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DOJ Slapped Aside Trump Holdovers to Raid Giuliani After Months of Delays: Report

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According to a report from NBC/New York, plans to raid the home of former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani languished for months in the Justice Department and only came about due to new leadership under President Joe Biden.

On Thursday, the home and office of Giuliani was the subject of a raid with federal agents “collecting phones and computers as part of their probe into whether he broke U.S. lobbying laws by failing to register as a foreign agent related to his work,” the report states.

Those plans had been on hold dating back to the Trump Administration when the Justice Department was headed by Attorney General Bill Barr.

Under the Biden administration — and in particular under newly appointed Attorney General Merrick Garland — the Justice Department is dusting off the files and proceeding with multiple investigations that had stalled out.

According to NBC, “It’s not clear exactly why Justice Department officials chose this particular moment to strike, but it wasn’t out of character for the agency under new Attorney General Merrick Garland. The move was just one in a series of headline-making decisions by a department moving quickly to assert itself in investigations and policy setting,” adding, “The FBI action in New York on Wednesday was especially notable both because of the high-profile nature of the Giuliani investigation and because of the vigorous debate the search warrant question had produced inside the Trump-era Justice Department.”

The report goes on to note that prosecutors were set to go after Giuliani — who had been giving legal advice to former president Donald Trump — last fall but there was infighting within the U.S. Attorneys’ office over the political implications with an election on the horizon.

According to NBC, any dissent about going after Giuliani was pushed aside under the new leadership.

“Prosecutors in New York wanted last fall to serve a warrant on Giuliani as part of an investigation into whether he had failed to register as a foreign agent over his dealings with Ukrainian officials. But that request was rebuffed by officials in the deputy attorney general’s office in Washington. In a dispute over investigative tactics, they raised concerns both before and after the election and did not sign off on a warrant, multiple people familiar with the matter have said,” the report states. “A new leadership team under Garland apparently reached a different conclusion, though it is not clear on what grounds. The new deputy attorney general, Lisa Monaco, and John Carlin, her top deputy, have both previously led the department’s national security division — which is responsible for enforcing the Foreign Agents Registration Act, or FARA — and will presumably be engaged in the investigation as it moves forward.”

The report goes on to note that, under Garland, multiple investigations are moving into high gear “including a tax probe into President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, and a investigation into potential sex trafficking and public corruption by Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz.”

You can read more here.

 

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CRIME

Trump Supporter Who Was ‘Heavily Armed’ Pleads Guilty After Firing Gun Into Car Full of Black Girls

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A supporter of former President Donald Trump has pleaded guilty to intimidation with a dangerous weapon and willful injury after he fired multiple shots into a car filled with Black girls last year.

Local news station KCCI reports that 26-year-old Michael McKinney is now admitting to “causing the occupants to fear serious injury from my action” and also seriously injuring a 15-year-old girl whom he shot in the leg.

McKinney shot into the car while attending a pro-Trump rally at the Iowa Capitol building in December, exactly one month before the deadly January 6th pro-Trump riot that took place at the United States Capitol building.

“McKinney was wearing body armor and heavily armed when he participated in a pro-Trump parade of slow-moving vehicles through Des Moines on Dec. 6,” reports KCCI. “Police say he had a pistol, another firearm in his vehicle and was carrying two loaded magazines.”

Witnesses say that the girls’ car was surrounded by Trump supporters after they drove by and began taunting them. The car’s driver put the vehicle in reverse to escape the Trump supporters and struck a pickup truck, at which point McKinney drew his weapon and started firing at them.

McKinney faces a maximum of 10 years in prison for both charges he’s pleading guilty to, although in exchange prosecutors are dropping the more serious charge of attempted murder.

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CRIME

Trump CFO Allen Weisselberg Could Face Indictment as Soon as This Summer: NYT

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The New York Times is reporting that former Trump Organization CFO Allen Weisselberg could be charged as soon as this summer.

The news implies that Weisselberg isn’t cooperating with the district attorney’s office yet. It was thought that Wisselberg would quickly make a plea deal with DA Cy Vance to save himself legally. Weisselberg would be the first indictment in this case.

“In recent weeks, a grand jury has been hearing evidence about Mr. Weisselberg, who is facing intense scrutiny from prosecutors as they seek his cooperation with a broader investigation into Mr. Trump and the Trump Organization, the people with knowledge of the matter said,” reported the Times. “The prosecutors have obtained Mr. Weisselberg’s personal tax returns, the people said, providing the fullest picture yet of his finances.”

Weisselberg’s ex-daughter-in-law has been cooperating with the DA office handing over evidence that she has.

“The investigation into Mr. Weisselberg focuses partly on whether he failed to pay taxes on valuable benefits that Mr. Trump provided him and his family over the years, including apartments and leased cars as well as tens of thousands of dollars in private school tuition for at least one of his grandchildren,” said the report. “In general, those types of benefits are taxable, although there are some exceptions, and the rules can be murky.”

Read the full report from the New York Times.

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CRIME

Man Shoots and Kills Atlanta Supermarket Cashier, Wounds Guard Over Mask Policy: Police

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A man pulled out a gun and shot and killed an Atlanta-area Big Bear Supermarket cashier over the store’s mask policy, according to police. Two people, including a DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office reserve unit deputy who was inside the supermarket working as a security guard, and the suspect, were also wounded.

“The subject pulled out a weapon and shot a cashier at the location,” DeKalb County Sheriff Melody Maddox said, according to 11Alive. “The individual is deceased.”

“Although details are not complete, authorities say that the male suspect was involved in a dispute with a young woman before he began firing at her inside the store,” the spokesperson for the sheriff’s office said.

There apparently was an altercation over the mask policy, which is clearly posted on the store’s door.

“A witness, identified as Alan Williams, said a man walked into the store, struck the woman with a gun, then shot her. That’s when the deputy and the suspect exchanged gunfire.”

 

This is a breaking news and developing story. 

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