Posted: September 8, 2014 | Author: Pundit Planet | Filed under: Breaking News, Crime & Corruption, Health and Social Issues, U.S. News | Tags: Bronx, Casiano, Cocaine, Erik Casiano, New York City, Puerto Rico, Robert Tucker, Twitter, United States Department of Justice, United States Postal Service, Veterans Health Administration |
Tristyn Bloom reports: Two Veterans Affairs Medical Center employees were arrested last week for using VA facilities to smuggle and deal cocaine, the Department of Justice recently announced.
Robert Tucker and Erik Casiano had been using the U.S. Postal Service and the mailroom of a VA Medical Center in the Bronx to receive and distribute cocaine since “at least November 2013,” according to the press release.
Tucker has worked for the VA since 1997, and in 2012 was promoted to supervisor of the Logistics Warehouse and Mail Center. Casiano, a pipefitter in the plumbing department, had worked for the center since 2012.
All told, the two attempted to distribute over 5 kilograms of cocaine. If found guilty, they each face a minimum of 10 years in prison, and could be jailed for life.
[PDF – U.S. v. Robert Tucker & Erik Casiano Complaint]
The investigation began in December 2013 when a package addressed to the center caught the attention of postal inspectors in Puerto Rico, who discovered 2 kilograms of cocaine inside. Undercover investigators watched the pair receive and exchange such packages four times before finally busting them after Tucker was caught on video surveillance handing one over to Casiano in exchange for $500. Casiano was arrested while attempting to drive away with the package. One kilogram of cocaine was seized from his car. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: April 8, 2014 | Author: Pundit Planet | Filed under: Mediasphere, Science & Technology | Tags: Electronic Communications Privacy Act, Glenn Reynolds, Metadata, National Security Agency, Rick Perry, Texas, United States, United States Postal Service |
As we hear more and more about government spying at the federal, state, and local levels, it’s time to start thinking about what to do if we want to protect our privacy. Instapundit blogger and PopMech contributor Glenn Harlan Reynolds outlines the new rules he’d like to see. 1. Treat Email More Like Mail By statute, law enforcement can’t open domestic communications through U.S. mail without a court order. But under the federal law covering email—the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, which dates back to 1986—they can obtain many of your emails without a warrant, merely
Art Grafts/Getty Images
by subpoenaing the email provider. Texas has passed, and Gov. Rick Perry has signed, a state law requiring a warrant for access to email content. This is a good start, but I’d like to see something similar at the federal level. 2. Protect Metadata The National Security Agency (NSA) and other government agencies record cellphone and email metadata—who you call, when you call, how long you call, your location when making the call—on the same basis. Likewise, many local police departments are tracking license plates around town and building databases of who goes where. Even the U.S. Postal Service records its metadata without a warrant. Because so-called cover information such as the addressee’s address, return address, and postmark is recorded on every piece of mail and postal employees can see it, the information is considered public. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted: September 30, 2013 | Author: Pundit Planet | Filed under: Politics, U.S. News | Tags: Barack Obama, Congress, Government shutdown, Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Senate, United States Congress, United States Department of Defense, United States Postal Service |
The debate over the government shutdown should acknowledge its limited effects.
Andrew Stiles reports: Several hours remain until government funding expires, and if Congress cannot agree on a resolution to continue that funding before midnight, the government will shut down. If that happens, Democrats will be ready with countless horror stories about the consequences of extremist Republican obstructionism, so it’s worth examining the details of what will and will not occur during a government shutdown.
One common argument is likely to be that Republicans, in forcing a government shutdown, are hurting the most highly respected government employees: our troops. But according to the Department of Defense, funding for active-duty military personnel, as well as military operations in Afghanistan, will be unaffected by a government shutdown. About 400,000 civilian defense employees, on the other hand, could face furloughs, according to the Pentagon’s contingency plan. Read the rest of this entry »