30 January 2010

28 January 2010

Economic crime rises eightfold in 2009

Moscow Times article on statement from Ministry of the Interior, which rapidly turns into a piece on how to change the Ministry. Odd piece.

Garda lack of IT facilities

Piece from Irish Times, reporting on lack of computer facilities for the Garda Siochana, the Irish police. Big report from their inspectorate. Surprising absence of computer aided despatch sysems and basic email facilities.

27 January 2010

Four illegal fuel-laundering plans dismantled in Northern ireland

Another bit of the IRA funding machine switched off?

Top 50 Homeland Security Blogs

From the curiously named Forensic Science Technician blog. Sadly, SGOC hasnt made the top 50

Supreme Court overturns "terror asset" seizures

This is the new UK Supreme Court. Yet another panic measure found to involve misuse of powers not even granted by Parliament in the first place. The judgement as a whole should be interesting.

23 January 2010

Incoming EU Commissioner criticises US-type approach to terrorism

Justice should be put back ahead of security

Someone in Brussels should listen to Ireland

True in so many areas, but this is about the right to privacy and the dangerous roa down which the Commission and other central institutions continue to drive in the name of counter-terrorism [and keeping the US happy...]

"Bomb detector" Maker arrested

Other newspapers give more details. Odd since the BBC broadcast a programme on this on Newsnight last night. Even odder that it took a media investigation to make anything happen. Dowsing plus a store theft tag, all powered by "static electricity", allegedly...hmmm. Iraq paid $40,000 per unit, allegedly. Pass me my alleged homeopathic tranquilisers, please.

One-Third of Russian militiamen psychopaths or alcoholics, Expert says

Another cheery story from the Moscow Times.

Shadowy Arms deal traced to Kazakhstan

Fascinating "it wasnt me guv" story allegedly about sanctions busting...Why would North Korea want to ship arms to Iran? I missed the seizure of the aircraft in Thailand in December, I think...There you are. That should intrigue you sufficiently to read this piece from the Moscow Times.

Constitutional Court moves towards precedent based system of law

Im not sure it does, but anything that shows independence by a Russian court has to be worth noting. Rule of Law one day?

Bulldozers raze mansions after night raid

Moscow Times back in web format at last. Allegedly a crack down on celebrities. Next layer after the oligarchs?

17 January 2010

The laughing policemen

Independent article attacking the way police are being governed by a "target culture". Reads as if it were written by a Telegraph journalist. Probably taken from someone's press release, but if it's true, they will do anything to fine us to meet performance targets and raise revenue...I thought they were too busy filling in forms!

US waves white flag on disastrous "war on drugs"

If this is true, then it's rather important and has implications for the "war on terror" too. "War" declared by Nixon in 1969 compared to Prohibition in this piece, and considered just as disastrous. Towards the end, he accuses the CIA of ferrying drugs around in the same planes used for extraordinary rendition and names two crashed planes founf to have tons of cocaine aboard. Watch this space..."The war on drugs has spread corruption and organised crime throughout the world. Discuss the case that stopping it will also diminish corruption and organised crime." Hmmmm

15 January 2010

US kills FBI-wanted terrorist in Pakistan strike

Pakistan sources say member of Abu Nidal group killed. Involved in 1986 Pan-Am aircraft hijack. Theres an epic to be told here.

14 January 2010

More families must be put in "care", says crime tsar

I wasnt aware we had a crime tsar. This is about dysfunctional families whose children terrorise neighbourhoods.

Google China attack part of vast espionage campaign, experts say

A longer piece on the subject of the previous post from the Washington Post

US "troubled" by Chinese cyberattacks

Mostly about Google. Nothing about the attack on Baidu posted a few days ago. Something's going on and as usual, political spin will disguise reality.

John Gotti racketeering case abandoned in New York

Four failures to reach a verdict. Prosecutors now give up.

12 January 2010

El Teo arrested, one of the most wanted drug traffickers in Mexico

El Pais announces another success in the drive against the Mexican drug cartels. The head of the Arellano Felix family captured, possibly with his brother, el Torito. Hey, they may be breakinbg through here!

Stop and search powers ruled illegal by European Court

Dont worry, Mr. Plod. That nice Mr. Cameron has promised to take British human rights away again when he gets in. Unsurprisingly , European Court finds blanket stop and search powers with no clear procedures surrounding them are totally illegal. Theyve been taking the same decision for the past 30 years, but the Home office keeps doing this!

Iranian nuclear professor dies in bomb blast

This too will lead to retaliation, but probably against the opposition, not the perpetrators. Is there a pattern developing here Destabilisation of Iran....what do you mean, conspiracy theorist?

Baidu hacked by "Iranian cyber army"

Now we might see some real cyberwarfare! Baidu is the Chinese search engine. Whether this really is an Iranian group or someone mischief making we will have to wait and see, but retaliation is likely!

11 January 2010

"Loyalists" in death threat to Gerry Adams

Group called the Orange Volunteers.

Malaysian Christian Churches attacked amid uproar over court ruling

New York Times again. Danger here of a resurgence of JI who love burning Christian churches. All about who can use the word "Allah"...ah, religion, religion, what atrocities are commited in your name....

Race Riots grip Italian Town and Mafia is suspected

Article from New York Times. 'Ndragheta blamed. Complex story of African immigrant labour, human smuggling to pick fruit, turning into quasi human trafficking. italian police respond by bulldozing shanty towns. Wonder who will pick the fruit now?

Crime gangs "dominate shop theft"

Turns out to be a puff for a BBC TV programme "Millionaire Thieves". The McGovern gang in Glasgow are the subject.

Heathrow Robbery Trial Breaks with 400 year tradition of trial by jury

Previous trials have failed. Police claim jury-tampering, so this time, alleged robber will be tried by judge alone.

Shortage "forces gangs to share guns"

At last! A meaningful crime story! Either the snow is no longer news or the crime reporters have reluctantly staggered into their offices. This is a report from the National Ballistics Intelligence service [NABIS]...I'm tempted to say, if you privatised it , it could make biscuits [NABISCO]

05 January 2010

Lidl gets cocaine instead of the anticipated bananas

Story from Spain. Someone's going to be in a lot of trouble!

US intelligence chief criticises spy failings in Afghanistan

Guardian article on a report by Major Flynn [and others] which basically says intelligence is missing the wood for the trees. Trying to spot insurgent cells rather than identify local powerbrokers. report published by Centre for a New american Security http://www.cnas.org/
the full report is downloadable from here:
Fixing Intel: a Blueprint for Making Intelligence Relevant in Afghanistan: http://www.cnas.org/node/3924

If we are all under suspicion then we are all threatened

I don't often agree with Dominic Lawson, son of Nigel the worst Chancellor before Lamont and brother of Nigella...but I celebrate the fact that in this particular case I do. When are the polic going to start to behave tpwards photographers in a less authoritarian manner? Half a million people on the US terrorist watch list??!! I foresee times of sullen compliance...

04 January 2010

Mexican agents arrest brother of Beltran Leyva, drug lord killed in raid

The brothers ran the Sinaloa cartel. One, Mario, is still free. Alfredo is in jail, Arturo is now dead and Carlos is the one who has just been arrested. I just hope they have a plan to deal with the inevitable turf war that will follow the dismantling of the cartel.

03 January 2010

Yemen's Chaos aids the Evolution of an al Qaeda cell

Curious article which gives lots of names but then gets contradictory. It starts with 200 Al Q members, but later, 2,000 Yemenis who have returned from fighting in iraq turn up and in the next paragraph 200,000 Somali refugees. The leadership is staffed by escapees from a high security priso, but then it turns out only 3 survived. Then other leaders turn up who have been released from Guantanamo, but then they turn out to have been released to a Saudi rehabilitation programme from which they "disappeared". How much of this group [200 is far too many for a "cell"] are Saudis and how many yemenis? there are hints of a leadership dispute. Typical of the New York Times of late. It cant make up its mind whether its a serious newspaper or a tabloid.

Al Qaeda in the Sahara

Thoughtful piece from el Pais on Al Qaeda in North Africa. In Spanish, of course.

02 January 2010

Terror Handbook Artist appeals for watchdog's aid

Hmmm...I don't think Plod will go with this one, but I am concerned that I, as an academic, can't read this stuff to inform my own lectures.

01 January 2010

Focus on Internet Imams as Recruiters for al Qaeda

New York Times piece on charismatic imams on the internet. Do they radicalise young Muslims? Marc Sageman puts an opposite view to the camp that believes they do.