Roy Cohn and FBI - 8:28 AM 3/5/2019

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Roy Cohn and FBI - Google Search

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Roy Cohn and FBI - Google Search

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Roy Cohn and FBI - Google Search

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Roy Cohn and FBI - Google Search

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Roy Cohn and FBI - Google Search

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Michael Cohen is Trump’s new Roy Cohn

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On Monday, the FBI raided President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen’s office to seize records related to payments to pornographic film actress Stormy Daniels, tax documents and other records, including communications between Cohen and the president. Cohen is reportedly under federal investigation for possible bank fraud and campaign finance law violations. With Cohen’s every move under scrutiny by law enforcement, thanks to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Trump’s potential collusion with Russia to interfere in the 2016 presidential election, Cohen may be even less able to live up to Trump’s expectations as his ruthless enforcer.
When U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions recused himself from the Russia investigation, according to The New York Times, the president complained, “Where’s my Roy Cohn?”
Trump had expected the attorney general to act like his personal lawyer and have his back, the role that Cohn – the colorful consigliere to mobsters, politicians and celebrities – had played for more than a decade after taking Trump under his wing in the 1970s.
Cohen, the president’s current personal attorney, might have been hurt by Trump’s comments. He has already demonstrated fierce loyalty to his client, fulfilling Trump’s most important qualification. In vituperative messages left for reporters, and other threats to perceived enemies, Cohen has also replicated his near-namesake’s penchant for bullying.
Cohn used his vast connections, and a compliant media, to maneuver behind the scenes. Cohen doesn’t have that luxury. His client is now the president. He’s on a much bigger stage, the stakes are much higher and the media is paying attention.
Even if Trump thinks Cohen is not as good of a henchman as Cohn, Cohen has demonstrated a willingness to push the boundaries of professional conduct on his benefactor’s behalf. And, like Cohn, that may one day come back to haunt him.
Cohn and Trump were a perfect match. For the brazen and pugnacious Cohn, practicing law was a contact sport – rules and ethics be damned.
Caption: 
Roy Cohn ( New York World-Telegram and the Sun staff photographer Herman Hiller / Public domain )
Image Credit: 
New York World-Telegram and the Sun staff photographer Herman Hiller / Public domain
The son of a politically connected judge, Cohn graduated from Columbia University Law School at age 20. By 1951, at the height of the Cold War, he had made a name for himself helping the U.S. Justice Department convict Julius and Ethel Rosenberg as Soviet spies who stole America’s atomic secrets and were later executed.
FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover recommended Cohn to U.S. Sen. Joseph McCarthy, the Wisconsin Republican who was about to conduct investigative hearings to root out alleged communists in the federal government. Like Trump, McCarthy was notoriously prone to dramatic exaggeration, and sometimes outright fabrication. He was quick to impugn the motives and character of those with whom he disagreed, and to promote conspiracy theories.
In addition to boosting the Red Scare, McCarthy and Cohn (who was a closeted but promiscuous gay man) also engaged in the “Lavender Scare,” going after government officials and entertainment figures whom they suspected of being homosexual, resulting in the firing of many gay men from government jobs. (Persuaded that gay people were a threat to national security, President Dwight Eisenhowersigned an executive order in 1953 to ban homosexuals from working for the federal government.)
With Cohn at his side as chief counsel, McCarthy rose to prominence as the nation’s pre-eminent witch-hunter, making Cohn a hated figure among liberals ever since. But McCarthy went too far when he started attacking the U.S. Army for harboring communists. The Army-McCarthy hearings, broadcast on television, exposed Americans to Cohn and McCarthy’s troubling tactics and outright lies. In 1954, McCarthy’s Senate colleagues censured him and his political career nose-dived.
But Cohn survived. In fact, he thrived. He returned to New York to establish a private practice, utilizing his political ties and pit bull personality to represent high-profile clients, including Yankees owner George Steinbrenner, mobsters John Gotti, Tony Salerno, Paul Castellano and Carmine Galante, Catholic Cardinal Francis Spellman and media moguls Rupert Murdoch and S.I. Newhouse.
Rather than try cases, Cohn mostly pulled strings, funneled cash, insulted his adversaries and tapped his connections to reporters, gossip columnists, politicians and judges to intimidate people from bringing lawsuits against his clients. All along, he made sure that his own name appeared in the press as the city’s most influential fixer. And as a celebrity himself, he was regularly seen at the hippest nightclubs and power broker parties, including those he hosted at the Upper East Side townhouse where he worked and lived. A registered Democrat, he primarily supported Republicans and informally advised Presidents Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan, but when it came to influence-peddling, especially in heavily Democratic New York City, he was nonpartisan.
In 1973, when he first met Cohn at Le Club, a members-only Manhattan disco, the 27-year-old Trump was still working for his father’s outer-borough apartment empire, trying to infiltrate the Manhattan real estate world and celebrity social scene. He told Cohn that the Justice Department was suing him and his father for systematically discriminating against prospective black tenants. The government had a solid case, but Cohn advised Trump to fight back and tell the government to “go to hell.” Cohn orchestrated a press conference at the New York Hilton where Trump announced that he was countersuing the government for $100 million, claiming that the Justice Department has used “Gestapo-like tactics” by making false and misleading statements against him and trying to force him to rent apartments to welfare recipients.
The judge threw Trump’s bogus lawsuit out of court and accused Cohn and Trump of “wasting time and paper.” But Cohn persuaded the Justice Department to let Trump settle the case by agreeing not to discriminate in the future while not admitting guilt that he’d discriminated at all. Trump declared victory.
Trump liked Cohn’s combative win-at-all-costs style and the two quickly became a team. Cohn introduced Trump to his influential friends, telling them that the brash young man was “going to own New York someday.” He taught Trump to never admit mistakes and never apologize.
Cohn also schooled Trump in how to use the media to promote his reputation. Trump soon adopted Cohn’s habit of contacting columnists with self-serving gossip about himself.
To grease the skids for Trump’s development projects, including arranging a tax break for Trump Tower, Cohn used his ties to politicians and the mob (who controlled New York’s construction unions and building materials companies) and guided Trump in donating to key elected officials. Cohn represented Trump in several libel cases against reporters, crafted Trump’s prenuptial agreement with his first wife Ivana and emceed a birthday party for Trump at the famous Studio 54 nightclub, where both Cohn and Trump were regulars. He contacted his friend White House aide Edwin Meese to get Ronald Reagan to appoint Trump’s sister to a federal judgeship. According to one account at the height of their association, Trump and Cohn talked 15 to 20 times a day.
Over the years, Trump has said Cohn exhibited the characteristics that he most admires. “If you need someone to get vicious toward an opponent, you get Roy,” Trump told The Associated Press. “Roy was brutal, but he was a very loyal guy,” Trump told writer Tim O’Brien. “He brutalized for you.”
Trump did not repay that loyalty. In 1984, Cohn became ill and began treatment for AIDS, claiming that he had liver cancer. Trump quickly kept his distance from Cohn and dropped him as his lawyer.
Even the ruthless Cohn was shocked by Trump’s betrayal. “I can’t believe he’s doing this to me,” Cohn told Trump biographer Wayne Barrett. “Donald pisses ice water.”
But when the state Supreme Court’s Disciplinary Committee investigated Cohn for ethical misdeeds, including stealing money from and defrauding clients, Trump testified as a character witness, describing Cohn as “extremely loyal and extremely honest.” Nonetheless, Cohn was disbarred six weeks before his death in 1986.
Since Cohn’s death, Trump has hired at least dozens of lawyers. In the 30 years before he ran for president, Trump and his companies were involved in 4,095 lawsuits, according to a tally compiled by USA Today.
The 51-year-old Cohen may be personally closer to Trump than any lawyer since Cohn, and shares many of the same characteristics. He has frequently threatened Trump’s adversaries and has said that he would “take a bullet” for Trump.
Cohen, whose father was a surgeon and his mother a nurse, grew up on Long Island. He received a law degree from Western Michigan University’s Cooley Law School, which was recently ranked the worst law school in the country by Above the Law.
Like Cohn and Trump, Cohen’s political work has spanned both parties and shows no evidence of ideological commitment. In the 1980s, he volunteered and interned for Massachusetts Democrats. In 2003, Cohen – who lives on Manhattan’s Upper East Side – ran unsuccessfully for the New York City Council as a Republican, but he said he voted for Barack Obama in 2008. In the 2016 New York primary, he couldn’t vote for Trump because he was still a registered Democrat. He didn’t switch his official affiliation to the GOP until March 9, 2017.
Cohen’s legal career did not measure up to Cohn’s in terms of the number of noteworthy cases or notorious clients, but it shares a certain hustler’s mentality. Cohen began his career as a personal injury lawyer, then, according to the Daily Beast, “spent the ’90s buying up taxi medallions in New York City and Chicago and hustling side projects like a Miami gambling boat and several family-run Ukrainian ethanol businesses.” He and his family then began investing in Trump’s real estate deals.
In 2007, Trump hired Cohen as special counsel and executive vice president for the Trump Organization. Like Cohn, Cohen operates as a fixer and enforcer. “If somebody does something Mr. Trump doesn’t like, I do everything in my power to resolve it to Mr. Trump’s benefit,” Cohen said in an interview with ABC News in 2011. “If you do something wrong, I’m going to come at you, grab you by the neck and I’m not going to let you go until I’m finished.” That year, Cohen created the <a href="http://ShouldTrumpRun.com" rel="nofollow">ShouldTrumpRun.com</a> website, which disingenuously sought to “convince Donald Trump to run for President in 2012.” Since Trump entered the 2016 race, Cohen has been a relentless political attack dog on the boss’s behalf.
Cohen’s specific duties, before and after Trump took office, have always been murky. He’s done everything from brokering Trump’s real estate branding deals, to running a Trump-funded martial arts company, to arranging to have his plane’s engine repaired. “He’s the guy that you could call at 3 (o’clock) in the morning when you have a problem and you need something taken care of,” Cohen’s longtime friend David Schwartz told CNN earlier this year. “Every dinner I’ve been at with Michael, the boss has called.”
Soon after Trump launched his presidential campaign in 2015, Daily Beast reporter Tim Mak called Cohen for comment on an allegation, reported in a biography of Trump, that the would-be president had raped his first wife Ivana. Cohen denied the charge, which Ivana had made during divorce proceedings and later recanted.
But Cohen also incorrectly told Mak that “by the very definition, you can’t rape your spouse … and there’s very clear case law.” In fact, spousal rape is illegal in all 50 states.
And Cohen issued a warning, lest the reporter dared to go ahead with the story: “I will make sure that you and I meet one day while we’re in the courthouse. And I will take you for every penny you still don’t have. And I will come after your Daily Beast and everybody else that you possibly know,” Cohen said to Mak. “So I’m warning you, tread very fucking lightly, because what I’m going to do to you is going to be fucking disgusting. You understand me?”
The New York Times recently reported that in 2015 Cohen “received a phone call from Jeremy Frommer, a hedge-fund manager turned digital entrepreneur, who had obtained photos of Mr. Trump appearing to autograph the breasts of a topless woman from the estate of Bob Guccione, the founder of Penthouse magazine.” Cohen connected Frommer to David J. Pecker, chairman of American Media (which owns the National Enquirer and other tabloids) and a close Trump ally, who was known to purchase embarrassing photos and gossip about his high-profile friends in order to bury them.
The Times also recounted that in 2016, in the midst of Trump’s presidential campaign, Cohen may have brokered a deal to keep former Playboy playmate Karen McDougal from disclosing her alleged affair with Trump in the mid-2000s, not long after he had married his third wife, Melania. With the help of Hollywood lawyer Keith Davidson, a Cohen acquaintance, McDougal gave the exclusive rights to her story to American Media in exchange for $150,000 and a pledge to keep quiet about the relationship. America Media never published McDougal’s allegations.
Cohen left the Trump Organization in January 2017, but has continued to serve as Trump’s personal attorney.
In recent weeks, Cohen has been in the news for admitting to having paid porn star Stormy Daniels $130,000 out of his own pocket to sign a nondisclosure agreement shortly before the November 2016 election, in order to buy her silence about an affair she said she had with Trump. Daniels is suingCohen for defamation for asserting that the affair never took place.
Some legal and campaign finance experts believe that Cohen’s payment on behalf of a client may violate New York’s ethics rules as well as federal campaign finance regulations.
McClatchy News recently reported that Mueller is looking into Cohen’s role in Trump’s business deals not only in Russia, but also in Georgia and Kazakhstan, even though Trump has denied having any such dealings.
So, his complaints to the contrary notwithstanding, Trump seems to have found his new Roy Cohn. But, in exchange for his loyalty, Michael Cohen might one day have to ask Trump for the same favor he did for Cohn – to serve as a character witness at his friend’s disbarment hearing.
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Why a sitting president cannot be indicted? - Google Search

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Why a sitting president cannot be indicted? - Google Search

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Why a sitting president cannot be indicted? - Google Search

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by SL Bloch - ‎1997
Constitution cannot be read to provide a sitting President any temporary immunity from prosecution. However, he believes that policy arguments favor such an ...

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Dec 10, 2018 - The indictment or criminal prosecution of a sitting President would unconstitutionally undermine the capacity of the executive branch to perform ...

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Dec 14, 2018 - Can a grand jury indict a sitting president for a criminal act? Mr Trump is not the first president to wade into trouble. Twice in the past ...
Dec 8, 2018 - Although Trump hasn't been charged with a crime, the question of .... agencies, has maintained that a sitting president cannot be indicted.

"It is these prosecutors who have decided to look into whether any crimes have been committed in Mr Trump's orbit." - M.N.: Why didn't they make this decision earlier? Nothing changed. Does it take for a criminal to become the President, to get caught?!

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The Thurgood Marshall Courthouse hears cases from the US District Court for the SDNY

"It is these prosecutors who have decided to look into whether any crimes have been committed in Mr Trump's orbit."

M.N.: Why didn't they make this decision earlier, when Trump was not a President yet? Nothing changed, the same people, the same evidence, the same facts. Does it take for a criminal to become the President, to get noticed and to get caught?! 

________________________________________

New York takes on Trump as his home town turns against him | US News

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By Hannah Thomas-Peter, US correspondent

Of all the legal jeopardy currently facing Donald Trump, there is one investigation that may yet prove the most problematic for the president.
It is not special counsel Robert Mueller's impending report, nor the new probes launched by House Democrats, but a wide ranging inquiry currently being conducted by federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York.
The Southern District of New York, known as the SDNY, has quite a reputation; aggressive, independent and very, very good.
Prosecutors there are not restricted, as Mr Mueller is, to a particular area of concern.
In fact they are professionally obliged to follow the evidence wherever it takes them without fear or favour.
And they cannot be sacked by the occupant of the Oval Office.
It is these prosecutors who have decided to look in to whether any crimes have been committed in Mr Trump's orbit.
It reportedly all started with the SDNY's case against the president's former personal fixer and lawyer Michael Cohen.
Mr Cohen was referred to the SDNY via Robert Mueller, and in short order he pleaded guilty to violating campaign finance laws, bank fraud and other crimes.
But the SDNY's involvement in Mr Trump's world didn't end with Mr Cohen's guilty plea.
Quite the opposite.
It seems to have prompted these powerful prosecutors to keep looking.
The SDNY has quite a reputation; aggressive, independent and very, very good.
Because as part of Mr Cohen's plea he admitted to paying hush money to two women who according to a statement from the SDNY "otherwise planned to speak publicly about their alleged affairs with a presidential candidate, thereby intending to influence the 2016 presidential election."
In court documents, and in subsequent public testimony, Mr Cohen said he broke the law at the direction of Mr Trump, and that several other people at the New York based Trump Organisation also knew what was going on.
Separately, Mr Cohen pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about the extent of negotiations relating to the building of a Trump Tower in Moscow.
Again, as part of this plea he implicated the president, saying he discussed the tower with Mr Trump and briefed his family about it on several occasions in the run up to the election, despite the president's insistence that he never had any business involvement with Russia.
Mr Cohen said recently that although Mr Trump didn't explicitly ask him to lie, he strongly suggested that Mr Cohen should.
And the SDNY's investigations reportedly don't end there.
It sent subpoenas to Mr Trump's inauguration committee seeking material relating to possible money laundering, mail and wire fraud, illegal foreign contributions, and campaign finance violations.
And when he testified before Congress in late February, Mr Cohen inferred that the SDNY investigation is even more wide ranging than is publicly known.
He was asked by a committee member: "Is there any other wrongdoing or illegal act that you are aware of regarding Mr Trump that we haven't yet discussed today?"
To the president, who once ran with a crowd that treated New York City as a personal playground, it must feel like his home town has turned against him.
Mr Cohen replied yes, but declined to provide further details, citing the ongoing investigation in New York.
He said he was in constant contact with the SDNY's prosecutors.
He also accused the president, who in turn has called Mr Cohen a "fake witness", of variously inflating and deflating the value of assets for financial gain.
The SDNY, like all federal prosecutors offices, adheres to the notion that a sitting president cannot be indicted.
But there is nothing to stop it doing so once he leaves, or should the evidence warrant it, charging close associates and Trump family members.
It just so happens that the president's new personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani used to be the SDNY's top prosecutor.
He used the power of the SDNY to go after the mafia and other criminal organisations.
Now the office he helped build in to a juggernaut appears to be coming after his boss.
Giuliani will also know that the Manhattan District Attorney and the New York Attorney General's office are both pursuing separate investigations that relate to the Trump Organisation and the Trump Foundation respectively.
To the president, who once ran with a crowd that treated New York City as a personal playground, it must feel like his home town has turned against him.
For all the noise in Washington DC, it is worth tracking what's happening in New York very closely indeed.

Sky Views is a series of comment pieces by Sky News editors and correspondents, published every morning.

Previously on Sky Views: Paul Kelso - Cheltenham Festival will be a fleeting relief from Brexit
Read the whole story

· · · · · ·

New York takes on Trump as his home town turns against him | US News

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By Hannah Thomas-Peter, US correspondent

Of all the legal jeopardy currently facing Donald Trump, there is one investigation that may yet prove the most problematic for the president.
It is not special counsel Robert Mueller's impending report, nor the new probes launched by House Democrats, but a wide ranging inquiry currently being conducted by federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York.
The Southern District of New York, known as the SDNY, has quite a reputation; aggressive, independent and very, very good.
Prosecutors there are not restricted, as Mr Mueller is, to a particular area of concern.
In fact they are professionally obliged to follow the evidence wherever it takes them without fear or favour.
And they cannot be sacked by the occupant of the Oval Office.
It is these prosecutors who have decided to look in to whether any crimes have been committed in Mr Trump's orbit.
It reportedly all started with the SDNY's case against the president's former personal fixer and lawyer Michael Cohen.
Mr Cohen was referred to the SDNY via Robert Mueller, and in short order he pleaded guilty to violating campaign finance laws, bank fraud and other crimes.
But the SDNY's involvement in Mr Trump's world didn't end with Mr Cohen's guilty plea.
Quite the opposite.
It seems to have prompted these powerful prosecutors to keep looking.
The SDNY has quite a reputation; aggressive, independent and very, very good.
Because as part of Mr Cohen's plea he admitted to paying hush money to two women who according to a statement from the SDNY "otherwise planned to speak publicly about their alleged affairs with a presidential candidate, thereby intending to influence the 2016 presidential election."
In court documents, and in subsequent public testimony, Mr Cohen said he broke the law at the direction of Mr Trump, and that several other people at the New York based Trump Organisation also knew what was going on.
Separately, Mr Cohen pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about the extent of negotiations relating to the building of a Trump Tower in Moscow.
Again, as part of this plea he implicated the president, saying he discussed the tower with Mr Trump and briefed his family about it on several occasions in the run up to the election, despite the president's insistence that he never had any business involvement with Russia.
Mr Cohen said recently that although Mr Trump didn't explicitly ask him to lie, he strongly suggested that Mr Cohen should.
And the SDNY's investigations reportedly don't end there.
It sent subpoenas to Mr Trump's inauguration committee seeking material relating to possible money laundering, mail and wire fraud, illegal foreign contributions, and campaign finance violations.
And when he testified before Congress in late February, Mr Cohen inferred that the SDNY investigation is even more wide ranging than is publicly known.
He was asked by a committee member: "Is there any other wrongdoing or illegal act that you are aware of regarding Mr Trump that we haven't yet discussed today?"
To the president, who once ran with a crowd that treated New York City as a personal playground, it must feel like his home town has turned against him.
Mr Cohen replied yes, but declined to provide further details, citing the ongoing investigation in New York.
He said he was in constant contact with the SDNY's prosecutors.
He also accused the president, who in turn has called Mr Cohen a "fake witness", of variously inflating and deflating the value of assets for financial gain.
The SDNY, like all federal prosecutors offices, adheres to the notion that a sitting president cannot be indicted.
But there is nothing to stop it doing so once he leaves, or should the evidence warrant it, charging close associates and Trump family members.
It just so happens that the president's new personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani used to be the SDNY's top prosecutor.
He used the power of the SDNY to go after the mafia and other criminal organisations.
Now the office he helped build in to a juggernaut appears to be coming after his boss.
Giuliani will also know that the Manhattan District Attorney and the New York Attorney General's office are both pursuing separate investigations that relate to the Trump Organisation and the Trump Foundation respectively.
To the president, who once ran with a crowd that treated New York City as a personal playground, it must feel like his home town has turned against him.
For all the noise in Washington DC, it is worth tracking what's happening in New York very closely indeed.

Sky Views is a series of comment pieces by Sky News editors and correspondents, published every morning.

Previously on Sky Views: Paul Kelso - Cheltenham Festival will be a fleeting relief from Brexit
Read the whole story

· · · ·

Вонючая, поганая, паршивая, безмозглая, тупая, навсегда местечковая, Русско-Немецкая ЖИДОВНЯ! По другому и иначе, и не на Русском и не скажешь. Все они: и "Олигархи", и мафиози, и трамписты, и путинисты, и т.д., и т.п. И все - "полезные идиоты" Нового Абвера.

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Вонючая, поганая, паршивая, безмозглая, тупая, навсегда местечковая, Русско-Немецкая ЖИДОВНЯ! По другому, и иначе, и не на Русском и не скажешь. Все они: и "Олигархи", и мафиози, и трамписты, и путинисты, и т.д., и т.п.  И все - "полезные идиоты" Нового Абвера. 
M.N. 

Stinky, vile, lousy, brainless, stupid, forever parochial, Russian-German ZHIDOVNYA! In another way and in other words, and not in Russian, you cannot express it. All of them: the "oligarchs", and the mafia, and the trampists, and the putinists, and the manaforts-kilimniks-cohens, etc., etc. 

Above all, they are "The survivalists". And all of them are the "useful idiots" of the New Abwehr. 
Und ziz iz mein opini'on. 
M.N. 

3.5.19
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Rudy Giuliani going to prison - Google Search

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Dec 11, 2018 - Remember back when Rudy Giuliani first joined Donald Trump's legal team, and promised he would magically wrap up the Trump-Russia ...

FBI stepping up efforts to root out international corruption

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Aiming to crack down on money laundering and bribes to overseas governments, the FBI is stepping up its efforts to root out foreign corruption with a new squad of agents based in Miami.
The squad will focus its efforts not only on Miami but also in South America, a continent that has been home to some of the Justice Department’s most significant international corruption prosecutions of the last several years. The Miami squad joins three others based in the FBI’s largest field offices — Washington, New York and Los Angeles.
“We’re protecting the rule of law,” Leslie Backschies, the chief of the FBI’s international corruption unit, said in an interview Monday. “If there’s no rule of law, you’ll have certain societies where they feel like their governments are so corrupt, they’ll go to other elements that are considered fundamental, that they see as clean or something against the corrupt regime, and that becomes a threat to national security.”
The unit aims to identify violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, a U.S. law that makes it illegal to bribe foreign officials. The FBI has also been doing outreach to companies in a variety of industries, from oil to pharmaceuticals, to teach them about red flags that could indicate corruption and encourage the companies to “self-report” potentially improper conduct to the bureau.
“One thing when I talk to companies, I’m like, ‘When you pay a bribe, do you know where your bribe goes? Is your bribe going to fund terrorism?’” Backschies said.
And so far, the cases the unit has brought have resulted in billions of dollars in settlements.
Last September, for instance, the Brazilian-owned energy company, Petrobras, agreed to pay more than $853 million to resolve investigations into allegations that executives paid hundreds of millions of dollars in bribes to Brazilian politicians and political parties. And in December 2016, the Brazil-based construction conglomerate Odebrecht and another petrochemical company agreed to pay more than $3.5 billion to settle charges they bribed politicians around the world through a web of shell companies and off-the-books transactions.
“We’ve seen a lot of activity in South America — Odebrecht, Petrobras. South America is a place where ... we’ve seen corruption. We’ve had a lot of work there,” Backshies said.
“But not just South America. Miami itself, it’s an economic center,” she added. “It’s a big flow of money in and out of Miami. It’s a city where we see individuals hiding their money, through shell companies, through real estate, through boating.”
More broadly, special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation has shone a spotlight on international corruption. Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort is being sentenced Thursday in federal court in Virginia on charges that he evaded taxes on millions of dollars in income received through political consulting on behalf of a pro-Russia Ukrainian political party, and that he concealed his money in undisclosed foreign bank accounts.
Prosecutors have scored 34 convictions in cases brought by the international corruption unit from 2016 until 2018. The cases are often longer-running and more financially complex than other crimes the FBI investigates.
Agents also have to be conscious of any potential political ramifications because international corruption cases can have widespread effects that influence elections and economies, Backschies said. In addition to regular conversations about cases, FBI supervisors meet with lawyers at the Justice Department in Washington each quarter to review potential prosecutions and the possible consequences.
“These cases are very politically sensitive, not just in the U.S. but overseas,” she said. “When you’re looking at foreign officials in other governments — I mean, look, in Malaysia, the president wasn’t re-elected. We saw presidents toppled in Brazil. These are the results of cases like this. When you’re looking at high-level government officials, there’s a lot of sensitivities.”
The agents are working to ensure there’s “a place where business can compete fairly,” and in most cases other governments are glad to accept the FBI’s help in rooting out corruption, Backschies said.
“You can’t just have one agent or two agents in a field office addressing it. ...You can’t be working this two hours a week. It’s just not going to work. You need full-time dedicated resources,” she said.
The unit had been splitting cases involving South American countries between the three other offices before Backschies decided they should refocus their resources and add agents in Miami. The new squad will be comprised of six agents, who will start in their roles later this month, plus a supervisor and a forensic accountant. Unlike other FBI field office squads that focus on violent crime and public corruption and report to local leadership, this one will answer to officials at headquarters in Washington.
“Beverly Hills, New York, Miami — these are cities where we find people hiding their money” in real estate and boating, Backshies said. “They’re attractive cities for that.”
___
Follow Balsamo and Tucker on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MikeBalsamo1 and www.twitter.com/etuckerAP .
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A brief history of 'Lügenpresse,' the Nazi-era predecessor to Trump's 'fake news' - U.S. News

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This article was originally published on February 21, 2017 and re-posted after U.S. President Donald Trump told Mike Huckabee in a Saturday, October 7th interview that "fake news" is "one of the greatest of all terms I’ve come up with."
President Donald Trump’s go-to argument that unwelcome reports are “fake news” spread over the weekend to key figures in the Republican establishment, and as the vitriol ramped up, major media outlets hit back. On Friday, CNN anchor Don Lemon cut off pro-Trump guest Paris Dennard live on air, and not long after Trump tweeted, “The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!” Come Sunday, White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus got into a heated debate with Chris Wallace on Fox News, of all venues.
The sense of panic and anger in the mainstream media, the conservative Fox News included, is reasonable. The accusation of “fake news” or “lying press” has an ominous precedent, tracing back to the history of the German phrase “Lügenpresse.” (At a campaign rally in October 2016, in Cleveland, Ohio, the Atlantic’s Rosie Grey even caught two Trump supporters on tape using the original German word. “Lügenpresse! That’s what you are,” one white man shouts, coaching another on how to say the term, and elaborates: “You’re all in bed with the Clintons. You’re all bought and paid for, every one of you.”)
Originally coined by the German author Reinhold Anton in 1914, the term Lügenpresse was used during World War I to refer to “enemy propaganda.” Some 30 years later Hitler and the Nazisappropriated the term to weaken opposition to the regime, primarily “accusing” Jewish, communist, and later the foreign press of disseminating fake news.
The phrase made a comeback in Germany in 2014, when the anti-immigrant PEGIDA movement accused the media of “not telling the truth” about crimes committed by refugees and immigrants, primarily those displaced by ISIS in Syria and Iraq. In January 2015, some 25,000 protesters attended a PEGIDA march in Dresden, chanting “Luegenpresse, halt die Fresse" (“shut up, lying press”).
"Luegenpresse" subsequently earned the notorious "Unwort des Jahres" (Non-Word of the Year) dishonor given out annually by a German linguists' panel of experts.
According to Reuters, previous non-words of the year include 2011’s "Doener-Morde" (Doener killings), referring to a string of neo-Nazi killings of people of Turkish origin.

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War on the media
Trump had waged war on the press throughout his presidential campaign, featuring multiple high-profile feuds including with Fox News’ Megyn Kelly and CNN, which he dubbed the “Clinton News Network.” But critics and many supporters too were dismayed when he didn’t change tune once in office.  In fact, the administration doubled down on much of Trump’s anti-media rhetoric.  
“The media should be embarrassed and humiliated and keep its mouth shut and just listen for awhile,” Steve Bannon told the New York Times in late January. “The media here is the opposition party.”
Trump’s recent rally in Melbourne, Florida primarily focused on attacking the media, after a particularly tough week which saw the resignation of his national security adviser, Michael Flynn.
“I also want to speak to you without the filter of the fake news,” Trump began. “The dishonest media which has published one false story after another with no sources, even though they pretend they have them, they make them up in many cases.”
Priebus, on ‘Fox News Sunday’ with Chris Wallace, repeated this claim, calling media reports “Total garbage. Unsourced stuff, " and suggesting that the media doesn’t choose the right stories to cover. "I think you should be concerned about mainstream news outlets that are acting like Washington daily gossip magazines," continued Priebus, who had been viewed as the Republican establishment’s representative in the Trump administration, a relative voice of reason. "But you don't get to tell us what to do, Reince," Wallace shot back.
CNN anchor Don Lemon too had enough of it over the weekend, telling his guest Paris Dennard, a former George W. Bush official, “Please stop it with that stupid talking point, that it is a fake news story. If you don’t want to participate in the news stories on this network, then don’t come on and participate. But don’t call them fake because you don’t agree with them. Go on.”
When Dennard doubled down, insisting that "this is a fake news story," Lemon cut him off and abruptly ended the segment.
“OK, Paris, thank you very much everyone,” Lemon said. “Thanks everyone, thanks for watching. Have a great weekend. Goodnight, all.”
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