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Rudy Giuliani opened Trump up to a racketeering investigation with his ‘organized crime scheme’: Ex-FBI official

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When Rudy Giuliani served as the United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York, he pioneered the use of a federal anti-racketeering law to go after the mafia. But now, that same law may be used to go after Giuliani and his associates.

The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act was passed by Congress to as a mechanism for prosecutors to go after people who order crimes as part of a criminal syndicate, but do not necessarily carry out the crimes themselves.

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Federal obstruction of justice, bribery, fraud, embezzlement and money laundering can each count as two of the necessary predicate offenses allowing a RICO case, as can violations of state laws against bribery and extortion.

Former FBI Assistant Director for Counterintelligence Frank Figliuzzi was interviewed Tuesday by MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace.

“I’ve watched enough crime shows on television to be dangerous with the phone log,” Wallace said. “What I see is a whole lot of Lev Parnas, Rudy Giuliani, OMB number, John Solomon — a journalist who spread a lot of the conspiracy theories about Marie Yovanovich — what do these call logs say to you?”

“Well, phone records are indeed gold to any investigator,” Figliuzzi replied. “And it is no exception in this case, Nicolle, especially when you can take the possibility of Lev Parnas having possible recordings of some of those conversations and overlap them with actual White House phone records.”

Figluizzy likened Giuliani to a mafia caporegime, or capo.

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“It really looks like he is the capo of kind of an organized crime scheme that works its way throughout the White House,” Figliuzzi explained. “And I have to tell you, if this were a county corruption investigation in Miami or Cleveland, we’d be sitting down with the U.S. Attorney’s office right now and we’d be saying, “Do we have a RICO case here? Do we have a situation where Rudy Giuliani — working for the president — is running a corrupt enterprise and this time is he running it in the White House?”

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New Zealand may postpone general election after 4 test positive for COVID-19: PM Jacinda Ardern

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New Zealand locked down nursing homes nationwide Wednesday after a 102-day streak without the coronavirus ended, as Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the outbreak could force her to postpone next month's general election.

Ardern said authorities were scrambling to trace anyone who had been in contact with four Auckland residents who tested positive Tuesday, ending the dream run in which the virus had been contained at New Zealand's borders.

A three-day stay-at-home order for Auckland, New Zealand's biggest city with a population of 1.5 million, was announced on Tuesday night and went into force at lunchtime on Wednesday.

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2020 Election

Android phones to get ‘ShakeAlert’ earthquake warnings — and phones may double as tremor detectors

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Android phones will receive warnings triggered by a "ShakeAlert" earthquake early-warning system implemented on the West Coast by the US Geological Survey and partners.

ShakeAlert uses signals from hundreds of seismometers across the state to trigger warning messages that "an earthquake has begun and shaking is imminent," according to the system's website.

"We saw an opportunity to use Android to provide people with timely, helpful earthquake information when they search, as well as a few seconds warning to get themselves and their loved ones to safety if needed," principal software engineer Marc Stogaitis said in a blog post.

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2020 Election

‘Don’t talk about racism, racist’: Trump scorched after claiming Biden-Harris campaign has a ‘racism problem’

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President Donald Trump continued to lash out at Kamala Harris after the California Democrat was chosen to join the 2020 Democratic Party ticket as presumptive nominee Joe Biden's running mate.

At a news conference following the selection, Trump complained about Harris being "nasty."

After 10 p.m. on Monday, Trump tweeted out an attack ad claiming "Joe Biden has a racism problem."

Here's some of what people were saying about Trump's line of attack:

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