Dissecting the MEMO: Establishing Probable Cause

My career as a prosecutor involved doing more wiretaps than all other prosecutors both state and federal combined in Massachusetts for somewhere between five and ten years straight. I also taught search and seizure law to police officers and was involved in supervising and compiling hundreds of matters involving wiretaps, searches and seizures.

The first thing for you to understand about them is that to get a warrant or a court order (Massachusetts courts issue warrants to search, federal courts issue orders to search) for a search you need probable cause. As the MEMO states the “DOJ and FBI sought and received a FISA probable cause order . . . .” (my emphasis)

Probable cause means just that. It does not mean absolute certainty or proof beyond a reasonable doubt. It just means based on the information at hand it is probable that the things we set out are true and that contraband or evidence of crime will be obtained if an order is issued. You are required to submit enough evidence for a court to believe that by issuing the order you may get what you are looking for.

When you use information obtained from informants there is two things that must be shown. The first is that the informant is truthful. One way to show this is by showing past associations with that person. You can spell out the person’s background to convince the judge he knows what he is talking about; or in the case of someone involved in criminal activity you can show that in the past he or she has provided information that was truthful.

You do not have to show the informant’s motive for giving you the information. Some informants are giving the information because they are caught up in criminal activity themselves and are looking for a deal on sentencing by cooperating; others may be receiving pay to give information; and others might be doing it because they have a grudge against a fellow criminal or might be trying to put a competitor out of business. There may be cases where you would show that if it was the only way to establish the informant’s truthfulness but normally it is not included in the affidavit.

Once you establish that the informant is worthy of belief, you then have the obligation to show how the informant got his or her information. Obviously, the best way to show it is through personal observation. For instance, informant X was in the home of target Y and X was shown the stolen jewelry that Y was keeping in a small safe. A truthful man telling of that observation gives probable cause to believe Y has the stuff in his house. If it is not stale information, that gives a judge probable cause to issue a warrant.

If the informant’s information is based on hearsay information, that is if informant X said that his  friend Z went into Y’s house and saw the jewelry that would not alone be sufficient.

What would be done in the latter case is to take additional steps to make it sufficient. Where informant X’s personal observation is sufficient in and of itself, the latter case where he is relying on Z’s statement requires more. That more would involve looking into the background of Y, making observation of Y’s activities, and doing surveillance at his house. If a known fence was to go into his house that would add to the probability; or if a person was arrested with hot jewelry and he said he got it from Y that also would help.

The idea is to build a mountain of facts and information to convince a judge that the item or items sought will probably be in the place to be searched. Or, in the case of a wire will be learned by intercepting the conversations of a person.

I speak about probable cause because in reviewing the MEMO you understand the standards that must be kept and the procedures normally used to establish it.


34 thoughts on “Dissecting the MEMO: Establishing Probable Cause

  1. Matt
    How about posting some pics from Florida.
    My thermometer says 7 degrees at 11:30 pm
    My rectal thermometer says 108 degrees farentrump
    We picked up 9 inches of snow,the next town over
    from us Chesterville got 14 “

    Blogging is not truth
    behaviour is truth

    We brought Greg Flannery to speak at our conference dealing
    with crimes committed by the FBI. He brought along
    with him Cincinnati Bell Telephone supervisor Leonard Gates
    who was committing voter fraud for the FBI along with illegal

    Talk to me about getting a warrant to tap a phone matt.


    pretty please…..


    Privacy Died Long Time Ago

    06/03/2013 at 9:12 pm

    The great forgotten Cincinnati wiretap scandal

    By Gregory Flannery

    Americans no longer assume their communications are free from government spying. Many believe widespread monitoring is a recent change, a response to terrorism. They are wrong. Fair warning came in 1988 in Cincinnati, Ohio, when evidence showed that wiretapping was already both common and easy.

    Twenty-five years ago state and federal courtrooms in Cincinnati were abuzz with allegations of illegal wiretaps on federal judges, members of Cincinnati City Council, local congressional representatives, political dissidents and business leaders.

    Two federal judges in Cincinnati told 60 Minutes they believed there was strong evidence that they had been wiretapped. Retired Cincinnati Police officers, including a former chief, admitted to illegal wiretapping.

    Even some of the most outrageous claims – for example, that the president of the United States was wiretapped while staying in a Cincinnati hotel – were supported by independent witnesses.

    National media coverage of the lawsuits, grand jury hearings and investigations by city council and the FBI attracted the attention of U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont) and the late U.S. Sen. Paul Simon (D-Ill.).

    As Americans wonder about the extent to which their e-mails, cell-phones and text messages are being monitored, they would do well to look back at a time before any of those existed. Judging by what was revealed in Cincinnati, privacy died long before anyone had ever heard of Osama bin Laden or al Q’aeda.


    In 1988 Leonard Gates, a former installer for Cincinnati Bell, told the Mount Washington Press, a small independent weekly, that he had performed illegal wiretaps for the Cincinnati Police Department, the FBI and the phone company itself.

    A week after the paper published his allegations, a federal grand jury began hearing testimony.

    Gates claimed to have performed an estimated 1,200 wiretaps, which he believed illegal. His list of targets included former Mayor Jerry Springer, the late tycoon Carl Lindner Jr., U.S. District Judge Carl Rubin, U.S. Magistrate J. Vincent Aug, the late U.S. Sen. Howard Metzenbaum (D-Ohio), the Students for a Democratic Society (an anti-war group during the Vietnam War), then-U.S. Rep. Tom Luken (D-Cincinnati) and then-President Gerald Ford.

    A second former Cincinnati Bell installer, Robert Draise, joined Gates, saying he, too had performed illegal wiretaps for the police. His alleged targets included the Black Muslim mosque in Finneytown and the General Electric plant in Evendale. Draise’s portfolio was much smaller than Gates’s, an estimated 100 taps, because he was caught freelancing – performing an illegal wiretap for a friend.

    Charged by the FBI, Draise claimed he had gone to his “controller” at Cincinnati Bell, the person who directed his wiretaps, and asked for help. If he didn’t get it, he said, he’d tell all. When the case went to federal court, Draise didn’t bother to hire an attorney. He didn’t need one. In a plea deal, federal prosecutors dropped the charge to a misdemeanor. Found guilty of illegal wiretapping, his sentence was a $200 fine. The judge? Magistrate J. Vincent Aug.

    If Gates and Draise had been the only people to come forward, they could easily be dismissed as cranks – disgruntled former employees, as Cincinnati Bell claimed. But some police office officers named by Gates and Draise confirmed parts of their allegations, insisting, however, that there were only 12 illegal wiretaps. Other officers not known to Gates and Draise also admitted to illegal wiretaps. Some of the officers received immunity from prosecution in exchange for their testimony. Others invoked their Fifth Amendment right not to incriminate themselves.

    “Due to the turbulent nature of the late ’60s and early ’70s, wiretaps were conducted to gather information,” said a press release signed by six retired officers. “This use began in approximately 1968 and ended completely during the Watergate investigation.”

    The press release, whose signers included former Police Chief Myron Leistler, listed 12 wiretaps, among them “a black militant in the Bond Hill area” and a house on either Ravine or Strait streets rented by “the SDS or some other radical group.”

    The retired cops’ lawyer said there were actually three Cincinnati Bell installers doing illegal wiretaps, but declined to identify the third.

    The retired officers denied knowledge of “any wiretaps involving judges, local politicians, prominent citizens and fellow law enforcement officers or city employees.”

    Getting rid of Aug

    Others had that knowledge, however.

    Howard Lucas, former security chief at the Stouffer Hotel downtown, said he caught Gates and three cops trying to break into a telephone switching room shortly before President Gerald Ford stayed at the hotel.

    “I said, ‘Do you have a court order?’ and they all laughed,” Lucas told the Mount Washington Press.

    The four men left. But they returned.

    “A couple days later, in the back of the room, I found a setup, a reel-to-reel recorder concealed under some boxes,” Lucas said.

    Ford stayed at the Stouffer Hotel in July 1975 and June 1976 – two years after the Watergate scandal, when Cincinnati Police officers claimed the bugging ended.

    Then there was the matter of a former guard at the U.S. Courthouse downtown. He said he had found wiretap equipment there in 1986 and 1987, just a year before the wiretap scandal broke.

    “I heard conversations you wouldn’t believe,” he said. “I heard a conversation one time. they were talking about getting rid of U.S. Magistrate Aug.”

    The wiretapping started with drug dealers and expanded to political and business figures, according to Gates. In 1979, he testified, he was ordered to wiretap the Hamilton County Regional Computer Center, which handled vote tabulations. His handler at the phone company allegedly told Gates the wiretap was intended to manipulate election results.

    “They had the ability to actually alter what was being done with the votes. … He was very upset through some of the elections with a gentleman named Blackwell,” Gates testified.

    J. Kenneth Blackwell is a former member of Cincinnati Council, and 1979 was an election year for council.

    Something went wrong on Election Night, Gates testified. His handler at the phone company called him.

    “He was panicking,” Gates testified. “He said we had done something to screw up the voting processor down there, or the voting computer.”

    News reports at the time noted an unexpected delay in counting votes for city council because of a computer malfunction.

    Cincinnati Bell denied any involvement in illegal wiretapping by police or its own personnel. Yet police officers, like Gates, testified the police received equipment – even a truck – and information necessary to effectuate the wiretaps. The owners of a greenhouse in Westwood even came forward, saying the police stored the Cincinnati Bell truck on their property.

    ‘Say it louder’

    Gates claimed that his handler at Cincinnati Bell repeatedly told him the wiretaps were at the behest of the FBI. He named an FBI agent who, he said, let him into the federal courthouse to wiretap federal judges.

    Investigations followed – a federal grand jury, which indicted no one; a special investigator hired by city council, the former head of the Cincinnati FBI office; the U.S. Justice Department, sort of.

    U.S. Sen. Paul Simon asked then-Attorney General Richard Thornburgh to look into the Cincinnati wiretap scandal. Federal judges, members of Congress and even the president of the United States had allegedly been wiretapped. Simon’s effort went nowhere. His press secretary told the Mount Washington Press that it took three months for the Attorney General to respond.

    “The senator’s not pleased with the response,” Simon’s press secretary said. “It didn’t have the attorney general’s personal attention, and it said Justice (Department) was aware of the situation, but isn’t going to do anything.”

    The city of Cincinnati settled a class-action lawsuit accusing it of illegal wiretapping, paying $85,000 to 17 defendants. It paid $12,000 to settle a second lawsuit by former staffers of The Independent Eye, an underground newspaper allegedly wiretapped and torched by Cincinnati Police officers in 1970.

    Cincinnati Bell sued Leonard Gates and Robert Draise, accusing them of defamation. The two men had no attorneys and represented themselves at trial. Hamilton County Common Pleas Judge Fred Cartolano refused to let the jury hear testimony by former police officers who had admitted using Gates and Draise and Cincinnati Bell equipment. In a 4-2 vote, the jury ruled in the phone company’s favor, officially adjudging the two whistleblowers liars.

    During one of the many hearings associated with the wiretap scandal, an FBI agent was asked what the agency would do if someone accused the phone company of placing illegal wiretaps. He testified the FBI would be powerless; it needed the phone company to check for a wiretap.

    “It would go back to Bell,” the agent testified. “We would have no way of determining if there was any illegal wiretapping going on.”

    The FBI agent was the person Gates had accused of opening the federal courthouse at night so he could wiretap federal judges.

    One police sergeant offered no excuses for the illegal wiretapping. Asked why he didn’t bother with the legal niceties, such as getting a warrant, as required then by federal law, he said, “I didn’t deem it was necessary. We wanted the information, and went out and got it.”

    At one point, covering the scandal for the Mount Washington Press, I received a phone call from a sergeant in the Cincinnati Police Department. He invited me to the station at Mount Airy Forest, where he proceeded to wiretap a fellow police officer’s phone call. I listened as the other officer talked to his wife.

    “Say hello,” the sergeant told me.

    I did. There was no response.

    “Say it louder,” the sergeant said.

    I did. No response.

    “You can hear them, but they can’t hear you,” the sergeant said. “Any idiot can do a wiretap. You know that’s true because you just saw a policeman do it.”

    Privacy is dead. Its corpse has long been moldering in the grave.

    also see

  2. Matt, seems like you left out a very important part. Wiretaps are not given out like candy. You also have to swear to the judge that you can’t obtain the information any other way. That’s one of the reasons why informant information isn’t sufficient for a wiretap. If you already have an informant inside the organization why do you need a wire tap? I’m sure you know that you need to swear to the judge that you can’t get the information from other methods such as surveillance, informants or other forms of Investigation prior to being given authorization to tap someone’s phone or other private area.

  3. I apologize for calling Florida Judge Rotenberg, Rottencrotch. It’s not nice to make epithets out of persons’ names; it’s O.K. in fiction, novels, short stories. She’s probably a nice woman. It her statutory interpretation that is ROTTEN.
    She self-identifies as an Israeli (that’s good; I have great long time friends who are Israelis . . .I think often of the late great Peter Vardy of Haifa, a pediatrician) she also identifies as an MMA practitioner (judo, I recall); that’s good too, we used to practice judo ;in fact the two teenage Bouche brothers, John and Eddie, had black belts in judo by the time we were in college, and of course the world champion women’s Olympian is from Lowell, Mass, or at least trained there . . .with those great Olympians, you know who I mean.
    Anyway I criticize Judge Rottenberg because she’s hubristic and thinks words are infinitely malleable. I wish when she were younger she’d met some of the girls from Mattapan, Dot or Southie, street-smart, sweet, nice, lovely but tough, who would have taken her one on one in a back alley some night and beaten the MMA daylights out of her and perhaps kicked her in the crotch a few times . . .just to give her a tiny dancer’s tiny dose of come-uppance and humility.
    You see, when you think words are infinitely malleable,and as a judge you can legislate from the bench, and make a statutes words mean whatever you want them to mean, that can have a spill over effect, a harmful effect, a haunting effect in other areas of your life.
    Do the words “I do” mean something
    How about “I swear to tell the whole truth and nothing about”?
    How about “I pledge allegiance . . .
    You see, folks can twist words to betray their flag, their oaths . . . and some folks don’t even need words as U-2 reminded us in the song Pride: “One man betrayed with a kiss . . .”

    1. “I wish when she were younger she’d met some of the girls from Mattapan, Dot or Southie, street-smart, sweet, nice, lovely but tough, who would have taken her one on one in a back alley some night and beaten the MMA daylights out of her…..”

      I’ve seen it in the flesh. Its not pretty. My Irish Catholic wife has a left hook that is at least as good as mine. Probably faster and certainly not expected. And the kicks???? Forget it. Step dancing will do that.

    2. Wa’llahi! Bill, you should join the crotch, and, get all that bullshit knocked out of your head.

  4. Remember how corrupt prosecutors went after Raymond Donovan.
    You have to had grown up in Boston to think that was novel.
    Remember the corrupt prosecutors, politically motivated, who went after Judge Teddy Glynn . . .of course he was vindicated with a not-guilty by a jury of his peers . . .but the corrupt Leftists abused power then as now . . .
    Boston . . .re-read the Forced Busing fiasco . . .Brookline and Newton are exempt . . .the M ..the Media paint residents of Charlestown, Southie, Dot and Eastie as Cro-Magnons . . . one parent’s three kids walked one block to grammar school, now the FEDs forced the three to be bused to three separate schools miles from home . . . .that’s Justice?
    Boston? Then we got the St. Pat’s Parade . . .State judges, prosecutors totally corrupt; Fed Courts . . .Fed. Appeals Court still trying to figure out if a Parade is an Free Speech event protected by the First AMendment when SCOTUS slammed Mass. State and Federal judicial systems. . . .as Federal Judge Duffy in New York sharply succinctly stated, “A parade is a pristine form of speech.”
    Then within four years of the Parade Case, corrupt prosecutors Wyshak, Durham, Stern use proven perjurious serial killers to go after honest innocent FBI agents like John Connolly and H.Paul Rico, and what Sterns, Wyshak and Durham did before Federal Judge Wolfe, tricking him, failing to zealously defend the ex-parte FBI agents, selling the FBI agents down the drain on Flemmi/Cardinale’s Motion to Dismiss some charges, should put them in prison.
    Wyshak treats a Congressman’s wife with leniency; but for the bookie’s wife who is a registered nurse who is alleged to have “laundered” one-tenth the amount of money as the Congressman’s wife, Wyshak demands a long prison sentence. Equal Justice, my foot.
    And the the list of all the good men TRICKED into pleas (I admit I lied when I said I didn’t see that plan or that I didn’t call some lawyer’s office or that I didn’t wack my dog once) . . .all the good men entrapped by these overlyzealous power drunk politically motivated unscrupulous federal and state prosecutors and their henchmen in the press, academia, other law enforcement agencies, and amoralists in general, is enough to make an ordinary honest man wrench with furor.

  5. Another investigation:


    Uranium One informant makes Clinton allegations in testimony
    An FBI informant connected to the Uranium One controversy told three congressional committees in written testimony that Moscow routed millions of dollars to America with the expectation it would be used to benefit Bill Clinton’s charitable efforts while Secretary of State Hillary Clinton quarterbacked a “reset” in US-Russian relations.


  6. https://www.thenation.com/article/russiagate-or-intelgate/

    “And most intriguingly, there was the “research” provided by Nellie Ohr, wife of a top Department of Justice official, Bruce Ohr, who, according to the Republican memo, “was employed by Fusion GPS to assist in the cultivation of opposition research on Trump. Ohr later provided the FBI with all of his wife’s opposition research.” Most likely, it found its way into Steele’s dossier. (Mrs. Ohr was a trained Russian Studies scholar with a PhD from Stanford and a onetime assistant professor at Vassar, and thus, it must have seemed, an ideal collaborator for Steele.

    “Was Russiagate produced by the primary leaders of the US intelligence community, not just the FBI? If so, it is the most perilous political scandal in modern American history, and the most detrimental to American democracy. And if so, it does indeed, as zealous promoters of Russiagate assert, make Watergate pale in significance. (To understand more, we will need to learn more, including whether Trump associates other than Carter Page and Paul Manafort were officially surveilled by any of the agencies involved. And whether they were surveilled in order to monitor Trump himself, on the assumption they were or would be in close proximity to him, as the president once suggested in a tweet.

    1. Listen to yourselves. If the FBI or the Deep State wanted to stop Trump from winning the election…they wouldn’t have quietly begun an investigation of him and simultaneously announce the re-opening of a HRC investigation 8 days before the election. It makes no sense.

      It will come out that Page, Papadopolous, Kushner through Cambridge Analytica, etc. coordinated an attack on our electoral system through direct email hacking, the spreading of fake news through social media, and the dissemination of information to the Trump campaign in exchange the lifting of sanctions, backroom business deals (see the sale of Rosneft), and the blackmail of trump through kompromat.

      1. Comey, the Investigator, usurped the Power of the Attorney General’s Office when he appointed himself Prosecutor . . .”actingA.G.” …without Constitutional authority . . . and wrongfully cleared Hillary in July after first conducting a phony pre-judged investigation white-washing her in May . . .and secondly after finding her guilty of “extreme carelessness” which is a synonym for “gross negligence” which the Statutes enacted by Congress declare is FELONY

        What Comey did is illegal, an abuse of power, ignoring clear statutory language, in exculpating the multiple felon HIllary. Never miind for now HRC’s multiple perjuries . . .Never mind the Unequal Treatment the Queen Hillary received . . .not under oath, no notes, no recording

        Comey’s not only usurped power, his entire phony “investigation” was a farce, a pre-ordained cover-up!

        1. Can’t the two issues co-exist simultaneously? Hillary wasn’t prosecuted due to political ties and Trump’s campaign engaged in espionage w/ members of the Russian intelligence community? Why does it have to be one or the other?

  7. Matt
    you may remember the FBI campaign against President
    Jimmy Carter called “ the october suprise” where
    the FBI made sure Carter was not reelected President.

    Any chance we can get a judge to unseal the police
    case notes on the investigation into the death of
    investigative reporter Danny Casolero who was
    investigating the “ october suprise”?


    also see


    February 7, 2018
    DOJ ordered police notes contradicting the suicide narrative for Danny Casolaro be sealed
    Handwritten notes from the Martinsburg Police Department catch the Bua Report in a major lie about the mysterious death of a journalist
    Written by Emma Best
    Edited by JPat Brown
    An examination of the original handwritten police notes about the death of journalist Danny Casolaro contradict the official claims and conclusions of the Justice Department and the Special Counsel investigation led by Judge John Bua. The police notes, originally seized by the federal government and allegedly still under seal, undermine the narrative that Danny Casolaro committed suicide, and appear to provide corroboration that someone took his briefcase containing many of his notes and papers at the time of his death.

    MuckRock previously filed a FOIA request with Martinsburg Police Department for records relating to the death of Danny Casolaro, including notes, photographs and autopsy reports. A response dated ten days later, but not received until nine months later (the statutory time limit is five business days), denied the request by referring to the federal government seizing jurisdiction and custody of all documents. This is consistent with previous reports from the Berkeley County Prosecutor’s office that the materials were sealed. Although the records still being apparently sealed, copies were obtained through a combination of Special Access Reviews, visits to different archives, and the cooperation of a number of people who were involved in the case.

    In some instances, the Bua Report simply seems to leave out relevant information. One passage in the Bua Report describing threats against Casolaro, for instance, completely misstates the facts as presented in the original police notes. The Bua Report then contends that Casolaro fabricated the death threats while planning to commit suicide because he wanted to make people think he was murdered.

    This contention is not only unsupported by the original documentation, it’s contradicted by it. According to the Bua Report, Casolaro began reporting death threats “during the last few weeks of his life,” with only a single report of a death threat being offered by Olga Mokros the Monday before his death. According to the Bua Report, “She could not recall any other specific occasions on which Mr. Casolaro received such a call, even though she was at his house nearly every day.” This statement is directly contradicted by the notes of the police interview with her, in which she said that she had answered the Casolaro phone to hear threats to kill Danny and “cut him into pieces.” According to the notes, this was “months” before his death.

    The notes go on to describe a death threat against Danny that she received around the time of his death, which may be the same call described in the Bua Report. It’s not immediately clear if the false statement in the Bua Report is the result of a deliberate decision to ignore the police notes, or if the Special Counsel was denied access to them or not properly informed of their contents.

    If this were the only error, or even the worst error, it might do little to undermine the Bua Report’s conclusions regarding Casolaro’s death. It is neither.

    Arguably the worst error in the Bua Report is in their response to the question of Casolaro’s missing briefcase, which they concluded didn’t exist. According to the Bua Report, only one witness – a front desk employee at the hotel – thought they might have seen the briefcase. The Bua Report incorrectly claimed that “no other hotel employee recalled seeing Mr. Casolaro with a briefcase.”

    Elsewhere, the Bua Report twice describes Lopez as having been “not sure” and decide that since “none of the other hotel employees recall seeing a briefcase or documents … Lopez was probably mistaken.” The conclusion that the briefcase didn’t exist is then used to undermine the statement from William Turner that he had just returned documents to Casolaro, documents which may have related to Alan Standorf, an alleged NSA whistleblower who was murdered and whose records are still withheld by the FBI due to an unidentified 25+ year old pending law enforcement proceeding.

    Contrary to the assertions of the Special Counsel’s office in the Bua Report, the original police notes show that there was a second witness at the hotel who saw the briefcase: Barbara Bettinger. According to her statement to the police, Bettinger had seen the briefcase. The Bua Report describes Bettinger as an employee at the hotel, while failing to describe her telling the police she had seen Casolaro’s briefcase.

    According to the handwritten police notes, Bettinger saw Casolaro on the afternoon before his death, while standing in the doorway to his room. She noted that he seemed nervous and kept looking over his shoulders.

    According to the Bua Report, Bettinger was the last hotel employee to see Casolaro alive when she spoke with him that Friday afternoon.

    Most relevantly, Detective John McMillen asked Bettinger “did you notice any paperwork or baggage in the room?” She answered that “yes,” there had been a “briefcase on [the] dresser, open with papers sticking out of it.” She saw the papers on the same afternoon Turner alleges he return papers to Casolaro, though the Bua Report points to inconsistencies in Turner’s retellings of this.

    Bettinger signed the notes, affirming their accuracy.

    As both the handwritten police notes and the Bua Report note, the police didn’t find Casolaro’s briefcase or papers, which he still had with him in his hotel room the afternoon before he died. Their disappearance means that Casolaro either had at least one unknown interaction with someone or the papers were stolen from his room after his death.

    The disappearance of the papers does more than confirm the existence of an unknown player in the final hours, if not the final moments or immediate post-mortem, of Casolaro; they also provide a potential motive for his death: the removal of evidence. The most likely candidate for this unknown player is the deceased Joseph Cuellar, who had not only reportedly threatened Casolaro, but provided contradictory alibis for Casolaro’s death.

    As the Bua Report notes, Cuellar had reportedly threatened both Lynn Knowles, an ex-girlfriend, and Casolaro. At the same time, Cuellar referenced Anson Ng, a Financial Times reporter who had been killed in Guatemala and was reportedly looking into aspects of the Inslaw affair. Cuellar denied this, though Knowles continues to stand by her statements. Bua cleared Cuellar of wrongdoing, asserting that witnesses placed him in Washington D.C. on the day Casolaro died, processing out from Desert Storm and into Southern Command.

    The Bua Report’s reliance on these witnesses ignores the fact that Casolaro’s estimated time of death was between 7 and 8 AM in Martinsburg, West Virginia – a two hour drive from Washington D.C., which could have given Cuellar time to return before witnesses apparently saw him in D.C.

    The Bua Report’s dismissal of Cuellar as a suspect ignores his contradictory alibis. According to a DOJ memo written to the Assistant U.S. Attorney, “Cuellar advised that three (3) to four (4) weeks prior to Casolaro’s death, he left for Panama and was advised of Casolaro’s death through a phone call to Lynn Knowles. Cuellar returned from Panama to attend Casolaro’s funeral.” If Cuellar had left for Panama at that time, he would have already been processed into Southern Command and wouldn’t have returned to Washington D.C. to process out of Desert Storm (nowhere near Panama) and into Southern Command (which did have jurisdiction over operations in and around Panama).

    The two alibis are impossible to reconcile. To date, there is no evidence that the DOJ ever investigated the change in Cuellar’s alibi, nor was it publicly reported on. The documentation was only obtained relatively recently as part of a Special Access Review with the National Archives.

    Combined with other instances in which the Special Counsel ignored or was left ignorant of relevant information about the Inslaw affair and he PROMIS scandal, these omissions and distortions raise additional questions about the integrity of the Bua Report and its conclusions, which have now been challenged on both the death of Casolaro and on the PROMIS scandal.

    As of this writing, over 20,000 pages at the National Archives on Casolaro’s death, the PROMIS scandal and the investigations into the Inslaw affair remain inaccessible to the public. While the Special Access Review for all the documents continues, you can file a FOIA request for individual sections to prompt a speedier release to the public. Previously released sections can be found here. You can read the rejection from Martinsburg PD on the request page, or you can read their separately obtained handwritten notes below.

  8. I think you are onto something here Matt, I really do.
    This is the “ teaching moment “from you that I
    asked you to do back when Brandeis was on the bench.

    I seriously want to create a curriculum for students in
    grades 1-12 , where law is taught in just the same way
    that you gave us this teaching moment post.
    Flesh out this search and seizure a dight and
    give us a list of other subjects worthy of the heading
    Criminal Law.

    in other news


    A Congressional Probe Is Needed Given The FBI’s Destruction Or Loss Of Every Single Email That It Relied Upon In Pitching its Controversial “Ivins Theory” In Mueller’s Amerithrax Investigation

    Posted by Lew Weinstein on January 23, 2018

    Search for the word “e-mail” in the FBI’s Amerithrax Summary

    Then compare the quoted emails to the ones that the FBI for the past 5 years have failed to produce.

    And look at all the emails quoted in Dellefera Affidavit in support of the search of Ivins’ residence.

    The loss or destruction — the proven failure to produce — these emails is a flagrant violation of FOIA and the rule of law.

    It constitutes spoliation of evidence if they are not produced. The report to the federal judge on this issue is January 30, 2018.

    Amerithrax was Robert Mueller’s biggest whodunnit. I was Mueller’s biggest fan. Still am.

    But the FBI’s withholding of these emails is just beyond the pale.

    And which would be worse — its failure to maintain them or lying and saying they can’t find them.

    Either is unacceptable and requires imposition of attorneys fees and sanctions against the individuals who continue to fail to produce them.

    also see

    If FBI agents wanted to acquire weapons grade plutonium

    what kind of facility do you think they would infiltrate?


    Originally founded and established as Project Y of the Manhattan Project, the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) occupies approximately 36 square miles of DOE land situated on the Pajarito plateau in the Jemez mountains of northern New Mexico. The closest population centers are the cities of Los Alamos and White Rock. The closest large metropolitan center is Santa Fe, 35 miles away. It includes 47 technical areas, 42 of which are actively in use, and over 2,100 individual facilities covering some eight to nine million square feet worth $5.9 billion.

    Facilities within the technical areas include a reactor (which is shut down); criticality experiment areas; particle, neutron and ion accelerators; sealed source and x-ray radiography facilities; research laboratories; depleted uranium and explosive test facilities; a plutonium recovery, metal production, and metal fabrication; and radiological-contaminated environmental areas in various stages of remediation; and decontamination and decommissioning projects.

    As a DOE national security research institute, the LANL’s primary responsibility is ensuring the safety, security, and reliability of the nuclear stockpile. This mission has expanded from the primary task of designing nuclear weapons to include non-nuclear defense programs and a broad array of non-defense programs. In addition to the Lab’s core national security mission, its conducts work in bioscience, chemistry, computer science, earth and environmental sciences, materials science, and physics disciplines. Past missions of LANL have included development of nuclear test devices and other research projects. LANL is now focusing on nuclear weapon stockpile stewardship and nonproliferation.


    Lab hires new counterintelligence director

    Would-be Los Alamos National Laboratory hackers watch out — the lab has named experienced FBI cyber-counterintelligence agent Daniel Lee Cloyd to lead LANL’s Office of Counterintelligence beginning in January.

    Cloyd was the assistant director of the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division before taking his new position, according to information from LANL. Cloyd’s 25-year FBI résumé has a lot of “counters” — counterespionage, counterterrorism, counterproliferation — and also includes intelligence and law enforcement. His work has taken him to Buffalo, N.Y.; Washington, D.C.; and Norfolk, Va.

  9. I’ve been talking about Carter Page for over a year now. In the words of Trump, I feel totally vindicated.

    1. Sobbing … Carter Page’s Nana ran down to the water to embrace her grandson … just pulled from the turbulent surf like a wet and useful communist idiot …. HE HAD A HAT ! … the distraught woman screamed at the lifeguards ….

      So sad .

        1. Alright Solly , So I re-gifted a Borscht Belt go-to . Who do you think I am , Dr.Tim Whatley ?

  10. “Texts between FBI lovers reveal Obama wanted to be briefed on EVERYTHING happening in Clinton email investigation – after he ‘guaranteed’ he wouldn’t get involved

    Lisa Page wrote her lover Peter Strzok about the Clinton probe: Obama ‘wants to know everything we’re doing’

    Obama had said he could ‘guarantee’ he wouldn’t interfere and there would be ‘no political influence’ in the FBI investigation

    The September 2, 2016 text message was among more 50,000 texts the pair sent during a two-year extramarital affair”


  11. How would the Steele Dossier comply with those “Aguilar-Spinelli” tests? Of course FISA warrants are usually for Counterintelligence, not prosecution, so there’d never be a motion to suppress. Well, up till now.
    BTW I’d be interested in your thoughts on the repeatedly proposed State wiretap law amendment.

  12. Now is the time for all good men to come to the aid of their country

    As Thomas Paine said, ““THESE are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated”

    Free us from today’s leftist MAFIA, the mendacious Media, the monolithicly idealogically leftist Academia, the power-mad, power-grabbing, power-grubby Feds, disrespecters of traditions and the separation of powers, gluttonous bureaucratic usurpers of power in the so-callled “Justice” Depo and Deep State designed to protect We the People, now deigned to deceive and betray us and suppress our Freedoms and Inalienable Right; all those Leftist MAFIA malicious malefactors who hail political ENDS as justification for any means: pernicious, devious, mendacious, immoral, mortal.

    Abe Lincoln had it right: Not in a trial of 1,000 years would a foreign power drink from the Ohio or walk the Blue Ridge . .if America will die . . .it will be at its own hand . . .by suicide . . .by the Enemy Within . . Domestic Enemies . . .within the DOJ, within the Deep State Intelligence Agencies, men like Clapper who lieD bold faced to Congress, and within the ill liberal, the illiberal Leftist Orwellian-Dvorkian-Wagnerian-Zarathustria-speaketh New World Order’s Black Hole: the M.A.F.I.A. . . . .As Jim Morrison and the Doors sang, “The time to hesitate is through, no time to wallow in the mire, wait and we can only lose, and our love become a funeral pyre, so come on baby Light My Fire . . .Fireya!!!

  13. Um, have you met Matt? No one I know is quicker to call out abuse of power or corruption at the federal level, especially at the FBI. Exactly, who do you think informants are? They’re almost always sketchy and have their own agenda. That’s why corroboration is required for probable cause. I’m not saying the FISA Court doesn’t have issues. I am saying that they are not specific to this particular case. Also, don’t love the whole MAFIA as an acronym thing. Journalists, professors, and people who don’t share your religious beliefs don’t deserve to be compared with the actual Mafia. If you’re going to get up in arms about the 4th Amendment, don’t forget about the 1st one.

  14. And make sure to tell us about what NFO the FED prosecutors withheld from the FISA courts. You know in ex parte proceeding the FEDs like Wyshak, Comey, Rodenstein, have an affirmative duty to present the weakness of their evidence, too. Wyshak of course had a duty to defend FBI agents against Judge Wolfe but maliciously sat back and let Cardinale pile on innuendos, and Wolfe bring in his own witnesses who Wyshak did practically nothing to counter, WHY? Because Wyshak’s boys, down the hall in the Federal Courthouse in Boston on the Water Front in a separte room were seeking indictments against FBI Agent John Connolly and other FBI agents. In other words, Wyshak and his teammates (Sterns and Durham) CHOP-BLOCKED federal judge Mark Wolfe and others, by not zealously defending FBI agents in Wolfe’s courtroom while overly zealously seeking multiple indictments against FBI agents (the same FBI agents, in many cases) in other courtroom down the hall at the same time.
    It was FED bully-boys Gang Bang of innocent FBI agents.

    Today, the FEDS bully boy and attempt to Gang Bang a Presidential Candidate and newly elected President Trump . . .and the FEDS do it in DC the exact same way they did it in BOSTON . . .the LEFTIST FEDS attack Connolly to get Bulger; they attack Carter Page, General Flynn and his son, to get Trump.

    P.S. Did you ever notice that the Probation DEpartment case headed by Wyshak, Sterns, Durham . . .that gang . . . the FEDS singled out one Probation Department . . .well, guess who worked in that probation department, Chris Bulger, Bill Bulger’s son.

    The evil that men do lives after them . . . The FEDS, Wyshak, Inc., et al, have abused, malicioiusly so, malignantly so, FederalPower . .and in DC the FEDS (Comey, Rodenstein, et al seem to have very likely (not probably) more likely than not, by a preponderance of evidence, beyond a resonable doubt have ABUSED power via abuse of the FISA process in DC.

    All for Political Motives . . .the Politicization of the Justice Department . . .in Boston and DC, by leftists, predominantly Democratic Bureaucrats . . .it galls the soul and makes my Black Irish blood boil.

  15. Matt, thanks for the background info: this “teaching moment”, now please spare us a leftist-liberal-lifelong Democrat’s apologia attempting to justify these blatantly corrupt prosecutorial abuses of the FISA court and/or the FISA jurists’ blatant naivete or blatant aquiscence in or blatant accedence/complicity with patently false pretextual fake phony duplicitous reasons for seeking this FISA warrant against Carter Page based on the phony Russian Dossier paid for and co-authored by Hillary afficiandilldos and Hillary affiliates and Hillary cover-up artists like Comey. In other words, Spare Us the Rationalizations.

    It seems to me that many beyond the MAFIA (Media, Academia, Feds, Interetionalists, Atheistic Antagonists, Amoralists) have be infected by the HRC Virus of Mendacity . . . .and turning a blind eye to Overzealous Partisan Prosecutions by the FEDS.

    1. What information leads you to believe that the entire Steele Dossier is a forgery? Other than Sean Hannity monologue of course.

        1. Raw intelligence is just that, raw…you think every CI gives 100% accurate info, or is not biased in some way? You forget that Glenn Simpson testified under oath that Steele didn’t know who was funding his research. One mistaken fact does not mean the remainder of that dossier is false.

          1. one mistaken fact? ha, ha, ha!
            Glenn Simpsonofwhat Steele knew is double hearsay

            “one” mistaken fact in the dossier? there’s zero factual in it except Moscow and Prague are cities and some people live in russia and some people work there . . .all else is bold faced lies (Cohen) disinformation and dirt as phony as a three dollar bill . . . .
            some not blind will not see

      1. msfreeh we disagree too much on the fundamentals to join forces . . .but at times independently we criticize the same/similar governmental excesses

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