The FBI and DEA's impersonation tactics have been facing a lot of criticism lately. First, there was the case of the cocaine defendant in New York who has filed a lawsuit to stop the DEA from impersonating her on Facebook. The DEA used photos and personal information from her seized cell phone to set up a fake Facebook account in order to trick her friends and associates into revealing incriminating information.
Then there was the disclosure a few days ago that in 2007, the FBI created a fake Associated Press article, put a spyware tool in it and sent it to the My Space account of a Seattle teen suspected of making bomb threats. [More...]
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Our last open thread is full. Here's a new one, all topics welcome.
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Robel Phillipos has been found guilty of making five of the nine false statements alleged in the Indictment. The jury found he lied about both false statements charged in Count 1 and three of the nine statements charged in Count 2. He will remain on bond and house arrest through sentencing.
Shorter version: He did not lie about what he saw or heard in the dorm room. He lied about not being in the dorm room at all, and learning afterwards that his friends had taken the backpack from the dorm room. He did not lie when he denied discussing get rid of the backpack with his friends. The jury rejected the FBI's "written confession" by Robel. [More...]
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ISIS hostage John Cantlie was let of out of ISIS jail to take a road trip to Kobane to make a new video. He also got to shed his orange jumpsuit and wear a nice black shirt.
You can view the video at Daily Motion here. Cantlie is quite animated as he shows off Kobane in the background and explains why the U.S. and its coalition won't succeed in controlling Kobane.
His hair is longer, and while his face appears haggard, his mood is quite upbeat and his delivery is very enthusiastic. He's either gotten quite adept at using a teleprompter, or he's a naturally gifted speaker who doesn't need one. If we didn't know he was a hostage, he could easily be taken for a network news reporter.
What would account for his enthusiasm? Perhaps ISIS rewarded him for his video work with a get out jail free card, rather than just a day pass. I hope so.
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I'll be in court today, which means a new open thread for you. Please be civil.
If you are interested in the Marysville WA school shooting, and learning the "cast of characters, I highly recommend you read this 3,000 word post, with photos, that I posted yesterday. Some of the media outlets have tried, but they tend to misidentify at least one of the principals involved, which I think is bad journalism. So i spent three days combing the FB, Twitter, and Instagram accounts of the kids and their siblings and parents, to compile a chronology and a "who's Who" list with photos and links to their twitter accounts, as well as a rundown of the media theories making the rounds as to Jaylen's possible motive, so you can read the source documents for yourselves. You needn't read it all in one sitting, but I spent a lot of time on it and think it is a handy guide for those wanting to learn more about the shootings, the relationship between individuals in the group, and the community reaction to the shootings and to Jaylen Fryberg.
Again, this is an open thread, all topics welcome.
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Update: After this was posted, the media announced that Gia Soriano passed away at 9:30 pm Sunday evening. R.I.P. Gia.
The school shooting in Marysville, Washington is a very sad and somewhat confusing story. Jaylen Fryberg’s motive remains mysterious. (Note: This is a very long post.)
The few media outlets which have attempted to decipher the relationships between Jaylen and his cousins and friends, provide conflicting information. What we know is that two teenagers are dead: Jaylen and Zoe. Four more, Gia, Shaylee and Jaylen’s two cousins, Andrew and Nate, remain in the hospital. Gia, Shaylee and Andrew are in critical condition. Nate is in serious condition, but conscious and communicating. He was shot in the jaw and tweeted a few hours ago that this is the worst pain he has felt in his life. (Added: He has also tweeted he forgives Jaylen.) [More...]
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The New York Times has a new article on the torture that preceded the beheadings of the journalists ISIS held captive. I'm going to read it as soon as Homeland is over. Here's a place to discuss it and all ISIS related news.
“Some of us who tried to escape were waterboarded by our captors, as Muslim prisoners are waterboarded by their American captors.”
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The RCMP has issued an update on the investigation into the Parliament Shooting and Michael Zehaf-Bibeau. According to the Toronto Star, saying Zehaf-Bibeau had recorded himself on video before the attack "that amounts to “persuasive evidence” that his attack had been “driven by ideological and political motives.” The RCMP statement is here.
The video is not being released, but the statement contains no such evidence. It says he obtained the knife he was carrying from his aunt's property where he had buried it years earlier. The gun is an old an uncommon gun and they are unsure of its origin. They believe he financed the attack from his own savings, when he worked for oil fields in Alberta. [More...]
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What's on your minds today? Here's an open thread, all topics welcome.
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The jury is in its fourth day of deliberations in the trial of Robel Phillipos, the friend of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev charged with two counts of making a false statement to federal officials in a terror investigation. Count One pertains to his statements to authorities on April 20, 2013, and Count 2 relates to statements made on April 25, 2013.
One of the reasons it may be taking so long: The jury must be unanimous as to any particular false statement he made. While there are only two counts, there are two allegedly false statements in the first count and seven in the second count. The jury has to discuss and arrive at a consensus on each. [More....]
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Zale Thompson of Queens, New York attacked four recent police academy graduates with a hatchet on the street in Queens yesterday as they were posing for a picture. The incident was caught on tape. One officer was struck in the head and is in critical condition. Another officer was struck in the arm and was treated and released from the hospital. The other two officers shot at Thompson, who died at the scene.
Authorities are pouring over his social media contacts to determine the motive for the attack and whether he has links to terrorists like ISIS. As far as I can tell, he's a militant whose cause is the oppression of African Americans in America, not religious oppression. He's interested in Africa and America, not the Middle East. I see nothing to indicate he cares about Sharia law. [More...
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A doctor in New York who recently returned from Africa has been confirmed to have Ebola. It was the main story on CNN (Sirius in the car) all afternoon, segment after segment.
He went bowling (I think they said last night) and he took an Uber taxi to the bowling alley. His girlfriend is in quarantine.
Every politician and doctor interviewed said there's no threat to anyone except those he came in direct contact with, which is very few people. Since he's a doctor, he knew what to look for and acted appropriately. So why is this such important news?
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Here's a new open thread, all topics welcome.
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Update: Susan Bibeau and Bulgasem Zehaf have made a statement expressing their devastation at their son's actions and their sorrow for the victim, his family and people of Canada. His mother says she grieves for the people, not her son. She spoke with him last week, for the first time in five years.
Susan Bibeau said she was devastated for the victims of the attack. "If I'm crying it's for the people," she said, struggling to hold back tears. "Not for my son."She said he seemed lost and "and did not fit in."
...."I am mad at my son, I don't understand and part of me wants to hate him at this time."
"I his mother spoke with him last week over lunch, I had not seen him for over five years before that...."So I have very little insight to offer."
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I haven't been following the Michael Brown case lately, but I am interested in the issue of law enforcement leaks that favor Officer Wilson at a time when the grand jury is considering whether to charge him.
The spokesman for the St. Louis prosecutor ’s office, Ed Magee, blows off the leaks with:
“There’s really nothing to investigate,” Magee said Wednesday. “We don’t have control over anybody leaking anything. All we can control is people in our office and the grand jury, and it’s not coming from us or the grand jury.”
He blames federal officials because his office has been sharing information with the Department of Justice and the articles with the leaked information refer to the sources as "officials briefed on the investigation." [More...]
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