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September 24, 2022 12:26 pm

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Labour demands answers from PM about aide Mark Fullbrook

“Indeed, relevant existing CT employees and former employee Mark Fullbrook, are witnesses in this matter and they and CT Group have fully, completely and voluntarily engaged with the US authorities in this matter, as they always do in any circumstance in which CT Group’s assistance is sought by authorities.”

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Navy bribery case fugitive ‘Fat Leonard’ tried to get to Russia, officials say

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In a photo released Sept. 21, 2022, Interpol Venezuela said it captured Malaysian fugitive Francis Leonard Glenn, known as Fat Leonard.

Since escaping two weeks ago, officials say the fugitive Malaysian defense contractor nicknamed “Fat Leonard” — who orchestrated one of the U.S. Navy’s largest bribery scandals — zipped between countries to find a place where he could become virtually untouchable for American authorities.

It almost worked.

After cutting off an ankle monitor and slipping away from house arrest in San Diego on Sept. 4, U.S. and Venezuelan officials say Leonard Glenn Francis went across the border into Mexico, then traveled to Cuba and Venezuela, where he was arrested Tuesday at Simón Bolívar International Airport outside Caracas.

Francis was planning to travel to Russia, according to Interpol Venezuela Director General Carlos Garate Rondon, who disclosed the arrest in a statement posted Wednesday on Instagram. He said Francis would be handed over to the country’s judicial authorities to begin extradition proceedings.

Greg Rinckey, a former Army lawyer who is now in private practice, said he believes Francis was “trying to play the angle of using some countries to get outside the jurisdiction of the U.S. Marshals Service.”

“It looks like they caught him just in time,” Rinckey said. “If he made it to Russia, I don’t believe the Russians would have turned him over to us.”

And while Venezuela and the United States have an extradition agreement, the U.S. government could face an uphill challenge returning the fugitive to American soil. The Biden administration doesn’t officially recognize President Nicolas Maduro’s socialist government, has no embassy in Venezuela and has imposed crushing sanctions on the country that have further embittered relations. Law enforcement cooperation between the two countries is rare.

There was no immediate word on when Francis might be extradited to the U.S.

Defense contractor known as 'Fat Leonard' cuts ankle bracelet, escapes house arrest for bribery

The arrest came on the eve of his scheduled sentencing in a federal court in California for a bribery scheme that lasted years.

Francis pleaded guilty in 2015 and had been allowed to remain in home confinement to receive medical care while he cooperated with the prosecution. With his help, prosecutors secured convictions of 33 of 34 defendants, including more than two dozen Navy officers.

The towering man with a wide girth and gregarious personality wielded incredible influence as a main point of contact for U.S. Navy ships at ports across Asia. His family’s ship servicing business, Singapore-based Glenn Defense Marine Asia Ltd. or GDMA, supplied food, water and fuel to vessels for decades. He plied officers with Kobe beef, expensive cigars, concert tickets and wild sex parties at luxury hotels from Thailand to the Philippines. In exchange, commanders passed him classified information and steered their ships, mostly from the Navy’s 7th Fleet, to ports he controlled so he could cover up as much as $35 million in fake charges.

Among those he befriended was a Russian diplomat, Francis told podcaster Tom Wright, who created a nine-part series on the case. In an episode posted last October, Francis said he lived only a “stone’s throw” from the Russian Embassy in Singapore, and the Russian diplomat would stop by his home uninvited to drop off vodka and other gifts.

It’s unknown if Francis turned to his Russian friends for help while on the lam.

A law enforcement official familiar with the case told The Associated Press that authorities tracked down Francis using a cellphone number they were provided. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the case publicly, said Francis was located Tuesday in a Caracas neighborhood.

Venezuelan authorities deployed a team of officers at the airport after a cab driver tipped them off that Francis was leaving a hotel and headed there.

The official said Francis intended to board a plane to the Venezuelan Caribbean Island of Margarita, which Venezuela wants to turn into a popular destination for Russian tourists because of its pristine beaches accessible by ferry or flights from the mainland. The government said last month it plans to offer five flights a week between Margarita and Moscow starting Oct. 1. Signs in Russian can already be seen at the island.

The official said Francis later told authorities his final destination was Russia.

Andean's Daniel Osorio describes complicated trading relationship between U.S. and Venezuela

It’s unclear if Francis had contacts in Russia offering to help, and if he did, what they wanted in return. Francis bragged about still holding compromising photos and videos of Navy officials.

“What really worried the United States the most was these officers being corrupted by me, that they would be corruptible by the foreign powers,” Francis said in one of the podcast’s episodes.

His sentencing hearing was still held Thursday to deal with the changing situation. When he returns, Francis will need new attorneys.

His defense attorney, Devin Burstein, told the judge he plans to file a motion severing their ties due to an “irreparable breakdown in the attorney-client relationship.” Burstein did not mention his client’s arrest in Venezuela.

And when Francis does return, prosecutors indicated he will face an even longer sentence, asking the court to note his failure to appear at his sentencing hearing as ordered. That could add five years to his potential sentence of 25 years, if he is ultimately charged for not showing up.

U.S. District Court Judge Janis Sammartino set a Dec. 14 status hearing for Francis with the caveat that all parties could meet sooner depending on how events unfold.

“This turn of events raises several issues, and obviously will have an impact on other cases,” she said.

Sentencing hearings are scheduled in October for four Navy officers who went to trial and were convicted in the case.

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Dual legal blows hammer Trump

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(CNN)A day of double legal blows undermined ex-President Donald Trump’s battle to avoid criminal action for hoarding classified documents and left him exposed to potential civil penalties targeting the business wealth on which his political mystique is built.

Trump’s lifelong capacity to thwart accountability is now facing its sternest test as investigations and evidence mount against him. Trump has not been charged with any crimes, but the legal and court processes he is a master at delaying and twisting in procedural knots are now making serious headway.

Two huge developments on Wednesday crashed into Trump’s legal teams, which were already fighting off serious investigations on multiple fronts.

  • New York Attorney General Letitia James unveiled an astonishing 200-page civil lawsuit that alleged that the Trump family empire was essentially built on years of grift and self-enrichment by deceiving lenders, insurers and tax authorities and dodging the laws that apply to every American. James is seeking the redress of $250 million in allegedly ill-gotten funds and sanctions that would severely crimp the Trump Organization’s capacity to do business and would effectively drive the former President and his family out of the city that made his name. Still, the case is a civil one and while James referred evidence to the Internal Revenue Service and the Justice Department, she could not make a criminal charge. Trump responded with fierce denials of wrongdoing and claims he was the victim of a “witch hunt.”
  • In a crucial ruling in the case of highly sensitive material that Trump took to his Mar-a-Lago resort, an appeals court handed the Justice Department a victory by allowing it to look at documents marked as classified that were seized in a search by FBI agents last month. Three judges, including two appointed by Trump, ruled that the public has a strong interest in ensuring his retention of the material did not cause “exceptionally grave damage to the national security.” Given Trump’s record of seeking to delay investigations against him as long as possible, he could try another legal maneuver but his options are running out, with one of his only remaining possibilities being an emergency request to the US Supreme Court.

Both developments appear to have widened Trump’s potential legal exposure, which now appears stark in at least three separate dramas that include a probe in Georgia into his alleged attempt to steal the 2020 election in the critical swing state. The ex-President has denied wrongdoing on all accounts.

But the deepening crisis for Trump also came on a day when the House select committee investigating the January 6, 2021, insurrection formally announced its first fall hearing for next week. The panel has yet to decide whether to make a recommendation for criminal action against the former President. The Justice Department already has its own separate grand jury probe into events surrounding his false election fraud claims and those leading up to the attack on the US Capital by his mob of supporters.

The darkening legal storm for Trump also bolsters the extraordinary possibility of a former President facing potential criminal action and serious civil penalties that could significantly threaten his fortune. Much of Trump’s initial political appeal is based on the idea that he is a wildly successful tycoon who built a hugely profitable business and amassed personal wealth. If it is proven that it is all a scam and that his career is a house of cards built on illegal acts, his narrative will absorb a serious hit — although it’s unlikely that would ever be enough to shake his appeal to his core voters.

The latest legal rebukes of Trump come as he considers a likely 2024 presidential campaign, which he has already signaled would be constructed on his claim that he is being politically persecuted by Democrats, and has already implicitly warned of violence if he is formally indicted.

‘The art of the steal?’

The civil suit filed by New York state against Trump represents the broadest catalogue yet of the former President’s business practices and also targets three of his adult children — Don Jr., Ivanka and Eric, who are deeply involved in the Trump Organization.

It alleges a staggering pattern of overvaluing of properties and assets across Trump’s real estate portfolio, his hotel and golf club empires. The purported aim of the multiple schemes was to deceive lenders, insurance brokers and tax authorities to give him better loan conditions and to lower his tax liability. James alleged that each certification was personally signed off by Trump and that he played a direct role in falsifying valuations. In one case in her claim, James said that Trump inflated the size of his Trump Tower apartment from less than 11,000 square feet to more than 30,000 square feet to arrive at a value of $327 million. In another case, she claimed that Trump repeatedly inflated the value of an office building the organization owns at 40 Wall Street.

“It is an enormous complaint, it is a robust complaint, it is filled with facts and it is very serious. And so Donald Trump and others named in the complaint are going to have their day in court to respond to this and try and seek to challenge it,” Geoffrey Berman, a former US attorney for the Southern District of New York, told CNN’s Erin Burnett.

“It is formidable.”

James said that any regular citizen who had allegedly committed such acts would have the book thrown at them. She argued that not pursuing the case would mean there would be two justice systems, one for working people and one for the rich and the powerful.

“There cannot be different rules for different people in this country or this state,” James said.

Her remarks took direct aim at the conceit behind Trump’s entire political narrative — that he’s an outsider fighting for everyday Americans against a system that favors elites.

‘Corporate death penalty’

The penalties that James is seeking against Trump in what is likely to be a protracted case have the potential to at the very least severely limit the capacity of the business to operate, especially in the US financial capital.

“She is seeking what corporate lawyers call the corporate death penalty, which would be decertification of the Trump Organization so they couldn’t even do business in New York anymore,” CNN legal analyst Paul Callan told Anderson Cooper.

“It’s a very, very serious penalty if the AG wins the suit.”

In a sign that Trump’s defense could be an uphill task, James said that he repeatedly invoked his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. In a civil case, as opposed to a criminal one, prosecutors have the right to ascribe an adverse inference to such a step.

James, a Democrat, went out of her way to insist that there was no political motivation behind her case and that other corporations had faced similar censure.

But James has created some openings for Trump to accuse her of political bias. She had publicly said before taking office that she believed that the then-President could be indicted. And the almost taunting use of Trump’s slogan in her presentation unveiling the lawsuit did appear somewhat triumphalist. “Claiming money that you do not have does not amount to the ‘art of the deal,'” she said. “It’s the art of the steal.”

Trump quickly responded to the lawsuit by calling it a witchhunt — his well-worn tactic of dismissing any attempt to force him to face accountability. Trump may try to argue that his business was adopting the same business practices as others in New York and that he is being unfairly singled out as a former President and potential future candidate.

Still, the evidence unveiled in the lawsuit could spiral in unexpected directions in other jurisdictions — even if it does not result in a criminal case against the Trump Organization — that could threaten the business’ financial viability.

Another blow in the classified documents case

The Justice Department’s victory in the 11th Circuit represents another legal blow to Trump because it targets the idea that he’s immune from rules pertaining to classified information.

The appeals court did not just partially stay a lower court’s ruling to halt the DOJ’s review of 100 classified documents taken from Mar-a-Lago, which officials say are government property and could expose US intelligence sources and methods and even put covert US assets at risk overseas. The ruling also obliterated the argument of the Trump legal team that the former President may have declassified the documents as president.

“The record contains no evidence that any of these records were declassified. And before the special master, Plaintiff resisted providing any evidence that he had declassified any of these documents,” the ruling said, referring to the third-party official appointed by a lower court to go through the documents taken in the search.

Nick Akerman, a former assistant US attorney for the Southern District of New York, said on CNN Wednesday that the 11th Circuit gutted Trump’s case, expressing doubt that that the Supreme Court would take the case up if it got that far.

“Donald Trump had no proper interest in classified documents; there is no way he ever has the right to get this information or see it. That really is the underlying basis of this whole opinion,” he said.

The political fallout

As always, when Trump faces a legal threat, the question arises whether he will face a political price.

The former President has spent years seeking to discredit any institution, including the courts, that takes him on. He bashes them as biased, corrupt and a tool of liberal persecution. He has also specifically targeted James, accusing her of racism against him. Such demagoguery is now a critical tool of his political brand. At rallies, he tells supporters that he is willing to be persecuted to shield them.

There is little chance the former President’s base will turn on him. Still, yet more damaging allegations of Trump’s behavior are unlikely to help his already diminished standing with general election voters who voted him out of office in 2020. And the pressure of yet another serious legal threat cannot help but weigh on his mind as he contemplates another White House run.

However, the reality that sitting presidents enjoy protections against criminal action may appear even more attractive to Trump now. And if he doesn’t run in 2024, it would make it more difficult for the former President to claim he is being politically victimized.

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Ukraine revokes accreditation of Iran’s Ambassador

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The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine informed charge d’affaires ad interim of Iran in Ukraine about the decision to revoke the accreditation of the Ambassador of Iran to Ukraine and to appreciably lower the selection of embassy’s diplomatic personnel owing to the information of the use of Iranian-built weapons by the Russian troops.

This is stated in the statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.

“To fulfill the request of the President of Ukraine to choose urgent actions to answer to the information of the use of Iranian-manufactured weapons by the Russian troops in the territory of Ukraine, the charge d’affaires ad interim of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Ukraine was summoned to the Ministry of Overseas Affairs of Ukraine on September 23,” the statement reads.

The Iranian facet was advised that the source of Iranian weapons to Russia for its further more use by Russian troops in opposition to the Ukrainian civilian populace and the Defense Forces straight contradicts the position of neutrality and respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, publicly declared by the prime leadership of Iran.

Go through also: Ukrainian armed forces down Russia’s Su-25, six Shahed-136 suicide drones

“Supplying weapons to Russia for waging war towards Ukraine is an unfriendly act that offers a really serious blow to Ukraine–Iran relations,” the statement underscores.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs notes that the Ukrainian facet determined to revoke the accreditation of the Ambassador of Iran to Ukraine and to significantly decrease the amount of diplomatic personnel of the Embassy of Iran in Kyiv in response to such an unfriendly act.

Read also: Russian invaders assault Odesa with a few kamikaze drones, killing one particular civilian

As reported, the Russian troops intensified air attacks making use of Iranian Shahed-136 kamikaze drones in the south of Ukraine. In certain, the enemy after once again attacked the port infrastructure of the town of Ochakiv, Mykolaiv region, with these drones. One particular of the two drones was shot down by Ukrainian units, the other hit a port tug.

Read through also: Ukrainian anti-plane gunners down Iranian-built Mohajer-6 drone for very first time

On September 23, the President of Ukraine asked for the Ministry of International Affairs to respond to the information of the use of Iranian-manufactured weapons by Russian troops.

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The post Ukraine revokes accreditation of Iran’s Ambassador appeared first on Ukraine Intelligence.

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Abbreviated pundit roundup: Trump’s legal exposure, GOP’s ad strategy, and more – Daily Kos

Abbreviated pundit roundup: Trump’s legal exposure, GOP’s ad strategy, and more  Daily Kos
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Jury Rules Project Veritas Violated Wiretapping Laws and Fraudulently Misrepresented Themselves – Gizmodo

The post Jury Rules Project Veritas Violated Wiretapping Laws and Fraudulently Misrepresented Themselves – Gizmodo first appeared on The FBI Reform – – fbireform.org.

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The Best Marilyn Monroe Books to Read After Seeing ‘Blonde’ – Vulture

The post The Best Marilyn Monroe Books to Read After Seeing ‘Blonde’ – Vulture first appeared on The FBI Reform – – fbireform.org.

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10:08 AM 9/20/2022 – FBI News: MY OPINION: #MYOPINION: The #FBI FBI agents’ job is to investigate, not to produce the broad overreaching political assessments. These “whistleblowers” look more like the Trump agents in the FBI, the “CABAL” e.g. James Kalstrom, Rudy Jiuliani. It was instrumental in the #ELECTION2016

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Michael_Novakhov
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10:08 AM 9/20/2022 – FBI News: MY OPINION: #MYOPINION: The #FBI FBI agents’ job is to investigate, not to produce the broad overreaching political assessments. These “whistleblowers” look more like the Trump agents in the FBI, the “CABAL” e.g. James Kalstrom, Rudy Jiuliani. It was instrumental in the #ELECTION2016

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The #FBI FBI agents’ job is to investigate, not to produce the broad overreaching political assessments. 


MY OPINION #MYOPINION

#FBI A half of the FBI are unhappy, frustrated, B & C #MovieActors. And this is a #huge #problem. Another half thinks that they are the Cowboys fighting the Indians, while in fact THEY ARE THE #INDIANS, played with by the #COWBOYS, the Russian #MobIntel. | #FBI #CABAL #FBICABAL #Trump #Election2016 fbi CABAL helped Trump in Election 2016 | #FBI DOJ #DOJ #CIA CIA The purpose of Putin’s KGB in facilitating and enabling the FBI’s obsession with “child pornography” was exactly this: the DIVERSION OF RESOURCES. Apparently they use this tactic quite often, and very likely used it before the 911. | #FBI FBI #DOJ DOJ #ChildPornographyLaws Child Pornography Laws The #false and #baseless accusations of “child pornography”, based on the recent #laws of the very #questionable #legality are very #shameful for the #US and global #legalsystems & are the product of #Putin’s #KGB. 

The #FBI FBI agents’ job is to investigate, not to produce the broad overreaching political assessments. These “whistleblowers” look more like the Trump agents in the FBI, the “CABAL” e.g. James Kalstrom, Rudy Jiuliani. It was instrumental in the #ELECTION2016. 

6:26 AM 9/20/2022 – M.N.: It increasingly appears that the Wanda Vazquez case is simply a side show and the background for the attack on British PM Liz Truss and her chief of staff Mark Fullbrook. It does look like the Russian (GRU?) operation to bring down her new Cabinet in retaliation for her staunch support of Ukraine. What was the FBI role in all of this? 

Michael Novakhov (Mike Nova), Blogger 

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10:08 AM 9/20/2022 – FBI News: MY OPINION: #MYOPINION: The #FBI FBI agents’ job is to investigate, not to produce the broad overreaching political assessments. These “whistleblowers” look more like the Trump agents in the FBI, the “CABAL” e.g. James Kalstrom, Rudy Jiuliani. It was instrumental in the #ELECTION2016

thumbnail_profile_1614703202.jpg
Michael_Novakhov
shared this story
from 7952065.png The News And Times.

10:08 AM 9/20/2022 – FBI News: MY OPINION: #MYOPINION: The #FBI FBI agents’ job is to investigate, not to produce the broad overreaching political assessments. These “whistleblowers” look more like the Trump agents in the FBI, the “CABAL” e.g. James Kalstrom, Rudy Jiuliani. It was instrumental in the #ELECTION2016

  • Get link

  • Facebook

  • Twitter

  • Pinterest

  • Email

  • Other Apps

 


The #FBI FBI agents’ job is to investigate, not to produce the broad overreaching political assessments. 


MY OPINION #MYOPINION

#FBI A half of the FBI are unhappy, frustrated, B & C #MovieActors. And this is a #huge #problem. Another half thinks that they are the Cowboys fighting the Indians, while in fact THEY ARE THE #INDIANS, played with by the #COWBOYS, the Russian #MobIntel. | #FBI #CABAL #FBICABAL #Trump #Election2016 fbi CABAL helped Trump in Election 2016 | #FBI DOJ #DOJ #CIA CIA The purpose of Putin’s KGB in facilitating and enabling the FBI’s obsession with “child pornography” was exactly this: the DIVERSION OF RESOURCES. Apparently they use this tactic quite often, and very likely used it before the 911. | #FBI FBI #DOJ DOJ #ChildPornographyLaws Child Pornography Laws The #false and #baseless accusations of “child pornography”, based on the recent #laws of the very #questionable #legality are very #shameful for the #US and global #legalsystems & are the product of #Putin’s #KGB. 

The #FBI FBI agents’ job is to investigate, not to produce the broad overreaching political assessments. These “whistleblowers” look more like the Trump agents in the FBI, the “CABAL” e.g. James Kalstrom, Rudy Jiuliani. It was instrumental in the #ELECTION2016. 

6:26 AM 9/20/2022 – M.N.: It increasingly appears that the Wanda Vazquez case is simply a side show and the background for the attack on British PM Liz Truss and her chief of staff Mark Fullbrook. It does look like the Russian (GRU?) operation to bring down her new Cabinet in retaliation for her staunch support of Ukraine. What was the FBI role in all of this? 

Michael Novakhov (Mike Nova), Blogger 

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Sen. Wyden Raises Concerns Over Government Data Collection

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Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., sent a letter on Sept. 21 to the inspector generals of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Defense (DoD), and Department of Justice (DOJ), requesting that they investigate the alleged warrantless data gathering of American citizens’ online search histories.

Senator Wyden raises concerns over this after proclaiming that he has been individually investigating concerns that government agencies have been purchasing data without any “judicial authorization.”

“While I have been able to make public important details about government agencies’ purchase of location data, my efforts to probe and shed light on the government’s purchase of internet browsing records have been frustrated by the Pentagon,” stated Wyden in his letter.

According to the letter, the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency (DCSA) has spent over $2 million to obtain such data.

“After DoD refused to release this information without restrictions, my staff learned that public contract information had been posted online, showing that multiple DoD agencies purchased data from data brokers that reveal internet browsing history: The Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency spent more than $2 million purchasing access to netflow data, and the Defense Intelligence Agency purchased Domain Name System data,” the senator wrote.

The letter also alleges that the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) has purchased access to data from a data broker and pays for a subscription service, known as Augury, to gain access to netflow data.

“Public contracting records confirm that the Augury tool provides access to ‘petabytes’ of network data ‘from over 550 collection points worldwide’ and ‘is updated with at least 100 billion new records each day,’” stated the letter.

The letter ends with insisting that independent oversight of these agencies is crucial for a thorough investigation of the alleged data collecting.

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