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June 18, 2012 - The Federal Crimes Watch Daily

June 18, 2012 - The Federal Crimes Watch Daily

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Published by Douglas McNabb
The Federal Crimes Watch Daily is a daily newspaper that discusses current federal criminal issues written by a federal criminal defense attorney.
The Federal Crimes Watch Daily is a daily newspaper that discusses current federal criminal issues written by a federal criminal defense attorney.

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Published by: Douglas McNabb on Jun 18, 2012
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Federal Criminal Defense Lawyerswww.McNabbAssociates.comMonday, June 18, 2012
Submitted at 3:55 PM June 18, 2012
The Washington Post on June 18, 2012released the following:“By Ann E. Marimow and Del QuentinWilberLegendary pitcher Roger Clemens wasfound not guilty Monday of all charges inthe government’s perjury case againsthim.Over seven weeks of testimony in thecase against Clemens, jurors heard frommore than 40 witnesses, including formermajor league ballplayers, a housekeeper,the general manager of the New York Yankees and the wife of the star pitcher.The trial, initially anticipated to last fourto six weeks, was at times slow going,with two jurors dismissed for sleeping onthe job.Deliberations began Tuesday, but jurorswere off on Thursday and Friday.The baseball legend was on trial for asecond time, charged with six counts of perjury, making false statements andobstructing Congress for denying in 2008that he had ever taken steroids or humangrowth hormone. A House panel wasfollowing up on a 2007 report by formersenator George Mitchell that connecteddozens of ballplayers, including Clemens,to performance-enhancing drugs.Clemens told Congressional staffers andlawmakers in a nationally televisedhearing that his former strength coachBrian McNamee had injected him withliquid vitamin B 12 and the painkillerlidocaine – not steroids or human growthhormone. But McNamee told the sameHouse committee that he injected theseven-time Cy Young Award winner withthe banned substances on severaloccasions in 1998, 2000 and 2001.Defense attorneys portrayed Clemens as aman who was unfairly pursued by a hugeteam of investigators and prosecutors forfour and a half years. Despite more than200 interviews and the work of more than90 federal agents, Clemens’s attorneyemphasized that McNamee, a man with atroubled past, was the only person totestify to firsthand knowledge of theballplayer’s alleged use of performance-enhancing drugs. Clemens’s highlydecorated 24-year career was the result of hard work and discipline, not drugs, hislawyers said.Prosecutors responded that it wasunremarkable to find just one witness towhat they described as Clemens’s “dirtylittle secret.” Government’s lawyers notedthat not one of the defense’s witnesses hadtestified to seeing McNamee injectClemens with vitamin B-12 or lidocaine.And they put on the stand several athletictrainers and team doctors who testifiedthat McNamee would not have had accessor the authority to inject the star pitcherwith such substances in their teamclubhouses.The defense team spent considerable timeattacking McNamee’s credibility, at onepoint putting his estranged wife on thewitness stand to contradict the formerstrength coach’s testimony about why hekept needles, cotton balls and othermedical waste from the alleged injections.The former strength coach admitted tohaving exaggerated, changed his story andlied to authorities in a 2001 criminalinvestigation into an alleged sexualassault.But prosecutors said McNamee had littleincentive to turn on his former employerwhose cachet helped McNamee’s ownbusiness as a personal trainer. McNameeonly decided to turn over the medicalwaste — stored in a MillerLite can andFedEx box, he said — after Clemensallowed a taped conversation thatmentioned McNamee’s sick child to beaired on national television.Perhaps the most dramatic moment of thetrial came when Clemens’s formerteammate and friend, Andy Pettitte,backed away from a critical element of theprosecution’s case. Pettitte, a star pitcherin his own right, initially told jurors thatClemens confided in him in 1999 or 2000about using HGH to help with recovery.Pettitte had earlier told Congressionalinvestigators the same story. But on cross-examination, Pettitte agreed with one of Clemens’s attorneys, Michael Attanasio,that there was a 50/50 chance he hadmisheard his friend.Even before the trial began, many of theWashingtonians called to the PrettymanCourthouse for jury duty questioned thewisdom of the government investigatingthe use of performance-enhancing drugsin big league baseball. In interviews withthe judge, many prospective jurors —including some selected for the panel —said that Congress should have beenspending its time on weightier matters thataffected more people.In reaching a verdict, the panel of eightwomen and four men had to decidewhether Clemens’s answers to questionsfrom Congressional investigators andlawmakers were “material” or relevant tothe work of committee “as distinguishedfrom unimportant or trivial facts,”according to the lengthy jury instructions.To find Clemens guilty of the obstructioncharge, for instance, jurors had tounanimously agree that the all-star pitchermade at least one of 13 allegedly false ormisleading statements on subjectsincluding his use of vitamin B-12 and thecircumstances of his wife’s injection of human growth hormone.In July, during the pitcher’s first trial onthe same charges, Walton declared amistrial after just two days of testimony.But the judge subsequently decided not todismiss the charges, allowing this year’strial to proceed.”————————————————————–Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates,P.C.’sFederal Criminal Defense AttorneysVideos: Federal Crimes – Be Careful Federal Crimes – Be Proactive Federal Crimes – Federal Indictment————————————————————–To find additional federal criminal news,please readFederal Criminal DefenseDaily.Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/ or report extensively on matters involvingFederal Criminal Defense, INTERPOLRed Notice Removal, InternationalExtradition Defense, OFAC SDNSanctions Removal, InternationalCriminal Court Defense, and US Seizureof Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets.Because we have experience dealing withINTERPOL, our firm understands theinter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “RedNotice” brings to this equation.The author of this blog is Douglas C.McNabb. Please feel free to contact himdirectly atmcnabb@mcnabbassociates.comor at oneof the offices listed above.
 
2Federal Criminal Defense Lawyers
Submitted at 3:38 PM June 18, 2012
NJ.com on June 17, 2012 released thefollowing:“By Ted Sherman/The Star-LedgerThe Eli Lilly warehouse in Enfield,Conn., is a nondescript beige buildingwith a pebbled concrete exterior, just off Freshwater Boulevard.Although just down the road from asuburban shopping mall and an OliveGarden restaurant, it feels like the middleof nowhere, surrounded by woods andlittle else.A light rain was falling on Saturday,March 13, 2010, when a tractor-trailerrumbled up to the loading dock about 9:33p.m. Shut down for the weekend, thebuilding had no security fence orwatchman to keep an eye on the pallets of the costly pharmaceuticals awaitingshipment.A video surveillance camera captured thefuzzy image of two men apparentlychecking to see if there was anyone insidethe office. Then they quickly carried aladder to get to the roof. Little more thantar and metal sheeting, it would not takemuch effort to cut through if nobody waswatching.And nobody was.The Enfield warehouse was about tobecome legend — the scene of an $80million commercial drug heist, the biggestin U.S. history.This is the inside story of how it wentdown and how authorities tracked andarrested 22 alleged members of anOcean’s Eleven-style ring of thieves, whooperated with their own trucks,warehouses and black market wholesalers.Criminal complaints filed in federal courtin New Jersey, Florida, Connecticut andIllinois detail an operation that stole andthen sold an eclectic litany of products:trailer-loads of pharmaceuticalsexchanged for cash in the parking lot of aToys “R” Us in North Bergen, hair careproducts taken in San Antonio andunloaded to a buyer in Newark, boxes of respiratory medicine loaded onto a flatbedtow truck at a Home Depot parking lot inHollywood, Fla. They made off withmillions in cancer drugs andantidepressants, and carried away loads of whiskey, inflatable boats and cigarettes.It was an operation, say federal lawenforcement sources, that was penetratedby an FBI cargo theft task force in NewJersey after a buy-and-bust sting involvinga load of pharmaceuticals stolen inGeorgia led investigators to Florida.But the most revealing information comesby way of an FBI court affidavit,mistakenly unsealed, offering a rareinsight into the workings of a network thatoperated like a big business with high-end, fast-moving theft crews —sometimes working independently, othertimes as teams.The accused, say investigators, includedtwo brothers — one an expert in alarmsystems — each with a long history of taking stuff that did not belong to them.And both might still be free but for twomistakes that ultimately helped federalagents identify gang members and track them down — a discarded water bottleand a brand new set of tools.“This wasn’t about a guy walking downthe street with a black knit hat and acrowbar over his shoulder. It was nothinglike that,” said Charles Forsaith,coordinator of the Pharmaceutical CargoSecurity Coalition, an industry group thatshares intelligence. “This was a group thathad tentacles elsewhere.”EL GATO AND THE CUBANSAmaury Villa is a stocky man with close-cropped hair, a tattoo of a scorpion on hisleft arm, and a long rap sheet for burglary.“Unfortunately he has a substantialcriminal background,” acknowledged hisattorney, Frank Rubino of Miami.Living in Miami with a girlfriend, andhaving to make monthly child supportpayments, Villa had recently incorporateda transportation company, Florida recordsshowed. E-mails revealed he was lookingto purchase several long-haul tractor-trailer rigs.He also apparently knew his way aroundsecurity systems. On an application for asafe deposit box at the Bank of America,Villa listed his occupation as a self-employed alarm installer.Three months before the drug companywarehouse in Enfield was hit, prosecutorssaid Villa boarded an American Airlinesflight from Miami to LaGuardia Airport inNew York on Jan. 7, 2010, together withanother individual — a man not chargedin the case, but identified in the FBIaffidavit as “El Gato.” The Cat. Accordingto the affidavit, El Gato’s real name wasYosmany Nunez Aguilar, who also had arecord for theft of interstate freight.Villa rented a luxury Infinity QX56 SUVfrom Hertz at the airport counter. He thendrove to the Hyatt Regency Hotel on theJersey City waterfront, where Villa — aHyatt platinum club member — hadreserved two rooms for the night.The next day, Villa and another man,believed to be Aguilar, drove to Windsor,Conn., approximately 11 miles fromEnfield, where Villa checked into theHyatt Summerfield Suites for a two-nightstay.It was a scouting mission, agentssurmised in the affidavit. Late Saturdayevening, about 10:35 p.m., thesurveillance video at the Eli Lillywarehouse captured an individual walkingaround the outside and peering throughthe front doors of the locked building.Nobody was monitoring the camera, butsomeone — very likely Villa — appearedto be casing the joint, the FBI said. Villareturned to Miami the next day.Cargo theft is a multibillion-dollarbusiness, according to the FBI andForsaith, a former New Hampshire statepolice officer who now works as atransportation security expert, said there isa methodology to how cargo thieves ferretout targets.“In today’s day and age, you can prettymuch go on the internet and tell what acompany makes, where it is located — beit Pfizer or Purdue — and use that publicinformation to make an educated guess asto what that company manufacturers, andwhere those products may be distributed,”he said.Trucks leaving a warehouse may befollowed to determine their routes of travel long before any theft takes place.Warehouses are not hard to find onGoogle Maps.Villa, say authorities, had made a careerout of it. Less than two weeks after hisadvance trip to Connecticut, Villa wastracked to another warehouse job 1,000miles away. On Jan. 22, records showsomeone using Villa’s credit card checkedinto the Fairfield Inn in East Peoria.The target that weekend, according to theFBI, was a commercial warehouse alongIllinois Route 116 containing a sizableload of cigarettes being stored fordistribution.The operation seemed well orchestratedto police. Thieves did not try to go inthrough the front door, but rather climbedto the unsecured roof, cut through withpower tools, and lowered themselves inwith ropes. They seemed to know whatthey were looking for there. The alarmsystem was bypassed without cutting a
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3Federal Criminal Defense Lawyers
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single wire, and a convoy of stolen tractor-trailers pulled up to haul away more than3,500 cases of cigarettes valued at morethan $8 million.One of the truck trailers turned up in NewJersey two days later, abandoned nearNewark on the southbound shoulder of theeastern spur of the New Jersey Turnpike,authorities say.But inside the East Peoria warehouse,someone left a clue that would helpconnect the dots much later. According tothe FBI affidavit, DNA that they now link to Villa’s older brother, Amed, wasrecovered at the scene.With dark hair and the tattoo of a skull onhis right arm, Amed Villa was well knownto law enforcement authorities. Hereportedly installed fire doors for a living,according to his attorney, but he had ahistory of arrests and convictions forburglary. He had been arrested andconvicted for burglary in January 2000 inSeminole County, Fla., and charged withmultiple burglary-related offenses inFlorida between 1995 and 2005, the FBIaffidavit noted.A Cuban citizen, he had been ordereddeported from the United States,according to the FBI, although he had notbeen detained. Rather, he was required toperiodically check in with immigrationauthorities. He had not done so for years,according to the affidavit.In July 2009, another multimillion-dollarcigarette warehouse burglary was reportedin Montgomery, Ill. Inside, said the FBI,they again found DNA that matched thesame unique biological fingerprint pickedup in East Peoria. Days before the July 4break-in, the FBI found Amaury Villa hadchecked into a hotel in Rosemont, some40 miles away, and checked out after theheist.Then in August 2009, thieves struck thebig GlaxoSmithKline distributionwarehouse in Chesterfield, Va., cuttingthrough the roof, disabling the alarms anddriving away with at least $4.3 million of its respiratory drug Advair Diskus.Amaury again had not been far away. Theday before, he had checked into a hotel inChester, Va., some 15 miles away fromChesterfield, according to the FBI. Andinvestigators again had a DNA match tothe earlier jobs, they said, left on a coffeecup in the warehouse.Officials will not disclose if they knewwho they were looking for based on theDNA. But if they did not yet know thename of Amed Villa, the evidence showedthat one person had been at the scene of three major unsolved crimes.THE CONNECTICUT CAPERIn March, members of the gang werezeroing in on their new target, the EliLilly warehouse in Enfield, Conn.,according to complaints filed in the caseand other court documents.Amaury Villa had just negotiated leaseagreements for two Freightliner CL-20tractor trucks — one for $20,205 and theother for $23,211 — through the companyhe set up in Florida, called Trans-USA.Villa rented another Infiniti QX56 inearly March, between a flurry of flights hemade to and from Miami and New York.On March 12, Villa checked back into theSummerfield Suites, using his platinumHyatt membership card.The Connecticut break-in occurred on thenight of March 13, following the samescript as that of the GlaxoSmithKline theftin Virginia, the cigarette heist in EastPeoria, and the job in Montgomery. Thethieves went in on a Saturday night,climbed to the roof, cut into thedrugmaker’s warehouse, rappelled downusing climbing gear to the floor below andknocked out the alarm system withoutcutting wires.“The security surveillance system andalarm were disabled in a manner whichindicated familiarity with systems of thistype,” wrote FBI agent John Howell in hisaffidavit. “For example, wires were notcut, but rather unplugged and only certainof the wires were unplugged. Other wires,which might have set off alarms outside of Connecticut were not disconnected forsome time.”The crew had plenty of time tothemselves and put together 49 pallets of drugs, using forklifts inside the warehouseto load boxes of Zyprexa, an anti-psychotic drug used to treat bipolardisorder; Prozac and Cymbalta, bothantidepressant drugs; and Gemzar, achemotherapy drug used to treat lungcancer.They drove away into the night, and intointernational headlines of what seemedlike a Hollywood-style caper movie,starring a crack team of brazenprofessionals who knew what they werelooking for before they punched their wayinside.But as smart as the alleged gang memberswere, law enforcement documents say,they left more evidence behind — enoughto get the Villa brothers arrested.When the Enfield Police Department wascalled to the scene, they found an openedcase of water bottles, with several emptyplastic bottles scattered on the floor of thekitchen and office area of the warehouse.Later in a lab, they found DNA on thewater bottle that matched the DNA foundon the coffee cup of the GlaxoSmithKlinewarehouse in Virginia, and at two Illinoiswarehouse break-ins, linking four jobsnow to the same man — Amed Villa.Also lying on the floor was a collectionof several red-handled Husky-brand handtools and an assortment of power tools, allwith that immaculate, never-used look.The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Connecticutwould not disclose what specific toolswere used, but the thieves could not havemade a more ill-advised purchase.Husky is a brand sold only at HomeDepot stores, and investigators speculatedthat someone might have purchasedeverything at one time. Agents beganscouring Home Depot computer records tofind out if how many collections of theeight tools matching those recovered inConnecticut had ever been sold together inone place.The answer was a blockbuster. Thepurchase had been made only once in thepast 12 months — at the Flushing, N.Y.,store on March 12, 2010, at 1:13 p.m.The home improvement store’s ownrecords not only provided a road map, butimages of the sale itself at the checkoutline. Surveillance cameras in the storeshowed two men at the register, paying forthe $757 purchase in cash. Those sametwo men could then be seen on othervideo footage Home Depot maintained of its parking lot, as they put their purchasesinto the back of an SUV.It looked a lot like the Infiniti QX56rented by Villa.AN UNSELLABLE CARGOJust days after the theft, the FBI in NewHaven got an anonymous call helpingconnect more of the pieces. Three of theperpetrators of the Eli Lilly heist, thecaller said, would be meeting in the nearfuture to negotiate the load.Among them was Aguilar, who the callerknew only as El Gato. All of them, theFBI was told, hung out at theRickenbacker Marina in Key Biscayne,Fla., where the nearby Rusty Pelicanoffers up a great waterside view of Miami,along with steaks, burgers with avocadofries, and Holy Mackerel Special GoldenAle.The surveillance that followed wouldsoon lead investigators to others, and anundercover buy operation to locate thestolen drugs, the criminal complaintsshow.Pharmaceuticals are typically marketedthrough wholesalers, but there has longbeen a secondary wholesale market thatoften deals with products offered atcheaper prices because they are about toexpire. Sellers are supposed to have“pedigrees” to show the stuff came froman authorized wholesaler.“Typically you have these sellers with faxmachines who blast out that they have thisINSIDE page 6

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