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joeb Show full post »

Dear JFK Assassination Researcher,  

By now, I'm certain you are aware of the serious legal problems with which I have been confronted in recent weeks. It is not possible to discuss this matter in any detail within the context of this letter, but I will simply state that my attorneys -- who include former U.S. Attorney General Richard Thornburgh and J. Alan Johnson, former U.S. Attorney for Western Pennsylvania -- strongly believe the charges against me are unjustified. All of them agree that this vindictive inquisition is completely indefensible and that ultimately, I will prevail.

Unfortunately, the legal defense that I must mount all the way through a prolonged trial will be astronomically expensive. But I have no choice. My entire life is literally at stake -- personally, professionally and financially. And most important, the incredible emotionally traumatic impact this investigation has had on my wife, children and grandchildren must be reversed.  

Your financial assistance in this critical matter would be deeply appreciated and, together with similar contributions from other key individuals, might even prove life-saving. Should you find yourself in a financial position to contribute to this cause, please direct it to the "Wecht Legal Defense Fund" at 1119 Penn Ave., Suite 404, Pittsburgh, PA, 15222.  

Thank you for your consideration of this fervent plea. With kind regards,   Cyril H. Wecht, M.D., J.D.  

p.s. There is no particular reason to believe that my four decade-long search for the truth in the assassination of John F. Kennedy is the //cause// of this prosecution, but neither is there reason to believe that resistance to that work is not one of the government's motivating factors. It is of note, for instance, that the F.B.I. has seized all of my JFK assassination files and correspondence, even though none of the allegations against me have been related in any way to that case.

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first easy read


second uneasy read

You can ALMOST commit the perfect crime if your the law enforcement agency committing the crime and investigating it at the same time

click link for full story


Federal agent claims FBI halted key investigation
By Victoria Corderi and Richard Greenberg
Dateline NBC

June 3, 2005

Is our government doing everything it can in the war on terror? A highly-respected federal agent says no and he's making a troubling accusation. He says the FBI intentionally put the brakes on an investigation into a suspected al-Qaida fundraising operation. Why? The answer, he says, is a flaw exposed by September 11 that still hasn't been fixed.

Three years ago, President Bush gave a directive to succeed in the war on terror, law enforcement agencies need to work together:

Bush: “Information must be fully shared so we can follow every lead to find the one that may prevent tragedy.”

So you'd think that if a decorated federal agent had evidence of suspected terrorist activity, the government would pull out all the stops to follow up. Think again, says this man.

Joe Webber: “My concern is that we have learned nothing from the events of September 11.”

Joe Webber, a 30-year veteran of federal law enforcement, says the government sat on important information about suspected terrorist activity on U.S. soil. He's so outraged, he says, he's willing to risk his career by going public.

Victoria Corderi: “Have you ever done anything like what you're doing today? To come forward to criticize the government?”

Webber: “No. This is probably a very career-limiting move.”

Webber runs the Houston office of the Department of Homeland Security's Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, “ICE” for short.

He says the story begins two and half years ago when his office started investigating a man believed to be raising money for terrorists. Webber doesn't want to jeopardize the ongoing case by revealing too many details, but he will say the suspect was in direct contact with known terrorists.

Webber: “There's clearly probable cause to believe that the target of the investigation was in communication with those involved in international terrorism.”

Corderi: “With Osama Bin Laden?”

Webber: “Those associated with Osama Bin Laden, yes.”

He says the FBI has intentionally impeded the investigation being conducted by his agency, ICE.

Webber: “I was told point blank, they are not going to let ICE pursue this investigation.”

To understand why this hits a raw nerve for Joe Webber, you need to know what happened to him on September 11. Back then, before he took over the Houston office, he was in charge of the New York office of U.S. Customs which was located at number six World Trade Center, right next to the Twin Towers.

He was there when the first plane hit, Webber saw to it that all 500 of his staff evacuated. After the second plane struck he rushed back into his office.

Webber: “I felt an obligation to make sure that the building was empty.”

He was still inside when the first tower collapsed. Part of his building went with it. Debris rained down on top of him and he was trapped.

Corderi: “What were you thinking?”

Webber: “Well there were some private thoughts there, but I recall thinking that was the end. And thought of my family. Said a prayer.”

His prayer was answered when two firefighters came to his rescue.

That day changed him. He says he is haunted by unthinkable images and devastation.

Webber: “Words cannot describe the sight of people jumping from a building. It's difficult to get through a day without thinking about it, very difficult.”

Which is why when one year after September 11 his office zeroed in on that suspect in Houston who was allegedly raising money for terrorists, Webber says he and his agents dug hard for two years. He says they collected a lot of evidence of the suspect's terrorist ties, but needed more to build a criminal case. And the best way to do that was a wiretap. To get permission for one, they had to lay out what they'd learned so far in an affidavit.

Webber: “That affidavit referenced terrorism on 49 occasions, referenced bin Laden by name on three occasions, and referenced al-Qaida twice.”

Webber says he made a point of following President Bush's directive about sharing information and he submitted the affidavit to other federal law enforcement agencies.

The local FBI office and federal prosecutors in Houston were on board, he says. And so were Justice Department officials in Washington.

Webber: “And at every level, they said, ‘Go ahead, go ahead, go ahead, good luck. ICE and FBI working well together in Houston.’ Everything was on track.”

But he still needed approval for the wiretap from FBI headquarters in Washington, where he says his request sat on a bureaucrat's desk for four months. Webber says he kept asking what was happening.

Corderi: “So you'd never experienced this kind of lag before?”

Webber: “No.”

And, he says, what was making his blood boil during the wait, was the news he was hearing out of Iraq: terrorists offering reward money for the deaths of Americans.

Webber: “It was $3,000 for the death of a U.S. Serviceman, $2,000 for the death of an Iraq Serviceman, and $1,000 for a U.S. contractor.”

Corderi: “Without terrorist financing, that wouldn't be possible.”

Webber: “Correct. If they don't have the means of support to carry it out, they can't do it. I was no longer going to wait patiently.”

So, he says, with his terror funding suspect apparently still active, he called FBI headquarters directly last December and asked officials for a meeting to resolve any problems with the wiretap request.

Webber: “And the answer was, ‘We have too many people on vacation due to the holidays, and we'll be there next week.’ I was shocked. We work 7 by 24. It's a fulltime law enforcement operation.”

Webber says he finally got his meeting in January, But, still, no go-ahead for the wiretap.

Webber: “What the Bureau began to allege was, there were problems. There were conflicts. But when pushed for specifics, they couldn't articulate what those were.”

He says friends inside the FBI finally told him the real reason for the delays. It was because the case was not generated by the FBI itself, but came from Customs agents.

Corderi: “You mean a turf battle?”

Webber: “That's correct. That's correct.”

Corderi: “That the FBI would put a turf battle above national security?”

Webber: “That's absolutely my impression. You would think, in a post-9/11 environment, that an event like that wouldn't occur. But it did.”

Webber says he became fed up and wrote to two government offices he hoped could intervene, but didn't hear back. Finally, he contacted Sen. Charles Grassley, the Iowa Republican with a history of investigating problems with the FBI.

Sen. Charles Grassley: “He's got a great deal of credibility.”

Sen. Grassley says he's been able to confirm key aspects of Webber's account and believes the FBI would have acted differently if the case had come from within.

Sen. Grassley: “They would've jumped on this so fast that you'd see the smoke. And they didn't jump on it. It's quite obvious.”

Corderi: “That seems incredible if you're talking about a terrorism investigation.”

Sen. Grassley: “It's a compromise of our national security. And it's evidence, further, of the institutional disease that the FBI has, that they always want to be in control of everything.”

Sen. Grassley says he discussed Joe Webber's case with FBI director Robert Mueller.

Sen. Grassley: “I don't want to repeat what he told me, but I think that I can conclude that he thought this was a very isolated incident. But it's not an isolated incident. Just that’s clear.”

Sen. Grassley says that because he's looking into other cases that may have been mishandled by the FBI for similar reasons -- turf battles. And, separately, federal agents have told Dateline of yet another terrorism funding investigation they say the Bureau neglected for two years because it didn't originate as an FBI case.

The FBI and ICE declined to be interviewed on camera and said that federal law constrains them from discussing matters under investigation. But they issued a joint statement saying that they "work closely together" on numerous investigations, and share a "spirit of cooperation ... at the highest levels."

They say "any and all terrorism leads are aggressively pursued" ... and though there is often healthy debate about the best.... approach, it's "never at the expense of public safety or national security." And they say they "have an established framework to discuss these issues, make decisions and move forward in the best interests of the American public."

As for Joe Webber's case, he says that between the time he asked for the wiretap and the time Sen. Grassley began asking questions, the government missed intercepting more than 700 communications by the suspected terrorist fundraiser operating on U.S. soil.

Webber: “Seven hundred conversations, never to be recovered. And if one dollar, one dollar has found its way into the hands of a terrorist that impacted the life of a U.S. citizen or a soldier in Iraq or even a citizen of another country, we lost. We lost.”

After four months and only after he complained to Sen. Grassley, Webber says, the FBI finally decided to pursue the case in its own way, but he fears it may be too late.

Corderi: “I can see someone saying it's sour grapes. The FBI has cut them out of the loop. It's sour grapes. Is there anything to that?”

Webber: “I don't believe so. People within the FBI have expressed their displeasure, within the FBI, about how badly this case was treated and how inappropriately the case was handled.”

Webber: “I am not a disgruntled employee. I love my job. I love our system of government. I somehow walked away from a building on September 11 due to two heroes, two firemen. I have a debt of gratitude I can never repay. I can never repay that. But I can't let this happen either. This can never happen again.”
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Sun, Aug. 20, 2006

Challenge to lone gunman theory
By Betsy Mason
Chuck Todd/Contra Costa Times

LIVERMORE - More than four decades after his death, John F. Kennedy's assassination remains the hottest cold case in U.S. history, and the clues continue to trickle in. Now Lawrence Livermore Laboratory scientists say a key piece of evidence supporting the lone gunman theory should be thrown out.

A new look at clues gleaned from studies of crime-scene bullet fragments shows they may have been misinterpreted.

"It basically shatters what some people call the best physical evidence around," said chemist Pat Grant, director of the lab's Forensic Science Center.

Grant and Livermore Lab metallurgist Erik Randich found that the chemical "fingerprints" used to identify which bullets the fragments came from are actually more like run-of-the-mill tire tracks than one-of-a-kind fingerprints.

"I've spoken with people on both sides of the conspiracy divide and there's no question but that (Randich and Grant's) work is going to be very difficult, if not outright impossible, to refute," said Gary Aguilar, a San Francisco ophthalmologist and single-bullet skeptic who has studied the Kennedy assassination for more than a decade. "It looks impregnable."

The government's claim that Lee Harvey Oswald alone killed Kennedy spawned a vitriolic debate between conspiracy theorists and lone gunman supporters that rages to this day.

In 1964, the Warren Commission, established by President Lyndon B. Johnson to investigate the assassination, concluded that Oswald fired just three shots from the Texas School Book Depository in Dallas: The first missed entirely. The second passed through the president's neck, into Texas Governor John Connally's body under his right arm, out through his chest and then splintered his wrist and wounded his left thigh. The third fatally hit Kennedy in the head.

Single-bullet theory

Even though three bullets were involved, this scenario became known as the "single-bullet theory" because it requires the second bullet to account for all the nonfatal injuries to both Kennedy and Connally.

The injuries to Kennedy's neck and to Connally happened within a split second of each other. So either the injuries to both men came from a single bullet from Oswald or from at least two bullets from more than one shooter. Oswald's rifle couldn't have fired two shots in such rapid succession.

So in order for Oswald to be the lone gunman, it had to be a single bullet.

Skeptics and believers alike say the bullets amount to the most important piece of physical evidence for the single-bullet theory. Throwing it out is like removing a leg from a four-legged table.

"Warren Commission defenders consider this evidence central to the single-bullet theory," Aguilar said.

But Grant and Randich say the bullet lead analysis was faulty. Both Randich and Grant are forensic scientists at Livermore Lab but researched the JFK case on their own time. Their work is the latest chapter in an ongoing saga.

Lead impurities

In the immediate aftermath of the assassination, the FBI analyzed five bullet fragments recovered from the limousine, the governor's wrist, the president's brain and from a hospital stretcher.

The FBI used a technique known as "neutron activation" analysis to find the precise composition of the fragments. By determining the exact amounts of impurities in the lead, such as antimony and silver, they hoped to be able to tell which fragments came from the same bullet. But the FBI decided it couldn't draw any conclusions from the results.

In 1976, the U.S. House of Representatives formed an assassination committee to investigate the deaths of JFK and Martin Luther King Jr. The move was largely a response to hundreds of books, documentaries and magazine pieces questioning the government's version of the JFK assassination, as well as public outcry following the first airing of Abraham Zapruder's home movie of the assassination on the television show, "Good Night America."

The committee called in nuclear chemist Vincent Guinn, one of the world's foremost experts on neutron activation, to reanalyze the bits of bullet lead.

Unlike the FBI, Guinn drew a very clear conclusion. He said the antimony in the fragments clearly showed they all came from two, and only two, bullets of the type used by Oswald's gun, which supports the Warren Commission's lone gunman theory.

According to Guinn, one set of fragments from the president's brain and the limousine in front of the president had around .06 percent antimony, and all came from the bullet that killed JFK. The other set of fragments from the governor's wrist and a nearly intact bullet found on a stretcher at the hospital had closer to .08 percent antimony and were pieces of the infamous "single bullet."

Based on evidence including the bullet lead, the committee concluded in 1979 that both shots had come from Oswald's gun.

They did not, however, rule out the possibility of a conspiracy. In fact, they strongly suspected a second shooter was present that day, but based on Guinn's data, any second shooter had missed the target.

Or maybe not.

"It turns out that if you really analyze the results correctly, then the results are wrong," said Grant.

Fatal flaw

Randich and Grant's study grew out of work Randich did in 2002 that exposed a fatal flaw in the FBI's use of bullet-lead evidence to connect suspects with crime scenes in thousands of criminal cases during the past three decades.

The FBI claimed that like a fingerprint, each batch of lead has a unique chemical signature, so the specific amounts of impurities in a lead bullet could match it with other bullets from the same batch. For example, if bullets at a suspect's house were found to have the same impurity signature as a bullet or fragment found at a murder scene, it was treated as evidence tying the suspect to the crime.

Randich's training as a metallurgist told him there was something wrong with this reasoning.

"I realized these people could put my sons in jail with bogus science," he said. "I thought I ought to do something about it."

By analyzing years of data kept by lead smelters, Randich found that batches are not unique, and bullets from different batches of bullets poured months or years apart could have the same chemical signature. And bullets poured from the start of a batch could differ slightly, but measurably, from those at the end.

He has testified in about a dozen cases. Because of his work, courts now reject bullet-lead analysis and the FBI no longer uses it as evidence.

JFK case problems

The JFK case has similar problems.

According to Guinn, the type of bullets used by Oswald happened to have highly variable amounts of antimony.

Guinn said the variation between bullets of this type was so great that he could use it to tell individual bullets apart, even from the same batch of lead.

Randich and Grant say that assumption is dead wrong.

They analyzed the same type of bullets and showed that within a single bullet, there is a significant variation in impurities on a microscopic scale. The range of concentrations of impurities in each bullet is large enough to make small fragments from different parts of the same bullet have very different chemical fingerprints.

Some of the fragments in the JFK case are so small that the differences in antimony could be explained entirely by this microscopic variation, instead of by differences between bullets, they said. Randich and Grant's study was published in July in the Journal of Forensic Sciences.

One to five bullets

"We don't know if there were two bullets," said Randich. "There could have been two bullets, but the lead composition data shows there could be anywhere from one to five bullets."

The bullet found on the stretcher is missing some lead, but not enough to account for all the other fragments. So there had to be more than one bullet. But Grant and Randich say there is no way to tell how many more, at least from the bullet lead.

Losing Guinn's bullet-lead evidence is a major blow to the single-bullet theory.

That evidence "knits together the core physical evidence into an airtight case against Lee Oswald," according to a 2004 paper by Larry Sturdivan and Ken Rahn in an issue of Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry that celebrated Vincent Guinn after his death. "It is, thus, the key to resolving the major controversies in the JFK assassination and putting the matter to rest," the paper said.

Rahn, an atmospheric chemist recently retired from the University of Rhode Island, stands by this statement and Guinn's research despite Randich and Grant's study.

He says he believes it is possible that microscopic variation occurs within bullets of this type, but Grant and Randich can't say for sure whether it happened in the JFK bullets because they didn't analyze those particular fragments.

Rahn thinks it is far more likely the fragments fell into two distinct groups, one with .06 percent antimony and the other with .08 percent, because they came from two distinct bullets.

This fits the Warren Commission's conclusion that Oswald was the lone shooter, and two of the three bullets he shot hit the occupants of the president's limousine, Rahn said.

Grant counters that the two groups of bullet fragments might not actually be that distinct. The margin of error associated with the antimony analysis means that, statistically, the concentrations are too close to separate into groups.

Although Randich and Grant's research doesn't solve the Kennedy assassination, it certainly does weaken the case for a lone gunman.

"In recent years, the (bullet) fragment evidence has become one of the key struts supporting the single-bullet theory," Aguilar said. "Randich and Grant have knocked this slat out from under the theory."
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BPD probing alleged shady cop behavior
By O’Ryan Johnson
Saturday, August 26, 2006 - Updated: 12:47 AM EST

A Boston police detective is under investigation after he allegedly stole a pair of sunglasses from a toney Newbury Street store where he was called to solve a robbery.
    “The incident has been given to the superintendent of the bureau of internal affairs for investigation,” acting police commissioner Al Goslin said last night.
    According to a tape aired by WHDH-TV Ch. 7, a store security camera at the sunglass store Solstice captured the detective taking a pair of sunglasses off the wall while investigating a robbery there Monday, then later slipping them into his pocket.
    The alleged theft came two hours after the robbery where three men stole upward of 100 pairs of sunglasses after telling store employees they had a handgun and ordering the workers to empty the goods into bags.
    News of the incident hits a department that is still reeling from the arrest of three officers in an elaborate two-year FBI corruption probe. It also comes as a Suffolk County grand jury hears testimony about a police officer shooting a fellow officer following a night of boozing, and just weeks after a Boston cop and a state trooper allegedly brawled on Causeway Street, an incident that is also under investigation.
    Goslin, who was the superintendent in charge of internal affairs until his promotion to acting commissioner, said the Police Department is vigilant about keeping an eye on its own. “We pay very close attention to this stuff,” he said.
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I am reposting this with correct links to the story.

3 easy reads

Symbol of innocence (National Geographic Society)choosen to collaborate with FBI agents
to push disinformation spin on FBI agents and their
relationship with CIA asset Bin Laden ,
in spite of solid science linking FBI agents
as principle architects of first world trade
center bombing, oklahoma city bombing
and 911.
We can only wait for the next taxpayer
funded FBI-State Sponsored act of
terrorism to maintain America in the
grip of the Politics of Terrorism.
FBI agents know you have already
forgotten about their involvement in
JFK assassination, Martin Luther King assassination
, Robert Kennedy assassination,
voter fraud , pedophilia, Waco, Ruby Ridge,
and yes the Anthrax
. Welcome to Mr. Rogers Neighborhood,
won't you let a FBI agent be your neighbor.

click above link for more disinformation

then click this link for how it really went down


How Bin Laden's Spy Suckered the CIA, FBI and Army: TV Review

By Dave Shiflett

Aug. 28 (Bloomberg) -- President George W. Bush promises we are safer today than before 9/11, which sounds good until you realize how little is being promised.

What makes it all especially disturbing is that during much of this time Mohamed was a U.S. citizen, an operative for the CIA and FBI, and a member of the U.S. Army.

The program traces his rise with the help of archived news footage, re-enactments and interviews with terrorist experts, law-enforcement officials and people who knew Mohamed. They include military acquaintances and former FBI special agent John Cloonan, one of the master spy's contacts.

The story they tell is almost unbelievable.

Radical Views

Mohamed's initial infiltration of the U.S. military came in 1981 when, at the age of 29, he participated in an exchange program at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, home of the Green Berets and Delta Force.

After returning to Egypt he was drummed out of that country's military because of his radical Islamic views. No matter. The CIA took him on in 1984, sending him to infiltrate a Hamburg mosque. There, Mohamed quickly blew his cover, resulting in his name being added to a watch list of suspected terrorists.

That still didn't stop Mohamed, who was allowed to re-enter the U.S. in 1985. He quickly went about living his version of the American dream, including marrying a California girl he met on the plane ride into Kennedy Airport. The nuptials were held in Las Vegas.

He joined the U.S. Army a year later, which took him back to Fort Bragg, where his superiors were alarmed by his praise of the assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat. His radicalism did not lead to his dismissal, though. Instead, Mohamed was asked to share his views with officers so that they might better understand the Islamic way.

Terrorist Training

In one captivating segment we see Mohamed passionately telling a military panel that Americans ``see what they want to see'' regarding the Mideast. He also insists Israel has no right to exist.

His views seemed so extreme, the show says, that many officers thought his radicalism was ``a joke.'' Lieutenant Colonel Robert Anderson, Mohamed's supervisor at Fort Bragg, adds that he had ``an air about him, a stare, a very coldness.''

Yet his chief characteristic was brashness.

He stole documents at Fort Bragg and fashioned them into a terrorism training manual, which he used to help bin Laden's personal security forces and countless terrorists. He also used his military credentials to take an unauthorized trip to Afghanistan, where he fought Soviet forces, a violation for which he was not disciplined.

After his military service ended, Mohamed did bin Laden's bidding on many other fronts, including scouting bombing targets such as U.S. embassies in East Africa. He was arrested in 1998 after his part in the plots was revealed, and pleaded guilty in 2000 to five counts of conspiracy.


Terrorism expert Steve Emerson, interviewed throughout the program, is awestruck by Mohamed's career.

``I've never seen a terrorist with such a storied background, with his connections to U.S. law enforcement and intelligence,'' he says. Emerson adds that Mohamed also revealed ``bureaucratic crevices'' between the CIA, FBI and military that were so big ``you could drive truck bombs through them.''

Mohamed is thought to be supplying information helpful to the U.S. government from an undisclosed prison cell, and at least one person thinks his final chapter has yet to be written.

David Runke, a defense attorney in the African embassies bombing case, says, ``I think the most likely thing that will happen is he'll be released, he'll be given a new name and a new identity, and he will pick up a life someplace.''

Although the documentary makes it clear that U.S. agencies bungled their handling of Mohamed, the author of the book that inspired the program says it's not tough enough.

Peter Lance, whose book ``Triple Cross'' will be released next month, has criticized the program for being too soft on federal authorities. John Ford, the National Geographic Channel's executive vice president of programming, has denied the allegation and says the show isn't solely based on Lance's book.

I imagine Mohamed must be pleased that he's still causing trouble in the U.S.

For more information on the program, see http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/channel

Another 9/11 Coverup in the Making?

By Rory O'Connor, AlterNet. Posted August 23, 2006.

The author of a new book about the mistakes that led to 9/11 accuses the National Geographic Channel of diluting a documentary about the book in order to protect the government.

Despite the best efforts of the Pentagon to keep the lid on, the story of Able Danger -- the controversial secret military intelligence program that purportedly identified five active al-Qaeda cells and four of the 9/11 hijackers more than a year before the worst terror attacks ever on American soil -- continues to make news.

The latest wrinkle is a nasty public spat between the National Geographic Channel, which plans to broadcast "Triple Cross: Bin Laden's Spy in America" on Aug. 28, and author Peter Lance, whose new book forms the basis of the documentary.

Lance is an Emmy-winning former reporter-producer for ABC News. His book, "Triple Cross," which will be released in September, accuses law enforcement officials of negligence in tracking down Ali Mohamed, an alleged al-Qaeda agent in the United States for years before Sept. 11. The book says Mohamed was hired by the CIA and worked for the FBI, all the while providing information to the terrorists. The book also contains, according to Lance, "a major new insight" into why the Pentagon killed the Able Danger operation in April 2000.

It involves the discovery by Able Danger operatives that Ali Mohamed was a member of Osama bin Laden's inner circle. Mohamed turned up in FBI surveillance photos as early as 1989, training radical Muslims who would go on to assassinate Jewish militant Meir Kahane and detonate a truck bomb at the World Trade Center. He not only avoided arrest, but managed to become an FBI informant while smuggling bin Laden in and out of Afghanistan, writing most of the al-Qaeda terrorist manual and helping plan attacks on American troops in Somalia and U.S. embassies in Africa. Finally arrested in 1998, Mohamed cut a deal with the Justice Department, and his whereabouts remain shrouded, unknown.

''The FBI allowed the chief spy for al-Qaeda to operate right under their noses,'' Lance said. ''They let him plan the bombings of the embassies in Africa right under their noses. Two hundred twenty-four people were killed and more than 4,000 wounded because of their negligence."

Lance contends that when Pentagon officials realized how embarrassing it would be if it were revealed that bin Laden's spy had stolen top-secret intelligence (including the positions of all Green Beret and SEAL units worldwide), they decided to bury the entire Able Danger program. Lance further states that his book also contains evidence that Patrick Fitzgerald (of later Scooter Libby/Valerie Plame fame) covered up key al-Qaeda intelligence in 1996, when he was then an assistant U.S. attorney in New York. To Lance, Fitzgerald was "one of the principal players in the government's negligence, who engaged in an affirmative coverup of key al-Qaeda-related intelligence in 1996."

Lance believes "Fitzgerald was hopelessly outgunned by Mohamed, a hardened al-Qaeda spy, who was bin Laden's personal security advisor." Despite two face-to-face meetings with Mohamed, whom Fitzgerald called "the most dangerous man I've ever met," he left him on the street, which allowed Mohamed -- who actually planned the surveillance for the African Embassy bombings -- to help pull off that simultaneous act of terror in Kenya and Tanzania on August 7, 1998, in which 224 died and more than 4,000 were injured.

There is also a chilling tie-in in the book to the airliner-bombing plot revealed last week by the British intelligence. Much of the key intelligence that Fitzgerald helped to bury in 1996 was directly related to the Bojinka plot, a scheme by original WTC bomber and 9/11 architect Ramzi Yousef to smuggle small improvised explosive devices aboard up to a dozen U.S. bound jumbo jets exiting Asia.

Fitzgerald went on become both U.S. attorney for the northern district of Illinois and special prosecutor in the CIA leak probe. After allowing Ali Mohamed to operate with virtual impunity for years, Fitzgerald finally arrested him post-bombing in 1998. But then he cut a deal with him that allowed Mohamed to enter witness protection and avoid the death penalty.

Lance contends that this was to spare the government from embarrassment, since Ali Mohamed had been an FBI informant since 1992. Yet despite three years in federal custody, Fitzgerald and his elite FBI squad members were unable to extract the 9/11 plot from Mohamed, who was so close to bin Laden that he lived in the Saudi billionaire's house after moving him and his family from Afghanistan to Khartoum in 1992.

The revelations, says Lance, proved "too hot to handle" for the National Geographic Channel, which is two-thirds owned by Rupert Murdoch's NewsCorp (which also owns Lance's publisher, HarperCollins). "The Feds have gotten to them, there is no doubt," Lance told me in an interview. "National Geographic has abandoned the truth and acquiesced to pressure from the government."

Television critic Glenn Garvin first reported the flap in a Miami Herald piece that characterized Lance's reaction to the program as a "watered-down whitewash" that was "like doing 'Schindler's List' from Hitler's perspective.''

Able Danger insiders had figured the documentary to be controversial, but no one expected open warfare to break out between Lance and his broadcasters prior to its airing. Lance, who was originally slated to narrate the film, is so angry at what he sees as the program's shift in direction and emphasis that he now refuses to back it at all.

At least one source interviewed for the documentary -- House Armed Services Committee vice chairman Curt Weldon, who has spearheaded congressional efforts to get to the bottom of the Able Danger affair -- has asked to be removed from the program. "We didn't think National Geographic was doing a 100 percent job," says Weldon's chief of staff, Russ Caso. "We felt we weren't looking at an unbiased piece.'' And National Geographic's producers now won't even let Lance see the final cut unless he signs what they call a "nondisparagement agreement.''

The public pissing match between Lance and his putative broadcaster is virtually without precedent. ''It's probably happened before,'' John Ford, executive vice president of programming at National Geographic Channel, told the Herald. "But I can't tell you when. I certainly don't know of a case." Ford strongly denies the documentary is a whitewash and says the network still stands behind it despite Lance's attack. But Lance is having none of it: "They hijacked my work," he says, "The documentary is now skewed so much in favor of the feds that it actually distorts the facts of the story." National Geographic's executive vice president of programming, John Ford, said the film's producers never intended to base the documentary solely on the book -- something Lance hotly disputes.

"Let me set the record straight on the allegations made by John Ford," he says. "First, in the Miami Herald piece, Ford lied to Glenn Garvin when he said that 'Peter wanted us to include accusations and conclusions ... that we could not independently verify, and we weren't willing to do that.'"

"The second lie is that the documentary 'was never supposed to be based solely' on my book," says Lance. "The truth is that from the beginning Nat Geo hired me to do a documentary exclusively based on my work. This was my show from start to finish. But now we're at a point where a major cable network, reporting on an issue of national importance, is backtracking on proof of how the FBI folded on the road to 9/11. What's worse, in a few days this documentary will air with my name on it!" Lance concludes, "This is a ridiculous lie, since they've cut me out of the process and rolled over in favor of the feds."

Despite Lance's vehement protestations, National Geographic executives like Ford are undeterred and say that the show must and will go on -- especially given the upcoming fifth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. ''It exposes how different parts of the U.S. national security apparatus failed to connect the dots on Ali Mohamed over a decade and a half,'' Ford said. "It's like a Tom Clancy thriller, but true.''

What's also true is that many questions still remain unanswered about the actual Able Danger program, what it found, and what reaction higher-ups everywhere from Pentagon brass to FBI officials to the 9/11 Commission had when Able Danger operatives attempted to inform them of its findings.

Why, for example, were three planned meetings with the FBI canceled at the last minute, thus preventing the bureau from hearing evidence that may have helped them "connect the dots" before the terror attacks? Why was the guided missile destroyer USS Cole sent to refuel at the port of Aden, Yemen, in October 2000, despite the fact that Able Danger had identified Aden as the location of an active al-Qaeda cell? Why did Special Operation Command chief Peter Schoomaker (now Army chief of staff) apparently do nothing after Able Danger analysts personally briefed him about the danger in Yemen just two days before a suicide bomb attack blew a 40-by-40-foot hole in the side of the Cole, killing 17 crew members and injuring 39 others?

Further, why was veteran intelligence analyst-operative Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer's career derailed and reputation besmirched after he tried to alert an unwilling 9/11 Commission to Able Danger's findings? What has happened to the Department of Defense's own inspector general's investigation into the scapegoating of Shaffer -- originally slated to be completed and made public in May? Whatever happened to Arlen Specter's Senate Judiciary Committee hearings on Able Danger, originally scheduled for last September and then "postponed for the Jewish holidays?" And why were the entire 2.5 terabytes of Able Danger data destroyed, along with a pre-9/11 link chart that identified four eventual hijackers and even had a photograph of Mohammed Atta?

And what about reports that the Able Danger program was reconstituted after the data purge by a classified Raytheon "skunk works" program in Garland, Texas? Or that the entire data-mining effort was then taken "black," hidden deep inside the intelligence bureaucracy and expanded into what later morphed into Total Information Awareness, NSA warrantless surveillance, and in fact the government's ongoing illegal and unconstitutional spying on huge quantities of domestic telephone calls and emails? Conspiracy ... or something more? The plot ever thickens …

Filmmaker and journalist Rory O'Connor writes the Media Is A Plural blog.
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It used to be called treason punishable by death. FBI agent used her bureau issued "get out of jail free" card and walked . Just another perc when you work for the taxpayer funded FBI.

Ex-FBI Agent to Get Probation for Leak

The Associated Press
Tuesday, August 29, 2006; 12:34 AM

LOS ANGELES -- A former FBI agent who disclosed confidential information in connection with a Chinese spying investigation will be sentenced to a year of probation and ordered to pay a $1,000 fine, a judge said Monday.

U.S. District Judge Gary Klausner said he would accept a plea bargain for Denise K. Woo, 47, who pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count in June as part of the agreement. Sentencing was set for Oct. 23.
In the plea agreement, Woo acknowledged she had passed on information in 1999 about an informant's identity to a man only identified as J.W. Her lawyers argued that she acted out of concern that the man, a family friend, was being wrongly investigated.

Authorities have said the man was a Chinese-American employee of a defense contractor who was under investigation into whether he passed defense secrets to China.

The government dropped charges of disclosing a wiretap, revealing the identity of a covert operative and lying to FBI agents.

Her lawyer, Michael Camunez, has called the case "completely overblown."
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Feds challenge 9/11 conspiracies
'Fact sheet' addresses alternative theories of worst terror attacks in American history

Posted: August 31, 2006
1:00 a.m. Eastern

© 2006 WorldNetDaily.com

In the wake of growing skepticism, the U.S. government is taking the unusual step of responding to conspiracy theories about the Sept. 11, 2001, destruction of the World Trade Center.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology, or NIST, headquartered in Gaithersberg, Md., investigated the causes of the collapse of the twin towers. Yesterday NIST announced it had posted a "fact sheet" addressing alternative theories about the World Trade Center fires and collapse.

The government's response comes in response to accusations and suspicions of increasing numbers of Americans that the official explanation of the events of Sept. 11, 2001 – that 19 Muslim terrorists hijacked four U.S. jetliners and crashed them into the World Trade Center and Pentagon, with a fourth being downed in rural Pennsylvania – are wrong. In fact, a shocking new Scripps Howard poll shows a third of Americans believe the U.S. government was complicit in the Sept. 11 terror attacks.

The current edition of WND's acclaimed Whistleblower magazine takes a close look at the controversial issue of alternative 9/11 theories in its September edition, titled "9/11: FIVE YEARS LATER, A TIME FOR TRUTH."

On its website, the National Institute of Standards and Technology posed 14 questions regarding the 9/11 terror attacks and answered each in detail. For instance, one question asked:

Why did NIST not consider a "controlled demolition" hypothesis with matching computer modeling and explanation as it did for the "pancake theory" hypothesis? A key critique of NIST’s work lies in the complete lack of analysis supporting a "progressive collapse" after the point of collapse initiation and the lack of consideration given to a controlled demolition hypothesis.

Here's is the government's response:

NIST conducted an extremely thorough three-year investigation into what caused the WTC towers to collapse, as explained in NIST’s dedicated Web site. This included consideration of a number of hypotheses for the collapses of the towers.

Some 200 technical experts – including about 85 career NIST experts and 125 leading experts from the private sector and academia – reviewed tens of thousands of documents, interviewed more than 1,000 people, reviewed 7,000 segments of video footage and 7,000 photographs, analyzed 236 pieces of steel from the wreckage, performed laboratory tests and sophisticated computer simulations of the sequence of events that occurred from the moment the aircraft struck the towers until they began to collapse.

Based on this comprehensive investigation, NIST concluded that the WTC towers collapsed because: (1) the impact of the planes severed and damaged support columns, dislodged fireproofing insulation coating the steel floor trusses and steel columns, and widely dispersed jet fuel over multiple floors; and (2) the subsequent unusually large jet-fuel ignited multi-floor fires (which reached temperatures as high as 1,000 degrees Celsius) significantly weakened the floors and columns with dislodged fireproofing to the point where floors sagged and pulled inward on the perimeter columns. This led to the inward bowing of the perimeter columns and failure of the south face of WTC 1 and the east face of WTC 2, initiating the collapse of each of the towers. Both photographic and video evidence – as well as accounts from the New York Police Department aviation unit during a half-hour period prior to collapse – support this sequence for each tower.

NIST's findings do not support the "pancake theory" of collapse, which is premised on a progressive failure of the floor systems in the WTC towers (the composite floor system – that connected the core columns and the perimeter columns – consisted of a grid of steel "trusses" integrated with a concrete slab; see diagram below). Instead, the NIST investigation showed conclusively that the failure of the inwardly bowed perimeter columns initiated collapse and that the occurrence of this inward bowing required the sagging floors to remain connected to the columns and pull the columns inwards. Thus, the floors did not fail progressively to cause a pancaking phenomenon.

NIST's findings also do not support the "controlled demolition" theory since there is conclusive evidence that:

  • the collapse was initiated in the impact and fire floors of the WTC towers and nowhere else, and;
  • the time it took for the collapse to initiate (56 minutes for WTC 2 and 102 minutes for WTC 1) was dictated by (1) the extent of damage caused by the aircraft impact, and (2) the time it took for the fires to reach critical locations and weaken the structure to the point that the towers could not resist the tremendous energy released by the downward movement of the massive top section of the building at and above the fire and impact floors.

    Video evidence also showed unambiguously that the collapse progressed from the top to the bottom, and there was no evidence (collected by NIST, or by the New York Police Department, the Port Authority Police Department or the Fire Department of New York) of any blast or explosions in the region below the impact and fire floors as the top building sections (including and above the 98th floor in WTC 1 and the 82nd floor in WTC 2) began their downward movement upon collapse initiation.

    In summary, NIST found no corroborating evidence for alternative hypotheses suggesting that the WTC towers were brought down by controlled demolition using explosives planted prior to Sept. 11, 2001. NIST also did not find any evidence that missiles were fired at or hit the towers. Instead, photographs and videos from several angles clearly show that the collapse initiated at the fire and impact floors and that the collapse progressed from the initiating floors downward until the dust clouds obscured the view.

  • Other questions posed and answered by NIST include:

  • If the World Trade Center (WTC) towers were designed to withstand multiple impacts by Boeing 707 aircraft, why did the impact of individual 767s cause so much damage?
  • How could the WTC towers have collapsed without a controlled demolition since no steel-frame, high-rise buildings have ever before or since been brought down due to fires? Temperatures due to fire don't get hot enough for buildings to collapse.
  • Weren't the puffs of smoke that were seen, as the collapse of each WTC tower starts, evidence of controlled demolition explosions?
  • Why were two distinct spikes – one for each tower – seen in seismic records before the towers collapsed? Isn't this indicative of an explosion occurring in each tower?
  • How could the WTC towers collapse in only 11 seconds (WTC 1) and 9 seconds (WTC 2) – speeds that approximate that of a ball dropped from similar height in a vacuum (with no air resistance)?
  • How could the steel have melted if the fires in the WTC towers weren’t hot enough to do so? Or, since the melting point of steel is about 2,700 degrees Fahrenheit, the temperature of jet fuel fires does not exceed 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit and Underwriters Laboratories (UL) certified the steel in the WTC towers to 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit for six hours, how could fires have impacted the steel enough to bring down the WTC towers?
  • We know that the sprinkler systems were activated because survivors reported water in the stairwells. If the sprinklers were working, how could there be a "raging inferno" in the WTC towers?
  • If thick black smoke is characteristic of an oxygen-starved, lower temperature, less intense fire, why was thick black smoke exiting the WTC towers when the fires inside were supposed to be extremely hot?
  • Why were people seen in the gaps left by the plane impacts if the heat from the fires behind them was so excessive?
  • Why do some photographs show a yellow stream of molten metal pouring down the side of WTC2 that NIST claims was aluminum from the crashed plane although aluminum burns with a white glow?
  • Did the NIST investigation look for evidence of the WTC towers being brought down by controlled demolition? Was the steel tested for explosives or thermite residues? The combination of thermite and sulfur (called thermate) "slices through steel like a hot knife through butter."
  • Why did the NIST investigation not consider reports of molten steel in the wreckage from the WTC towers?
  • Why is the NIST investigation of the collapse of WTC 7 (the 47-story office building that collapsed on Sept. 11, 2001, hours after the towers) taking so long to complete? Is a controlled demolition hypothesis being considered to explain the collapse?
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    two john lennon reads

    1st read

    2nd read

    EXCLUSIVE: Yoko Ono on John Lennon and the FBI
    John Lennon's Widow Talks With Jonathan Karl About Their 'Threat' to U.S. Government

    Yoko Ono talks with ABC News about the "The U.S. vs. John Lennon," an upcoming documentary.  (ABC News)
    Related Stories


    Sept. 5, 2006 — John Lennon's perceived "threat" to the U.S. government is the highlight of a new film that documents his transformation from pop idol to political activist and offers a fresh look at this former Beatle's career.

    "The U.S. vs. John Lennon" will be released later this month. Yoko Ono cooperated with the filmmakers, opening her archives of rarely seen footage of the couple's fight for peace.

    "One thing that brought us together was the fact that both of us were rebels in so many ways," she said.

    And that's something he didn't always share with his bandmates, who were reluctant to join Lennon as he spoke out against the Vietnam War, said Ono.

    "He is the only one who really wanted to do something about it when he was a Beatle," Ono explained.

    Star Watched by the FBI

    Lennon's rebelliousness may have come at a price. In the 1970s, Lennon was convinced that government agents were watching him. As it turns out, he was right.

    Almost 20 years after his death, the government released the FBI file on Lennon, which included nearly 300 pages of text. One document that went from the FBI to the CIA reports that Lennon planned to take part in a protest at the 1972 Republican National Convention.

    South Carolina Sen. Strom Thurmond seized on that, suggesting to President Nixon's attorney general that Lennon's visa be terminated.

    A few weeks later, Lennon was given 30 days to leave the country and was notified that his visa had been terminated because of an old drug arrest in England.

    "I think that the world really loved the Beatles for being charming and sweet," Ono said. "But some people did resent the fact that they were no more the sweet, nice, charming boys."

    Ono and Lennon did not want to leave the United States, and a legal battle ensued.

    In 1976, after the end of the Vietnam War and the Watergate scandal, Lennon won.

    The judge in the case wrote that the British singer's battle to stay in the United States was a "testimony to his faith in the American dream."
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    Ex-FBI Agent Admits To Hiding Relationship With Illegal Alien

    Dania Beach Man Made False Statements So Colombian Woman Could Stay In U.S.

    POSTED: 6:45 am EDT September 13,                                                                                 2006
     | Print this story
    Sign Up for Breaking News Alerts
    A former FBI agent from Dania Beach has pleaded guilty to concealing his relationship with a Colombian illegal immigrant so she could stay in the country following a drug arrest.Ronald LeBlanc entered the plea before U.S. District Judge Richard Casey in Manhattan on Tuesday. LeBlanc, 45, admitted that he failed to disclose the nature of his relationship with the woman, with whom he was intimately involved.LeBlanc also admitted making false statements regarding the value of the information the woman provided to law enforcement. LeBlanc faces five years in prison when he is sentenced Dec. 20.
    Click here to find out more!
    LeBlanc met the woman in the summer of 1999 while working on a squad investigating South American drug trafficking and money laundering organizations.He registered her in November 1999 as a cooperating witness and acted as her supervising agent. The woman pleaded guilty to a drug charge after FBI agents in Massachusetts arrested her in November 1998.The woman moved to New York in February 1999 after she was released from custody on the Massachusetts charges. She faced deportation because her cooperation was not enough to win her special consideration.
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    Hayat wins delay in bid for new terror trial

                                                                    Jeff Hood
    Lodi Bureau Chief                                
    Published Friday, Sep 15, 2006

    A new-trial hearing for a Lodi man convicted of supporting terrorists at a training camp in Pakistan was delayed two months at the request of his defense attorneys.

    In an order filed Thursday, U.S. District Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr. agreed to the delay after Hamid Hayat's attorneys said a delay in obtaining transcripts from the two-month trial put them behind schedule in preparing legal arguments that were originally due today. Transcripts from 40 hearings were filed with in the Sacramento district court last week, and prosecutors did not object to the defense request.

    The hearing, originally scheduled for Nov. 17, now will be on Jan. 19. Burrell also agreed to give defense attorneys Wazhma Mojaddidi and Dennis Riordan until Oct. 20 to file their papers.

    :::                                                         Advertisement :::

    Hayat, 23, is seeking a new trial after a jury convicted him April 25 of one count of providing material support to terrorists and three counts of lying about it to FBI agents. He faces up to 39 years in federal prison, but his sentencing has been delayed by defense motions.

    His lawyers say a new trial was justified because of alleged juror misconduct and Burrell's supposed legal missteps, including a decision to keep retired FBI agent Jim Wedick, a defense expert, from testifying.

    One juror told a defense team investigator she was bullied into voting to convict Hamid Hayat and never believed him guilty. She also said the jury foreman made racist remarks, shared information about the trial that wasn't presented to jurors in court and pulled a simulated noose around his neck and said, "Hang him," two days into trial testimony.

    Mojaddidi said Thursday she doesn't expect the arguments for a new trial to include any surprises. "I think the focus is going to be on the jury stuff and Wedick not testifying," she said.

    Hayat was arrested June 5, 2005, less than a week after returning to Lodi from Pakistan. He was convicted of attending a paramilitary camp run by radical Islamic terrorists. His father, who was arrested and charged with lying to federal agents for denying he knew anything about his son's attendance at a camp, later pleaded guilty to lying about the amount of cash he took to Pakistan in 2003.

    Umer Hayat, 48, was sentenced Aug. 29 to time already served and released from custody.
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    Peter Dale Scott, PhD.


    © Copyright 2006, From The Wilderness Publications, http://www.fromthewilderness.com.  All Rights Reserved. This story may NOT be posted on any Internet web site without express written permission. Contact admin@copvcia.com. May be circulated, distributed or transmitted for non-profit purposes only.

    September 22nd 2006, 2:04PM [PST] - The V Crisis story by Aleksander Boyd about a 2.2ton seizure of cocaine on the Sierra Express is a propagandistic exaggeration of a corroborated story.1

    Boyd’s most controversial sentence is this: “International authorities have seized more than 41 tons of cocaine consignments originated in Venezuela since Hugo Chavez took power, a huge increase on previous years.” Venezuela has been a major exporter of cocaine for years, certainly since the 1980s. The 41 tons of cocaine in Chavez’ eight years in power averages out to five tons a year. Just one individual, Gen. Ramon Guillen Davila, a Venezuelan general who led a Central Intelligence Agency counter-narcotics program, was belatedly indicted in 1996 for authorizing shipments of 22 tons of cocaine into the United States between 1987 and 1991.2 That works out to an average of four tons a year for just one individual.

    Gen. Guillen was tried in Miami in 1997, but Lexis Nexis shows no evidence that anyone other than his top aide, Adolfo Romero Gomez, was ever convicted. According to the New York Times, "The CIA, over the objections of the Drug Enforcement Administration, approved the shipment [by Guillen] of at least one ton of pure cocaine to Miami International Airport as a way of gathering information about the Colombian drug cartels." One official said that the total amount might have been much more than one ton.3
    The fact that 41 tons of cocaine have been exported from Venezuela since 1998 does not of course prove guilt on Chavez’ part. On the contrary, the CIA has worked in the past with drug traffickers to remove elected presidents, successfully in Chile, and unsuccessfully in Cuba.
    It is worth noting that one shipment of 5.5 tons of cocaine earlier this year from Venezuela, on the airplane N900SA downed in Mexico, has been linked by researchers to CIA associates such as Adnan Khashoggi and Wally Hilliard.4

    Peter Dale Scott is currently writing a new book titled The Road to 9/11: Wealth, Empire, and the Future of America, to be published by the University of California Press next year. In addition, he has co-edited with David Ray Griffin, 9/11 and American Empire: Intellectuals Speak Out which is now available and can be purchased at http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~pdscott/q.html

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    September 21, 2006 -- RUDY Giuliani has made enemies among a group that should be solidly behind "America's mayor" - the Society of Former Special Agents - after canceling as their keynote speaker. The retired FBI men, at the New York Hilton for the society's 54th annual convention, booked Giuliani in May for this morning's breakfast speech. But Hizzoner canceled two weeks ago, leaving the group almost no time to line up a replacement. "We are deeply disappointed," said Joseph Valiquette, the retired spokesman for the FBI's New York office. "He is a national figure, We were looking forward to hearing his perspective on terrorism." A less diplomatic member said, "Don't forget, it was the FBI cases that Rudy rode to prominence so he could run for mayor in the first place. We did not forget him, but he forgot us." Among those who pressed Giuliani into relenting and giving the speech was Yankee owner George Steinbrenner. But Giuliani couldn't be swayed. A spokeswoman for Giuliani said, "He deeply regrets not being able to be there. There was a scheduling conflict." In the end, the speaker they ended up with ain't too shabby - FBI Deputy Director John Pistole.

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    Freeh: FBI determined to find stolen weapons
    Freeh June 4, 1997
    Web posted at: 1:49 p.m. EDT (1749 GMT)

    WASHINGTON (CNN) -- FBI Director Louis Freeh said
    Wednesday the bureau is putting on "a full-court
    press" to recover weapons and ammunition that were
    lost when one of its own vans was stolen from a
    Memphis, Tennessee hotel parking lot.

    The burned-out shell of the SWAT truck was found early
    Tuesday in Memphis, but the weapons -- including
    automatic rifles and two grenade launchers -- were

    "We certainly have put on a full-court press to try to
    retrieve these weapons, which are very dangerous
    weapons," Freeh told the Senate Judiciary committee.

    The FBI also will look into whether the agents
    responsible for the van violated any FBI regulations.

    The vehicle belonged to FBI agents from Little Rock,
    Arkansas, who were among about a half-dozen federal
    special weapons and tactics squads in Memphis for a
    regional training exercise on terrorism.

    Freeh said that trunks containing weapons must be
    locked with chain locks. But, he said, "This was a
    Suburban. It had no trunk, it had no alarm installed."

    The unmarked GMC Suburban had been parked outside a
    Budgetel motel on the eastern edge of Memphis late
    Monday, the FBI said.

    Agents discovered it missing several hours later. The
    motel was not where the agents had intended to stay,
    Freeh said.

    Special Agent Mike Smith said he had no reason to
    believe the van wasn't locked. "I would assume it was.
    I can't imagine that it wouldn't be," he said.

    No arrests were made and authorities were searching
    for the weapons, said John W. Hancock, in charge of
    the FBI's Memphis office.

    Hancock said he did not know if the thieves knew they
    were stealing an FBI van or that it contained
    firearms. "I'm sure (the weapons) were not in plain
    view," he said.

    WPTY-TV in Memphis, which obtained a list of equipment
    in the Suburban, reported that seven M-16s, three
    MP-5s with 30-round magazines, two M-79 grenade
    launchers and one 12-gauge shotgun was among them.

    M-16s are basic American military assault rifles, and
    MP-5s are shorter-barreled rifles.

    Also in the vehicle were 1,000 rounds of ammunition
    for the M-16s, 3,000 rounds of 9 mm ammunition, 4,000
    10 mm rounds and two bulletproof shields, according to
    the broadcast report.

    The theft comes as the FBI, embroiled in controversy
    for much of the past year, is basking in praise for
    its investigation of Timothy McVeigh, who was
    convicted this week in the Oklahoma City bombing.

    The agency had hoped the guilty verdicts might help
    dispel criticism after a Justice Department report was
    critical of the FBI crime laboratory and the agency's
    failure to solve last summer's Olympic bombing in

    Local - WJXT News4Jax.com
    WJXT News4Jax.com
    FBI Van Burglarized; SWAT Rifles, Ammo Taken

    Mon Feb 7, 2005 10:53 PM ET

    Four sniper rifles, scopes and ammunition were stolen
    from an FBI (news - web sites) SWAT van parked outside
    a Baymeadows Road hotel before dawn Sunday.

    The FBI said the guns belonged to a team from Atlanta
    in Jacksonville to provide extra security for the
    Super Bowl.

    A spokesman for the FBI said authorities are concerned
    these weapons are out on the street and are doing
    everything possible to try and find whoever took them.

    Four high-powered rifles with scopes and 80 rounds of
    308 ammunition were taken from the unmarked, locked
    van parked outside the Holiday Inn at Baymeadows and
    Interstate 95. An agent parked the van at 3:45 a.m.
    and discovered a few hours later the padlock cut and
    van burglarized.

    An internal investigation is under way.

    The FBI asks anyone with information that could help
    recover the rifles to call their Jacksonville office
    at (904) 721-1211.
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    Activists' Session Looks At Rights

    Conference Recounts Breaches Of Liberty In The Name Of War Against Terrorism
    October 8, 2006
    By KIM MARTINEAU, Courant Staff Writer
    HAMDEN -- Shane Matthews is a young veteran angry because he believes the rights he served this country to uphold are slowly being stripped away in the name of fighting terrorists. The 24-year-old Navy veteran from Glastonbury has drafted a letter asking the attorney general to challenge a new law he considers unconstitutional.

    Looking for feedback, he brought the letter to a conference on Saturday called "Take Back Our Rights." He was one of about 100 citizens who came to hear lawyers and activists talk at Quinnipiac Law School about President Bush's expansion of executive powers and the harm it may be doing to democracy. The conference was sponsored by a host of advocacy groups for immigrants, workers, minorities and individual rights.


    In his letter, Matthews asks the attorney general to fight the Military Commissions Act, a new law that makes it harder for non-citizen "enemy combatants" thrown in jail to challenge their designation and imprisonment. The law also authorizes interrogation techniques that Matthews considers torture and beyond the bounds of international law.

    "As a veteran I am furious," he wrote. "I fought and I have bled for the ideals laid forth in our Constitution. ... The Geneva Convention[s] protected me and all my brethren regardless of which country we served."

    Matthews used to work on a nuclear submarine based in Groton and now works at Pratt & Whitney. He brought his wife, a social worker, to the conference, along with his kid sister and a stack of comic books to keep her entertained. The conference was held a month before elections to motivate people to go out and vote, said organizer Bruce Martin, a longtime Hartford peace activist.

    Martin said he invited all politicians running in Connecticut but only three candidates showed up, all from the Green Party. "Take Back Our Rights" was a sequel to a conference held at Quinnipiac four years earlier to discuss the repercussions of the USA Patriot Act, which expanded police powers after 9/11.

    The four Connecticut librarians who refused an FBI demand for patron Internet records also spoke. Last year, the librarians became the first in the country to challenge a National Security Letter, a tool under the Patriot Act that lets the government, without court approval, review records of people who are not suspected of wrongdoing. Anyone who receives a letter is gagged from disclosing its existence. The government later backed off from its demand for the library records and the gag order was lifted.

    Since their silence was broken, the librarians have received numerous awards and requests to speak across the country.

    "There are thousands of others out there under lifetime gag orders," said Peter Chase, director of the Plainville Library. "If we're the only ones who can talk, we should talk."

    The gag order prevented the librarians from speaking out at a critical time against the reauthorization of the Patriot Act. "The gag had nothing to do with national security," said George Christian, director of the Library Connection, a consortium of libraries in Connecticut. "It was purely political."

    Linda Chavez-Thompson, the third highest ranking member of the AFL-CIO, gave the opening speech. She condemned the wall set to go up along the U.S. border with Mexico and criticized recent immigration "reform" bills. She talked about growing up on a Texas cotton farm, the daughter of sharecroppers. As hard as she worked, she could see that the migrant workers had it worse, picking from sunrise to dusk, for little pay, she said. The experience motivated her to become a voice for the powerless, to fight for immigrant and workers' rights.

    UConn Professor Amii Omara-Otunno, a former student leader in Uganda who challenged his country's military dictatorship, also spoke. He pulled a copy of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights from his coat pocket and talked about the importance of addressing inequality worldwide. He told the audience to put the 9/11 deaths in the context of the millions who die in wars or of famine each year in impoverished countries.

    "As we strategize about how to take back our rights, be sure think about those people affected by our policies," he said.
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    taxpayer funded FBI agents target leading JFK assassination researcher.Why?
    FBI agents were principal architects in JFK assassination

    2 uneasy reads

            Posted on Tue, Oct. 10, 2006        

    Wecht trial delayed while attorneys wait for appeals court ruling

    Associated Press

    PITTSBURGH - Former Allegheny County coroner Dr. Cyril Wecht's federal corruption trial has been postponed indefinitely because an appeals court has yet to rule whether a judge is biased and should be removed from the case.

    The order canceling jury selection, which was to have begun next Monday, was issued Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Arthur Schwab.

    The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals last month ordered all pretrial proceedings halted until it rules on Schwab's alleged bias and other issues. Wecht's attorneys contend Schwab has favored prosecutors in his rulings; the judge has threatened to hold a contempt hearing for defense lawyers after the trial.

    Federal prosecutors in Pittsburgh say Wecht used his county staff to do work and otherwise help his multimillion-dollar private pathology practice. Wecht is also accused of trading cadavers for lab space at a local college, and overbilling private clients using faked limousine bills for trips in which he was allegedly chauffeured by county employees in a county car.

    Wecht's attorneys appealed to the 3rd Circuit after Schwab upheld FBI searches for Wecht's records and computers. Defense attorneys had attacked the credibility of the FBI agent who obtained the search warrants, but Schwab overruled some of their objections because he said they were filed too late.

    Wecht is a renowned pathologist who has consulted on high-profile deaths including those of Elvis Presley and JonBenet Ramsey and, most recently, the son of former Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith. He resigned from county office in January after he was indicted on charges of theft of honest services, mail fraud and wire fraud.

    2nd read

    This from The Dallas Morning News, Jun 18, 1993, page 1:

    "Bullet fragments sought from Connally's body: JFK assassination researchers
    want tests" by Stee McGonigle, Washinton Bureau of The Dallas Morning News.

    WASHINGTON--Several long-time critics of the Warren Commission report asked
    Wednesday to remove bullet fragments from the body of former Texas Gov. John
    Mr. Connally was wounded in the Nov. 22, 193, assassination of
    President John F. Kennedy in Dallas. The JFK researchers argue that
    scientific tests on fragments still lodged in Mr. Connally's wrist and thigh
    will prove that more than one assailant fired on the presidential limousine
    in Dealey Plaza.
    In letters to Janet Reno and Texas Gov. Ann Richards, the researchers
    asked for help in allowing the fragments to be removed from Mr. Connally's
    body before its scheduled burial in Austin Thursday.
    Dr. Cyril Wecht, a Pittsburg pathologist who has long ridiculed the
    government's single-bullet theory of the assassination, said the fragments
    are crucial evidence in an unresolved murder case and should be preserved.
    "We're not talking about something that is ghoulish or gory or
    disfiguring," Dr. Wecht Said. "Any skilled physician can go in, take a few
    X-rays, locate the pieces, make small surgical cuts and remove them."
    Dr. Wecht said he hoped that the Dallas County District Attorney or
    medical examiner in Houston--where Mr. Connally died Tuesday of pulmonary
    fibrosis--would order that the surgical procedure be done as quickly as
    "I'm not real optimistic that this is going to happen, but I do want
    you to know that this is not a ploy," Dr. Wecht said.
    Neither Dallas District Attorney John Vance nor Harris County medical
    examiner Joseph Jachimczyk returned calls.
    Dr. Wecht was among eight physicians who joined in a letter from the
    Assassination Archives and Research Center to M. Reno. He also cosigned a
    letter from the Dallas-based JFK Information Center to Ms. Richards.
    Carl STern, the attorney general's chief spokesman, said Ms. Reno had
    referred the letter through her deputy to the FBI, which sent it to the
    Dallas field office "to make a judgement on the matter."
    Niether Buck Revell, special agent in charge of the Dallas FBI
    office, nor his spokeswoman could be reached for comment Wednesday night.
    Bill Cryer, a spokesman for Ms. Richards, said the governor had not
    seen the letter from the Dallas group and would not take any action if she
    "That's something that the (Connally) family would have to deal
    with," Mr. Cryer said. "Certainly we would not want to be involved with it."
    Julian Read, a spokesman for the Connally family in Austin, said he
    was unaware of the researchers' rquests and would have "absolutely no
    Mr. Reed [sic] said Mr. Connally's funeral is scheduled for 2 p.m.
    with burial in the state cemetery about an hour later.
    According to the Warren Commission report, one bullet passed through
    the president and into Mr. Connally's back. The bullet exited through his
    chest, passed through his right wrist and went into his left thigh.
    The same bullet was laterfound lying on a stretcher in the emergency
    room at Parkland Hospital, the commission reported. The bullet was only
    slightly damaged, a factor that has fueled criticism of the report.
    Mr. Connally said several times that he believed he and Mr. Kennedy
    were struck by separate bullets. However, he shied away from saying that he
    believed there had been multiple shooters or a conspiracy.
    Dr. Wecht and Jim Lesar, president of the Washington-based
    assassination research center, said X-rays taken at Parkland of Mr.
    Connally's wounds clearly showed that bullet fragments remained in his wrist
    and thigh.
    Dr. Wecht contended that a neutron activation analysis, a scientific
    procedure used in ballistics studies, would show whether the fragments left
    in Mr. Connally were fired from the same weapon used to kill Mr. Kennedy.
    The procedure would take less than an hur, Dr. Wecht said, and would
    not prevent the family from displaying the body in an open casket ceremony.
    Although Dr. Wecht offered sympathy for the Connally family, he said
    the importance of the evidence should outweigh privacy concerns.
    "It has to do with criminal justice. It has to do with a very, very
    important part of American history," he said. "And you cannot allow personal feelings to enter into this."
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    ACLU: Pentagon Monitoring of Antiwar Activists More Intensive Than Previously Thought

    Category: Free Speech | War on Terror

    Bush Using Pentagon Computer
    Image courtesy of the White House.

    Documents released last week by the Pentagon show widespread monitoring of antiwar groups and events, including events organized by the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), the social justice arm of the Society of Friends/Quakers. The surveillance was conducted under the auspices of the Pentagon's Threat and Local Observation Notice (TALON) antiterrorism database program:
    The TALON database was intended to track groups or individuals with links to terrorism, but the documents released today show that the Pentagon gathered information on anti-war protesters using sources from the Department of Homeland Security, local police departments and FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces ...

    One document, which is labeled "potential terrorist activity," lists events such as a "Stop the War NOW!" rally in Akron, Ohio on March 19, 2005. The source noted that the rally "will have a March and Reading of Names of War Dead" and that marchers would pass a military recruitment station and the local FBI office along the way.

    Also included in the documents is information on a series of protests mistakenly identified as taking place in Springfield, Illinois (the protests actually occurred in Springfield, Massachusetts). According to the document, "Source received an e-mail from the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), e-mail address: [REDACTED] that stated that on March 18-20, a series of protest actions were planned in the Springfield, IL area… to focus on actions at military recruitment offices with the goals to include: raising awareness, education, visibility in community, visibility to recruiters as part of a national day of action."
    Nobody should be stunned by this given previous abuses of the TALON program, but this all goes to show why citizens should not simply trust the government to run a fair antiterrorism program in other respects. If the Pentagon is using antiterrorism initiatives to spy on antiwar activists and other political critics with no history of terrorism, then it's unrealistic to expect the NSA wiretapping program, for example, to be limited to suspected terrorists, or to trust the administration to permanently limit the military detention program to suspected terrorists. Now is the time for vigilance and protest, not for acquiescence to a government whose policies quite often fail to respect the most basic principles of liberal democracy.
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    Any other business these guys and girls would be out on the streets looking for a new job.
    Make out the bill to the US taxpayer
    3 reads three different events

    Missouri man charged with stealing FBI gun, ammo
    This article was published on Tuesday, October 17, 2006 10:32 PM
    By Ron Wood
    The Morning NEws

    FAYETTEVILLE -- A Missouri man has been charged with stealing guns, ammunition and bullet-resistant vests from an FBI agent's car at the Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport earlier this year.

    James Grinder of Pineville, Mo., is charged with being a felon in possession of firearms and interstate transport of a stolen firearm.

    Grinder was ordered held at the Benton County Jail on Monday by a magistrate judge after he waived bond. No trial date has been set.

    FBI agents say Grinder broke into the car of an unnamed FBI agent in April by prying the door open with a hammer. He was able to take a Remington 870 pump shotgun, more than 900 rounds of ammunition, two bullet-resistant vests with "FBI" printed on them and various firearms equipment, agents say.

    Grinder worked for a business at the airport.

    Agents say Grinder kept the shotgun, which was later found in the grass behind his trailer house, but traded the rest for $200, a .357 revolver and ammunition.

    The pistol was later found in Grinder's home.

    Grinder did about $2,000 damage to the car.

    An affidavit filed in the case said Grinder, a convicted felon and parole violator, confessed to agents that he broke into the car and took the items.


    Local - WJXT News4Jax.com
    WJXT News4Jax.com
    FBI Van Burglarized; SWAT Rifles, Ammo Taken

    Mon Feb 7,10:53 PM ET

    Four sniper rifles, scopes and ammunition were stolen
    from an FBI (news - web sites) SWAT van parked outside
    a Baymeadows Road hotel before dawn Sunday.

    The FBI said the guns belonged to a team from Atlanta
    in Jacksonville to provide extra security for the
    Super Bowl.

    A spokesman for the FBI said authorities are concerned
    these weapons are out on the street and are doing
    everything possible to try and find whoever took them.

    Four high-powered rifles with scopes and 80 rounds of
    308 ammunition were taken from the unmarked, locked
    van parked outside the Holiday Inn at Baymeadows and
    Interstate 95. An agent parked the van at 3:45 a.m.
    and discovered a few hours later the padlock cut and
    van burglarized.

    An internal investigation is under way.

    The FBI asks anyone with information that could help
    recover the rifles to call their Jacksonville office
    at (904) 721-1211.

    Freeh: FBI determined to find stolen weapons
    Freeh June 4, 1997
    Web posted at: 1:49 p.m. EDT (1749 GMT)

    WASHINGTON (CNN) -- FBI Director Louis Freeh said
    Wednesday the bureau is putting on "a full-court
    press" to recover weapons and ammunition that were
    lost when one of its own vans was stolen from a
    Memphis, Tennessee hotel parking lot.

    The burned-out shell of the SWAT truck was found early
    Tuesday in Memphis, but the weapons -- including
    automatic rifles and two grenade launchers -- were

    "We certainly have put on a full-court press to try to
    retrieve these weapons, which are very dangerous
    weapons," Freeh told the Senate Judiciary committee.

    The FBI also will look into whether the agents
    responsible for the van violated any FBI regulations.

    The vehicle belonged to FBI agents from Little Rock,
    Arkansas, who were among about a half-dozen federal
    special weapons and tactics squads in Memphis for a
    regional training exercise on terrorism.

    Freeh said that trunks containing weapons must be
    locked with chain locks. But, he said, "This was a
    Suburban. It had no trunk, it had no alarm installed."
    icon (273 K / 25 sec. AIFF or WAV sound)

    The unmarked GMC Suburban had been parked outside a
    Budgetel motel on the eastern edge of Memphis late
    Monday, the FBI said.

    Agents discovered it missing several hours later. The
    motel was not where the agents had intended to stay,
    Freeh said.

    Special Agent Mike Smith said he had no reason to
    believe the van wasn't locked. "I would assume it was.
    I can't imagine that it wouldn't be," he said.

    No arrests were made and authorities were searching
    for the weapons, said John W. Hancock, in charge of
    the FBI's Memphis office.

    Hancock said he did not know if the thieves knew they
    were stealing an FBI van or that it contained
    firearms. "I'm sure (the weapons) were not in plain
    view," he said.

    WPTY-TV in Memphis, which obtained a list of equipment
    in the Suburban, reported that seven M-16s, three
    MP-5s with 30-round magazines, two M-79 grenade
    launchers and one 12-gauge shotgun was among them.

    M-16s are basic American military assault rifles, and
    MP-5s are shorter-barreled rifles.

    Also in the vehicle were 1,000 rounds of ammunition
    for the M-16s, 3,000 rounds of 9 mm ammunition, 4,000
    10 mm rounds and two bulletproof shields, according to
    the broadcast report.

    The theft comes as the FBI, embroiled in controversy
    for much of the past year, is basking in praise for
    its investigation of Timothy McVeigh, who was
    convicted this week in the Oklahoma City bombing.

    The agency had hoped the guilty verdicts might help
    dispel criticism after a Justice Department report was
    critical of the FBI crime laboratory and the agency's
    failure to solve last summer's Olympic bombing in
    Quote 0 0
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    Did FBI agents  profile FBI  agents John Connolly and Lyndley DeVecchio as serial killers?

    a couple of easy reads from the comic strip called THE FBI

    Date:October 29, 2006

    Forensic Psychiatrists Address Limitations Regarding FBI Profiles Of Serial Killers

    Dennis Rader, the notorious BTK murderer who eluded capture for more than 30 years until his arrest in 2005, did not fit precisely into the FBI's method for profiling serial killers on the basis of crime scenes.

    And Aileen Wuornos, the Florida prostitute executed in 2002 for slaying seven men over a two-year period in the early 1990s, didn't fit at all because the database of convicted serial killers used by the FBI in developing their profiling method did not include women.

    The cases of Rader and Wuornos are among the topics to be explored during a panel discussion led by Dr. Charles L. Scott, a forensic psychiatrist at UC Davis Health System, at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law Friday at the Marriott Hotel in downtown Chicago. Scott will examine the way the bureau develops the personality profiles used by investigators in serial murder cases. He also will look at alternative profiling methods, such as one developed by a crime writer that uses motive to sketch a female offender's likely character traits.

    "The FBI profiling method has many positive attributes. But it also has some inherent limitations," Scott said. Scott, associate professor of clinical psychiatry with the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, will be one of four panelists in the talk, dubbed "Serial Killers: From Cradle to Grave." It is one of many events slated at the meeting, which began Thursday and runs through Sunday. The annual conference seeks to cover the major issues facing forensic psychiatrists.

    Scott has extensive experience in legal psychiatric issues. He directs the psychiatry department's forensic case seminar, which trains psychiatrists in criminal and civil psychiatric evaluations, including assessments on insanity, competency to stand trial, personal injury evaluations, medical malpractice and danger assessments. He also serves as psychiatric consultant to the Sacramento County Jail and directs his department's forensic psychiatry residency program, overseeing training and education in landmark mental health law cases.

    The purpose of Friday's panel discussion is not to critique the FBI, Scott said. Instead, it is to acquaint forensic psychiatrists with how the bureau profiles serial killers, defined as someone who has killed at least three times.

    "Often, forensic psychiatrists are not trained in how the FBI does its analysis," Scott said.

    Such training is important, Scott said, because forensic psychiatrists can play "an important collaborative role" with law enforcement when it comes to profiling. To support his view, Scott will cite a study that found psychiatrists were more accurate than police in profiling murder suspects. To an FBI agent, the crime scene is the key.

    "The FBI would say the crime scene is like a fingerprint," Scott said. Interpreted properly, "it is likely to identify the kind of offender who would do this."

    According to Scott, the bureau categorizes murder crime scenes as either organized or disorganized. An organized crime scene is one in which the killer exerted careful control of the environment and left little evidence behind. This suggests a well-educated and socially competent suspect. In a disorganized crime scene, things are left in disarray and evidence is plentiful. This suggests a murderer with a low level of education and social competence who may habitually use alcohol or drugs.

    The problem with that approach, Scott said, is that crime scenes often have both organized and disorganized components. Take Rader's first crime scene, when he killed Joseph and Julie Otero and their two children on Jan. 15, 1974. There was clear evidence of advance planning and the murderer's domination of the environment -- Rader both strangled and suffocated his victims, forcing them to pass out and then allowing them to revive somewhat "as a way to extend their death," Scott said.

    But, Scott said, there were disorganized elements as well. Rader -- or BTK for Bind, Torture, and Kill -- left behind the Venetian blind cords he used as a strangling device. He also did not get rid of the bodies. While Scott stated that he has not seen any FBI profile of the BTK killer, who was sentenced to 10 consecutive life sentences last summer, Scott said that "Rader had many of the characteristics of an organized killer." For example, Rader, a resident of a Wichita, Kan., suburb, was employed and lived near his crime scenes. As a result, Scott said the signs of disorganization that were present in his first crime scene and in subsequent ones were potential red herrings, at least in terms of developing a profile. Rader was not, for example, under the influence of alcohol during his killings, nor did he frequently travel and change jobs -- traits of an organized killer under the FBI scheme.

    When the FBI develops profiles of serial killers, Scott said the bureau is relying on interviews its investigators have conducted with 36 convicted sexual or serial murderers. Scott said a shortcoming with the database is that it does not include a single female serial killer. Consequently, its applicability to someone like Wuornos, portrayed in the 2003 movie "Monster" by Charlize Theron, "just isn't there," Scott said.

    The database's relevance to non-Caucasian serial killers is also lacking, Scott said, as 90 percent of the men interviewed were white. It also doesn't explain a "very rare subset -- children who serially kill," Scott said. Probably the most well-known in this category, Scott said, is Jesse Pomeroy, a Massachusetts boy who, in the 1870s, brutalized other boys when he was only 12 and who killed a 10-year-old girl when he was 14.

    Boston Herald

    Bureau's dirty star founded original trenchcoat mafia
    By Tom Mashberg
    Sunday, January 18, 2004

         They say H. Paul Rico was one of J. Edgar Hoover's favorite G-men - a law enforcement hellion who had it in for the Mafia and could turn an informant like a flapjack.

         But the real Harold Paul Rico was in evidence in 1968, the day after a group of four Italian-Americans from Boston were sent up for life for knocking off a small-potatoes Irish-American thief and gunsel, Edward ``Teddy'' Deegan.

         The prosecution of the four - Joseph Salvati, Peter Limone, Henry Tameleo and Louis Greco - was a trumped-up case allegedly set in motion by Rico and his key hand-picked turncoat hood, murderous Joseph ``the Animal'' Barboza.

         Of the four Italian fall guys sentenced, only Greco - a double Bronze Star recipient for his World War II heroics at Bataan in the Philippines - had a bronze-clad alibi: Multiple witnesses put him in Florida the night of Deegan's killing.

         Rico and his FBI confederate, agent Dennis Condon, showed up at the Central Auto Body Shop in Boston, where local Mafia kingpin Frances ``Cadillac Frank'' Salemme held court, to gloat about how easily they sent the four pigeons up the river.

         Rico, according to law enforcement documents reviewed by the Herald, began to chuckle to Salemme about Greco in particular - about how funny it was that Greco was on death row when he in fact had been tanning in Miami when the hit went down.

         Salemme, the documents show, ``blew his top'' at the two feckless G-men, Rico in particular, whom he saw as a ``rackets guy'' and a ``rogue agent'' who indulged in booze and horse racing and ``on one occasion wrecked his FBI vehicle while at the track'' - a wreck Salemme arranged to have fixed for no charge on the q.t.

         Salemme was legendary for never ratting on his cohorts - and was foolish enough to include on that list informants James J. ``Whitey'' Bulger and Stephen ``the Rifleman'' Flemmi, two of the criminals who spent years conspiring with Rico and others to let some thugs prevail over others in Boston.

         But even Salemme drew a line at Rico - a man he described as venal and arrogant, a man who sought revenge against gangsters when he heard them on wiretaps joking that Rico was a homosexual partner to J. Edgar Hoover himself.

         Rico may have written his own epitaph in October 2003, when he was asked to justify the wrongful jailing of Greco, et al. by a U.S. House Judiciary Committee looking into the Boston FBI's corrupt past. Greco died in prison and as a result his conviction remains in place.``What do you want, tears?'' Rico, 78, said with a smirk.

         Rico and convicted former FBI agent John J. Connolly were later named in a lawsuit accusing the FBI of withholding evidence that would have freed all four men.

         Rico grew up like a typical Boston suburbs kid. A degree in history from Boston College in 1950 led to a career start with the FBI.

         He was legendary among his fellow crewcuts for bringing mobsters in from the cold - even though it has been claimed his two top informants, Flemmi and Bulger, were given license to extort, peddle heroin and kill so long as they helped bust up the Italian Mafia and helped Rico look good.

         Rico still has fans. Yesterday, John F. Kehoe, an ex-Bay State Public Safety commissioner and an FBI special agent in Boston for 29 years, defended him as ``a very capable and tremendous agent who was very adept at developing informants.

         ``I don't think he ever did anything that went over the line,'' Kehoe said. ``He stayed within the bounds of the bureau and the regulations that we all lived by.''

         But the family of Roger Wheeler has a different view. They believe Rico led Bulger and Flemmi to Wheeler in Tulsa, Okla., in 1981 so Wheeler could be killed for trying to get the two goons out of his Miami-based World Jai Alai pari-mutuel wagering company.

         Yet attorney John Cavicchi of East Boston, who has spent decades trying to clear Greco, said even his client would have felt sympathy for the ailing Rico at the end of his days.

         ``I might be in the minority but I felt sorry for him when I saw how sick he looked,'' Cavicchi said. ``And I'm sure if Louis Greco were alive today, he'd have felt sorry for him and for his family, too.''

    New York FBI: In Bed With Mob & CIA

    Exclusive Report by Sander Hicks

    Published by The New York Megaphone, debut issue, June/July 2006


    On June 16th, 2006, citizen researcher Angela Clemente was found knocked out and strangled to within an inch of her life in Brooklyn. Her independent research had led to the March 30th indictment of Lindley DeVecchio, a Mob/FBI scandal that is the New York FBI’s biggest ever. DeVecchio, a retired FBI agent, was accused of four murders, rubbing out the opponents of Mafia don Greg Scarpa, Sr. To date, The New York Post has done a commendable job on the story, while The New York Times has all but ignored it.


    Perhaps because there’s more to this scandal than one man gone bad. This story has connections to the defining events of our times: the 9/11 attacks, and their often-ignored predecessor, the ’93 World Trade Center bombing. It turns out DeVecchio is a part of a network that goes all the way back to Iran/Contra.

    When a decorated FBI agent, Richard Taus, working under DeVecchio, started to expose this network, Taus ended up in jail. He’s been there since 1991.

    “It’s been a 16 year nightmare,” Taus’s son David told The Megaphone in the harsh noonday sun outside the New York State Appellate courthouse. The date was May 9, 2005. The family had spent $300,000 on lawyers, trying to get dad out of jail. They just had their first appeal in a long while. But the judges themselves had made hostile statements.

    Richard Taus was a top investigator in the New York FBI’s Counter-intelligence Division. In 1991, he was sentenced to a record-breaking 32 to 90 years for questionable charges of pedophilia. Supporters claim he was railroaded for doggedly investigating a CIA-linked operation involved in narcotics, Iran/Contra, and the Mafia. Angela Clemente visited Taus in prison, as part of her DeVecchio research.

    The retired, Mafia-linked, ex-CIA asset George Hebert admits to The Megaphone that there is more to the Richard Taus story than meets the eye: “[Taus] was playing around and wasn’t listening to the right people. They had their own agenda. Once Taus got locked up, I stayed away. You have to understand, these people play for keeps.”

    For 20 years, the Richard Taus story has remained underground, too weird for New York newspapers.

    Until now.

    DeVecchio: Worked for the Mob and the CIA

    Lin DeVecchio allegedly helped have 18-year old Patrick Porco shot, when Porco witnessed a murder by Scarpa’s stepson. When girlfriend-to-the-mob, Mary Bari, turned FBI informant, it was DeVecchio who helped have her slain in a bar. The list goes on. It’s the mob connection that has captivated the media’s attention, at least thus far.

    But there’s more to the story. According to The New York Post, DeVecchio was also the guy the CIA called in 1983 when they needed someone to go undercover to wiretap a rogue CIA asset making death threats in prison. The year 1983 is significant: at that time DeVecchio was Richard Taus’ supervisor at the FBI. DeVecchio interfered with Taus’ investigation of CIA/mob/narcotics and weapons trading on Long Island. But Taus kept digging, and in exchange, had his life ruined.

    Ten years later, Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes indicted DeVecchio, tipped off by Angela Clemente, and journalist/author Peter Lance.

    DeVecchio is cited 12 times in Richard Taus’ recent jailhouse memoir, FBI, CIA, the Mob and Treachery. A helicopter pilot in Vietnam, Taus was shot down nine times. Surviving the crashes implanted a sense of mission, and thanks to a special dispensation from President Johnson, Taus adopted a Vietnamese orphan, whom he named David.

    Taus was recruited into the FBI, and by 1979, had made the Foreign Counter-Intelligence division. In the early ’80s, Taus worked alongside future FBI Director Louis Freeh on one of the biggest busts of drug money laundering ever—the ironically named “Pizza Connection” case. The case broke open and temporarily shut down sections of the Sicilian heroin trade, which were laundering profits through pizzerias in New York City and the Midwest. The Mafia in this case had connections to the Italian government, and according to some, the CIA.


    Dossier on “The K-Team”:

    Clowns with Connections to protect them from the law

    According to an unpublished paper by U.K. Iran/Contra scholar John Simkin, “A significant degree of policy-forming leadership” during the Iran/Contra scandal was ‘privatized,’ passing to an assortment of fringe forces represented by such notables as Singlaub, Secord, and Clines, who...provided the basic framework within which Reagan, McFarlane, and Casey acted, with North and Poindexter featured as trustworthy “handmaidens.”

    But who were the “handmaidens” of North and Poindexter? That would be people like the “K-Team,” a Freeport, Long Island group of intelligence sub-contractors, wanna-be spies in trench coats and dark glasses, getting in over their heads in dangerous waters. The “K-Team” were true believers in Ronald Reagan’s vision of democracy versus an “evil empire” but their methods were unorthodox. They gathered intelligence on Central America and the Caribbean by hanging out in Brooklyn bars. They were handed major responsibilities for Reagan’s 1983 invasion of Grenada. In fact, they found someone to install as the new president, post-invasion, but their candidate chickened out.


    Dan Priscu

    A veteran member of the the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the precursor to the CIA, Priscu was president of Castle Securities, a stock brokerage in a bad neighborhood. Taus suspected it of being a CIA front. Taus found Priscu through his work on the Pizza Connection case, specifically, Taus’ stakeout of a Mafia-linked cheese company that was dealing narcotics.



    Kevin Kattke

    Kattke was a textbook “Soldier of Fortune” ripped from the pages of the magazine. When his handlers at CIA wanted his K-Team to kill some Grenadian drug dealers in the Bronx and steal their money, Kattke agreed it was a great way for the Team to raise some funds. Richard Taus knew Kattke from their Army Reserve unit, where Kattke was in U.S. Army Intelligence. Kattke’s day job “cover” was a maintenance man at Macy’s. Today, nobody knows where Kattke is or if he’s still alive.


    George Hebert

    Hebert went to college with Richard Taus at Pennsylvania Military College (today, Widener University). Hebert describes himself as “very close to Reagan” after the Grenada invasion. In 1985, Hebert pressured Taus to stop investigating them. Hebert today tells The Megaphone: “Exactly what [Taus’s] game was only God knows. I think he was convicted for being a child molester, but I’m not even 100 percent sure of that. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about this whole game, that the truth most times never reaches the surface.” Hebert describes a time in which he was “hung out to dry” by CIA, “set up on gun charges,” around the time of Clinton’s invasion of Haiti, in 1994. That was the end of his dalliance in “black ops.”


    Oliver North

    Taus’s investigation climaxed the fourth time he flew to Fort Lauderdale in April, 1985. Taus there identified Oliver North standing alongside Contra leader Adolf Calero, accepting delivery of some mysterious air cargo. A Lockheed plane had just touched down from Honduras, and was sitting pretty under armed U.S. military guard. Taus flashed a badge, poked around on the tarmac, and asked questions. Back in New York, he was reamed out for being there. Suddenly, the U.S. Attorney’s office denied his wiretap requests on the K-Team.

    Earlier, the FBI had helped Taus develop a “cover” as a soccer coach and founder of the Freeport Sports League, in order to get close to the K-Team. As a soccer coach, Taus was looked up to. Kids from broken homes saw him as a surrogate father. But Taus’s days as a soccer coach, a dad, and a free man were numbered.


    The Trial

    When Taus arrived at FBI headquarters, on the Nov. 4, 1988, he was detained and questioned until 2:30 a.m. His FBI superiors, including Special Agent Carson Dunbar, and Lin DeVecchio, put him under interrogation. The FBI later claimed that a feverish Taus confessed to a sexual relationship with four boys in his Freeport Sports League. Taus’ attorney, Anthony Lombardino, would later attempt (unsuccessfully) to strike that confession from evidence. Taus was not advised of his legal rights, and did not have counsel present. Taus claims the confession is a fabrication.

    Simultaneous with the interrogation, a separate FBI team illegally searched Taus’ home in Freeport. The FBI claims it found nude photos of a young, male family friend. Taus claims the photos were planted. The FBI interviewed the boy’s mom, Lucy Moore, who stated she didn’t believe anything improper was going on. Prosecutor Kenneth Littman withheld her interview from the defense.

    The prosecution accused Taus of 27 counts of first, second, and third-degree sodomy, sexual abuse, and promoting the sexual performance of a child. Originally, these counts came from 10 different youngsters, but the contradictory testimony of five of the boys had to be thrown out. Two of the kids never appeared at trial, but testified through recorded statements. In similar child abuse cases afterwards, The Wall Street Journal reported that any kind of witness testimony from child victims was not reliable. No psychologists or pediatricians corroborated the alleged abuse. No medical evidence was submitted. No parents testified.

    Taus’ lawyers could not view their client’s FBI “time and attendance” records, which may have further contradicted the allegations. The FBI and the prosecution communicated throughout the trial, but the defense was prevented from discovering what was said. The transcripts show a belligerent Judge Baker, occasionally yelling things at the defense counsel, “You owe me money!” Baker was forced to retire shortly after the trial. The Taus family believes Judge Baker was suffering from alcoholism.

    Taus always claimed he was innocent. But his bargain-basement attorneys were unwilling to argue that the accusations were prompted by Taus’ investigation into global politics. Instead, the defense decided to argue that Taus was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from Vietnam. Taus was sentenced to maximum security prison, with the longest sentence ever for sexual abuse in Nassau County: 32 to 90 years.


    The Appeal

    Taus filed a federal habeas corpus brief in August 2002, requesting a declaration of mistrial for withheld evidence, juror misconduct, and judicial bias. According to sources on the jury, juror Nancy Dillon told the jury she should be disqualified, since DA Dennis Dillon was a close, blood relation. Carol Lewis also claimed the jury “read newspaper accounts of the trial daily,” which may have biased jurors. Local newspapers at the time of Taus’ trial were in a frenzy of accusation, since child sexual abuse was a hot, nationwide scandal in the early ’90s.

    At Taus’ 2005 appeal, Judge John M. Walker (a cousin of President George Walker Bush) stated matter-of-factly that juror misconduct “would not have changed the outcome in this case” in light of the “overwhelming evidence” of Taus’ guilt. Taus attorney Marjorie Smith was badly prepared and rude to reporters. After a swift hearing, Taus’s appeal was denied.


    The Hope

    Taus’ story is a lesson in how one good book can alter the course of history. Peter Lance is a journalist and author of a major study on the NY FBI: Cover Up: What the Government is Still Hiding About the War on Terror (Regan Books, 2003). Lance won five Emmy awards while at ABC News. His new revelations lend an eerie credibility to what Taus charges: deep corruption in the NY FBI. In Lance’s book, either arrogance or deliberate malfeasance from the NY FBI was at fault in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. And that 1993 bombing led directly to 9/11.

    The radical Islamists of the Jersey City Mosque, run by “Blind Sheikh” Omar Abdul-Rahman, pulled off the 1993 WTC bombing. But the Jersey City mosque was well penetrated by informants and double agents, namely Emad Salem and Ali Mohammed. According to audio tapes, FBI informant Salem tried to stop the bombing in 1993 before if happened. Another of Richard Taus’ former bosses, Carson Dunbar, suppressed agents who were trying to use Emad Salem’s warnings.

    Dunbar was transferred out of FBI and made a superintendent in the New Jersey State Police, in 1999. But back in 1988, Dunbar was the FBI agent who took Taus’s“confession” and testified against him at the pre-trial hearing.

    In 1998, the CIA admitted it was “partly culpable” for the 1993 WTC bombing. This admission surfaced in a UK newspaper but has never before appeared in a U.S. paper.

    [Our source: The Independent, 12/1/1998 “Terror Blowback Burns CIA,” by Andrew Marshall]. The spiritual leader of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, “Blind Sheikh” Abdul-Rahman, was given a tourist visa to enter the U.S. in 1990, despite being on the U.S.’s terrorist watch list, for three years prior.

    Taus is not the first to have allegations land on him in the middle of a sensitive investigation into national intelligence activities. Captain Brad Ayers and UN Arms Inspector/DIA agent Scott Ritter have also experienced similar character assassination for turning whistle-blower.

    Today, Richard Taus works inside the prison for $7.25 a week, doing inmate counseling. At Lindley DeVecchio’s arraignment, on March 30, 2006, a desperate gaggle of retired and current FBI agents packed a Brooklyn courtroom. About 47 agents exhibited a rambunctious display of solidarity with the accused. Five FBI agents put up DeVecchio’s bail.

    Perhaps they had good reason. In FBI, CIA, the Mob and Treachery, Taus’s co-author Rodney Stich writes that he “received letters from Gregory Scarpa, Jr., in early 2005, where he gave me details about how FBI agents, including DeVecchio, gave his father the names of government informants, and that his father would then murder the people.” Notice the plural in Scarpa’s use of the term “FBI agents.” According to inside sources, like Taus, Stich, and Scarpa, Jr., the DeVecchio case is just the tip of the iceberg: FBI corruption in the New York office is rampant. A growing number of researchers and citizens groups are recommending an outside body, vested with subpoena power (perhaps by the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office), be formed to look at NY FBI’s role in 9/11, the 1993 WTC bombing, and the Richard Taus case. Many call for a new trial for Taus.

    During the arraignment, the FBI was vocal in its derision of the prosecution. As DeVecchio left the courtroom, a phalanx of stone-faced FBI agents marched alongside him. DeVecchio would not answer questions from reporters, including questions from The Megaphone about Richard Taus, or the CIA. The reporter on hand from The New York Times found those questions laughable. But which paper has handed in deep coverage of this scandal?

    FBI personnel shoved aside author Peter Lance, and punched photographer Robert Stolarik. The FBI’s Chris Mattiace later bragged on lindevecchio.com, “a few reporters received a few body checks out on the sidewalk.” The statement was later removed.

    It was not the FBI’s finest hour. NYC’s top cops looked like a criminal organization out of control.

    But now that DeVecchio is in custody, can a new trial for Taus be far off?
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    former FBI  agent heads up ENRON  security team

    Pre-9/11 Insider Trading and Enron

    The capper to Skilling’s Enron schemes comes in a brilliant article by Tom Flocco, with additional research by Kyle Hence: “Investment Espionage And The White House—Bush Administration Links To Pre-9/11 Insider Trading.”

    The first thing of note was that “Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) spokesman Tom Crispell denied that the CIA was monitoring ‘real-time,’ pre-September 11 stock trading activity within U.S. borders using such software as the Prosecutor's Management Information System (PROMIS) or the Echelon satellite monitoring system. However, when asked whether the CIA had been scrutinizing world financial markets for national security purposes, Crispell replied, ‘I have no way of knowing what operations are [being affected by our assets] outside the country’ . . ."

    But more to the Enron point, “A January 23, 2002, Houston Chronicle report revealed that Enron Corporation's top security team, including four former CIA officers and an ex-FBI agent, left the company to form a private firm, Secure Solutions International (SSI), while continuing with Enron via a consulting contract. John W. Presley, the FBI agent now heading SSI could not be reached for comment. But the team probed a ‘variety of allegations of fraud and other kinds of rule-breaking by Enron workers,’ according to the Chronicle.”

    In fact, “Team member and former CIA agent David M. Cromley's business biography at Enron listed him as Enron's director of business analysis,’ the Chronicle reported, adding that Cromley gave Enron executives ‘detailed and unique information’ allowing them to make ‘investments, sales of assets, joint ventures and [financial] products.’

    “But no public information has been forthcoming as to whether such ‘detailed and unique information’ or sensitive CIA software was used in conjunction with Enron's controversial off-shore investment products, or whether their missing assets may have been employed in what former German Minister of Technology, Andreas von Bulow, estimated at $15 billion in insider trading profits . . ." Additionally, we find . . .

    “An examination of SSI's website reveals that its corporate members have ‘managed cutting-edge counterterrorism and counterproliferation operations for the CIA, implemented advanced technical information and security programs for the CIA, and conducted a wide range of investigations for the FBI,’ while also ‘overseeing all security arrangements for several large gas pipeline companies.’” Looks like one big happy family. But . . .

    “It is yet to be determined if Congress will publicly question CIA Director George Tenent as to whether CIA and FBI employees were ‘loaned’ to Enron's corporate espionage program, involved in personal pre-9/11 insider trading, or merely relaying sensitive insider political information to others involved in prior knowledge of the attacks. . . .

    “The fraud-racked Enron Corporation has had at least 20 CIA agents on the payroll in the last eight years. But while the Houston Chronicle reported the operatives as ‘former’ CIA, a February 26, 2002, National Enquirer story quoted a top Washington insider familiar with several secret investigations into Enron, as reporting that they were given ‘leaves of absence without pay and put on the Enron payroll.’” So, either Enron was paying the CIA to spy on them, or the agency was helping Enron make a buck.

    “The source added that Enron's CIA members used ‘info gleaned from a satellite project called 'Echelon,' which intercepted emails, phone calls and faxes with detailed business information,’ adding that ‘pure and simple, [taxpayer-funded] U.S. intelligence agents were involved in corporate espionage.’ Another Enquirer source with ties to the CIA revealed that ‘the cozy deal between Enron and the CIA allowed the 'on-loan' undercover operatives to return to the Agency's payroll before Enron's collapse.’" How prescient of them.

    Bottom line, it would seem the Skilling-led Enron had their hands in 9/11 profiteering as well. If you were looking for a ray of redemption in Skilling’s epitaph, fuhgeddaboudit. Maybe Ken Lay might have something good to say about him. But excuse me, Lay’s dead. Especially now that his estate’s been released to the family.

    Jerry Mazza is a freelance writer living in New York City. Reach him at gvmaz@verizon.net.

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    read this first then read my next post
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    You know how you wet your finger by sticking it in your mouth then holding it in the air to see which way the wind is blowing....? It seems the taxpayer funded Death Squad called the FBI  has just decided to do that after taking more hits than Leon Spinks over the last couple years.   They tested the poilitical wind last week and decided that they
    didn.t have anything left to loose after their success in creating 911, did I leave anything out? oh, the Oklahoma City bombing, did I get it all ,hmmm, oh yea the first world trade center bombing, the Kennedy- King assassinations,WACO, Ruby Ridge, The Franklin Coverup, wait a minute I am running out of room. In any analysis of the newstory THE FBI IS GOING AFTER CONGRESS one has to look at when the last time they did this. First you need to understand the FBI-CONGRESS  marriage is a co-enabling /symbiotic relationship. The FBI leaves the Congress alone and Congress leaves the FBI alone. In 1980 taxpayer funded FBI agents created ABSCAM , a sting operation to target members of Congress.
    Several members of Congress were entrapped and got busted. Most voters and taxpayers don't understand what prompted FBI  agents to go after Congress.
    It was the Church Committee  hearings held by Senator Frank Church during the laste 70's that made taxpayer funded FBI  agents wet their pants.
    The Church Committee hearings uncovered enough Class A felonies committed by FBI  agents
    to sentence the Bureau and every agent in it to 3 consecutive 40 year sentences to run on and after they completed the first sentence. Worse yet Congress was creating legislation for the first time in the history that would hold taxpayer funded FBI  agents accountable. Something had to be done and done quick. Thats when  ABSCAM
    was created and to the credit of the FBI , they struck Congress before Congress could strike them.

    two easy reads, let god sort it out

    Posted on Sun, Nov. 05, 2006

    FBI willing to go undercover in Congress if necessary

    By Greg Gordon

    McClatchy Newspapers


    WASHINGTON - The new chief of the FBI's Criminal Division, which is swamped with public corruption cases, says the bureau is ramping up its ability to catch crooked politicians and might run an undercover sting on Congress.

    Assistant FBI Director James Burrus called the bureau's public corruption program "a sleeping giant that we've awoken," and predicted the nation will see continued emphasis in that area "for many, many, many years to come."

    So much evidence of wrongdoing is surfacing in the nation's capital that Burrus recently committed to adding a fourth 15- to 20-member public corruption squad to the FBI's Washington field office.

    In the past year, former Republican Reps. Duke Cunningham and Bob Ney have pleaded guilty to corruption charges. FBI agents are investigating about a dozen other members of Congress, including as many as three senators. The Justice Department also is expected to begin seeking indictments soon after a massive FBI investigation of the Alaska Legislature.

    If conditions warrant, Burrus said, he wouldn't balk at urging an undercover sting like the famed Abscam operation in the late 1970s in which a U.S. senator and six House members agreed on camera to take bribes from FBI agents posing as Arab sheikhs.

    "We look for those opportunities a lot," Burrus said, using words rarely heard at the bureau over the last quarter century. "I would do it on Capitol Hill. I would do it in any state legislature. ... If we could do an undercover operation, and it would get me better evidence, I'd do it in a second."

    Philip Heymann, who oversaw the Abscam investigation as chief of the Justice Department's Criminal Division during the Carter administration, expressed surprise to learn of the FBI's willingness to attempt another congressional sting after the outcry from Capitol Hill over Abscam.

    "It shows courage at the FBI," said Heymann, now a criminal law professor at Harvard University. He said he concluded, after watching a recent public television documentary and listening to experts, that "there is more corruption (on Capitol Hill) than I ever thought imaginable" and that a single FBI sting "might result in very large numbers of prosecutions."

    But even without an undercover operation, Heymann and other observers say they have been pleased with the GOP-controlled Justice Department's willingness to pursue old-fashioned investigations, even if they hurt congressional Republicans in Tuesday's elections.

    Nationally over the last year, 600 agents worked 2,200 public corruption cases, resulting in 650 arrests, 1,000 indictments and 800 convictions, Burrus said.

    FBI Director Robert Mueller, who listed public corruption as his top criminal investigative priority when he shifted the FBI's focus to terrorism in 2002, said last month that the surge in convictions "sends the message that public corruption will not be tolerated." Despite the realignment, the number of agents working on public corruption has remained constant.

    Burrus argued that the FBI is "uniquely qualified" to handle such cases, pointing to the bureau's political independence, exemplified by Mueller's 10-year term. Burrus said that Alice Fisher, the politically appointed chief of the Justice Department's Criminal Division with whom he confers weekly, also has "an aggressive attitude" about pursuing public officials.

    "Operation Rainmaker," the FBI's broad investigation of a Washington lobbying ring, has already led to a handful of convictions, including Ney's guilty plea last month. The inquiry was one reason for the resignation last year of House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Texas, who also faces state campaign finance charges. Other investigations seem to be sprouting everywhere.

    But Reid Weingarten, a former Abscam prosecutor who now is a high-profile Washington criminal defense lawyer, said he would bet that the flurry of congressional cases has resulted from evidence "falling in their (investigators') laps," rather than a programmed FBI hunt for corruption.

    The FBI does appear to be stepping up its use of electronic surveillance and has conducted stings of state politicians. Bureau agents secretly taped Rep. William Jefferson, D-La., before finding $90,000 in his freezer during a raid last May. Cell phones were wiretapped for four months in an investigation of Rep. Curt Weldon, R-Pa., government sources say.

    In "Operation Tennessee Waltz," 10 Tennessee state officials, including five current and former legislators, have been prosecuted in a scheme in which hidden cameras whirred as FBI undercover agents offered payoffs in return for help for a dummy company. Burrus said some targeted Tennessee legislators were moving so quickly that "we were actually having to discuss how we were going to slow it down" so that bills aiding the phony firm didn't become law.

    A separate undercover inquiry led to the indictment of three members of San Diego's city council.

    In Alaska, the FBI has more than doubled its manpower in a sweeping investigation of allegations that an oil industry services company bribed state legislators, people familiar with the inquiry said. On Aug. 31 and Sept. 1, the FBI conducted two dozen raids and searched the office of state Sen. Ben Stevens, son of U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska.

    Burrus declined to discuss any investigation, but said the FBI will focus on more state capitals over the next year, "because we have seen a trend in cases that leads us to believe there's more out there."

    When he arrived as deputy chief of the criminal division in 2004, he said, field offices frequently told him they had "no idea" how to pursue public corruption leads. Since then, he said, agents in about 30 of the bureau's 56 field offices have been trained. FBI agents in Washington have studied congressional activities that might invite bribes, such as hard-to-trace "earmarks" in which members appropriate money for pet projects, often keeping their involvement off the public record.

    "Public corruption cases have to be fished out," he said, noting that crooked politicians tend to do secret deals with one other person and often try to disguise their actions as "for the public's good."

    Controversial new legal theories are also helping prosecutors bring cases in which they can't prove outright briberies. A vaguely written, 28-word 1988 law, for example, makes it a fraud for a politician to deprive taxpayers of his "honest services." It was among the charges lodged against Cunningham, Ney, former lobbyist Jack Abramoff and the San Diego councilmen.

    Burrus said the FBI has to prove "that this person engaged in the activities specifically to receive this stream of benefits and knew that stream of benefits would stop if he did not support these particular projects."

    last read

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    Daniel Hopsicker is one of my favorite investigative reporters,along with Al Giordano and Wayne Madsen. Check him out

    Titan Corp Contractor Sues
     The MadCowMorningNews

    NOV 7 2006--Venice FL.
    by Daniel Hopsicker


    A Lebanese man whose convenience store in Venice Florida was used by Mohamed Atta and his cadre of terrorist hijackers to receive overseas wire transfers, and from whose apartment Atta and Marwan took taxis to Orlando Airport to pick up visiting Saudis has filed a defamation lawsuit against the MadCowMorningNews alleging unspecified “false statements.”

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