Search This Blog

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Springfield Man Sentenced to 60 Years for Producing Child Pornography

FBI Kansas City Division #News Release:


Springfield Man Sentenced to 60 Years for Producing Child Pornography

U.S. Attorney’s OfficeJune 24, 2015
  • Western District of Missouri(816) 426-3122
SPRINGFIELD, MO—Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Springfield, Mo., man was sentenced in federal court today for sexually exploiting two children to produce child pornography.
Ronald Mazza, 34, of Springfield, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge M. Douglas Harpool to 60 years in federal prison without parole.
Mazza pleaded guilty to two separate counts of using two children, identified as “Jane Doe” and “John Doe,” to produce child pornography between Aug. 1 and Dec. 1, 2013. Mazza also pleaded guilty to one count of receiving and distributing child pornography over the Internet.
Mazza was arrested on Dec. 3, 2013, when his wife reported to the Springfield, Mo., Police Department that she found images of child pornography on his computer. When officers arrived at their residence, she showed them images of a three-year-old victim and a five-year-old victim on Mazza’s computer. As the officers were in the process of seizing the computer, Mazza arrived at the home and was immediately placed under arrest. He has remained in federal custody without bond since his arrest.
According to court documents, investigators discovered approximately 432 images and 61 videos depicting child pornography, including the sexual exploitation of infants, on Mazza’s computer. Five videos and 53 images contained sexually explicit depictions of the two victims that Mazza produced. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children has reported that Mazza’s images of those victims have been recovered in multiple unrelated child pornography investigations, indicating that those images are now circulating the Internet.
Mazza also faces state charges in Greene County Circuit Court for three counts of statutory sodomy, three counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, one count of statutory rape, one count of sexual misconduct involving a child, one count of promoting child pornography and 13 counts of possessing child pornography.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher. It was investigated by the Springfield, Mo., Police Department and the FBI.
Project Safe Childhood
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc . For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources.”
This content has been reproduced from its original source.

Springfield Man Sentenced to 15 Years for Child Pornography Offenses

FBI Kansas City Division #News Release:


Springfield Man Sentenced to 15 Years for Child Pornography Offenses

U.S. Attorney’s OfficeJune 23, 2015
  • Western District of Missouri(816) 426-3122
SPRINGFIELD, MO—Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Springfield, Mo., man was sentenced in federal court today for receiving and distributing child pornography over the Internet.
Andrew Paul Dinsmore, 19, of Springfield, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge M. Douglas Harpool to 15 years in federal prison without parole. The court also sentenced Dinsmore to a life term of supervised release following incarceration, and ordered Dinsmore to pay $3,000 in restitution to a victim.
On Feb. 2, 2015, Dinsmore pleaded guilty to receiving and distributing child pornography between July 5 and Aug. 25, 2014. Law enforcement received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in August 2014 when an Internet site flagged suspected child pornography being uploaded. Investigators identified Dinsmore’s computer as sharing a video of child pornography over the Internet.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick Carney. It was investigated by the FBI and the Southwest Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force.
Project Safe Childhood
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources.”
This content has been reproduced from its original source.

Lee’s Summit, Smithville Men Indicted for Internet Child Pornography Offenses

FBI Kansas City Division #News Release:


Lee’s Summit, Smithville Men Indicted for Internet Child Pornography Offenses

U.S. Attorney’s OfficeJune 23, 2015
  • Western District of Missouri(816) 426-3122
KANSAS CITY, MO—Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced that a Lee’s Summit, Mo., man and a Smithville, Mo., man were indicted by a federal grand jury today, in separate and unrelated cases involving child pornography.
USA v. Moore
Ronald L. Moore, Jr., 50, of Lee’s Summit, was charged in a four-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Kansas City, Mo.
Today’s indictment alleges that Moore distributed child pornography over the Internet between June 27 and Aug. 28, 2014.
Moore is also charged with two counts of receiving child pornography over the Internet on Aug. 17, 2013, and on Sept. 15, 2012, and one count of possessing movies of child pornography on Sept. 19, 2014.
The indictment also contains a forfeiture allegation, which would require Moore to forfeit to the government any property used to commit the alleged offense, including a desktop computer and two hard drives.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney David Luna. It was investigated by the FBI.
USA v. Arnold
Jacob A. Arnold, 19, of Smithville, was charged in a two-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Kansas City, Mo.
Today’s indictment alleges that Arnold received child pornography over the Internet on March 17, 2015. Arnold is also charged with possessing child pornography on June 4, 2015.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney David Luna. It was investigated by the Western Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force and the Smithville, Mo., Police Department.
Dickinson cautioned that the charges contained in these indictments are simply accusations, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charges must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.
Project Safe Childhood
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources.”
This content has been reproduced from its original source.

Gowdy on Face the Nation: Clinton failed to turn over all work related e...

Rubio Comments On Missed Deadline In Iran Negotiations

Press Releases

Washington, D.C.  U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today commented on the extension of nuclear negotiations with Iran:

“Once again, the Obama Administration has given into Iran’s obfuscation and stalling tactics. In April, the President announced to the world that the United States had reached ‘a historic understanding with Iran.’ Now, as the Iranian leadership attempts to walk back the key provisions of that deal, we’re told a few more days are required to negotiate a deal that was supposedly concluded months ago. The events of recent weeks have shown that it is clearer than ever that Iran is not serious about resolving longstanding concerns regarding its illicit nuclear program. Another week of negotiations at this point is just another week for further U.S. concessions. Tehran knows this. Our allies and partners in the Middle East see this because they’ve experienced it before.

“The major points of this agreement are already clear, though there may in the coming days be additional American concessions. We already know that this deal is not in the interests of the United States. It will not keep Americans safer. It will only embolden the world’s foremost sponsor of terrorism as it expands its influence and sows instability across the Middle East. It will provide billions of dollars to a regime that brutalizes its citizens and acts like a criminal gang by kidnapping American citizens and effectively holding them for ransom. If the President were serious about negotiating a deal that advances our security and protects our allies, such as Israel, he would walk away from the table and impose new sanctions on Iran until the regime comes to the table ready to negotiate seriously. If he instead chooses to conclude a deal that ensures that Iran will be a nuclear threshold state, I am confident that a majority of both houses of Congress will join me in opposing it, which will lay the foundation for our next President to undo this disaster.”

Yes, Gay Marriage Hurts Me Personally | TheBlaze.com

I received a lot of feedback this past weekend about my piece responding to the Supreme Court’s gay marriage ruling. Many people seemed to take exception to my radical position that men and woman can conceive children. They didn’t explicitly disagree with that theory, but they did deny the one single conclusion that inevitably stems from it, which is that the union between a man and a woman is special and different.
Most of the comments, emails, and messages I read this weekend eschewed the process of even attempting to debate that point and skipped right to the insults. Here’s a quick sampling:


Yes, Gay Marriage Hurts Me Personally | TheBlaze.com

Cornyn: Supreme Court Ruling A Welcome Check On EPA Overreach

John Cornyn #News Release:


Jun 29 2015

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) issued the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s decision in Michigan v. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA):
“Today’s ruling is a welcome check on the EPA’s massive, job-killing regulatory regime that has hit the wallets of middle-class families and small businesses across Texas.
“After today’s ruling we must redouble our efforts to fight bureaucratic overreach from the Obama Administration that could stifle growth and raise energy prices for folks in Texas and across the nation.”

Quo Vadis, America? - Pat Buchanan - Page 1

"Natural law -- God's law -- will always trump common law," said Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and a Christian leader in her own right, "God will have the final word in this matter."
But, for now, Justice Anthony Kennedy has the final word.


Quo Vadis, America? - Pat Buchanan - Page 1

Sen. Rand Paul Highlights a Federal Insurance Boondoggle Costing $310 Million Annually

From Senator Rand Paul:


06.29.15

Sen. Rand Paul Highlights a Federal Insurance Boondoggle Costing $310 Million Annually

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Rand Paul today released the newest edition to ‘The Waste Report.’ ‘The Waste Report’ is an ongoing project to catalog egregious examples of wasteful spending throughout the U.S. government.
This week’s edition of ‘The Waste Report,’ exposes a loophole in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) crop insurance program, costing American taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. Each year, the USDA pays out on crop insurance claims for “prevented planting” to farmers who cannot plant their crops due to extreme weather. However, exploiting the generality of law, farmers with seasonal wetlands that regularly flood in planting season but dry other times, are raking in approximately $310 million annually in crop insurance payments. 
‘The Waste Report’ can be found HERE or below.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture – ‘The Waste Report’
Insurance protects against the rare and unforeseen, not the regular and predictable.  You insure your car against accident, not oil change.
But, when the government is the insurer, this kind of obvious logic does not apply. Surprisingly (or maybe not), the Department of Agriculture (USDA) is paying out hundreds of millions of dollars annually in “prevented planting” crop insurance to farmers who cannot plant their corps in SEASONAL WETLANDS.[1] 
At issue is the intersection of the “prevented planting” crop insurance and prairie potholes.  What are prairie potholes?  They are basically ground depressions that fill with water in the rainy spring and dry out in the summer and fall, and are mostly located in the upper-Midwest.  The “prevented planting” program is taxpayer subsidized crop insurance that compensates farmers when extreme weather prevents planting.  
The problem is, some farmers claim prevented planting each year for the regular flooding of prairie potholes.[2]  In fact, farmers in sixty-five counties, mostly in the Dakotas, have gotten payouts; 14 years in a row, and in another twenty-nine counties have gotten payments 13 of the last 14 years. In most cases, insurance payments were greater what direct crop subsidies would have been.[3] These farmers are raking in approximately $310 million annually.
No private insurer would stand for this and would either not offer insurance or would control for this kind of abuse. To their credit, the USDA is not complacent in this abuse. Several attempts have been made to close the prairie pothole loophole. As recently as last year, USDA “clarified” rules to effectively prohibit claims four years in a row.[4] But data suggests this new policy could be gamed. At the heart of the problem is that USDA simply does not have a definition of “normal” weather.[5] 

###


[1] Cox, Craig, Soren Runquist, Anne Weir; Boondoggle: “Prevented Planting” Insurance Tears Up Wetlands and Wastes Billions. Environmental Working Group, Washington, D. C. April 2015
[2] IBid
[3] Ibid
[4] Risk Management Agency-USDA. RMA Clarifies Prevented Planting Standards in the Prairie Pothole Region [Press Release]; August 2013
[5] Cox, Craig, Soren Runquist, Anne Weir; Boondoggle: “Prevented Planting” Insurance Tears Up Wetlands and Wastes Billions. Environmental Working Group, Washington, D. C. April 2015

WATCH: San Diego Beachgoers Sign Petition to Ban Old Glory | Fox News Insider

Would you sign a petition to ban the American flag?
Social critic Mark Dice asked beachgoers in San Diego, Calif. to sign a fake petition to get rid of the American flag – with some surprising results.


WATCH: San Diego Beachgoers Sign Petition to Ban Old Glory | Fox News Insider

Marines weighing having members hitch rides on foreign warships | Fox News

The Marines are weighing whether to have members hitch a ride on foreign warships, citing a shortage of U.S. Navy vessels due to recent budget cuts -- raising bipartisan security concerns about the leverage this could give other countries. 
A key concern is whether a warship from a host nation could deny Marines permission to come ashore. 


Marines weighing having members hitch rides on foreign warships | Fox News

UMKC choir sings with The Rolling Stones - KCTV5

KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

More than 50,000 people filled Arrowhead Stadium over the weekend for The Rolling Stones concert.

And in case you missed it, some very special guests helped the rock band during an encore in a performance that may just top them all.


Read more: http://www.kctv5.com/story/29432644/umkc-choir-sings-with-the-rolling-stones#ixzz3eYTe1sfA




UMKC choir sings with The Rolling Stones - KCTV5

Activists Plan to Burn American Flags in New York City Ahead of Fourth of July | TheBlaze.com

A group calling for the immediate disarmament of the New York Police Department plans to burn American flags in a Brooklyn park on Wednesday, just days before the Fourth of July holiday.



Activists Plan to Burn American Flags in New York City Ahead of Fourth of July | TheBlaze.com

Let Us Not Forget

From Israeli Defense Forces:




One year ago, today, the search for Eyal, Gil-ad and Naftali came to an end. After 18 days of tireless searches and prayers, an entire nation was overcome with loss when the bodies of the three teens, kidnapped by Hamas, were found in a field near Hebron. May their memory be a blessing.

Ryan Statement Upon Enactment of TPA | U.S. Congressman Paul Ryan

WASHINGTON, DC — House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) released the following statement after President Obama signed into law legislation reauthorizing trade promotion authority (TPA) as well as a bill extending trade preferences programs and trade adjustment assistance. Chairman Ryan was the primary sponsor of the TPA bill in the House.



Ryan Statement Upon Enactment of TPA | U.S. Congressman Paul Ryan

Paul Ryan on Promoting American Trade and Replacing Obamacare | U.S. Congressman Paul Ryan

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This morning, Wisconsin Congressman and House Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) spoke with John Dickerson, host of CBS's Face the Nation , about the passage of Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) and why it is critical for America to lead in a global economy. Chairman Ryan also discussed the Supreme Court’s ruling in the King v. Burwell case and the need to replace Obamacare with patient-centered solutions.



Paul Ryan on Promoting American Trade and Replacing Obamacare | U.S. Congressman Paul Ryan

Cornyn Pushes Justice Department to Fully Implement SAFER Act, Help Reduce Rape Kit Backlog

From Senator John Cornyn:


Jun 29 2015

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sens. John Cornyn (R-TX) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) are urging the Department of Justice (DOJ) to fully implement the SAFER Act to help state and local governments eliminate the national backlog of untested rape kits. The provisions of the legislation, signed into law in 2013, have yet to be fully enacted to help state and local law enforcement agencies audit and process rape kits that could lead to the prosecution and resolution of sexual assault cases across the country.
In a letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch, the Senators wrote, “[T]he SAFER Act helps ensure the timely and appropriate processing of DNA evidence collected from sexual assault crimes and provides grants for state and local governments to conduct one-year audits of all untested rape kits in their possession. Through these audit grants, law enforcement agencies would be better-equipped to assist victims of rape and solve these horrific crimes…We must help local law enforcement reduce backlogs of rape kits and bring criminals to swift justice.  We ask for your collaboration in enforcing the law and fulfilling all requirements of the SAFER Act. Victims of sexual assault should not have to wait unnecessarily for justice.”
The bill, first introduced in 2012 by Sens. Cornyn and Bennet, requires that at least 75 percent of Debbie Smith Act funds be spent directly on either analyzing untested DNA evidence or increasing the capacity of labs. It also provides state and local governments with funding to conduct one-year audits of the untested sexual assault evidence in their possession. Finally, it creates a national reporting system to help track these audits, prioritize the analysis of untested rape kits, and better target existing Debbie Smith Act appropriations.
Full Text of the Letter:
June 22, 2015
Dear Attorney General Lynch:
We write to urge the Department of Justice (DOJ) to fully implement the Sexual Assault Forensic Evidence Reporting (SAFER) Act as expeditiously as possible. The SAFER Act became law in March 2013 as part of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (P.L. 113-4). This legislation will help state and local governments to eliminate the national backlog of untested rape kits and strengthen the FBI’s interstate CODIS database. We are deeply concerned with the continued backlog of DNA evidence from unsolved rape cases and believe DOJ must promptly implement the key provisions of the SAFER Act.
As you know, the SAFER Act helps ensure the timely and appropriate processing of DNA evidence collected from sexual assault crimes and provides grants for state and local governments to conduct one-year audits of all untested rape kits in their possession. Through these audit grants, law enforcement agencies would be better-equipped to assist victims of rape and solve these horrific crimes.
With the full implementation of the SAFER Act, rape kits would be promptly analyzed consistent with all proper testing practices. The SAFER Act’s national reporting system for forensic evidence from sexual assault cases would help the federal government to more effectively target resources to jurisdictions experiencing the largest backlogs. It would also increase the transparency in the DNA rape kit testing process. It is imperative that we fully implement all aspects of the SAFER Act in order to address the DNA backlog aggressively. 
It is our hope that DOJ will complete implementation of the SAFER Act as soon as possible. We must help local law enforcement reduce backlogs of rape kits and bring criminals to swift justice.  We ask for your collaboration in enforcing the law and fulfilling all requirements of the SAFER Act. Victims of sexual assault should not have to wait unnecessarily for justice.
Thank you for your attention to this matter.
John Cornyn
United States Senator
Michael F. Bennet
United States Senator

McConnell Welcomes the Supreme Court’s EPA Ruling

Press Releases

Jun 29 2015

McConnell Welcomes the Supreme Court’s EPA Ruling

LOUISVILLE, KY. – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell issued the following statement today regarding the Supreme Court’s ruling on Michigan v. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA):
“Obama Administration officials like to pretend that the costs of their massive and regressive regulations either don’t exist or don’t matter. Middle-class families in Kentucky and across our country don’t have that luxury, and are often the first to suffer.
“Today’s Supreme Court decision represents a cutting rebuke to the administration’s callous attitude. While much of the damage of this regulation has already been done, the ruling serves as a critical reminder to every governor contemplating the administration’s demands to impose more regressive – and likely illegal – regulations that promise even more middle-class pain. Clearly, there is no reason to subject their states to such unnecessary pain before the courts have even had a chance to weigh in, especially if the Supreme Court simply ends up tossing the regulation out as we saw today.”
###

SPIEGEL Editorial on the Greek Referendum Shock - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Much of Europe is outraged by Alexis Tsipras' decision to hold a referendum on reforms in Greece. But how did the euro zone allow an economically irrelevant country of 11 million to bring the common currency to the brink? Through cowardice.



SPIEGEL Editorial on the Greek Referendum Shock - SPIEGEL ONLINE

SPIEGEL Commentary on the Greek Crisis - SPIEGEL ONLINE

The Greek crisis has destroyed an old dream about the future of Europe. The only possibility for moving the EU in the direction we were promised is a radical solution -- either a Grexit or an expensive debt haircut.



SPIEGEL Commentary on the Greek Crisis - SPIEGEL ONLINE

Monday, June 29, 2015

Rockford Airfest

Constituent Outreach: Importance of keeping the budget balanced

Two Plead Guilty in Debt Elimination Scheme

FBI Columbia Division #News Release:


Two Plead Guilty in Debt Elimination Scheme

U.S. Attorney’s OfficeJune 22, 2015
  • District of South Carolina(803) 929-3000
COLUMBIA, SC—United States Attorney Bill Nettles stated today that Jeffrey Scott Green, age 53, and Lisa Flaugher-Green, age 52, both of Easley, pled guilty today in federal court in Greenville, to a conspiracy to defraud, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1349. Senior United States District Judge Henry M. Herlong, Jr., of Greenville accepted the pleas and will impose sentence after he has reviewed the presentence report which will be prepared by the U.S. Probation Office.
Evidence presented at the change of plea hearing established that this was an Electronic Funds Transfer (“EFT”) debt elimination case. Various branches of the Sovereign Citizen movement, which denies the jurisdiction and authority of the federal government, teach that they can discharge debts by presenting a check written off a closed account. The debtor writes on the check “EFT Only for discharge of debt.” On the back he writes “authorized representative without recourse.” Sovereign-Citizen groups falsely teach that if the creditor accepts the instrument then the debt is discharged even though no money ever changes hands. The Defendants were part of a group that endorsed the use of EFT instruments.
It was a part of the scheme and artifice to defraud that Jeffrey Scott Green and Lisa Flaugher-Green wrote checks on closed accounts and noted on the checks “EFT only for discharge of debt.” They then would mail these bogus “EFT instruments” and accompanying documents to creditors in an effort to trick the creditors into issuing documents noting that the debt was paid in full. Once the creditor discovered the scam, Defendants would refuse further payment on the grounds of a discharge procured by “EFT instruments.” Agents estimate that the Defendants attempted to eliminate over half a million dollars in debt using the scheme.
Mr. Nettles stated the maximum penalty the Defendants can receive is a fine of $250,000 and/or imprisonment for 20 years, plus a special assessment of $100.
The case was investigated by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Spartanburg County Sheriff’s Office, and the Greenville County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Bill Watkins of the Greenville office handled the case.
This content has been reproduced from its original source.

Twenty Sentenced in Drug Trafficking Conspiracy

FBI Cincinnati Division #News Release:


Twenty Sentenced in Drug Trafficking Conspiracy

U.S. Attorney’s OfficeJune 22, 2015
  • Southern District of Ohio(937) 225-2910
COLUMBUS, OH—Twenty people indicted in December 2013 have been sentenced in U.S. District Court as of today for participating in a drug trafficking organization in Central Ohio.
Carter M. Stewart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, Angela L. Byers, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Joseph P. Reagan, Special Agent in Charge, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Franklin County Sheriff Zach Scott and Columbus Police Chief Kim Jacobs announced the sentences.
The sentences are a result of a year-long investigation into the organization by local, state and federal law enforcement.
The organization was responsible for distributing cocaine, oxycodone, crack cocaine and marijuana in the central Ohio area. Some members of the organization, including some convicted felons, possessed firearms in furtherance of the drug trafficking activities. The group supplied drug distributors with firearms to protect the distributors, the drug supply and proceeds from potential robberies. Firearms were placed in strategic places in various locations to intimidate potential robbers.
According to court documents, members of the group would torture and threaten individuals with serious physical harm who were perceived as owing money or drugs to members of—or individuals who were seen as potential witnesses against—the drug conspiracy.
Some of the defendants would launder their drug trafficking proceeds by exchanging tens of thousands of dollars for casino chips at Hollywood Casino in Columbus.
Jermonte M. Fletcher was also indicted on drug, firearm and money laundering charges in connection with the group. He was fatally injured during a shootout with law enforcement agents in Columbus on January 27, 2015. Fletcher had been facing a statutory mandatory minimum of 115 years in prison.
U.S. Attorney Stewart acknowledged the cooperative investigation by the FBI, Columbus Police, Franklin County Sheriff, DEA, ATF, the Ohio Casino Control Commission, and Franklin County Prosecutor Ron O’Brien’s Office, as well as Assistant U.S. Attorneys David DeVillers and Kevin Kelley, and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Jimmy Lowe with Franklin County Prosecutor O’Brien’s Office, who prosecuted the case.

Well-Known Priest’s Amazing Response After He Said Two Men Spat on Him in Midst of NYC Gay Pride Parade | TheBlaze.com

Fr. Jonathan Morris is likely a familiar face to readers of TheBlaze — the Catholic priest based in the Bronx also has been a longtime analyst for Fox News.
Morris said he was walking on Sunday in the vicinity of Broadway and 22nd Street in Manhattan and happened upon a gay pride parade.


Well-Known Priest’s Amazing Response After He Said Two Men Spat on Him in Midst of NYC Gay Pride Parade | TheBlaze.com

Brad Thor Observes Something Peculiar About Obama Admin’s Reaction to Gay Marriage Ruling | Video | TheBlaze.com

Author Brad Thor jumped on Twitter Sunday and shared something decidedly strange about the Obama administration’s reaction to the landmark Supreme Court ruling on gay marriage, making it legal all across America:



Brad Thor Observes Something Peculiar About Obama Admin’s Reaction to Gay Marriage Ruling | Video | TheBlaze.com

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Mike Huckabee: Supreme Court Case Was About 'Marriage Redefinition'

Forty-Two Defendants Facing State or Federal Drug Charges for Allegedly Selling Heroin on City’s West Side

FBI Chicago Division #News Release:


Forty-Two Defendants Facing State or Federal Drug Charges for Allegedly Selling Heroin on City’s West Side

U.S. Attorney’s OfficeJune 24, 2015
  • Northern District of Illinois(312) 353-5300
CHICAGO—Forty-two defendants are facing state or federal narcotics charges for their alleged roles in supplying and distributing heroin in the area of West Grenshaw Street and Independence Boulevard, in the North Lawndale neighborhood on the city’s west side. An investigation led by officers of the Chicago Police Department and agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration assigned to the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (“HIDTA”) Task Force, resulted in federal charges against 16 defendants and state charges against 26 others, who police and federal agents began arresting early this morning.
Twelve firearms, approximately $50,000, nearly a half-kilogram of heroin, and over one-half kilogram of cocaine were seized this morning during the arrests of 32 of the charged defendants. The remaining defendants are either in custody or at large. Additionally, over one and a half kilograms of heroin were seized during the course of the investigation from last August through this month. Early today, Chicago police, DEA agents, and other HIDTA law enforcement partners also executed seven search warrants upon several defendants’ residences and three alleged stash houses, and seized two vehicles, including one defendant’s 2014 Maserati, Gran Turismo.
The federal defendants were charged with conspiracy, distribution, or possession with intent to distribute narcotics in five separate criminal complaints that were filed yesterday in U.S. District Court and unsealed following the arrests. The federal defendants are scheduled to begin appearing at 3 p.m. today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Maria Valdez in U.S. District Court. The 26 state defendants face charges ranging from Class 1 to Class X Delivery of a Controlled Substance and face a potential sentencing range of four to 30 years in prison upon conviction. The state defendants are expected to appear in bond court this afternoon at the Leighton Criminal Courts Building in Chicago.
According to a 230-page affidavit in support of the federal arrests and search warrants, the investigation revealed that JAMES TRIPLETT, also known as “Trell,” 33, of Berkley, controlled the distribution of heroin in the area of the 3700 block of West Grenshaw Street, in the North Lawndale neighborhood west of Douglas Park. Triplett allegedly assigned responsibility for heroin distribution on the block he controlled to specific individuals, who further delegated distribution to shift workers who sold heroin throughout the day.
Triplett obtained his heroin largely from supplier, LEVAUGHN COLLINS, also known as “Sweet Bobby,” 34, of Chicago, who along with his narcotics associates, obtained wholesale quantities of heroin which they mixed and packaged for distribution to buyers like Triplett who then subsequently sold the heroin on the street in the area of the 3700 block of West Grenshaw Street.
The area is just south of the Interstate 290 Eisenhower Expressway corridor that has been referred to as the “Heroin Highway” because of the accessibility it provides to city and suburban heroin customers.
“The Chicago HIDTA is a powerful collaboration of local, state, and federal law enforcement which concentrates its efforts on both narcotics suppliers and street-level distributors,” said Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois. “This investigation and arrests associated with this open air drug market demonstrate how effective teamwork by law enforcement agencies can significantly reduce the flow of narcotics into our communities,” he said.
“This operation demonstrates how police and prosecutors are continuing to work together to dig in at the local level and hammer away at the drug markets plaguing our local communities,” said Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez. “Once again, we are pleased to join our state and federal law enforcement partners in these ongoing and coordinated efforts.”
Mr. Fardon and Ms. Alvarez announced the charges with Garry F. McCarthy, Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department; Dennis Wichern, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration; Robert J. Holley, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; Jeffrey Magee, Special Agent in Charge of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Chicago Field Division; and Stephen Boyd, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division in Chicago.
“This multi-agency investigation, culminating in the charging of 42 individuals, represents a significant hammer-blow to the open-air drug markets operating in North Lawndale and Douglas Park,” said Superintendent Garry McCarthy. “Operations of this nature exemplify our ceaseless commitment to eliminating guns, gangs, and drugs on our city’s streets,” he added.
“Investigating, charging and arresting heroin dealers is priority number one,” said SAC Wichern. “Too many lives in Chicagoland are forever lost due to heroin use. I’m proud of the work done by these agents, officers and prosecutors, who worked tirelessly to achieve these results and I’m confident that with our continued partnership, we will have increasing success.”
“IRS Criminal Investigation was an integral part of today’s law enforcement events by investigating the financial aspects of these investigations,” added Special Agent-in-Charge Boyd from IRS/CID.
The complaint affidavit alleges that Triplett was a wholesale supplier of heroin who, through his drug trafficking organization, ran the heroin trade in the area of the 3700 block of West Grenshaw Street. The complaint further alleges that Triplett tasked his narcotics associates with different responsibilities ranging from picking up and transporting the packaged heroin for subsequent distribution, to running the daily operations of the Grenshaw drug spot, to collecting proceeds from heroin sales there. The Triplett drug trafficking organization employed individuals, like MARCETTEAUS MCGEE, aka “Antonio,” aka “Keitho,” 31, of Chicago; CHRISTOPHER TIDWELL, aka “Gov,” 42, of Chicago; JAMES SMITH, aka “J Dub,” 35, of Chicago; and CHIQUITA JACKSON, 29, of Chicago, to manage the Grenshaw drug spot and advise Triplett when resupply was needed, to shuttle heroin among the various stash and retail locations, and to return his share of the profits to him. The organization employed street-level workers responsible for the retail sale of its heroin such as JACKIE TYLER, 29, of Chicago.
Levaughn Collins, a wholesale supplier to the Triplet drug trafficking organization, and others, operated his heroin distribution from his main stash house at 561 East 103rd Place, as well as specific locations such as 2936 West Warren Boulevard, the charges allege. Other defendants, including LARRY COLLINS, aka “Scooter,” 38, of Chicago, JIMMY BELL, aka “Dirt,” 38, of Chicago; LAMEL BURNS, aka “Slim,” 38, of Dolton; and KEVIN GARDNER, aka “Bo,” 35 of Chicago, allegedly assisted Levaughn Collins in diluting the heroin to increase profits and packaging the heroin into smaller, user-sized quantities for street-resale. Heroin packaged and distributed by Collins’s organization was typically packaged in small user-portion plastic bags with orange basketballs, purple lady logos, green Playboy bunnies, Hershey’s kisses, or black panda bear symbols stamped on them.
One federal complaint charges twelve defendants ― James Triplett, Levaughn Collins, Larry Collins, Jimmy Bell, Lamel Burns, Kevin Gardner, Christopher Tidwell, Marcetteaus McGee, James Smith, Chiquette Jackson, Jackie Tyler and ANTON HIGGINS, aka “Spud,” 35, of Chicago― with conspiracy to possess and distribute more than a kilogram of heroin. If convicted, they each face a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum of life imprisonment and a $10 million fine.
DONALD MCINTOSH, aka “Donnie,” 40, of Chicago, and NEKENYA HARDY, aka “Keefy,” 36, of Berwyn, were charged separately with being heroin customers of Levaughn Collins. If convicted, McIntosh faces a mandatory minimum of five years in prison and a maximum of 40 years and a $5 million fine and Hardy faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $1 million fine.
ANGELES AVALOS, 32, of Chicago, was also charged separately with being a heroin supplier to Levaughn Collins. If convicted, he faces a mandatory minimum of five years in prison and a maximum of 40 years and a $5 million fine.
DEONTE THOMAS, aka “12th Street,” 25, of Chicago, was also charged separately with distributing heroin in the 3700 block of West Grenshaw Street. If convicted, he faces a mandatory minimum of five years in prison and a maximum of 40 years and a $5 million fine.
The 27 state defendants, charged for their alleged roles in supplying and distributing heroin are: CARL AUSTIN, DEMARIO BUTLER, DEJON CARR, LAVORA CHILDRESS, DEWAYNE COOK, JOHNNY CORBIN, SIMEON CURRIE, DEANDRE CURRY, MARQUITA DAVIS, ORLANDO EDWARDS, TERRELL HARRIS, WILLIE HUGHES, ERIC JACKSON, COSHAWNDRA JENKINS, ERIC LEMON, ANDRE MINOR, BERNARD PERSON, DARRYL PLEASANT, DONALD ROGERS, FLOYD SHAW, KENNETH SMITH, LEONARD SMITH, TIMESHA WASHINGTON, LEONARD WHITE, DOMINICK WILLIAMS and JASON WOODS.
Assistant United States Attorneys Katherine A. Sawyer and Andrew K. Polovin are representing the government in the federal cases. Assistant State’s Attorney Aaron R. Bond is prosecuting the state cases.
The public is reminded that complaints contain only charges and are not evidence of guilt. The defendants are presumed innocent and are entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
This content has been reproduced from its original source.