mentioned executing and shooting the CIA informant.

One email sent to the legal team says, “The whistleblower should be shot.”

Another person wrote, “In Putin’s country, they would execute this person.”

According to the source, the FBI is taking the threats “incredibly seriously.”

President Trump has turned up the hateful rhetoric directed at the whistleblower, calling him a “partisan operative,” “spy,” and “never Trumper.”

“Sounding more and more like the so-called Whistleblower isn’t a Whistleblower at all,” Trump tweeted last month.

Serious Questions Raised about DOJ and AG Barr’s Handling of Whistleblower Complaint

Attorney General William Barr.

By Steve Neavling

ticklethewire.com

The Department of Justice’s handling of the whistleblower complaint involving Ukraine raises a serious question: Why did the DOJ decide not to forward the complaint to Congress?

The complaint was serious enough to spur an impeachment inquiry. It alleges Trump tried to pressure a foreign nation to investigate his political opponent.

The whistleblower also implicates Attorney General William Bar for allegedly helping Trump dig up dirt on Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and his son.

Democrats are accusing Trump of using the Justice Department to help interfere in the election.

It also has become clear that Barr’s DOJ has stymied the investigation.

As the impeachment inquiry continues, much more will be known about Barr’s involvement.

FBI, DOJ Refuse to Disclose Details of Settlement With FBI Agent Who Was A Whistleblower

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The FBI and Justice Department are refusing to disclose details of a legal settlement with an FBI agent who was a whistleblower, the Associated Press reports.

FBI agent Kurt Siuzdak’s lawsuit, filed in 2014 exposed allegations of internal strife and dysfunction within the FBI’s main Connecticut office in New Haven and mentioned a 2013 visit to the New Haven office by then-Director James Comey, who apologized to employees for “the failure of the FBI’s executive management to correct the leadership failures” in Connecticut, AP reports.

Siuzdak’s lawsuit in court  documents filed in March, but the FBI and Justice Department have declined to release the details and rejected recent requests under public records laws by The Associated Press for a copy of the deal. Officials contend there’s was no admission of wrongdoing in the settlement.

Senator Demands Answers about Suspension of Whistleblowing FBI Agent

Sen. Chuck Grassley

Sen. Chuck Grassley

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Senate committee chairman wants more information from the Justice Department about an FBI agent who was suspended after blowing the whistle on a former Louisiana district attorney accused of trading sex for leniency, the Associated Press reports. 

FBI Special Agent Mike Zummer filed an ethics complaint in 2013 against a federal prosecutor, Fred Harper, of New Orleans.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, said Zummer complained that Harper’s relationship with a defense attorney may have resulted in a lenient plea agreement for former St. Charle Parish District Attorney Harry Morel.

The FBI suspended Zummer and his security clearance earlier this year after he made the conflict-of-interest allegations in a letter to a judge.

“That looks like it could be a misuse of the security clearance process to mask retaliation for protected whistleblowing,” Grassley wrote in Nov. 15 letters to Attorney General Loretta Lynch and FBI Director James Comey.

Grassley said he has not yet received a response.

Editorial: Why FBI Whistleblowers Should Be Protected, Not Mistreated

whistleBy Editorial Board
Post and Courier 

Whistleblowers perform an essential role in providing government accountability. Just consider the array of life-threatening problems that agency employees brought forth at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

But for what they do for the taxpayers and people who are served by the bureaucracy, whistleblowers are routinely mistreated by the federal government.

Surprisingly, perhaps, the FBI’s record on that score is among the worst.

A recent report by the Government Accountability Office, amplified by hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee, found that the nation’s premier, elite law enforcement organization routinely discourages employees who want to report fraud, waste and abuse.

Worse, it often retaliates against those that do, ruining careers and taking as long as a decade to resolve whistleblower complaints.

And unlike most other government agencies, FBI employees are not protected by the Merit Systems Protection Board or the Office of Special Counsel whose main mission is to help whistleblowers.

To read more click here. 

Documents Show Feds Tried to Discredit Snowden Using His Own Email

Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Newly declassified documents show that Edward Snowden first raised concerns with the NSA before he leaked the information.

In one letter, Snowden questioned whether an presidential executive order allowing the spying program could supersede federal law, the Daily Mail reports.

 “I’m not entirely certain, but this does not seem correct, as it seems to imply Executive Orders have the same precedence as law,” Snowden wrote in the e-mail. “My understanding is that EOs may be superseded by federal statute, but EOs may not override statute. Am I incorrect in this? Between EOs and laws, which have precedence?”

The new documents lend credibility to Snowden’c claims that he repeatedly tried to raise concerns about the NSA’s surveillance of Americans.

Other Stories of Interest

Tribune-Review: TSA’s Bonus Scam Rewards ‘Pitiful Job Performance’

tsaBy Editorial Board
The Tribune-Review

By definition, a “bonus” is recognition of a job well done. In federal application, it’s acceptance of poor performance as graphically illustrated by the Transportation Security Administration.

Following a whistle-blower’s complaint, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is investigating TSA bonuses paid despite pitiful job performance. Under the collective bargaining agreement with the American Federation of Government Employees union, performance-based cash awards are permitted without defining how these perks are to be issued.

And once again, the brakes are applied long after the flight to mediocrity has left the gate.

TSA officials at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport pocketed automatic bonuses — in one case, $70,000 over three years — despite abysmal results in security tests, according to reports. An undercover operation revealed that weapons bypassed security 95 percent of the time in 70 tests. Screeners reportedly failed to find a fake bomb taped to an undercover agent’s back even after it set off a warning device.

To read more click here. 

Other Stories of Interest

Ex-FBI Agent Fired After Blowing Whistle on Sexual Misconduct Wins Appeal

courtroomBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A former FBI special agent was wrongly fired after he blew the whistle on alleged sexual misconduct among his co-workers, a federal appeals court has ruled.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit said the bureau lacked sufficient cause to fire former special agent John C. Parkinson in 2012, four years after he alleged that a colleague had a “career-long pattern of soliciting sex with prostitutes,” the Fresno Bee reports. 

Now the FBI must rehire Parkinson or pay him.

Parkinson alleged that another Sacramento-based colleague had a “history of viewing Internet pornography, both on government and personal computers during work hours.”

A decorated Marine Corps Reserve lieutenant colonel, Parkinson was fired in 2012 for allegedly obstructing investigators and lacking candor in his responses to a probe involving in building new Sacramento quarters for the Special Operations Group.

“It should be appreciated that . . . the penalty of removal, which was predicated on the now-overturned lack of candor charge, cannot be sustained,” wrote Judge Richard Linn of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

Parkinson’s attorney celebrated the ruling, which was quietly released Monday. 

“We are thrilled at this victory,” attorney Jesselyn A. Radack, with the watchdog group ExposeFacts, said in an interview Tuesday with the Fresno Bee. “It truly is a rare and historic ruling.”