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TSA investigates pilot for posting videos online critical of security

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SAN FRANCISCO – A pilot who posted videos on YouTube that were critical of security at San Francisco International Airport is now the subject of an investigation, the pilot’s attorney says.

The pilot placed several videos on YouTube in late November or early December that showed how ground crew members can enter secure areas by swiping security cards and without undergoing further screening.

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The Transportation Security Administration is looking into whether the pilot revealed sensitive information, his attorney, Don Werno of the Santa Ana-based law firm Werno and Associates, said Friday.

The TSA wouldn’t answer questions but said in a statement it is responding to the situation and is confident in the security at San Francisco International Airport.

“As to access control at SFO, TSA is confident in the tools the airport has implemented and reminds passengers there are security measures in place that are both seen and unseen.”

The pilot remains employed with a major airline, but he has withdrawn from a program that trains flight crew to help prevent hijackings after authorities confiscated his federally issued firearm, Werno said. He declined to release the pilot’s name, citing concerns about the man’s job.

In the footage, the pilot says that pilots undergo intense screening, but then have access to ax-like weapons that are stored in the cockpit in case of emergencies.

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One of the videos, which number more than six, was of federal air marshals and sheriff’s deputies who came to the pilot’s home earlier this month to seize his federally issued firearm. The pilot had been allowed to carry the weapon on board as part of a program after 9/11 that trains certain flight crew to serve as “federal flight deck officers” to prevent hijackings.

Werno said his client was upset about what he feels is lax security for ground crew, including baggage handlers, working at SFO while flight crews and passengers are subject to intense screening.

“The airport should be a security zone where everything that comes into the airport perimeter is checked,” he said.

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The pilot removed the videos from YouTube after the TSA objected.

The pilot, a 50-year-old Sacramento-area native, has worked for a major airline for the past 10 years and continues to fly, according to Werno. He has been advised by his airline not to disclose his identity.

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In its statement, the TSA said it “responded and took action in this situation because the pilot in question was a FFDO (federal flight deck officer).”

“FFDOs must be able to maintain sensitive security information as a condition of the FFDO program,” the agency said. It did not elaborate.

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Lev Parnas’s lawyer declared ‘open war’ on AG Bill Barr during Maddow interview: attorney

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The attorney for Rudy Giuliani associate Lev Parnas appears to be using a novel legal strategy, attorney Luppe Luppen explained on Friday.

Joseph Bondy, the attorney for Parnas, was interviewed Friday evening by Rachel Maddow, following the day's end of the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump.

Luppen, who offers legal analysis on his popular @nycsouthpaw Twitter account, came to a conclusion that seemed to surprise him after watching the interview.

"I’ve never seen a lawyer sit on a cable panel show and make that much news," Luppen wrote.

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Democratic prosecutors wrap up case against Trump

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Democratic prosecutors on Friday wrapped up three days of arguments for seeking Donald Trump's removal from office, as the US president's lawyers prepared to take their turn presenting his defense in the Senate's historic impeachment trial.

For a final eight-hour stretch, the 100 senators listened as Democrats argued that Trump abused the power of the presidency in pressuring Ukraine to launch investigations that would help him politically and then sought to block efforts by Congress to investigate.

Democrats said they had met the burden of proof as they warned Republicans that Trump would remain a grave danger to the nation if left in office.

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‘Give me a break’: Internet unleashes on ‘snowflakes’ Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski for complaint about Schiff

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CNN's Manu Raju revealed after the Senate adjourned that Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) audibly disputed Rep. Adam Schiff's (D-CA) quotation of a CBS News report threatening senators.

"She shook her head and said, 'No they didn't. No, that's not true,'" Raju reported.

Sens. Tom Cotton (R-AR), Jim Risch (R-ID) Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and John Barrasso also said that the report was false.

https://twitter.com/GriffinConnolly/status/1220891285910892544

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