Wednesday, November 21, 2018

The Detroit Quantum Renaissance: DOJ, MIED, FBI & A Bunch Of People Who Actually Care About The Poors Of Detroit

Welcome to the Detroit Quantum Renaissance.

Much love the Michigan Eastern District U.S. Attorney's Office and the Detroit Federal Bureau of Investigation to stop the stealin' of children, land & votes.

Low-income in Detroit? How to pay lower property taxes

Thanks to a newly approved ordinance, it may be easier for low-income Detroit residents to apply for poverty tax exemption — and avoid foreclosure — starting next year. But before that kicks in, take note: There's still time to apply for an exemption on 2018 taxes before the Dec. 10 deadline.

In July, the American Civil Liberties Union and Detroit settled a lawsuit that claimed the city's poverty exemption program was tough to apply for and wasn't well-publicized. Detroit will have to "streamline" its application process and provide more notice to low-income residents. The new ordinance solidifies those requirements into law and expands upon them.
Here's what you need to know about applying before Dec. 10 and beyond:

What is a poverty tax exemption?

Homeowners pay property taxes. But some low-income homeowners may struggle to pay their property taxes, leading to foreclosure.
Poverty tax exemption allows low-income homeowners to get some or all of their taxes exempted to help lift that burden. In Detroit, the exemptions come through the Homeowners Property Tax Assistance Program.

Do I qualify?

If you live alone in your home, you must make $16,660 a year or less to receive a 100 percent exemption. You must make $19,160 a year or less for a 50 percent, or partial, exemption.

How do I apply?

If you think you might be eligible, you're strongly encouraged to go to a workshop led by a nonprofit agency, which will help fill out the application, said Alexa Eisenberg, a member of the coalition that helped draft the ordinance. Workshop leaders will help you square away the application, get it notarized and turn it in for you. 
Workshops are available at the following dates and locations:
  • District 1 and 2: Monday, Dec. 3, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. at Focus Hope, 1400 Oakman Blvd.
  • District 3 and 4: Wednesday, Dec. 5, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. at Alkebulan Village, 7701 Harper Ave.
  • District 5: Tuesday, Dec. 4t, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. at Central Detroit Christian, 1550 Taylor St.
  • District 6: Friday, Dec. 7, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. at Patton Recreation Center, 2301 Woodmere St.
  • District 7: Thursday, Dec. 6, 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. at Suzanne Cody Rouge Community Resource Center, 19321 W Chicago St.
Otherwise, see the 2018 application here. You will need to print it, fill it out, get it notarized and turn it in to the address on the first page of the form: OCFO – Office of the Assessor, Coleman A. Young Municipal Center, 2 Woodward Ave., Room 804, Detroit, Michigan 48226. You might consider mailing it with a return receipt requested.
To ask the City of Detroit questions about the application, call 313-224-6214 or 313-628-0723.

What do I need for the application?

You will need ALL of the following items and should bring them to the workshop, according to the Quicken Loans Community Fund:
  • Deed for the home in your name
  • Current ID for all adults over 18
  • Proof of income for everyone over 18 (Ex.: W2’s, paystubs, SSI/SSD, food stamps, etc.)
  • Proof of expenses (Ex.: current utility bills,tax payment plan, medical bills, credit card bills, etc.)
  • Financial Assets (Ex.: Bank statement, 401k, insurance settlement, etc.)
  • Report cards for school age children
  • Notarized letter of help from anyone who is assisting you financially
  • 2017 Federal & State income tax return

Do I have to get it notarized?

Yes. But starting in fiscal year 2019, when the new ordinance takes effect, you may be exempt if you're of advanced age, provide caretaker services to a dependent or have limited physical mobility.

Is there an application fee?


When will I know the status of my application?

Sometime before or at the beginning of the new year, you'll get notice via mail of the status of your exemption.
To be clear, the Dec. 10 application round is to exempt your 2018 property taxes. If you already paid, you will get a refund for your exemption. 

Will I have to apply again next year?

Yes. Exemptions only cover one tax year at a time. However, the new ordinance will allow some people who have received the exemption in past years to do an abridged version of the application. Ask about that next year.


Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©

DOJ Gets Names In OSC Russian Election Interference Investigation


Welcome to Michigan.
Image result for damsel in distress
OSC saving the Damsel in Distress


Butina, 29, was indicted on July 17 on a conspiracy charge and for acting as an unregistered foreign agent of Russia. She is accused of attempting to infiltrate conservative political groups, including the National Rifle Association, at the direction of Alexander Torshin, the deputy chief of Russia’s central bank.

(RELATED: Russian National Linked To NRA Is Charged With Acting As Russian Agent)

Butina, who attended American University, was a gun rights activist who co-founded The Right to Bear Arms, a pro-gun group in Russia.

Butina and her boyfriend, a conservative political operative named Paul Erickson, had extensive contact with top NRA officials. Erickson also made several attempts in May 2016 to arrange meetings between members of the Trump campaign and Torshin.

Torshin appeared at an event on the sidelines of the NRA convention in Louisville in May 2016. He did not meet with Donald Trump at the event, but did briefly greet Donald Trump Jr.

Prosecutors have accused Butina of operating covertly. They have claimed to have evidence that Butina met with Russian operatives in the U.S.

In a complaint filed against Butina on July 18, U.S. attorney Jessie Liu accused Butina of offering sex in exchange for access to a special interest organization. Butina’s lawyers said text messages showed that Butina was joking with a friend in Russia who had repaired her car.

Liu acknowledged the mistake in a court filing submitted on Aug. 24.

“Even granting that the government’s understanding of this particular text conversation was mistaken, other communications and materials in the government’s possession (and produced to the defense) call into doubt the defendant’s claim that her relationship with U.S. Person 1 is a sufficiently strong tie to ensure her appearance in court to face the charges against her if she is released.”

U.S. Person 1 is believed to be Erickson.

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©

Kavanaugh Is Referred To SCOTUS For Ethics Investigation - Is Ken Starr In Those Filings?

Image result for ken starr whitewater
Ken Starr, Baylor University.
It is such a shame we do not know the scope of the judicial ethics complaints.

I bet there is more than just quarter bounce in those filings.

But, hey, what do I know.

I know the following is what was going on when he was at Baylor University, because it is all public information, and I learned circumvention research from Starletta Banks.

Oh, and it is the same crap that is going on with with the charge of Michigan State University ex-President Lou Anna Simon.

Child welfare fraud.

Same exact crap, except I have not found the children's trust funds out of Baylor, yet, but all I have to do if follow the Medicaid fraud in child welfare because they are using kids as lab rats

You are more than welcome to contribute or just follow my mission right here, because we are all going to be coming to Detroit.

Baylor paid ex-coach Art Briles $15.1 million after dismissal amid school's sexual assault scandal; Ken Starr got $4.5 million

Actually, it was more than $4.5 because he got paid for being the Chancellor, too, you know.

Image result for ken starr contempt
Timing is everything

Baylor University and Ken Starr Issue Joint Statement Regarding Their Employment Relationship

WACO, Texas (Aug. 19, 2016) – Effective today, Judge Ken Starr will be leaving his faculty status and tenure at Baylor University’s Law School. The mutually agreed separation comes with the greatest respect and love Judge Starr has for Baylor and with Baylor’s recognition and appreciation for Judge Starr’s many contributions to Baylor. Baylor wishes Judge Ken Starr well in his future endeavors. Judge Starr expresses his thanks to the Baylor family for the opportunity to serve as president and chancellor and is grateful for his time with the exceptional students of Baylor University who will lead and serve around the world.

Largest-ever U.S. autism research study underway

I wonder what Ken Starr is doing right about now....

Again, what do I know?

Chief Justice Roberts Requests Tenth Circuit To Investigate Kavanaugh Ethics Questions

Image result for ken starr whitewater
Brett Kavanaugh & Ken Starr
Whitewater days
(pre-Detroit Land Bank Authority days)
These complaints were initially received by the U.S. Court of Appeals prior to Kavanaugh’s seating on the Supreme Court. Chief Judge Merrick Garland — whose nomination to the Supreme Court was blocked by Senate Republicans—recused himself from the matter. The complaints were then passed to Judge Karen LeCraft Henderson, whom President George H.W. Bush nominated to the bench.

Judge Henderson dismissed some of the complaints made against Judge Kavanaugh as frivolous. But she concluded that more than a dozen complaints were substantive enough to warrant investigation by an impartial panel and that they should not be handled by Judge Kavanaugh’s fellow judges in the D.C. Circuit. She referred them to Chief Justice Roberts, who has now referred them to the 10th Circuit.

The Legal Basis Of The Ethics Complaints
The complaints were not made without legal basis. More than 2,400 law professors have determined that Kavanaugh has “displayed a lack of judicial temperament that would be disqualifying for any court.”

Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens also stated that Judge Kavanaugh has demonstrated bias and is “not fit for the Supreme Court.” Former Justice Stevens, in remarks to retirees in Boca Raton, Fla, declared that Kavanaugh’s statements on September 27 revealed prejudices that would make it impossible for him to do the court’s work. “They suggest that he has demonstrated a potential bias involving enough potential litigants before the court that he would not be able to perform his full responsibilities.”

Wall Street Journal, about “a few things [he] should not have said” in his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, though without giving specifics.

Now, Chief Justice Roberts has requested Judge Timothy M. Tymkovich, the chief circuit judge of the Denver-based Tenth Circuit, to review the complaints against Kavanaugh and "any pending or new complaints related to the same subject matter." Judge Tymkovich has the option of handling the complaints himself, dismissing them or appointing a special committee to examine them.

Unlike the allegations of Justice Kavanaugh’s sexual misconduct and excessive drinking as a teenager, there is no question here about the facts as to what happened, since they occurred on national television. At the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing, Judge Kavanaugh’s behavior was startlingly non-judicial in nature. From the outset in his prepared statement, he was angry and confrontational in manner. He was aggrieved and complaining about the situation in which he found himself. He was impolite and challenged the integrity of the Senate questioners and portrayed the hearing in the starkest partisan terms.

Kavanaugh made no apparent effort to bring a lifetime of professional expertise and perspective to bear on the difficult issues under consideration. Instead, he was dismissive of the inquiry and was careless on matters of fact that had been asserted by other potential witnesses on the subject under discussion. He made obfuscating responses to questions about the meaning of words. He made no apparent effort to hold emotions in check and shouted at U.S. Senators and accused them of wrongdoing. He repeatedly sought to shift the attention and blame to others for what was taking place. He resisted further legal inquiry into the issues under discussion. He approached the inquiry with an attitude of entitlement and self-pity. His conduct was remarkably unprofessional.

Although Kavanaugh’s behavior was the very opposite of what one hopes for and expects in a judge, it succeeded in its immediate intent of winning the applause of President Trump and his Republican supporters. Yet his performance, which has been accurately satirized on Saturday Night Live, appalled the rest of the country and raised strictly legal questions about his temperament to sit as a judge on any federal court, let alone the Supreme Court.

Next Steps
The situation is unique in that never before has a Supreme Court appointee joined the court at a time when a fellow judge has concluded that misconduct claims against that appointee warrant review and when a former Supreme Court Justice has concluded that the appointee’s behavior was disqualifying.
Technically, Supreme Court justices are not subject to the misconduct rules governing these claims. But if complaints against a sitting Justice are not dealt with in an impartial apolitical manner, then there will be an asterisk against Judge Tymkovich and Justice Kavanaugh for the remainder of their terms, and indeed the U.S. Supreme Court itself.

There is therefore a risk that Mitch McConnell's seeming accomplishment of a “rock-solid Republican majority on the Supreme Court for a generation” may yet turn out to be something of a Pyrrhic victory.

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©

Mississippi Catholic Churches Next Up In Trafficking Tiny Humans - DHS Raid Diocese Of Jackson

This sounds like one of those Catholics In Action (CIA) operatives.

Why did Homeland Security raid Catholic Diocese of Jackson? It starts with a priest.

The Office of Homeland Security raided the Catholic Diocese of Jackson office investigating accusations a Starkville priest obtained money by lying about having cancer when in fact he was HIV positive and was sent to a Canadian sexual addiction facility for priests.

An affidavit by Homeland Security Special Agent William Childers was filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Jackson. The search of the Jackson Diocese apparently took place Nov. 7.

The affidavit says Homeland Security Investigations have developed probable cause to believe the Rev. Lenin Vargas-Gutierrez, pastor of St. Joseph Parish in Starkville, knowingly devised schemes of obtaining money by means of false and fraudulent pretense, through the use of wire communications.
The affidavit refers to Lenin Vargas-Gutierrez as Father Vargas after the initial introduction. A native of Mexico, he was ordained a priest in the Jackson diocese in 2006.

Childers' affidavit said the diocese had knowledge of Vargas' felony and concealed it by not making it immediately known.

The Diocese of Jackson issued the following statement Monday:

"Earlier this week the government began an investigation of the financial administration of St. Joseph in Starkville. St. Joseph Parish and the Diocese of Jackson are cooperating with the investigation. Pending the resolution of the investigation, Father Lenin Vargas will not engage in any public ministry and has been removed from all pastoral and financial administration.

"After receiving complaints, Bishop Joseph Kopacz ordered an internal accounting audit of the Starkville Parish’s finances.  After Bishop Kopacz’ staff conducted the audit, the Diocese placed fiscal constraints on Father Vargas’ spending and found that he was violating diocesan policy concerning soliciting charitable donations and demanded that he stop these activities and conduct no further charitable fundraising without first informing the diocese of these planned activities. Federal law, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, better known as HIPPA, prohibits our discussion of Father Vargas’ medical condition — not only when we first learned of it, but also throughout the time period mentioned in the affidavit. In fact, HIPPA law continues to bind us today in that we can neither admit nor deny anything related to Rev. Vargas’ medical condition."

In Vargas' absence, the diocese saidthe Rev. Jeffrey Waldrep, pastor of Annunciation in Columbus, will serve as administrator, and the Rev. Rusty Vincent will be responsible for all pastoral ministry at St. Joseph and at Corpus Christi in Macon.

"The continued spiritual and financial well being of St. Joseph Parish and Corpus Christi is of the utmost importance, and we will continue to aid you both in sound fiscal management of all of your resources. Let us pray with trust that the Lord Jesus will shepherd us through this difficult time of upheaval and uncertainty," the diocese said.

The affidavit said agents met with five confidential informants with years of experience with the diocese in August or September.

Affidavit highlights of confidential informants' statements

  • Confidential informant No. 1 reported that in late 2014 Vargas went to the Oktibbeha County Hospital Regional Medical Center for breathing trouble. Vargas stayed in the hospital for several days.
After Vargas was discharged, he invited the confidential informant to dinner and told him he was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer — Walden Storm's macroglobulinemia lymphoma.
Vargas told the informant that the Diocese of Jackson was sending him to Canada for treatment because the Canadian hospital was one of the few hospitals that dealt with the type of rare cancer.
The informants said Vargas announced from the pulpit numerous times to St. Joe parishioners that he had cancer.

In April and May of 2015, an announcement appeared in the church bulletin, providing an address of Vargas for those parishioners who wished to send him mail. The address listed was the address of Southdawn Institute, "founded to address the need of religious and clergy around addictions and mental health issues."

A GoFundMe account was established for Vargas' benefit to cover medical expenses. Also, an informant said Vargas raised money for his alleged cancer from private donations as well.

Agents confirmed the GoFundMe account and that 57 people donated $9,210.

The GoFundMe narrative said that while Vargas has medical insurance, the costs associated with his cancer were high and that bills continued to be significant, and that donated funds would be deposited into the account. Three confidential informants told Homeland Security agents that the Diocese of Jackson's medical coverage for priests is very good and effectively covers everything, and that Vargas' medical expenses were covered.

The narrative contained a disclaimer that the Diocese of Jackson wasn't responsible for this campaign.
  • Confidential informant No. 2 told agents he learned from a reliable source that Vargas didn't have cancer and was in fact diagnosed with HIV in 2014. The informant said the information was forwarded to Bishop Joseph Kopacz of the Diocese of Jackson in 2015.
Information provided by the informant was corroborated by agents who subpoenaed Vargas' medical records from Oktibbeha County Hospital Regional Medical Center. The doctor ordered a HIV test. On Sept. 28, 2014, Vargas checked out of the hospital without seeing his doctor.

On July 16, 2016, Vargas went to Oktibbeha County Hospital Medical Associates for right knee pain and reported he had HIV. He reported on two other occasions that he was HIV positive, according to the court affidavit.

The cover-up allegation

In April 2015, Vargas left St. Joseph and went to Canada for treatment, informing parishioners during Mass that he was going for cancer treatment.

One of the informants said Vargas actually went to Southdown Institute of Toronto, Canada, which among other things, is a sexual addiction facility for priests.

In March 2015, the Diocese of Jackson furthered Vargas' cancer story by sending out email to priests in the diocese. Two informants said they believe the diocese was aware of Vargas' diagnosis when he was sent to Canada.

"The Diocesan email stated that Vargas would be leaving for extensive treatment in the near future, and that he would be gone for a few months. What the email failed to state was that Vargas was not going away for cancer treatment. As a result, Vargas continued to raise money for his supposed cancer treatment. Your affiant (Agent Childers) believes the email was sent in order to perpetuate the cancer story, to hide Vargas' HIV condition and protect the Diocese of Jackson  from negative publicity," the affidavit said.

In addition to the GoFundMe account money, St. Joseph parishioners and others donated more than $33,000 to Vargas and most of the money was spent on personal expenses. Two informants said that as of this year, Vargas was still claiming he had cancer.

Additionally, Vargas was raising money for an orphanage in Mexico, but authorities said he never provided any letter or correspondence from a Mexican orphanage and never provided receipts. 
Vargas is also alleged to have solicited money for a chapel in Mexico.

Informants said Vargas spent excessively, especially by standards for priests.

According to the affidavit, in October 2017, Bishop Kopacz and Vicar General Kevin Slattery were informed by concerned clergy that Vargas was raising significant amounts of money from parishioners for cancer treatment and unverified charitable causes. The bishop and Slattery were told that Vargas was making numerous trips to Mexico and that money was missing from the parish coffers.

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©

DOJ: Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein Delivers Remarks at the Interpol 87th General Assembly

I shall assume this long winded speech is in reference to the trafficking of tiny humans.

Dubai United Arab Emirates ~ Sunday, November 18, 2018

It is a privilege to join you at this 87th INTERPOL General Assembly.  I am grateful to the United Arab Emirates for hosting our conference. Thank you President Kim Jong Yang for your exceptional leadership and for providing stability to INTERPOL.  

Our theme this year is innovation.  Many digital innovations affect law enforcement, from the rise of cybercrime, to the increasing importance of electronic evidence, to encryption and the dark net. 
In addressing these innovations, we must respect the primary value that is constant in our work: the rule of law.  Law provides the framework for civilized people to conduct their lives.  At its best, law reflects moral choices; principled decisions that promote the best interests of society, and protect the fundamental rights of citizens. 
 The term “rule of law” describes the government’s obligation to follow neutral principles and fair processes. The ideal dates at least to the time of Greek philosopher Aristotle, who wrote, “It is more proper that law should govern than any one of the citizens: upon the same principle, if it is advantageous to place the supreme power in some particular persons, they should be appointed to be only guardians, and the servants of the law.”
The rule of law is indispensable to a thriving and vibrant society.  It shields citizens from government overreach.  It allows businesses to invest with confidence.  It gives innovators protection for their discoveries.  It keeps people safe from dangerous criminals.  And it allows us to resolve differences peacefully through reason and logic.
When we follow the rule of law, it does not always yield the outcome that we prefer. In fact, one indicator that we are following the law is when we respect a result although we do not agree with it. We respect it because it is required by an objective analysis of the facts and a rational application of the rules.
The rule of law is not simply about words written on paper.  The culture of a society and the character of the people who enforce the law determine whether the rule of law endures.
Since we met last year in Beijing, the news media has reported several prominent challenges to the rule of law, including the lawless attacks on Sergei and Yulia Skirpal and Jamal Khashoggi.  Last month, international attention focused on INTERPOL, as a result of the disappearance of President Meng Hongwei.  Such events give rise to questions about whether our member countries abide by shared principles.  In evaluating our actions at this General Assembly, observers may ask whether our votes reflect the values that we profess. We must stand for the rule of law.  
INTERPOL exists to promote international police coordination and discourage departures from the law. We represent diverse forms of government. But if we serve with integrity, each of us functions as a trustee for our fellow citizens.
When our successors look back on how we dealt with the issues of our era, they will ask whether we honored our fiduciary duties.
First, did we develop the knowledge to understand our challenges?
Second, did we inculcate the wisdom to solve them?
Third, did we demonstrate the courage to defend our principles?
Fourth, did we maintain the resolve to achieve our goals?
I traveled here to speak about INTERPOL’s role in responding to the major innovation of our lives: the rise of a cyber-connected world. 
The Internet holds immeasurable promise as a repository of ideas, and as a forum for speech and commerce.  It connects citizens across cultures and countries.  It is accessible to the rich and the poor, the powerful and the powerless.  It creates efficiencies and innovations that immensely improve our lives.
But like every innovation that offers opportunities for good, the Internet also can be exploited by wrongdoers. Today, there is a growing divergence between the Internet as it is, and the Internet as it could be.
Malicious actors use the Internet for evil ends.  Cyber criminals employ modern technologies to damage information systems, steal data, commit fraud, violate privacy, attack critical infrastructure, and sexually exploit children. They also launch misleading schemes to influence people’s opinions, seeking to foment division and disrupt democratic processes.
The Internet enables attacks on businesses, government agencies, and individual citizens that cause damage costing billions of dollars.  And new technologies allow criminals to conceal themselves, which frustrates law enforcement’s efforts to keep honest citizens safe. 
We must acknowledge the divergence between the Internet in theory and the Internet in practice. Closing that gap will ensure the viability of an open Internet governed by the rule of law.
Enforcing the law on the Internet requires rapid and accurate detection of criminal activity; cooperation among law enforcers from different nations; prosecution of accused criminals in judicial systems that provide due process of law; and just punishment of guilty offenders.  It means not tolerating virtual online locations where crime is unchallenged.  It means not condoning physical safe havens for cyber criminals.
Detecting, disrupting, deterring, and prosecuting malicious cyber activity are among our highest law enforcement priorities in the United States.  The cyber threats we face are varied and evolving, and our resolve to keep our people safe must extend to every corner of the Internet.
My office recently issued a comprehensive report about our work to combat cybercrime.  It describes the global challenges posed by cyber-enabled crime.  It explains how hostile cyber actors damage computer systems, steal data, engage in cyber fraud, violate personal privacy, infiltrate critical infrastructure, and pursue malign foreign influence operations.  The report also details our efforts to detect and disrupt those threats, and our commitment to inform citizens about the dangers.
The perceived anonymity of the Internet attracts many criminals, including terrorists and those trafficking in child pornography, illicit weapons, illegal and deadly drugs, murder-for-hire, malware, and stolen identities.  The barriers to entry are low.  Criminal opportunities are on offer for anyone with an Internet browser and an inclination to break the law.  
Yet our police agencies repeatedly demonstrate that with the support of international partners, we can find and dismantle malign internet operations.  We identify anonymous users who commit illegal activity, seize their infrastructure and proceeds, and pursue criminal charges against them.  Criminals operating on the dark web should be on notice that our investigative tools allow us to expose them.
We must not allow cybercriminals to hide behind cryptocurrencies.  Virtual currencies have some legitimate uses.  But bad actors are using them to fund crimes and to hide illicit proceeds.  For example, Bitcoin was the exclusive method of payment for the WannaCry ransomware attack that spread around the globe, causing billions of dollars in losses. 
In addition, fraudsters use the lure of coin offerings and the promise of new currencies to bilk unsuspecting investors, promote scams, and engage in market manipulation.  The challenges of regulating, seizing, and tracing virtual currencies demand a multinational response.  We must work together to make clear that the rule of law can reach the entire blockchain.
To that end, last year, prosecutors in the United States announced the indictment of Alexander Vinnick and the virtual currency exchange he allegedly operated. That exchange received more than $4 billion of virtual currency. It was designed without any means to control money laundering, so predictably it served as a hub for international criminals seeking to hide and launder ill-gotten gains. 
We filed criminal charges and assessed a $110 million civil penalty against the exchange for willfully violating our anti-money laundering laws, as well as a $12 million penalty against Vinnick.
To prevent virtual currency from being abused by criminals, terrorist financiers, or sanctions evaders, all of us must implement policies that mitigate the risks posed by the new technology.  My country includes virtual currencies in our anti-money laundering regulations.  And the Financial Action Task Force urges all nations to make clear that global anti-money laundering standards apply to virtual currency products and service providers. We must guard against abuses of digital currency.
We also need to protect against abuses of encrypted communications.  Encryption can be useful in the fight against cybercrime.  Encrypting data makes it more safe and secure.  But the proliferation of warrant-proof encryption also poses a challenge to effective law enforcement. 
Encryption technologies designed to be impervious to legal process impede our ability to access investigative data.  In September, the chief law enforcement officials of the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand joined together to issue a “Statement of Principles on Access to Evidence and Encryption.”
While acknowledging the benefits of encryption, they called for urgent, sustained attention and informed discussion about the increasing difficulty law enforcement agencies face in accessing evidence of criminal conduct.
We will continue to work closely with technology companies to establish responsible practices that consider both privacy concerns and public safety imperatives.
On the Internet, data is decentralized, information flows across continents, and online activities are dispersed across global networks. Cybercrime knows no borders.  As a result, international cooperation is indispensable.  INTERPOL is central to that cooperation.
We must ensure that appropriate criminal laws are enforced.  Each of us must do our part to bring malicious actors to justice.  We rely on international partners to locate, arrest, and extradite cybercriminals so that they may be held accountable.  Cybercriminals should find no safe haven, either on the dark web or within national borders.
In the United States, we continue to faithfully discharge our responsibility to extradite fugitives. In the last five years, we extradited 95 Americans, honoring inquiries whenever the requesting state presents sufficient evidence of criminality.
For example, last year the United States sent Shawn Gregory Towner to Ireland.  Towner was arrested in Ireland in 2006 after authorities found him watching images of child sexual abuse on his laptop in Dublin, but he fled to the United States after being released on bail.  My country located Towner and sent him to Ireland to stand trial. 
We process extraditions without regard to the nationality of the offender. 
But that cooperation must be reciprocated.
International cooperation was essential to our successful dismantlement of the Kelihos botnet, a global network of tens of thousands of infected computers.  Criminals used the network to harvest login credentials, distribute hundreds of millions of spam e-mails, and install ransomware and other malicious software. 
In 2017, prosecutors obtained judicial orders authorizing law enforcement to neutralize the botnet by seizing control of malicious domains and redirecting traffic to servers we controlled. 
Disabling the botnet was only part of the equation. The criminals responsible for creating and administering the botnet also should be held accountable. American prosecutors charged Peter Levashov of St. Petersburg, Russia for multiple offenses stemming from his control and operation of the Kelihos botnet.  Levashov is a cybercriminal who operated multiple botnets with impunity for nearly two decades. 
Spanish authorities arrested Levashov and extradited him to the United States. In September, Levashov was found guilty in a fair and public judicial proceeding.
Levashov’s extradition represented effective coordination with our foreign partners.  Unfortunately, not every case is a success story.  In some instances, nations shield their citizens from the rule of law with schemes that waste resources, cause needless delay, thwart investigative efforts, and undermine justice. 
Consider the prosecution of accused hacker Aleksey Belan.  Belan is a Russian national who was indicted in the United States for massive computer breaches on American companies.  After the United States issued an arrest warrant, Belan was reportedly arrested in 2013.  But he was permitted to return to Russia. 
A second indictment alleges that in 2014, after Belan returned to Russia, Russian intelligence agents recruited him to carry out one of the largest data breaches in history, stealing information from more than 500 million individual email accounts of people around the world. 
The rule of law suffers when cybercriminals are given safe havens.  The United States will continue to promote the rule of law by identifying, exposing, and seeking to extradite perpetrators who harm innocent people.  And we will continue to support legitimate investigations and prosecutions conducted by our INTERPOL partners. 
At the same time, we will expose schemes to manipulate the extradition process.  We will identify nations that routinely block the fair administration of justice and fail to act in good faith, with a sincere commitment to holding criminals accountable.
As cyber threats grow in scale and sophistication, we increasingly need to search throughout the world for evidence, witnesses, and defendants.  Our responses must be as innovative as the criminal activity. We depend on expeditious international cooperation and coordination in dismantling malicious criminal operations. 
Child exploitation cases provide a useful model for international coordination.  INTERPOL’s International Child Sexual Exploitation image and video database uses image and video comparison software to identify and locate child sexual exploitation victims and their abusers.  The database has led to the arrest of nearly 6,300 offenders. Recently, it helped authorities rescue five victims in Spain.  That is a superb example of innovative law enforcement.
In my country, we play a leading role by identifying cases in which child exploitation materials are generated from or hosted in other countries.  Then we disseminate the information to the appropriate INTERPOL member countries. Our partners often request follow-up information to assist in their own investigations. Last year, almost nine million investigative leads were distributed through this program, resulting in many arrests and prosecutions. 
Children around the world are safer when our law enforcement agencies work together – quickly, and with methods like those pioneered by INTERPOL.
Finally, I am proud that the United States takes seriously our responsibility to help secure evidence that our international partners need for their investigations.  We receive thousands of requests for mutual legal assistance each year, and we do all that we can to comply.  We employ expert attorneys and staff dedicated to assisting with foreign requests for electronic evidence.  We devote additional resources when necessary to meet your needs.
We call upon each of you to do the same.  By devoting appropriate resources to international cooperation efforts, we can properly address the increasing threat of cybercrime.
My country recently enacted a new law to remove legal impediments to compliance with foreign court orders in cases that involve serious crimes.  The legislation demonstrates our commitment to the vision of the Budapest Convention on Cybercrime, the primary treaty for harmonizing national interests and enhancing international cooperation against cybercrime.  Sixty-one nations have fully ratified the treaty, agreeing that national laws should include authority to compel providers to disclose data they control, even when it is held elsewhere. 
New cyber conventions are sometimes proposed that would limit the free flow of information between nations. But that would dangerously impede efforts to investigate cybercrime. It would protect criminals and allow cyber threats to proliferate and grow in scale and sophistication.  That is untenable in a world in which criminals using computers shielded by layers of anonymity can harm innocent victims in any one of our nations, anywhere in the world. Such limitations would be a step backward, not an innovative law enforcement approach.
No nation should exempt itself from just and reasonable law enforcement cooperation. No nation will be more prosperous, more secure, or more respected because it supports cybercriminals. 
My fellow delegates, there is a parable about three stonecutters asked to describe what they are doing.  They answer in varying ways. The first stonecutter focuses on how the job benefits him. He says, “I am earning a living.” The second man narrowly describes his personal task: “I am cutting stone.” The third man has a very different perspective. Instead of focusing solely on his work, he explains what it means to others: “I am helping these stonecutters build a shrine.”
Similarly, each of us helps to construct a legacy. INTERPOL delegates should always support leaders and policies that promote international police coordination and preserve the rule of law – in practice, and not just in theory. We must uphold the rule of law, so it will be there for us when we need it.
When our successors speak of our time here, give them reason to say that we understood the challenges; we found the solutions; we defended our principles, and we stayed the course to support liberty and justice for all. 
I am honored to work with you in advancing the INTERPOL mission and making the world safer and more prosperous for all law-abiding citizens. Shukran.  Thank you very much.

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A Few Reasons Why Arizona Averages 500 Legally Kidnapped Kids A Month

Did you ever wonder why so many children are Legally Kidnapped by Child Protective Services?

Well, wonder no more!

Arizona is going to be our example for the final phase in the Month of Trafficking Tiny Humans - Adoption.

See, when an anonymous individual calls the CPS Hotline, the intake worker fills out a form and takes it to a judge to sign the removal order.

Mind you, I did not say anything about being charged, facing the unknown accuser, or anything else relevantly close to due process because that is called ex-parte, meaning you are not invited to the proceeding.

Yes, that is correct, the courts hold a petite trial, meaning the only people in the court room are the judge, the CPS worker and probably the clerk, that is if the orders are not rubber stamped like they do in Michigan, but I digress because we are dealing with Arizona.

If a state is snatching this many kids, something tells me the state is not doing a very good job when it comes to quality of life and its elected officials probably do not care because the money to be made off these poor tiny humans funds their political campaigns.

Arizona Computer Glitches Bust Child Human Trafficking & Fraud

Oh, and I forgot.


Happy National Adoption Month!

Child welfare officials took 1,900 kids in 4 months, but that's not the whole picture

Over the last four months, child-welfare workers removed more than 1,900 Arizona children from their family homes with a judge's OK, according to data obtained by The Arizona Republic.

But that doesn't give the full picture of child removals that lawmakers wanted when they adopted a new warrant process as a check on the Department of Child Safety's power to remove a child from her parents.

Most notably, the agency doesn't reveal how many Arizona children were taken without judicial approval, which the law allows in dire circumstances. That's because DCS isn't tracking emergency removals even though the intent of the new warrant law was to provide more transparency on what is arguably one of the most intrusive actions a government can take on its citizens.

The Republic obtained data from the Department of Child Safety on removals from July 1, when the new law took effect, to October 31.

Previously, child-welfare workers alone made the call to remove a child. But under the new law, DCS case investigators must file removal requests electronically to Maricopa County's initial appearance court, where a judge or commissioner decides whether to issue an order. The court operates 24/7 and handles requests from investigators in all 15 counties.

The data shows that 93 percent of the time requests for a court order to remove a child have been granted. That accounts for the 1,938 children who were removed between July 1 and Oct. 31.

Requests involving 50 children were denied, but it's unclear what DCS did in those cases since the investigator apparently thought the child needed to be immediately separated from his home.
DCS can't quantify how many children were removed from their homes due to "exigent circumstances," the only situation in which an exception to a court order is allowed.

"I wish it wasn't this difficult to get this kind of reporting when it has such a dire impact on families," said Rep. Kelly Townsend, R-Mesa, an early advocate for court orders. She said she is working on legislation that would require regular reporting on the agency's removal process.

When should you call DCS if you think a child is in danger?
Arizona’s child-welfare agency says to call the child-abuse hotline if you reasonably believe that a child has been “abused, neglected, exploited or abandoned.”

Lawsuits, court decision propel action

The Arizona Legislature debated the need for a so-called warrant system for several years. A 2016 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that removing a child without court approval violates parents' constitutional rights was a key motivator. Ongoing lawsuits against DCS arguing that the state's practice of taking children without getting a warrant is unconstitutional further propelled action.

A bill requiring court approval passed in 2017, and earlier this year lawmakers defined the circumstances in which DCS could remove children without a court order. They outlined two narrow categories when this could happen:
  • When the situation is so urgent there is not time to file a request with the court
  • When there is probable cause that a child has been sexually or physically abused. 
But more than four months into the new process, DCS says it can't isolate cases where children have been removed due to emergency circumstances. At least, not without combing through more than 3,000 individual case files.

The agency every month reports the total number of children it removes.

From July to October, that totaled 3,175 removals. But that figure combines a variety of cases, DCS public-information officer Darren DaRonco said. Besides removals due to exigent circumstances, the number reflects cases in which parents voluntarily surrender their children; where the court (not DCS) generates the removal request; and where the child is also involved with the juvenile-justice system.

"It's not as easy as subtracting the numbers," DaRonco said.

What is easy is the reason DCS doesn't seek a court order: "There isn’t enough time to get in front of a judge before harm will come to a child," the agency said in a statement. This is one of the exceptions outlined in state law

Lawmakers want more details

Legislators said the reported numbers are helpful, but some want to see more detail.
Rep. Reginald Bolding, D-Laveen, said a big issue in his district are complaints that DCS "arbitrarily" removes kids based more on socioeconomic status than any real danger.

"The transparency aspect is probably the most important aspect when you're removing children from their home," he said. "Historically, DCS has had issues with that."

Rep. John Allen was closely involved in the creation of the court-order law. He said the fact that DCS can show that 93 percent of its removal requests were approved is a key reason for the law.
"I want the public to understand we're making strides to make the system better," said Allen, R-Scottsdale.

What the numbers don't tell 

Attorney Suzanne Nicholls contends the statistics don't tell the whole story on child removals.
She said she's seen DCS cases where the children were removed from their home using "present danger" plans. These plans are part of the safety protocol DCS has been using since last year under a policy intended to keep families together in as many cases as possible.

One of the options is to send children to live with "a responsible adult in the family network" who can care for them for up to two weeks. This option, in her eyes, is a back-door way to remove a child without court approval.

The plain fact that a child is not living with one or both parents is evidence of a removal, she said.
"Right now, we have no idea how many children are out of their homes," she said.

When a removal is not a removal

DCS sees it differently.

It views present-danger plans as a way to improve a family situation before things deteriorate to the point case managers feel a court order is needed to remove the child. That can entail having the child live apart from the parent or parents, but the agency doesn't consider that a removal.

Nor, apparently, do some of the judges who have denied removal requests. Judges have turned down removal requests, saying they want the present-danger plan to expire (they last no longer than 14 days) before deciding on a removal.

Allen said he views temporary placements with a relative as a breather for parents to settle things down in their household. In his eyes, it's not a technical removal.

"It's not a direct intervention of the state," he added.

Lessons learned

DCS said it studied the cases where the court has denied removal requests and found that usually happens when the child has been left with a relative, ending the "impending danger" that is key to deciding if a removal is needed.

In other instances, denials happened because the DCS investigator did not include information on both parents.

So far, DCS said, the new law is meeting its expectations: It has provided a backstop on investigators' decisions to remove a child; it has helped protect parental rights; and it has saved children from the trauma of being unnecessarily removed from their parents.

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