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‘Largest ever’ FBI corruption probe nets 133 cops, officials

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WASHINGTON — US officials Wednesday unveiled the FBI’s largest ever police corruption sweep saying 133 police, prison guards and army officers have been charged in a huge anti-graft crackdown in Puerto Rico.

The suspects face charges relating to possessing and distributing cocaine, and using firearms during a drug trafficking offense, the US Department of Justice said in a statement.

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The arrests “are the result of Operation Guard Shack, the largest police corruption investigation in the history of the FBI,” the statement read.

“Close to 750 FBI agents were flown in to Puerto Rico from across the country to assist in the arrests” early Wednesday.

A total of 129 people, including 60 Puerto Rican police officers, 16 municipal police, 12 prison officials, three Puerto Rico National Guard soldiers, and two US army officers, have been arrested.

Four others remain at large.

The indictments result from 125 undercover drug stings conducted by FBI agents in Puerto Rico between July 2008 and September 2010.

The defendants’ participation “consisted of providing armed protection to a drug dealer during the sale of multi-kilogram quantities of cocaine.”

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If convicted the defendants face sentences “ranging from 10 years, up to life in prison,” the DOJ statement read.

“The Justice Department?s commitment to rooting out and eradicating alleged corruption in our law enforcement ranks has never been stronger,” said US Attorney General Eric Holder.

Puerto Rico is a Spanish-speaking Caribbean archipelago and US territory, which lies east of the Dominican Republic.

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2020 Election

Trump-Biden race could hinge on how this one Florida county swings

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Betty Jones voted for President Donald Trump in 2016, but the lifelong Republican has her doubts she will do it again this year.

The federal response to the coronavirus pandemic that has killed about 200,000 Americans and forced older adults to restrict their activities has her contemplating a leadership change.

It “makes me unsure,” said Jones, 78, of Largo, in Pinellas County, Florida. Before COVID-19, she said, she would have definitely voted for Trump.

Polls show that many people will have the pandemic and its public health and economic consequences on their minds when they cast their votes — whether by mail or in person — this fall. Early in-person voting starts Oct. 19 in most Florida counties, including Pinellas.

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Muckraker’s fight to unseal FBI files on Jeffrey Epstein kept alive by judge

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WASHINGTON — A federal judge on Tuesday kept alive a citizen muckraker’s quest to pry loose for the public’s benefit tens of thousands of FBI documents about disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, including his time as a government informant.Self-styled public information crusader Angela Clemente sued in May, seeking to force the FBI to release the documents on the grounds that Epstein is now dead, albeit under mysterious circumstances, and that there is an overarching public interest in releasing documents. The Justice Department, representing the FBI, is fighting the effort.In a status hearing... (more…)

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Mark David Chapman says he was seeking ‘glory’ when he murdered John Lennon

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ALBANY, N.Y. — John Lennon’s killer said he was seeking “glory” when he shot the Beatles star in cold blood 40 years ago but now thinks he deserved the death penalty for his “despicable act,” according to a transcript of his most recent parole hearing obtained by the Daily News.Mark David Chapman, who shot Lennon four times outside of his Upper West Side apartment building on Dec. 8, 1980, was denied parole for the 11th time last month.During his appearance before the State Parole Board, Chapman expressed remorse for his actions that night, saying he killed the famed songwriter because he was ... (more…)

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