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August 5, 2011 - The Federal Crimes Watch Daily

August 5, 2011 - 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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Federal Criminal Defense Lawyers

Friday, August 5, 2011

www.McNabbAssociates.com

DEA Allegedly Cut a Deal With Sinaloa Cartel, Say Court Documents
McNabb Associates, P.C. (Federal Criminal Defense Lawyers)
Submitted at 4:20 PM August 5, 2011

Fox News on August 5, 2011 released the following: “By William Lajeunesse America’s Third War: The U.S. Cut a Deal With the Sinaloa Cartel, Say Court Documents U.S. federal agents allegedly cut a deal with the Sinaloa drug cartel that allowed it to traffic tons of narcotics across the border, in exchange for information about rival cartels, according to documents filed in federal court. Click here to view the Sinaloa Cartel case document. The allegations are made by Vicente Zambada-Niebla, a top ranking cartel boss extradited to the U.S. last year on drug charges. He is a close associate of Mexico’s most wanted man, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman and the son of Ismael “Mayo” Zambada-Garcia. Both remain fugitives, in part, because of the deal Zambada- Niebla made with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency, according to a defense motion filed last Friday in the case. Alvin Michaelson, the Los Angeles attorney representing Zambada- Niebla who wrote the brief, refused comment. The deal allegedly began with Humberto Loya-Castro, a Sinaloa cartel lawyer who became an informant for the D.E.A. after a drug case against him was dismissed in 2008. According to the motion, the deal was part of a ‘divide and conquer’ strategy, where the U.S. helped finance and arm the Sinaloa cartel, through Operation Fast and Furious, in exchange for information that allowed the D.E.A. and FBI to destroy and dismantle rival Mexican cartels. Operation Fast and Furious is the failed Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives anti-gun trafficking program which allowed thousand of guns to cross into Mexico. “Under that agreement, the Sinaloa Cartel, through Loya, was to provide information
(USDOJ: Justice News)
Submitted at 3:38 PM August 5, 2011

accumulated by Mayo, Chapo, and others, against rival Mexican Drug Trafficking Organizations to the United States government. In return, the United States government agreed to dismiss the prosecution of the pending case against Loya, not to interfere with his drug trafficking activities and those of the Sinaloa Cartel, to not actively prosecute him, Chapo, Mayo, and the leadership of the Sinaloa Cartel, and to not apprehend them.” Zambada- Niebla was arrested in Mexico City in March 2009 and extradited to the U.S. in February to stand trial on narcotrafficking-related charges. The indictment claims he served as the cartel’s “logistical coordinator” who oversaw an operation that imported tons of cocaine into the U.S. by jets, buses, rail cars, tractor-trailers, and automobiles. Zambada -Niebla is now being held in solitary confinement in a Chicago jail cell. The motion claims Mayo, Chapo and Zambada- Niebla routinely passed information through Loya to the D.E.A. that allowed it to make drug busts. In return, the U.S. helped the leaders evade Mexican police. It says: “In addition, the defense has evidence that from time to time, the leadership of the Sinaloa Cartel was informed by agents of the DEA through Loya that United States government agents and/or Mexican authorities were conducting investigations near the home territories of cartel leaders so that the cartel leaders could take appropriate actions to evade investigators- even though the United States government had indictments, extradition requests, and rewards for the apprehension of Mayo, Chapo, and other alleged leaders, as well as Mr. Zambada-Niebla.” In 2008, “the DEA representative told Mr. Loya-Castro that they wanted to establish a more personal relationship with Mr. Zambada-Niebla so that they could deal with him directly.” In March 17, 2009, Loya set up a meeting at the Sheraton Hotel in Mexico City with Robert Colbert, of Pittsburgh, pleaded guilty today in federal court to charges of

two D.E.A. agents, identified as Manny and David. There, the four men met and Zambada-Niebla claims he received immunity from an indictment out of federal court in Washington D.C. “There is also evidence that at the hotel, Mr. Zambada-Niebla did accept the agreement and thereafter in reliance on that agreement, provided further information regarding rival drug cartels. Mr. Zambada-Niebla was told that the government agents were satisfied with the information he had provided to them and that arrangements would be made to meet with him again. Mr. Zambada-Niebla then left the meeting. Approximately five hours after the meeting, Mr. Zambada-Niebla was arrested by Mexican authorities.” Experts who reviewed the document say the U.S. typically has written agreements with paid informants that spell out each other’s responsibilities. They doubt Zambada-Niebla had one, although Loya probably did. The defense here is hoping to obtain DEA reports that detail the agencies relationship with the Sinaloa cartel and get the agents on the stand. In response in court, the U.S. doesn’t dispute that Zambada-Niebla may have acted as an informant – only that he did not act with D.E.A. consent. The D.E.A. and the federal prosecutors in Chicago had no comment. Former D.E.A. director Karen Tandy told Fox News “I do not have any knowledge of this and it doesn’t sound right from my experience.”” To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Criminal Defense Daily. Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal. The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above. conspiring to conduct a racketeering enterprise.

Pittsburgh Crips Leader Pleads Guilty to Racketeering Charges

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Pedro Martinez III, Former Laredo Police Officer, Sentenced to Prison for Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute Cocaine
McNabb Associates, P.C. (Federal Criminal Defense Lawyers)
Submitted at 10:12 AM August 5, 2011

The U.S. Attorney’s Office Southern District of Texas on August 4, 2011 released the following: “Former Laredo Police Officer Sentenced to Prison for Drug Trafficking LAREDO, Texas – Former Laredo Police Department (LPD) officer Pedro Martinez III was sentenced to prison today by Senior U.S. District Judge George P. Kazen for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today. Charged along with co-conspirator Guillermo Villarreal of conspiring to possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine, Martinez, 34, of Laredo, pleaded guilty on Feb. 17, 2010, to that offense and also to conspiring with former LPD officer, Orlando Jesus Hale, to accept bribes to escort cocaine-loaded vehicles through Laredo. Today, Judge Kazen sentenced Martinez to 78 months in federal prison to be followed by a five-year-term of supervised release. At the time of his guilty plea, Martinez admitted that he introduced Villarreal, who he knew was engaged in trafficking cocaine, to another person for Villarreal to work out arrangements to store cocaine at the person’s residence. The residence was located near Villarreal’s residence and facilitated his cocaine trafficking

activities. Villarreal made several sales of cocaine to undercover officers. Each time, Villarreal retrieved the cocaine from the storage facility owned by the person to whom Martinez had introduced him. On Sept. 29, 2009, investigating agents executed a warrant at the person’s residence located near Villarreal’s residence and seized approximately three kilograms of cocaine, a metal press used to press cocaine into kilogram-size bricks plus other narcotics trafficking paraphernalia such as scales, a blender and plastic wrap. Villarreal, who has also pleaded guilty to the drug conspiracy charge, is pending sentencing. Martinez also admitted conspiring with former LPD officer Hale to escort cocaine -loaded vehicles through Laredo. The officers used their police-issued radios to monitor LPD dispatch traffic during the escort. In 2008, Martinez met with an FBI undercover employee (UCE) and agreed to and did escort two vehicle – on Oct. 15, 2008, and again on Nov. 13, 2008, – that he believed contained approximately 20 kilograms of actual cocaine. Hale was involved in escorting the loaded vehicle in November. During each escort, Martinez actually escorted a “sham” load of cocaine from south Zapata Highway to north Laredo. For each escort, Martinez was paid $1,000 by an FBI UCE. Hale was charged separately for his role in this conspiracy and convicted in September 2010 by a jury’s verdict following a sixday trial of conspiracy to possess with

intent to distribute cocaine and carrying a firearm during and in relation to a drug trafficking offense. He was sentenced on April 19, 2011, to a total of 295 months in federal prison without parole and fined $1000. Martinez has been permitted to remain on bond pending the issuance of a court order to surrender to a Bureau of Prisons facility to be designated in the near future where he will serve his sentence. The investigation leading to the charges and ultimately the conviction of Martinez and the others was conducted by the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Homeland Security Investigations with the cooperation of the Laredo Police Department. Former Assistant United States Attorney Samuel Sheldon and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Roberto F. Ramirez and James McAlister prosecuted the case.” To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Criminal Defense Daily. Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal. The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

The Incorporation Transparency and Law Enforcement Assistance Act: Another Tool to Fight Transnational Crime
Tracy Russo (USDOJ: Justice Blog)
Submitted at 7:51 AM August 5, 2011

Around the globe today, criminals are seeking to exploit the lack of transparency associated with U.S. companies to harm our national and economic security. Major drug trafficking cartels, arms traffickers and other criminal organizations have employed shell corporations to further their illegal activities and launder their illgotten proceeds. The Department of Justice joins our partners at [...]

Two Telecommunications Executives Convicted by Miami Jury on All Counts for Their Involvement in Scheme to Bribe Officials at State-Owned Telecommunications Company in Haiti
(USDOJ: Justice News)
Submitted at 12:33 PM August 5, 2011

New Orleans Police Officers Convicted of Civil Rights Violations in Danziger Bridge Case
(USDOJ: Justice News)
Submitted at 2:45 PM August 5, 2011

Joel Esquenazi and Carlos Rodriguez, former executives of Terra Telecommunications Corp., have been convicted by a federal jury for their roles in a scheme to pay bribes to Haitian government officials at Telecommunications D’Haiti S.A.M. The United States has filed a lawsuit seeking to stop Lakeisha Pearson from

A federal jury today convicted five officers from the New Orleans Police Department on 25 counts in connection with the federal prosecution of a policeinvolved shooting on the Danziger Bridge in the days after Hurricane Katrina and an extensive cover-up of those shootings.

Justice Department Sues to Shut Down Alabama Tax Return Preparer
(USDOJ: Justice News)
Submitted at 10:15 AM August 5, 2011

preparing federal tax returns for others.

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Federal Criminal FBI

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Kelvin Washington of Houston Arrested Due to a Houston Federal Grand Jury Indicting him on Conspiracy, Health Care Fraud, and Taking Kickbacks
McNabb Associates, P.C. (Federal Criminal Defense Lawyers)
Submitted at 9:59 AM August 5, 2011

The U.S. Attorney’s Office Southern District of Texas on August 4, 2011 released the following: “Nursing Home Administrator Arrested for Health Care Fraud and Taking Kickbacks HOUSTON – An employee of a Houston area nursing home has been arrested as a result of the return of a sealed indictment by a Houston grand jury chaging him with conspiracy, health care fraud and violations of the anti-kickback statute arising from a scheme to unlawfully bill federal health care programs for ambulance transport, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno along with Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott announced today. Kelvin Washington, 47, of Houston, was arrested at his Houston home this morning by investigating agents with the Department of Health and Human Services-Office of the Inspector General, Office of Investigations (DHHS-OIG-OI) and the Texas Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. The indictment was unsealed upon Washington’s arrest. He is expected to make an initial appearance before a U.S.

Magistrate Judge in Houston today at 2 p.m., at which time the issue of his release on bond is expected to be raised. Washington, employed as an administrator at a Sugar Land area nursing home, is accused in the 10-count indictment of having received payments for the referral of dialysis patients to a Houston ambulance transport service between 2003 and 2007. Additionally, Washington is accused of conspiring with others to have unsuspecting doctors sign transport prescriptions for dialysis patients allegedly admitted to the Sugar Land nursing home where Washington works. The indictment alleges, among other matters, that the patients for whom Washington sought the prescriptions were never admitted to the nursing home. According to the indictment, Medicare and Medicaid were billed almost a $1 million in false claims as a result of Washington’s alleged conduct. For his part in the scheme, Washington allegedly received approximately $20,000. The statutory maximum penalties for a violation of the health care fraud statute is imprisonment for not more than 10 years. The maximum sentence for a violation of the conspiracy statute or the anti-kickback statute is a maximum of five years. Each

of the 10 counts charged also carry a maximum fine of $250,000 as punishment upon conviction. The charges are the result of the investigative efforts of DHHS-OIG-OI, the Texas Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Unit in Houston, the FBI and the United States Attorney’s Office. Special Assistant United States Attorney Suzanne Bradley is prosecuting the case. An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until convicted through due process of law.” To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Criminal Defense Daily. Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN List Removal. The author of this blog is Douglas McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

FBI’s Top Ten News Stories for the Week Ending August 5, 2011
fbi (Current)
Submitted at 6:00 AM August 5, 2011

— Washington, D.C.

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