“Edward Snowden Charged With Espionage Over NSA Leaks”

June 22, 2013

The Huffington Post on June 21, 2013 released the following:

Reuters

“By Tabassum Zakaria and Mark Hosenball

WASHINGTON, June 21 (Reuters) – The United States has filed espionage charges against Edward Snowden, a former U.S. National Security Agency contractor who admitted revealing secret surveillance programs to media outlets, according to a court document made public on Friday.

Snowden, who is believed to be in hiding in Hong Kong, was charged with theft of government property, unauthorized communication of national defense information and willful communication of classified communications intelligence information to an unauthorized person, said the criminal complaint, which was dated June 14.

The latter two offenses fall under the U.S. Espionage Act and carry penalties of fines and up to 10 years in prison.

A single page of the complaint was unsealed on Friday. An accompanying affidavit remained under seal.

The charges are the government’s first step in what could be a long legal battle to return Snowden from Hong Kong and try him in a U.S. court.

Two U.S. sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the United States was preparing to seek Snowden’s extradition from Hong Kong, which is part of China but has wide-ranging autonomy, including an independent judiciary.

The Washington Post, which first reported the criminal complaint earlier on Friday, said the United States had asked Hong Kong to detain Snowden on a provisional arrest warrant.

There was no immediate response to requests for comment from Hong Kong’s security bureau.

Snowden earlier this month admitted leaking secrets about classified U.S. surveillance programs, creating a public uproar. Supporters say he is a whistleblower, while critics call him a criminal and perhaps even a traitor.

He disclosed documents detailing U.S. telephone and Internet surveillance efforts to the Washington Post and Britain’s Guardian newspaper.

The criminal complaint was filed in the Eastern District of Virginia, where Snowden’s former employer, Booz Allen Hamilton, is located.

That judicial district has seen a number of high-profile prosecutions, including the spy case against former FBI agent Robert Hanssen and the case of al Qaeda operative Zacarias Moussaoui. Both were convicted.

‘ACTIVE EXTRADITION RELATIONSHIP’

Documents leaked by Snowden revealed that the NSA has access to vast amounts of Internet data such as emails, chat rooms and video from large companies such as Facebook and Google, under a government program known as Prism.

They also showed that the government had worked through the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to gather so-called metadata – such as the time, duration and telephone numbers called – on all calls carried by service providers such as Verizon.

President Barack Obama and his intelligence chiefs have vigorously defended the programs, saying they are regulated by law and that Congress was notified. They say the programs have been used to thwart militant plots and do not target Americans’ personal lives, they say.

U.S. federal prosecutors, by filing a criminal complaint, lay claim to a legal basis to make an extradition request of the authorities in Hong Kong, the Post reported. The prosecutors now have 60 days to file an indictment and can then take steps to secure Snowden’s extradition from Hong Kong for a criminal trial in the United States, the newspaper reported.

The United States and Hong Kong have “excellent cooperation” and as a result of agreements, “there is an active extradition relationship between Hong Kong and the United States,” a U.S. law enforcement official told Reuters.

An Icelandic businessman linked to the anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks said on Thursday he had readied a private plane in China to fly Snowden to Iceland if Iceland’s government would grant asylum.

Iceland refused on Friday to say whether it would grant asylum to Snowden.”

As Federal Criminal Lawyer Douglas McNabb predicted, the U.S. has charged Mr. Snowden in a Federal Criminal Complaint. He was charged on June 14, 2013 with the following federal criminal violations:

  • 18 USC 641 – Theft of Government Property
  • 18 USC 793(d) – Unauthorized Communication of National Defense Information
  • 18 USC 798(a)(3) – Willful Communication of Classified Communications Intelligence Information to an Unauthorized Person

A copy of the Snowden Federal Criminal Complaint may be found here.

————————————————————–

Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
Federal Criminal Defense Attorneys Videos:

Federal Crimes – Be Careful

Federal Crimes – Be Proactive

Federal Crimes – Federal Indictment

Federal Crimes – Detention Hearing

————————————————————–

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 and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.


Viktor Bout – Government Trial Exhibit 1002-T

October 21, 2011

The US government is prosecuting Viktor Bout for violating several federal criminal laws. The following is a transcript of a conversation allegedly between Viktor Bout and a confidential informant for the DEA. The informant testified in trial that Mr. Bout told the informant “Let’s go to war” as they waited for an elevator at the Sofitel Hotel in Bangkok, Thailand.

CASE: UNITED STATES v. VIKTOR BOUT
DATE: March 6, 2008
START TIME: 1:20 p.m.
FILE: N-63
LOCATION: Bangkok, Thailand
PARTICIPANTS: Viktor Bout, Andrew Smulian, Misha Belozerosky, Carlos, Mike, Ricardo, Unidentified female, and Unidentified male

Viktor Bout – Government Trial Exhibit 1002-T

We would like to thank George Mapp @dobroyeutro for providing us the document.

————————————————————–

To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Crimes Watch Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition and OFAC SDN Sanctions 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.


Roger Clemens’ Federal Criminal Case Update

August 20, 2011
Roger Clemens

Main Justice on August 19, 2011 released the following:

Prosecutors Say Clemens Trying To Gain From Unintended Mistakes

Barring a retrial for Roger Clemens would hand the former baseball star “an unwarranted windfall” from inadvertent mistakes made during the first case against him, federal prosecutors argued in a brief filed Friday.

The brief came in response to a motion filed by Clemens’ attorneys seeking to prevent a retrial by arguing the government intentionally violated rules imposed by District Judge Reggie Walton, who declared a mistrial July 14 after prosecutors played a video that contained evidence Walton had previously ruled inadmissible.

That evidence included testimony from the wife of former pitcher Andy Pettitte, which suggested that Clemens had talked with Pettitte about using steroids. The video shown by prosecutors – a recording of Clemens’ 2008 testimony before Congress – showed Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.) making a reference to the conversation.

The video was strike two for the prosecution, which had also alluded to the conversation during opening statements.

But in their motion, Justice Department attorneys said the video had already been prepared when Walton made his ruling on admissibility, and that they hadn’t looked to see whether a reference might be buried in a question from the congressman.

“The government’s error was a mistake, not misconduct, and certainly not misconduct intended to provoke a mistrial,” prosecutors wrote. “As government counsel informed this court when the video clip mistake occurred: ‘There was no intention to run afoul of any court ruling.'”

A motion hearing on the issue is scheduled for Sept. 2.”

Attached is Roger Clemens’ filing on 7/29/2011 with its exhibits:

Attached is the government’s response on 8/19/2011:

To find additional federal criminal news, please read Federal Crimes Watch 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.

Bookmark and Share


Cooper Kweme Indicted by an Alexandria Federal Grand Jury for Sex Trafficking, Transportation of a Minor for Prostitution, and Production of Child Pornography

July 25, 2011

The U.S. Attorney’s Office Eastern District of Virginia on July 22, 2011 released the following:

“ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Cooper Kweme, 31, of Silver Spring, Md., has been indicted by a federal grand jury of sex trafficking, transportation of a minor for prostitution, and production of child pornography.

Neil MacBride, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; James McJunkin, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office; and M. Douglas Scott, Arlington County Chief of Police made the announcement.

“It’s anguishing to think that contact through a teen social site could lead a vulnerable girl into the world of sex slavery,” said U.S. Attorney MacBride. “Mr. Kweme is accused of recruiting girls online and other locations to work for his prostitution business. Our youth must be vigilant against predators trolling on social networking sites, like Tagged, and bring any suspicious activity to the attention of law enforcement so we can catch sex traffickers before they can enslave more victims.”

According to the indictment and court records, Kweme allegedly operated a prostitution business in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia, and used the Internet to advertise women as prostitutes. In February 2011, Kweme is accused of recruiting a juvenile female to work as a prostitute after meeting her on an online social network targeted at teens. Kweme subsequently posted photographs of the juvenile on the Internet, including a sexually explicit photograph. Kweme was arrested by the Arlington County Police Department on June 1, 2011, and later charged in federal court. Kweme is scheduled to be arraigned on July 29, 2011, in the United States District Court in Alexandria, Virginia.

If convicted, Kweme faces a mandatory minimum of 10 years and a maximum of life in prison for the sex trafficking and transportation of a minor for prostitution charges. He faces a mandatory minimum of 15 years and a maximum of 30 years in prison for the production of child pornography charge.

This case was investigated by the Arlington County Police Department and FBI’s Northern Virginia Resident Agency. Assistant United States Attorneys Morris Parker and Mary Daly are prosecuting the case on behalf of the United States.

Criminal indictments are only charges and not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty.”

To find additional federal criminal news, please read The Federal Crimes Watch 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.

Bookmark and Share


Claymon Trammell, Jeannettea Williams, and Michelle Trammell Plead Guilty in Houston Federal Court to Mortgage Fraud Scam

July 7, 2011

The U.S. Attorney’s Office Southern District of Texas on July 6, 2011 released the following:

“Mother, Daughter, Father Plead Guilty to Mortgage Fraud Scam

HOUSTON – Claymon “Butch” Trammell along with his wife, Jeannettea Williams, and daughter, Michelle Trammell, have all pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud for their roles in a multi-million dollar mortgage fraud scheme, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today. The three residents of Houston entered their pleas yesterday in federal court before United States District Court Judge Vanessa Gilmore.

From 2003 until the end of 2006, Claymon Trammell, 61, conspired with his wife, 56, and daughter, 39, to defraud mortgage lenders. Claymon Trammell and Williams recruited and paid individuals to act as straw borrowers on applications for residential mortgage loans, even though the borrowers had no intention of making payments on the mortgage loans or, in the case of homes supposedly purchased as “primary residences,” of residing in the homes. Some borrowers were used multiple times, including one borrower whose name and credit was used to “purchase” approximately 17 homes. Claymon Trammell pitched the scheme as an investment where the straw borrowers would not need any money down, would not be responsible for the monthly payments and would get money for the use of their name and credit.

At times during the scheme, Michelle Trammell and Williams were licensed mortgage loan officers. Michelle Trammell acted as a loan officer in the transactions and filled out loan applications in the names of borrowers and knowingly provided lenders with false information and documents about the borrower’s employment, income, assets and intent to occupy the purchased property. Michelle Trammell and Williams provided lenders with various documents she knew to be false, including false verifications of deposit, false verifications of rent and false earnest money contracts. There were more than 70 homes involved in the scheme, all of which went into payment default and most into foreclosure. The three defendants caused lenders to fund loans to purchase more than 70 homes in the Houston area and personally benefitted by funneling some of the loan proceeds to themselves via businesses they controlled and/or owned via bogus repair invoices and realtor and loan officer commissions.

For their conviction of conspiracy to commit wire fraud in violation of 18 U.S.C. Section 371, the defendants face a maximum of five years imprisonment, a $250,000 fine as well as up to a three-year-term of supervised release at their sentencing, scheduled for Dec. 5, 2011. As part of their plea agreements, the defendants also agreed to pay restitution if ordered to do so by the court.

The investigation leading to the charges was the result of an investigation conducted by agents of the FBI. Assistant United States Attorneys Belinda Beek, Jimmy Sledge and Kebharu Smith prosecuted the case with assistance from paralegal specialist Brenda Williams.”

To find additional federal criminal news, please read The Federal Crimes Watch 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.

Bookmark and Share


Jason Michael Lall, John Pierre Griffin, John DaSilva Paz, and Albert Richard Indicted by a Houston Federal Grand Jury for an Alleged Identity Theft Scheme

July 6, 2011

The U.S. Attorney’s Office Southern District of Texas on July 6, 2011 released the following:

“Four Indicted for Identity Theft Scheme

HOUSTON – Four area men have been indicted for taking part in an identity theft ring at various banks in the Houston area, United States Attorney José Angel Moreno announced today.

Jason Michael Lall, 38, John Pierre Griffin, 32, John DaSilva Paz, 27, all residents of Houston, and Albert Richard, 51, of Missouri City, Texas, are all charged with one count of conspiracy to commit bank fraud and two counts of access device fraud. Hall and Richard are also charged with two counts of aggravated identity theft, while Griffin and Paz are charged with one and three counts of aggravated identity theft, respectively.

All four men were arrested by criminal complaint on June 3, 2011, and appeared before a U.S. Magistrate Judge on June 10, 2011. Paz and Richard are currently out on bond, while Lall and Griffin are currently being held in custody without bond. All four men appeared in court today for formal arraignment proceedings, at which time all entered a plea of not guilty to the charges. The case is currently set for trial on Aug. 29, 2011, before U.S. District Court Judge Melinda Harmon.

According to the allegations in the indictment returned at the end of June, beginning in August 2009, the defendants took part in a scheme in which overlay devices were manufactured to be placed on ATM machines in order to capture the identifying information of bank customers. The defendants rented vehicles and spray-painted and otherwise obstructed bank surveillance equipment in order to make themselves more difficult to identify. The information captured from the various ATM machines was then re-encoded onto fraudulent cards that were used to withdraw money in excess of $400,000 from various area bank locations.

The maximum penalty, upon conviction, for conspiracy to commit bank fraud is up to 30 years in prison and a fine up to $1 million, while a conviction for each count of access device fraud is up to 10 years in prison and a fine up to $250,000. Each count of aggravated identity theft carries a maximum penalty, upon conviction, of two years in prison to run consecutively with any other sentence and a fine of up to $250,000.

The investigation leading to the charges was conducted by the United States Secret Service. Assistant United States Attorney Andrew Leuchtmann will be prosecuting the case.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.

A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.”

To find additional federal criminal news, please read The Federal Crimes Watch 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.

Bookmark and Share


Viktor Bout – Federal Criminal Indictment I

November 16, 2010

Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer Douglas C. McNabb discusses Viktor Bout’s first federal criminal indictment.

Mr. Bout’s Indictment:
1.08-cr-00365-SAS

Douglas McNabb and other members of the firm practice and write extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, Interpol Litigation, International Extradition and OFAC Litigation.

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.

Bookmark and Share