Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Bigger government, less transparency - inaugural meeting of FOIA Officer's Council

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA -  On July 22, 2016, the Chief FOIA Officers (CFO) Council, created by the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016, held its inaugural meeting at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building. 

The CFO Council is composed of all agency CFOs, plus the Deputy Director for Management from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and is co-chaired by the Directors of OIP and the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS).  Chief FOIA Officers and representatives from over 64 agencies attended, along with several members of the public. 

OIP Director Melanie Ann Pustay, opened the meeting by providing an overview of the responsibilities of agency CFOs. Next, Andrew Mayock, the Deputy Director for Management of OMB, emphasized the Administration’s commitment to transparency and open government.  Based on facts covered herein, that commitment seems to be as solid as the Syrian Red Line, however.

Mr. Mayock described the recently-announced Cross-Agency Priority (CAP) Goal for FOIA that will be co-led by OMB, DOJ, and NARA to focus senior leadership attention and drive performance and accountability for improving FOIA administration, and to ensure that Federal departments and agencies are providing sufficient resources toward FOIA responsibilities. 
He explained that the CAP goal will be publicly posted on, and will have a detailed action plan, including specific metrics and milestones that will be used to gauge progress. He did not explain if heads would roll if milestones were not met.
Mr. Mayock explained that the initial focus of the CAP goal will be on implementing the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016.  
Acting Director of OGIS Nikki Gramian also gave opening remarks. She discussed the responsibilities of OGIS and summarized the first meeting of the second term of the FOIA Advisory Committee, which is composed of representatives from both agencies and the requester community. 
Ms. Gramian indicated that she anticipates the work of the CFO Council and the FOIA Advisory Committee will be complementary, and that she looks forward to keeping the CFO Council informed about the Advisory Committee’s activities.  Which begs the question: if the work of the newly created council is complementary, why create a new bureaucracy in the first place?
Director Pustay then introduced the Council’s first item for consideration – implementing a “release to one is release to all” presumption for FOIA responses. Director Pustay briefed the Council on OIP’s six-month pilot program conducted with seven volunteer Federal agencies that was designed to assess the viability of a policy that would direct agencies to proactively post online their FOIA responses. 
Director Pustay did not address what happens when government employees use private servers or delete emails such as was the case with  Lois G. Lerner targeting conservative groups, or Secretary Clinton deleted emails.
In the coming months, the CFO Council will examine critical issues, including assessing the impact on investigative journalism efforts, as well as how best to address technological and resource challenges. At its next meeting, the Council will invite journalists and members of the public to provide feedback about the “release to all” policy, specifically addressing the concerns raised by some journalists about its possible impact on their work.  Details about the next meeting will be available here on FOIA Post.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Dems, White Supremacists replacing the plantation with ghettos and barrios

D'Souza's 'Hillary's America' Debuts with Box Office Success

Read More: 

DNC‬'s racist taco bowl is a contrived controversy: Like Old Faithful, the dems have been consistently racist:

Posted by CotoBlogzz hours ago ... Some prominent Democrats had called for the Democratic National Committee chairwoman to step down in the wake of emails revealing the

DNC member killing horses for insurance money.
DNC making fun of black woman's name.
DNC telling each other, “I love you too. no homo.”
DNC requesting a pull an MSNBC commentary segment.
DNC controlling the narrative with time released stories.
DNC conspiring to create false Trump information and release with Reuters.
DNC Hillary supporters infiltrated Sanders campaign.
DNC members going to complain to Morning Joe producers about his mentioning of a “rigged system.”
DNC discussing their relationship with NBC/MSNBC/CNN and how to get better treatment.
Super PAC paying young voters to push back online Sanders supporters. Paid shills.
DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz having an off the record meeting in MSNBC President Phil Griffin’s office.
DNC being messed with by the Washington Examiner.
DNC discussing Hillary’s policies as unfeasible.
$200k for a private dinner with Hillary.
Offering to send interns out to fake a protest against the RNC.
Faking outrage and pasting in a video later.
A mole working inside of the Sanders campaign.
Bringing up Sanders religion to scare the southern voters.
Possible money laundering by moving money back and forth to bypass legal limits.
Politico writer sending his stories to the DNC before he sends them to his editor.
DNC feeding CNN the questions they want to be asked in interviews.
Creating a fake job ad for a Trump business to paint him as a sexist.
Hillary funding 2 million dollars in a cooridanted campaign in battleground states to win back the Senate.
DNC is upset that their “allies” didn’t send in protestors so they sent out interns.
“Clinton Foundation quid-pro-quo worries are lingering, will be exploited in general.”
$50,000 – Lawrence Benenson.
Daily Fundraising Report for the DNC.
Content & Social Strategy Discussion.
Re: BuzzFeed and DNC connection.
Draft linking news articles about trump to use as negative press.
Fwd: State Dinner Countdown.
Some chick is angry she hasn’t been given more stuff from the Obama administration…might be interesting to follow up.
Re: State Dinner Countdown.
Tim O’Brien: Trump’s Fixation on Inflating his Net Worth is a Cause for Concern.
RE: May Fundraising Numbers.
Hillary for America Raised $26.4 Million in April, Began May with More than $30 Million Cash on Hand.
Re: For approval: Trump supporter graphics.
Press talking points, states Hillary is their candidate, dated May 5, 2016. More of a smoking gun than the ambiguous talk in the emails themselves.
Consultant calling megyn kelly a bimbo. Has PDF attached that says the same.
DNC trying to get away with violating the Hatch Act.
Democrats using interns to organize fake “protests.”
RE: Action on DNC tomorrow (Immigration Raids).

Friday, July 22, 2016

Ashkan Dezhangfard, Ryan Huebnar, Siavish Hosseinaliarhani, Angelica Shiabata, Brion Hyde, arrested in homicide case

Ashkan Dezhangfard, Ryan Huebnar,  Siavish Hosseinaliarhani,  Angelica Shiabata, Brion Hyde, arrested in homicide case

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA  - Today Orange County Sheriff Department (OCSD) investigators arrested Ashkan Dezhangfard,  San Juan Capistrano, Ryan Huebnar, Laguna Niguel, Siavish Hosseinaliarhani, Laguna Niguel, Angelica Shiabata,  San Juan Capistrano and Brion Hyde, San Juan Capistrano, in connection with a homicide at the end of Trabuco Creek Road in San Juan Capistrano.

On Wednesday, July 13, 2016, at approximately 1:10 p.m., OCSD's deputies responded to the end of Trabuco Creek Road and found an adult male deceased in the creek bed.  

An Orange County Deputy Coroner responded and found traumatic injuries to the victim’s body.  OCSD Homicide investigators responded and assumed responsibility for the investigation.  Homicide, crime scene and coroner investigators processed and collected evidence from the scene.

During the preliminary investigation, the deceased adult male was identified as Alvaro Rios, 38, Perris.  Rios was a reported missing adult from Perris in Riverside County on July 13, 2016.

Orange County Coroner Division conducted an autopsy and determined Alvaro was the victim of homicide.  The injuries were consistent with being stabbed.

Investigators prepared and served several search warrants on vehicles and residences in south Orange County.

All five suspects were arrested for murder and conspiracy and booked into the Orange County Jail.  They are being held on $1 million bail each and scheduled for their first court appearance on Monday, July 25, 2016.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Artem Vaulin, Ukraine, owner of KAT, the most visited illegal file-sharing website charged with criminal copyright infringement

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA - Artem Vaulin, owner of KAT,  the most visited illegal file-sharing website was charged with criminal copyright infringement and have seized domain names associated with the website, according to announcement by Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Zachary T. Fardon of the Northern District of Illinois, Executive Associate Director Peter T. Edge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and Chief Richard Weber of the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI)
Artem Vaulin, 30, of Kharkiv, Ukraine, was arrested today in Poland and is charged by criminal complaint, filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago, with one count of conspiracy to commit criminal copyright infringement, one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering and two counts of criminal copyright infringement.  The United States will seek to extradite Vaulin to the United States.
According to court records, Vaulin allegedly owns and operates Kickass Torrents or KAT, a commercial website that has enabled users to illegally reproduce and distribute hundreds of millions of copyrighted motion pictures, video games, television programs, musical recordings and other electronic media since 2008.  The copyrighted material is collectively valued at well over $1 billion, according to the complaint.  The complaint alleges that KAT receives more than 50 million unique visitors per month and is estimated to be the 69th most frequently visited website on the internet.
In addition, a federal court in Chicago ordered the seizure of one bank account and seven domain names associated with the alleged KAT conspiracy.
According to the complaint, KAT has consistently made available for download movies that were still in theaters and displayed advertising throughout its site.  KAT’s net worth has been estimated at more than $54 million, with estimated annual advertising revenue in the range of $12.5 million to $22.3 million, according to the complaint.  The complaint alleges that the site operates in approximately 28 languages.  KAT has moved its domains several times due to numerous seizures and copyright lawsuits, and it has been ordered blocked by courts in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Italy, Denmark, Belgium and Malaysia, according to the complaint.  KAT has allegedly operated at various times under the domains,,, and, and relied on a network of computer servers located around the world, including in Chicago. 
Several motion pictures currently available for download and sharing on KAT are still showing in theatres, including “Captain America: Civil War,” “Now You See Me 2,” “Independence Day: Resurgence” and “Finding Dory,” according to the complaint.  The complaint alleges that Vaulin, who used the screen name “tirm,” was involved in designing KAT’s original website, oversaw KAT’s operations and, during the latter part of the conspiracy, Vaulin allegedly operated KAT under the auspices of a Ukrainian-based front company called Cryptoneat. 

HSI and IRS-CI investigated the case with substantial assistance from the International Organized Crime Intelligence and Operations Center, the National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center, the Criminal Division’s Office of International Affairs and the Polish Border Guard and National Prosecutor’s Office.
Senior Counsel Ryan K. Dickey of the Criminal Division’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys William E. Ridgway and Devlin N. Su of the Northern District of Illinois are prosecuting the case.  

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Mir Islam, New York Sentenced for Swatting, Doxing and Cyber-Stalking

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA -  – Mir Islam, 22, of New York, N.Y., was sentenced today to 24 months in prison on three federal charges stemming from a conspiracy to commit various crimes related to the “swatting” and “doxing” of dozens of victims, and from a false bomb threat made against a university in Arizona and a pattern of online harassment constituting cyber-stalking against a university student, according to announcement by John S. Leonardo of the District of Arizona, and Paul M. Abbate, Assistant Director of the FBI’s Washington Field Office.

            Islam pleaded guilty on July 6, 2015, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, to a total of three charges. They included one count of conspiracy to commit a range of federal offenses, including identity theft; access device fraud; social security number misuse; computer fraud; wire fraud; assaulting federal officials; and interstate transmission of threats. The other charges included one count of threatening and conveying false information concerning the use of explosives and one count of cyber-stalking.

            In his guilty plea, Islam admitted to “swatting” and “doxing” numerous individuals, to communicating a false shooting and bomb threat on a university campus in Arizona, and to committing a pattern of online harassment against a university student.

          According to court documents, Islam and his co-conspirators “swatted” and “doxed” numerous individuals from February through August 2013. Islam and his co-conspirators committed the doxing and swatting to entertain themselves, to exact revenge for official conduct they found objectionable, to express animus toward certain victims, and for their own notoriety. The investigation is continuing.

      Swatting  in many instances is an assault with a deadly weapon in which the police are used as proxies to commit the assault.  By definition, the crime entails an armed police response.  When the responding officers are threatened in the fake 9-1-1 communications with physical harm or death if they respond, as some were by Islam and his co-conspirators, the officers invariably arrive at the premises in force, with guns drawn and trained on the premises and its occupants.  The prospect for injuries or fatalities in such a police response is manifest.  According to the government’s evidence, Islam and his co-conspirators swatted at least 20 celebrities and state and federal officials. For example, a former member of Congress from Michigan was swatted because of federal legislation he sponsored; a former State Representative, who is now a member of Congress, was swatted because of anti-swatting state legislation he sought to enact, and an Assistant United States Attorney was swatted in retaliation for a particular prosecution he participated in.

 Doxing is the act of gathering, by licit and illicit means, and posting on the Internet personal identifying information (“PII”) and other sensitive information about an individual, including, for example, addresses, dates of birth, social security numbers, telephone numbers, e-mail addresses, credit information, employers, and details regarding the individual’s children and other family members.   According to the government’s evidence, Islam and his co-conspirators posted the PII of at least 50 celebrities and state and federal officials on different websites that all shared the domain name “Exposed,” which were accessible to anyone, anywhere.  The natural, inevitable, and intended consequence of this publication of names, social security numbers, dates of birth, addresses, credit reports, and the like, was the use of that information by countless others to illicitly obtain credit cards and other finance-related accounts using the identities of the doxing victims, causing many victims to suffer continuing credit issues. The publication of the victims’ personal identifying information also revealed to any other would-be harassers or assailants how and where to contact the victims.


            Additionally, according to the government’s evidence, on March 22, 2013, Islam separately falsely reported a shooting and explosives incident on the campus of a university located in Arizona.  Using a 9-1-1 Internet relay system, Islam reported that a man on campus had a gun and a rifle and was shooting people on campus.  Islam further stated that the man was shooting up the area and that he had explosives and was going to blow up buildings.  In response to Islam’s false report, the local police, university police, and the FBI responded to the campus to investigate, including SWAT Teams and a Police Department Bomb Squad.  The campus was placed in lockdown, with flash text messaging sent to the student population advising of a potential active shooter situation.

            Islam made the false shooting and explosives report as part of Islam’s cyber-stalking of a student attending that university.  Over the course of several months after the false bomb threat, according to the government’s evidence, Islam repeatedly called or sent text messages to this student and some of her friends, occasionally threatening them.  Islam impersonated state and federal law enforcement officials to try to collect information about the student.  Islam further acquired unauthorized access to the student’s e-mail and social media accounts, and then downloaded information from those accounts and changed the passwords to the accounts, thereby denying the student access.  Islam created a social media account in which he assumed a false identity, including photographs of someone other than Islam, pretending to be a student attending the student’s university.  Islam used this account and identity to attempt to befriend the student.  Islam’s prolonged harassment of the student caused the student to suffer substantial emotional distress.

            Islam, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Bangladesh, was arrested in September 2013 and has been in custody in this case since July 2015. In addition to the prison time, the Honorable Randolph D. Moss ordered Islam to be placed on three years of supervised release following the prison term; during that time, Islam must agree to computer monitoring and other conditions.

            The investigation was conducted by the FBI’s Washington Field Office.  Assistance was provided by the FBI’s Phoenix, New York and Los Angeles Field Offices; the United States Secret Service’s Boston Field Office, and the Los Angeles, Boston, and Fairfax County, Va., Police Departments.  The Department of Justice’s Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS) also provided support.

            The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Corbin A. Weiss of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia.  Assistance was provided by Assistant U.S. Attorney Beverly Anderson of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Charles Wayne Farris, Aliso Viejo, guilty in multi-million dollar mortgage mod fraud scheme

More than 1,500 Victims of Fraud

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA - Charles Wayne Farris, 55, of Aliso Viejo, California, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Court Judge David O. Carter for the Central District of California to one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, in his role as the sales manager of a multi-million dollar fraudulent mortgage modification scheme, according to announcement by the Department of Justice (DOJ.)

Farris admitted that, between October 2008 and June 2009, he participated in a scheme to induce homeowners to pay between $3,500 and $5,500 for the services of the Rodis Law Group (RLG) and a successor entity, America’s Law Group (ALG).  RLG and ALG advertised on radio stations nationwide, urging struggling homeowners to call a toll-free number and stating that the companies consisted of “a team of experienced attorneys” who were “highly skilled in negotiating lower interest rates and even lowering your principal balance.”  In fact, RLG and ALG were telemarketing operations that never had teams of experienced attorneys.  During much of the scheme, Ronald Rodis was the only attorney at RLG.

Farris supervised a sales force of dozens of telemarketers who fielded calls from struggling homeowners.  At Farris’s direction and using scripts that he created, the telemarketers made numerous misrepresentations regarding the companies’ ability to negotiate loan modifications from the homeowners’ mortgage lenders.  For example, the telemarketers stated that RLG and ALG had been in business for 11 years when in fact the company had only opened in October 2008.  They falsely stated that RLG and ALG routinely obtained positive results for homeowners, including lower monthly payments, reductions in principal balance and lower interest rates.  In fact, positive results were rarely achieved for any RLG or ALG clients.  Telemarketers also falsely reiterated that homeowners would have a team of attorneys and real estate professionals assigned to their case.      

In a plea agreement filed in federal court, Farris admitted that the RLG and ALG schemes fraudulently obtained approximately $9 million from more than 1,500 victims. His sentencing is on April 17, 2017.

Farris was charged along with two co-defendants, Bryan D’Antonio and Ronald Rodis.  Rodis pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud on June 27.  D’Antonio is charged with 23 felony counts.  He is charged with nine counts of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.  Each of these counts carries a statutory maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.  In addition, D’Antonio is charged with 13 counts of criminal contempt for violating a 2001 federal court order, which permanently banned D’Antonio from participating in future telemarketing operations.  Criminal contempt of court has no statutory maximum penalty.  D’Antonio is scheduled for trial beginning Sept. 20.

This case was investigated by the FBI and is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney John W. Burke of the Civil Division’s Consumer Protection Branch and Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph T. McNally of the Central District of California.

Friday, July 08, 2016

Gregory Allen Justice, Culver City CA Arrested and Charged with Espionage

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA -  Gregory Allen Justice,  Culver City, California, was arrested yesterday on federal charges of economic espionage and violations of the Arms Export Control Act for his attempts to sell sensitive satellite information to a person he believed to be a foreign intelligence agent, according to announcement by  Assistant Attorney General for National Security John P. Carlin, U.S. Attorney Eileen M. Decker of the Central District of California, Assistant Director in Charge Deirdre Fike of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office and Special Agent John Rayho of the U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI) Detachment Commander at Los Angeles Air Force Base.

Gregory Allen Justice, 49, who worked for a cleared defense contractor as an engineer on military and commercial satellites during his alleged crimes, was arrested yesterday by FBI special agents and made his initial appearance yesterday afternoon in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.  The judge ordered him detained pending trial.

According to court records,  Justice stole proprietary trade secret materials from his employer and provided them to a person whom he believed to be a representative of a foreign intelligence service, but who was in fact an FBI undercover agent.  In addition to their proprietary nature, the documents contained technical data covered by the U.S. Munitions List and therefore controlled for export from the United States under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations, according to the allegations.  In exchange for providing these materials, Justice allegedly sought and received cash payments.

The FBI and AFOSI investigated the case.  Attorneys from the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Central District of California and the National Security Division’s Counterintelligence and Export Control Section are prosecuting the case.

Yahya Farooq Mohammad, Toledo, Ohio Facing Terrorism Charges Indicted for Plotting to Murder Judge Presiding Over His Case

Posted By CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA - Yahya Farooq Mohammad, Toledo, Ohio, was indicted Wednesday, charging him with soliciting the murder of a federal judge, according to announcement by U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade for the Eastern District of Michigan.

Mohammad, 37, from the United Arab Emirates, was charged with attempted first degree murder of a federal officer, solicitation to commit a crime of violence and use of interstate commerce facilities in commission of murder for hire.
Mohammad was indicted last year on charges of conspiring with three other men to travel to Yemen to provide thousands of dollars to Anwar Al-Awlaki in an effort to support violent jihad against U.S. military personnel in Iraq, Afghanistan and throughout the world.  That case remains pending and is assigned to U.S. District Judge Jack Zouhary of the Northern District of Ohio.
In the most recent charges, Mohammad is accused of soliciting someone to kidnap and murder Judge Zouhary.
On April 8, Mohammad allegedly told another inmate in the Lucas County Corrections Center in Toledo that he wanted Zouhary kidnapped and murdered..  That inmate then introduced Mohammad to an undercover FBI employee, according to the indictment.
The indictment alleges that Mohammad told the inmate that he was willing to pay $15,000 to have Zouhary killed.  Mohammad also allegedly told the undercover employee that he could send a down payment through a mail courier or that the undercover could meet Mohammad’s wife in Chicago to pick up the money.  When asked when he wanted the murder committed, Mohammad stated: “The sooner would be good, you know,” according to the indictment.
On May 5, Mohammad’s wife, identified in the indictment as N.T., met the undercover agent at a post office in Bolingbrook, Illinois, and provided $1,000 in cash inside a white envelope, according to the indictment.
On May 11, Mohammad informed the inmate that the rest of the money for the murder was coming from Dubai to Texas to Chicago to N.T., and then to the undercover agent, according to the indictment.
According to the indictment, on May 16, the undercover agent and N.T. met, and the undercover agent showed N.T. a photograph that purported to be of Zouhary’s dead body.  The undercover agent told N.T. he needed the rest of the money owed to him.  N.T. said she would contact Mohammad and then she would contact the undercover agent, according to the indictment.
The case is prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael Freeman and Matthew Shepherd of the Northern District of Ohio following an investigation by the FBI.  The U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio has recused herself from this case. 

Haris Qamar, Burke, Virginia Charged with Attempting to Provide Support to ISIS

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA  - Haris Qamar, 25, of Burke, Virginia, was arrested this morning on charges of attempting to provide material support and resources to ISIS, according to announcement by Assistant Attorney General for National Security John P. Carlin, U.S. Attorney Dana J. Boente of the Eastern District of Virginia and Assistant Director in Charge Paul M. Abbate of the FBI’s Washington Field Office.

According to court records,  on May 26, Qamar and an FBI confidential witness (CW) discussed a video that ISIS was supposedly making to encourage lone wolf attacks in the Washington, D.C., area.  Unbeknownst to Qamar, there was no actual video being created.  Qamar and the CW discussed the need for photos of possible targets in and around Washington, D.C., for use in the purported video.
According to the complaint, Qamar offered the CW ideas of where to take photographs for use in the video, including the Pentagon and numerous landmarks in Arlington, Virginia, and Washington, D.C., which could be targeted for terrorist attacks.  
On June 3, a conversation was audio and video recorded when CW picked up Qamar in a vehicle and they drove to area landmarks on the list Qamar had developed.  Qamar allegedly said, “bye bye DC, stupid ass kufar, kill’em all.”  Qamar and CW met again on June 10 and drove to a location in Arlington to take additional photos for the purported video.

According to the complaint, the investigation revealed that Qamar operated over 60 variations of the Twitter handle “newerajihadi,” which Qamar used to express his support for ISIS and to share videos and photos of extreme violence, including beheadings and mass shootings.
According to the allegations, during numerous conversations with the CW, Qamar expressed his interest and excitement in the extreme violence that ISIS is known for and said that he loved the bodies, blood and beheadings.  On several occasions, Qamar allegedly said that he could slaughter someone and described how he would do it.
On Sept. 11, 2015, terrorists connected with ISIS posted a “kill list” to the internet containing the names and addresses of U.S. military members.  A few days later, Qamar allegedly told the CW that the residences of several service members who appeared on the “kill list” were near Qamar’s own home, and that Qamar had observed undercover police cars near those residences.  According to the affidavit, on Sept. 16, 2015, Qamar tweeted his prayer that Allah “give strength to the mujahideen to slaughter every single US military officer.” 
Additionally, the affidavit alleges that on Sept. 25, 2015, Qamar told the CW that he tried to join ISIS in 2014, but that his parents prevented him from going overseas by controlling his passport.  Qamar allegedly said that his parents threatened to notify law enforcement authorities and said that he fought with his father and called his father a traitor to Islam.  According to the allegations, on Nov. 18, 2015, Qamar told the CW that he would leave the United States and join ISIS  if his father gave him back his passport. 
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gordon D. Kromberg of the Eastern District of Virginia and Trial Attorney Josh Parecki of the National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section.

Remon Daniel, Redwood, CA pleads guilty to defrauding growers for $1.5 million plus worth of fruits and vegetables.

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA  – Remon Issa Daniel pleaded guilty in federal court late yesterday to three counts of wire fraud for his scheme to defraud produce vendors, according to announcement by United States Attorney Brian J. Stretch and Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge John F. Bennett.  

The plea follows charges Daniel pretended to be employed by reputable produce companies and ordered loads of fruits and vegetables on credit, when he knew he did not have the funds to pay for the loads and had no intention of paying for them.
In pleading guilty, Daniel admitted that between 2014 and his arrest on February 25, 2016, he defrauded at least 38 different businesses of more than $1.5 million worth of fruits and vegetables. Daniel ordered produce primarily from companies in California, Arizona, and Texas, and usually claimed to be from Bay Produce, New San Jose Wholesale, or General Produce, each a genuine produce wholesaler in Northern California.  In fact, Daniel had no association with any of these companies. Daniel admitted to sending some of the vendors a copy of a deposit slip as proof that he had made a payment for the product.  Only after the vendor released the produce to Daniel did the vendor learn that the deposited check was returned for insufficient funds.
Daniel was indicted by a grand jury on March 10, 2016, on 14 counts of wire fraud. According to court records, Daniel has admitted he is guilty of three of the counts in the indictment and the remaining counts will be dismissed.  He is currently being held in in the Santa Clara County Main Jail, pending sentencing, set for October 19, 2016, at 9:45 a.m., before the Honorable United States District Judge Lucy Koh. 

Assistant U.S. Attorney Amber Rosen is prosecuting the case with the assistance of Susan Kreider, Yolanda Singletary, and Nina Williams. 

The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Florida Representative (D) Corrine Brown and Chief of Staff Elias Simmons Charged with Fraud In Bogus Education Charity

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA - Congresswoman Corrine Brown, Democrat, Florida, and her chief of staff Elias Simmons, were indicted today for their roles in a conspiracy and fraud scheme involving a fraudulent education charity, according to announcement by Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney A. Lee Bentley III of the Middle District of Florida, Special Agent in Charge Michelle S. Klimt of the FBI’s Jacksonville Division and Chief Richard Weber of the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI)
Brown, 69, of Jacksonville, Florida, and her chief of staff, Elias “Ronnie” Simmons, 50, of Laurel, Maryland, were charged today in a 24-count indictment with participating in a conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, multiple counts of mail and wire fraud, concealing material facts on required financial disclosure forms, theft of government property, obstruction of the due administration of the internal revenue laws and filing false tax returns.
The indictment alleges that between late 2012 and early 2016, Brown and Simmons participated in a conspiracy and fraud scheme involving One Door for Education – Amy Anderson Scholarship Fund (One Door) in which the defendants and others acting on their behalf solicited more than $800,000 in charitable donations based on false representations that the donations would be used for college scholarships and school computer drives, among other things.  According to the indictment, Brown and Simmons allegedly solicited donations from individuals and corporate entities that Brown knew by virtue of her position in the U.S. House of Representatives, many of whom the defendants led to believe that One Door was a properly-registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, when, in fact, it was not. 
Contrary to the defendants’ representations, the indictment alleges that Brown, Simmons and Carla Wiley, the president of One Door, among others, used the vast majority of One Door donations for their personal and professional benefit, including tens of thousands of dollars in cash deposits that Simmons made to Brown’s personal bank accounts.  In one instance, Simmons is alleged to have deposited $2,100 in One Door funds into Brown’s personal bank account the same day that Brown wrote a check for a similar amount to pay taxes she owed.  Likewise, the indictment alleges that Brown and Simmons used the outside consulting company of one of Brown’s employees to funnel One Door funds to Brown and others for their personal use.  
According to the indictment, more than $200,000 in One Door funds were used to pay for events hosted by Brown or held in her honor, including a golf tournament in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida; lavish receptions during an annual conference in Washington, D.C.; the use of a luxury box during a concert in Washington, D.C.; and the use of a luxury box during an NFL game in the Washington, D.C., area.
Despite raising over $800,000 in donations, the indictment alleges that One Door was associated with only two scholarships totaling $1,200 that were awarded to students to cover expenses related to attending a college or university.
Simmons is also charged with theft of government property based on the misuse of his position as Brown’s chief of staff to obtain congressional employment for a close relative.  Between 2001 and early 2016, Simmons’ relative allegedly received approximately $735,000 in government salary payments despite performing no known work for the U.S. House of Representatives.  The indictment alleges that between 2009 and late 2015, Simmons diverted over $80,000 of his relative’s government salary for his personal benefit, including through transfers to his personal bank accounts, payments on his personal credit cards and loan payments on his boat.
Simmons and Brown are also charged with failing to disclose, among other things, the reportable income they received from One Door and the salary payments that Simmons diverted from his relative’s government employment on required financial disclosure forms submitted to the U.S. House of Representatives and made available to the general public.
Brown is also charged with engaging in tax obstruction between 2008 and 2014 and, in certain years, filing false returns based on her repeated failure to report income from substantial cash deposits to her personal bank accounts and her repeated deduction of inflated and fabricated charitable donations.  According to the indictment, in various years, Brown claimed deductions on her tax returns based on false donations she claimed she made to One Door, as well as to local churches and non-profit organizations in the Jacksonville area.
Wiley, the president of One Door, pleaded guilty for her involvement in the scheme on March 3, 2016.
The FBI and IRS-CI are investigating the case. 
 Deputy Chief Eric G. Olshan of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys A. Tysen Duva and Michael J. Coolican of the Middle District of Florida are prosecuting the case.

Award Winner, Composer/Vocalist/Chef Slim Man to Appear on Saddleback College radio station KSBR 88.5FM's “Breakfast with Gary & Kelly”

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA –  Composer and vocalist Slim Man will be the special guest on the Saddleback College radio station KSBR 88.5FM's  Breakfast with Gary & Kelly broadcast on Saturday, July 16thThe Saturday morning radio show will broadcast live starting at 9:00 a.m. from the beautiful Capo Valley Performing Arts Center on the campus of Capo Valley High School in Mission Viejo.  

A studio audience will be welcomed in for the 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon show; doors will open at 9:30 a.m. with the final hour being videotaped for later broadcast.  The program airs on Saddleback College’s SCTV Channel 39 throughout the Cox Communication cable system in Orange County and also on all Charter Cable franchises in the state of California on Channel 188. The television production is provided by, which also live streams the television program around the world. is a service focused on connecting all musicians and music lovers around the world. Their advisory staff includes members from the Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band, Ringo Starr, Stevie Nicks and others. 

Slim Man is a true renaissance man who has written songs recorded by the Temptations, Angela Bofill and others.  He has hosted his own radio and television shows.  He organized and hosted a nationwide talent contest that discovered multiple Grammy award winning Brooks and Dunn.  His own recordings (he’s released a dozen CD’s since 1995!) show off his unique blend of jazz, soul, and pop and inspired JD Considine to write in Rolling Stone magazine that he was “A near-perfect example of how jazz and soul can be combined as pop.”   He’s also an accomplished cook who recently wrote and released “Slim Man Cooks - The Adventures and Recipes of Mr. Man.”   Most recently he was named “Best Jazz Vocalist” at the 2016 Coachella Music Awards!

Now in its sixth season on TV, Breakfast with Gary & Kelly  have hosted Al Jarreau, Melissa Manchester, Dave Koz, Mindi Abair, Jonathan Butler, Ray Parker Jr., Debbie Reynolds, Linda Evans, David Benoit, Peter White, Diane Schuur, Keiko Matsui, Rick Braun, Paul Brown, Bill Cantos, Brian Culbertson, Nick Colionne, Spencer Day, and more.  Gary and Kelly have conducted numerous remote broadcasts from locations all over Southern California, including the Festival of Arts in Laguna Beach and Catalina Island and the Malibu Guitar Festival.

KSBR is a community service of Saddleback College.  For more information on the Radio on TV monthly series and how to become part of the audience for this very special July 14th show, please tune to 88.5 KSBR or visit their website at

Located in Mission Viejo, Saddleback College provides quality higher education and training to the greater south Orange County community. Having served more than 500,000 students since 1968, Saddleback College offers over 300 degree and certificate programs to help students reach their personal, career, and educational goals. For more information, please visit and for Fine Arts information, please visit

Seven Los Angeles Men Charged with Racketeering and for Firebombing African-American Residences

All defendants are members and associates of the Big Hazard or Hazard Grande (Hazard) street gang, 

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA -   Seven Los Angeles men were charged in a 10-count indictment unsealed today June 7, 2016 with participating in the 2014 firebombing of residences of African Americans living in the Boyle Heights section of Los Angeles.  The defendants were also charged for their roles in a racketeering enterprise that used violence and intimidation to control the perceived territory of the Big Hazard street gang.    

On June 22, 2016, a federal grand jury returned an indictment under seal charging the defendants, all of whom are members and associates of the Big Hazard or Hazard Grande (Hazard) street gang, with a variety of violations stemming from the racketeering enterprise and related to the alleged firebombing that occurred on May 12, 2014, which was intended to drive African Americans from the Ramona Gardens Housing Development (RGHD).  The RGHD is a federally and city funded housing development that is occupied primarily by Hispanic residents and located in Boyle Heights.

Carlos Hernandez, aka Creeper and Rider, 31; Jose Saucedo, aka Lil’ Moe, 22; Francisco Farias, aka Bones, 25; Joseue Garibay, aka Malo, 23; Edwin Felix, aka Boogie, 23; Jonathan Portillo, aka Pelon, 21; and Joel Matthew Monarrez, aka Gallo, 21, were charged with conspiracy to violate civil rights; conspiracy to use fire and carry explosives to commit another federal felony; attempted arson of federal property; using fire and carrying explosives to commit another federal felony; aiding and abetting; violent crime in aid of racketeering and interference with housing rights.  Hernandez and Farias were also charged with possessing, using, carrying a firearm during a crime of violence, and Felix was also charged with making a false statement to the FBI.

The indictment alleges that, in early May, Hernandez led a Hazard meeting at a location in the gang’s territory near the RGHD which was attended by the other defendants.  During the meeting, Hernandez allegedly told the group that they were going to use Molotov cocktails to firebomb residential units in the RGHD that were occupied by African-American families.  According to the indictment, Hernandez allegedly told the defendants during the meeting that the purpose of the firebombing was to “get the n****** out of the neighborhood,” or words to that effect.  

On Mother’s Day, May 11, 2014, Hernandez instructed the other defendants to meet at a location in Hazard territory to prepare for the attack.  At the meeting, Hernandez distributed materials to be used during the firebombings, including disguises, gloves and other materials, according to the indictment.

The indictment alleges that Hernandez instructed the other defendants to split into groups, break victims’ windows in order to make clean entries, then ignite the firebombs and throw them into the victims’ residences in order to maximize damage.  The defendants also took precautions in order to avoid detection by law enforcement.

Evidence gathered by investigators indicates this attack was motivated by hatred stemming from racial bias.  Most of the victims of the firebombing were African-American families who were at home with their children, many of whom were minors.

According to the indictment, the defendants were members and associates of the Hazard street gang, a criminal organization whose members engaged in, among other things, robbery, extortion, witness intimidation, trafficking and conspiracy to traffic in controlled substances.

The indictment further alleges that Hazard gang members promote the reputation of the criminal enterprise among other Hispanic gangs in Southern California and inside of state and federal prisons by carrying out Hazard leaders’ orders against rival gang members and perceived enemies.  Further, Hazard members maintain control and authority over its territory, often through threats, intimidation, civil rights crimes and other acts of violence, including murder.

Hazard members are known to retaliate against rival gang members who challenge Hazard’s authority or who fail to pay debts owed to Hazard members and associates.  The indictment further alleges Hazard members expose and punish fellow Hazard members who violate the gang’s rules, as well as expose and punish potential witnesses to crimes by Hazard members and associates who are suspected of cooperating with law enforcement or disrespecting Hazard members.  The indictment further alleges that Hazard members impose unwritten rules regarding the control of its territory, including that African-American residents reside in RGHD at the pleasure of the gang and that they face retaliation and/or expulsion from RGHD if they offend Hazard members.

The indictment alleges that the defendants and others conspired to injure, oppress, threaten and intimidate African American residents in violation of their constitutional rights, including the right to occupy a dwelling free from injury, intimidation and interference based on race and color.  The indictment alleges Hazard members would spray paint or “tag” gang monikers and symbols on businesses and residences, obtain and possess guns and other dangerous weapons in order to enforce the authority of the Hazard gang, intimidate rivals and residents and attack rivals and African Americans, among other things.

The defendants and others allegedly met to discuss ways to threaten, intimidate, and attack African Americans in their residences, on the streets and elsewhere, to deter them from living in Ramona Gardens because of their race and color.  Saucedo would confront African-American residents, including mixed-race children, and individually or collectively threaten them by telling them they were not welcome in Hazard gang territory, namely, RGHD, and that they risked harm if they remained as residents.

The investigation was conducted by agents and detectives with the LAPD’s Hollenbeck Division; the LAFD; the ATF; and the FBI Los Angeles Division’s Civil Rights Squad.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mack E. Jenkins and Douglas M. Miller of the Central District of California and Trial Attorneys Patricia Sumner and Julia Gegenheimer of the Civil Rights Division’s Criminal Section.

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Gardena-based info tech companies to pay $5.8 Million for Misrepresentations Relating to Small Business Status and Contract Fee Payments

Posted by CotoBlogzz

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA - En Pointe Gov. Inc., En Pointe Technologies Inc., En Pointe Technologies Sales Inc., Dominguez East Holdings LLC and Din Global Corp., all of Gardena, California, have agreed to resolve allegations that they violated the False Claims Act by falsely certifying that En Pointe Gov. Inc. was a small business in order to obtain contracts set aside for small businesses and underreporting sales under a General Services Administration (GSA) contract to avoid the payment of fees, according to announcement by the Department of Justice (DOJ)

According to court records, between 2011 and 2014, the defendants were liable for false representations that En Pointe Gov. Inc. met Small Business Administration (SBA) requirements to obtain work that was only available to small businesses.  In particular, the DOJ alleged that En Pointe Gov Inc.’s affiliation with the other defendants rendered it a non-small business and, thus, ineligible for the small business set-aside contracts it obtained.

The DOJ also alleged that defendants caused En Pointe Gov. Inc. to file false quarterly reports with the GSA between 2008 and 2015 underreporting sales made under a GSA schedule contract that allowed other federal agencies to purchase from En Pointe.  Under the terms of the contract, En Pointe was supposed to return to GSA a percentage of its sales receipts.  By allegedly misrepresenting the amount of its sales, En Pointe underpaid the fees that it owed to GSA.

The settlements resolve allegations filed in a lawsuit by Minburn Technology Group, LLC (Minburn), a Virginia company that sells information technology products and services, and Anthony Colangelo, Minburn’s managing member.  The lawsuit was filed under the qui tam, or whistleblower, provisions of the False Claims Act, which permit private individuals to sue on behalf of the government for false claims and to share in any recovery.  The Act also allows the government to intervene and take over the action, as it did in this case.  Minburn and Mr. Colangelo will receive approximately $1.4 million.

This settlement was the result of a coordinated effort by the Civil Division’s Commercial Litigation Branch, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California and the GSA and SBA Inspector General Offices.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

FBI James Comey: Hillary will not be charged: too big to jail

Posted by Cotoblogzz

FBI James Comey in prepared statement said that while there were multiple violations, and others in similar circumstances would face consequences, Hillary is too big to jail.

Mr. Comey's complete remarks follow:

Good morning. I’m here to give you an update on the FBI’s investigation of Secretary Clinton’s use of a personal e-mail system during her time as Secretary of State.
After a tremendous amount of work over the last year, the FBI is completing its investigation and referring the case to the Department of Justice for a prosecutive decision. What I would like to do today is tell you three things: what we did; what we found; and what we are recommending to the Department of Justice.
This will be an unusual statement in at least a couple ways. First, I am going to include more detail about our process than I ordinarily would, because I think the American people deserve those details in a case of intense public interest. Second, I have not coordinated or reviewed this statement in any way with the Department of Justice or any other part of the government. They do not know what I am about to say.
I want to start by thanking the FBI employees who did remarkable work in this case. Once you have a better sense of how much we have done, you will understand why I am so grateful and proud of their efforts.
So, first, what we have done:
The investigation began as a referral from the Intelligence Community Inspector General in connection with Secretary Clinton’s use of a personal e-mail server during her time as Secretary of State. The referral focused on whether classified information was transmitted on that personal system.
Our investigation looked at whether there is evidence classified information was improperly stored or transmitted on that personal system, in violation of a federal statute making it a felony to mishandle classified information either intentionally or in a grossly negligent way, or a second statute making it a misdemeanor to knowingly remove classified information from appropriate systems or storage facilities.
Consistent with our counterintelligence responsibilities, we have also investigated to determine whether there is evidence of computer intrusion in connection with the personal e-mail server by any foreign power, or other hostile actors.
I have so far used the singular term, “e-mail server,” in describing the referral that began our investigation. It turns out to have been more complicated than that. Secretary Clinton used several different servers and administrators of those servers during her four years at the State Department, and used numerous mobile devices to view and send e-mail on that personal domain. As new servers and equipment were employed, older servers were taken out of service, stored, and decommissioned in various ways. Piecing all of that back together—to gain as full an understanding as possible of the ways in which personal e-mail was used for government work—has been a painstaking undertaking, requiring thousands of hours of effort.
For example, when one of Secretary Clinton’s original personal servers was decommissioned in 2013, the e-mail software was removed. Doing that didn’t remove the e-mail content, but it was like removing the frame from a huge finished jigsaw puzzle and dumping the pieces on the floor. The effect was that millions of e-mail fragments end up unsorted in the server’s unused—or “slack”—space. We searched through all of it to see what was there, and what parts of the puzzle could be put back together.
FBI investigators have also read all of the approximately 30,000 e-mails provided by Secretary Clinton to the State Department in December 2014. Where an e-mail was assessed as possibly containing classified information, the FBI referred the e-mail to any U.S. government agency that was a likely “owner” of information in the e-mail, so that agency could make a determination as to whether the e-mail contained classified information at the time it was sent or received, or whether there was reason to classify the e-mail now, even if its content was not classified at the time it was sent (that is the process sometimes referred to as “up-classifying”).
From the group of 30,000 e-mails returned to the State Department, 110 e-mails in 52 e-mail chains have been determined by the owning agency to contain classified information at the time they were sent or received. Eight of those chains contained information that was Top Secret at the time they were sent; 36 chains contained Secret information at the time; and eight contained Confidential information, which is the lowest level of classification. Separate from those, about 2,000 additional e-mails were “up-classified” to make them Confidential; the information in those had not been classified at the time the e-mails were sent.
The FBI also discovered several thousand work-related e-mails that were not in the group of 30,000 that were returned by Secretary Clinton to State in 2014. We found those additional e-mails in a variety of ways. Some had been deleted over the years and we found traces of them on devices that supported or were connected to the private e-mail domain. Others we found by reviewing the archived government e-mail accounts of people who had been government employees at the same time as Secretary Clinton, including high-ranking officials at other agencies, people with whom a Secretary of State might naturally correspond.
This helped us recover work-related e-mails that were not among the 30,000 produced to State. Still others we recovered from the laborious review of the millions of e-mail fragments dumped into the slack space of the server decommissioned in 2013.
With respect to the thousands of e-mails we found that were not among those produced to State, agencies have concluded that three of those were classified at the time they were sent or received, one at the Secret level and two at the Confidential level. There were no additional Top Secret e-mails found. Finally, none of those we found have since been “up-classified.”
I should add here that we found no evidence that any of the additional work-related e-mails were intentionally deleted in an effort to conceal them. Our assessment is that, like many e-mail users, Secretary Clinton periodically deleted e-mails or e-mails were purged from the system when devices were changed. Because she was not using a government account—or even a commercial account like Gmail—there was no archiving at all of her e-mails, so it is not surprising that we discovered e-mails that were not on Secretary Clinton’s system in 2014, when she produced the 30,000 e-mails to the State Department.
It could also be that some of the additional work-related e-mails we recovered were among those deleted as “personal” by Secretary Clinton’s lawyers when they reviewed and sorted her e-mails for production in 2014.
The lawyers doing the sorting for Secretary Clinton in 2014 did not individually read the content of all of her e-mails, as we did for those available to us; instead, they relied on header information and used search terms to try to find all work-related e-mails among the reportedly more than 60,000 total e-mails remaining on Secretary Clinton’s personal system in 2014. It is highly likely their search terms missed some work-related e-mails, and that we later found them, for example, in the mailboxes of other officials or in the slack space of a server.
It is also likely that there are other work-related e-mails that they did not produce to State and that we did not find elsewhere, and that are now gone because they deleted all e-mails they did not return to State, and the lawyers cleaned their devices in such a way as to preclude complete forensic recovery.
We have conducted interviews and done technical examination to attempt to understand how that sorting was done by her attorneys. Although we do not have complete visibility because we are not able to fully reconstruct the electronic record of that sorting, we believe our investigation has been sufficient to give us reasonable confidence there was no intentional misconduct in connection with that sorting effort.
And, of course, in addition to our technical work, we interviewed many people, from those involved in setting up and maintaining the various iterations of Secretary Clinton’s personal server, to staff members with whom she corresponded on e-mail, to those involved in the e-mail production to State, and finally, Secretary Clinton herself.
Last, we have done extensive work to understand what indications there might be of compromise by hostile actors in connection with the personal e-mail operation.
That’s what we have done. Now let me tell you what we found:
Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information.
For example, seven e-mail chains concern matters that were classified at the Top Secret/Special Access Program level when they were sent and received. These chains involved Secretary Clinton both sending e-mails about those matters and receiving e-mails from others about the same matters. There is evidence to support a conclusion that any reasonable person in Secretary Clinton’s position, or in the position of those government employees with whom she was corresponding about these matters, should have known that an unclassified system was no place for that conversation. In addition to this highly sensitive information, we also found information that was properly classified as Secret by the U.S. Intelligence Community at the time it was discussed on e-mail (that is, excluding the later “up-classified” e-mails).
None of these e-mails should have been on any kind of unclassified system, but their presence is especially concerning because all of these e-mails were housed on unclassified personal servers not even supported by full-time security staff, like those found at Departments and Agencies of the U.S. Government—or even with a commercial service like Gmail.
Separately, it is important to say something about the marking of classified information. Only a very small number of the e-mails containing classified information bore markings indicating the presence of classified information. But even if information is not marked “classified” in an e-mail, participants who know or should know that the subject matter is classified are still obligated to protect it.
While not the focus of our investigation, we also developed evidence that the security culture of the State Department in general, and with respect to use of unclassified e-mail systems in particular, was generally lacking in the kind of care for classified information found elsewhere in the government.
With respect to potential computer intrusion by hostile actors, we did not find direct evidence that Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail domain, in its various configurations since 2009, was successfully hacked. But, given the nature of the system and of the actors potentially involved, we assess that we would be unlikely to see such direct evidence. We do assess that hostile actors gained access to the private commercial e-mail accounts of people with whom Secretary Clinton was in regular contact from her personal account. We also assess that Secretary Clinton’s use of a personal e-mail domain was both known by a large number of people and readily apparent. She also used her personal e-mail extensively while outside the United States, including sending and receiving work-related e-mails in the territory of sophisticated adversaries. Given that combination of factors, we assess it is possible that hostile actors gained access to Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail account.
So that’s what we found. Finally, with respect to our recommendation to the Department of Justice:
In our system, the prosecutors make the decisions about whether charges are appropriate based on evidence the FBI has helped collect. Although we don’t normally make public our recommendations to the prosecutors, we frequently make recommendations and engage in productive conversations with prosecutors about what resolution may be appropriate, given the evidence. In this case, given the importance of the matter, I think unusual transparency is in order.
Although there is evidence of potential violations of the statutes regarding the handling of classified information, our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case. Prosecutors necessarily weigh a number of factors before bringing charges. There are obvious considerations, like the strength of the evidence, especially regarding intent. Responsible decisions also consider the context of a person’s actions, and how similar situations have been handled in the past.
In looking back at our investigations into mishandling or removal of classified information, we cannot find a case that would support bringing criminal charges on these facts. All the cases prosecuted involved some combination of: clearly intentional and willful mishandling of classified information; or vast quantities of materials exposed in such a way as to support an inference of intentional misconduct; or indications of disloyalty to the United States; or efforts to obstruct justice. We do not see those things here.
To be clear, this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences. To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions. But that is not what we are deciding now.
As a result, although the Department of Justice makes final decisions on matters like this, we are expressing to Justice our view that no charges are appropriate in this case.
I know there will be intense public debate in the wake of this recommendation, as there was throughout this investigation. What I can assure the American people is that this investigation was done competently, honestly, and independently. No outside influence of any kind was brought to bear.
I know there were many opinions expressed by people who were not part of the investigation—including people in government—but none of that mattered to us. Opinions are irrelevant, and they were all uninformed by insight into our investigation, because we did the investigation the right way. Only facts matter, and the FBI found them here in an entirely apolitical and professional way. I couldn’t be prouder to be part of this organization.