Academic Investigating Chinese Influence Peddling in New Zealand Had Break-Ins at Home and Work

Academic Investigating Chinese Influence Peddling in New Zealand Had Break-Ins at Home and Work

February 19th, 2018

Via: New Zealand Herald:

A New Zealand academic who made international waves researching China’s international influence campaigns has linked a number of recent break-ins to her work.

University of Canterbury professor Anne-Marie Brady, speaking today from Christchurch to the Australian Parliament’s Intelligence and Security Committee in Canberra, outlined three recent events which caused her concern.

“I had a break-in in my office last December. I received a warning letter, this week, that I was about to be attacked. And yesterday I had a break-in at my house,” she said.

She said this weeks’ burglary at her Upper Riccarton home was particularly suspicious.

“I had three laptops – including one used for work – stolen. And phones. [Other] valuables weren’t taken. Police are now investigating that.”

Brady also said her employer at Canterbury University had been pressured following earlier work on China’s Antarctic policy and – following a recent visit to China – sources she had talked to were subjected to visits from authorities.

“People I’ve associated with in China, just last year, were questioned by the Chinese Ministry of State Security about their association with me.”

Her outspokenness became extremely public after she published in September a “Magic Weapons” paper using New Zealand as a case study in explaining China’s extra-state exertion of influence.

The paper highlighted a river of campaign donations to governing parties, and how a cluster of former senior politicians – including former prime ministers and mayors – and family members of current government ministers had been appointed to boards of state-owned Chinese banks, companies and think tanks.

More: ‘Magic Weapons’: China’s Network of Influence in New Zealand




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NTSB investigating Grand Canyon helicopter crash that left three dead

Three people were killed and four others were injured after a helicopter with seven aboard crashed in the Grand Canyon Saturday, authorities said.

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Police investigating suspicious envelope addressed to Trump Jr.

Multiple senior law enforcement officials say that a suspicious letter mailed to an apartment belonging to Vanessa Trump and addressed to Donald Trump Jr. was opened this morning and is being investigated by police. NBC’s Tom Winter reports.

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FBI Investigating Millions Of “Mishandled” Dollars Funneled From Australian Govt To Clinton Foundation

FBI Investigating Millions Of “Mishandled” Dollars Funneled From Australian Govt To Clinton Foundation

January 19th, 2018

Via: ZeroHedge:

The FBI has asked retired Australian policeman-turned investigative journalist, Michael Smith, to provide information he has gathered detailing multiple allegations of the Clinton Foundation receiving tens of millions of mishandled taxpayer funds, according to LifeZette.

“I have been asked to provide the FBI with further and better particulars about allegations regarding improper donations to the CF funded by Australian taxpayers,� Smith told LifeZette.

Of note, the Clinton Foundation received some $88 million from Australian taxpayers between 2006 and 2014, reaching its peak in 2012-2013 – which was coincidentally (we’re sure) Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s last year in office.




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Las Vegas shooter Paddock had child porn on computer, FBI investigating person of interest…

Investigators scanning computers belonging to Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock found “numerous” child pornography photos, the city’s sheriff revealed Friday, adding that the FBI is looking into a person of interest in the case.

Sheriff Joe Lombardo, in his first press conference since Oct. 13, 2017, released an 81-page preliminary investigative report on the shooting Friday that contains new photographs of Paddock’s hotel suite and online searches he conducted before the attack, such as for SWAT tactics and other potential public venue targets.

Lombardo said the unnamed person of interest the FBI is looking into is not Paddock’s girlfriend, Marilou Danley, and he reiterated that authorities believe Paddock was a lone shooter.

“I realize it’s been three months since you have received an update on the 1 Oct. shooting,” Lombardo told reporters Friday. “We have done a lot of work trying to piece together what happened.”

The sheriff said investigators “have gone over 2,000 leads and looked at 21,560 hours of video.”

“This report won’t answer every question, or even the biggest question as to why he did what he did,” Lombardo said. “We are all going to have to be patient and let the investigation run its course.”

Paddock gunned down 58 people in the Oct. 1, 2017, massacre, firing at a music festival crowd from the confines of his Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino suite.

Bruce, his brother, was arrested last year by Los Angeles police and accused of possessing child pornography, as part of a separate investigation that began months before the Vegas attack.

Friday’s report said Stephen Paddock bought nearly double the number of firearms in the year leading up to the attack that he’d bought in the 24 years after his first gun purchase in 1982.

“From 1982 through September of 2016, Paddock purchased 29 firearms. These purchases consisted of handguns, shotguns and one rifle,” it read. “From October 2016 through September 2017, Paddock purchased over 55 firearms.”

It continued: “Most of the firearms purchased from 2016 through 2017 were rifles in various calibers along with over 100 firearm related items through numerous retailers. The firearm-related items included scopes, cases, bump stocks and ammunition.”

Police said all the weapons were purchased legally, in-store and online. 

FILE - This undated photo provided by Eric Paddock shows his brother, Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock. On Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017, Stephen Paddock opened fire on the Route 91 Harvest festival killing dozens and wounding hundreds. Paddock left behind little clues about what led him to carry out the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. He killed 58 and wounded nearly 500 before killing himself. Paddock's brain is being sent to Stanford University for a months-long examination after a visual inspection during an autopsy found "no abnormalities," Las Vegas authorities said. Doctors will perform multiple forensic analyses, including an exam of the 64-year-old's brain tissue to find any neurological problems. (Courtesy of Eric Paddock via AP, File)

Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock became more “distant” in the months leading up to the attack, his girlfriend, Marilou Danley, told investigators.

 (AP/Eric Paddock)

“Paddock did not commit a crime until he fired the first round into the crowd at the Las Vegas Village,” the report said.

A timeline in the report also said that on Sept. 26, 2017, “Paddock completed a wire transfer in Mesquite, Nevada, of $50,000 from his Wells Fargo account to an account in the Philippines.”

Two days later, he “made a $14,000 deposit at Wells Fargo and transferred $50,000 to a bank in the Philippines,” the report added.

During his stay at Mandalay Bay, Paddock was “seen” and “observed” numerous times entering and exiting the property with suitcases and bags, on different days.

“Paddock was described as ‘germaphobic’ and had strong reactions to smells.”

– Police report on Las Vegas shooting investigation

On one trip away from the resort, the gunman stopped at a Walmart in Mesquite and “purchased luggage, razor blades, fake flowers, a vase, and a Styrofoam ball,” the report stated.

His girlfriend, Danley, who was in the Philippines at the time of the attack, told investigators that Paddock’s behavior started to change in the year leading up to the shooting.

“Paddock had become ‘distant’ and their relationship was no longer intimate,” the report stated. “Paddock was described as ‘germaphobic’ and had strong reactions to smells.”

Danley said the pair stayed at Mandalay Bay in September 2017, and he was “behaving strangely.”

“The two were staying in room 60-235 and she observed Paddock constantly looking out the windows of the room which overlooked the Las Vegas Village venue,” the report stated.

The village was the site of the Route 91 Harvest music festival, which Paddock targeted.

“Paddock would move from window to window looking at the site from different angles,” the report said, describing the visit.

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Mueller investigating Ivanka Trump for saying hello to Russians in elevator lobby

Ivanka Trump


Special Counsel Robert Mueller is investigating Ivanka Trump over a brief elevator encounter with the two Russians at the center of a controversial 2016 meeting at Trump Tower that she did not attend.

The Los Angeles Times broke the news this morning, with a report that Ivanka exchanged pleasantries with the Russian duo.

Investigators also are exploring the involvement of the president’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, who did not attend the half-hour sit-down on June 9, 2016, but briefly spoke with two of the participants, a Russian lawyer and a Russian-born Washington lobbyist. Details of the encounter were not previously known.

It occurred at the Trump Tower elevator as the Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, and the lobbyist, Rinat Akhmetshin, were leaving the building and consisted of pleasantries, a person familiar with the episode said. But Mueller’s investigators want to know every contact the two visitors had with Trump’s family members and inner circle.

Mueller long has sought to nail down details of the unusual gathering at the height of the presidential race between three of Trump’s top campaign aides – his eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, and his campaign manager, Paul Manafort – and Veselnitskaya, Akhmetshin, plus a Russian language translator, a U.S.-based employee of a Russian real estate group, and a British music promoter with Russian business ties who helped bring the group together.”

The Times reported Mueller is looking at possible obstruction of justice by President Trump over his involvement in writing a press release about the meeting.

Mueller’s team is trying to determine if Trump and others involved in drafting the language aboard Air Force One knew it was inaccurate and whether it was aimed at deceiving federal investigators looking into whether the Trump campaign actively assisted a Russian intelligence operation aimed at interfering in the U.S. campaign.

…Mueller’s investigation into possible obstruction of justice by Trump is also examining whether he improperly tried to shield his former national security advisor, Michael Flynn, from an FBI investigation and then fired FBI Director James B. Comey to block the inquiry.

John Dowd, one of Trump’s lawyers, declined to comment Friday on the direction of Mueller’s inquiry. Trump has repeatedly denied wrongdoing and in a tweet Friday again denounced allegations of collusion with Russia as “a total hoax.”

Complete Times article at this link.

Trump haters are naturally ecstatic at the news of Ivanka Trump being investigated by Mueller.

Not mentioned in the Times article is whether Mueller has subpoenaed the Trump Tower elevator lobby security camera videos yet.

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FBI Reportedly Investigating Clinton Foundation

Federal officials reportedly have launched a new investigation into allegations of corruption at Bill and Hillary Clinton’s charitable organization.

The FBI and federal prosecutors aim to investigate whether the Clinton Foundation engaged in pay-to-play politics ― that is, whether the Clintons promised political favors in return for financial donations.

The primary location of the investigation will be Little Rock, Arkansas, where the foundation was started, an anonymous law enforcement official first told The Hill. Both the Justice Department and the U.S. attorney’s office in Arkansas declined to comment to CNN about the investigation.

The reopening of the investigation comes on the heels of the Justice Department’s move to also relaunch an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server while she worked as secretary of state, The Daily Beast reported Thursday.

A former senior DOJ official told The Daily Beast that officials are aware of demands from President Donald Trump to investigate Clinton.

Trump has been increasingly focused on Clinton as the investigation into his alleged ties with Russia has heated up. He tweeted Friday morning that the investigation into him is simply a “hoax.” 

The initial Clinton Foundation probe dates back to 2015, when the FBI began looking at people who made donations to the charity. In 2016, prosecutors with the Justice Department rejected a request from the FBI to expand the investigation, The Washington Post reports.

Nick Merrill, spokesman for Clinton, told The Hill on Friday that the new probe is “disgraceful.”

“Let’s call this what it is: a sham,” Merrill told the publication. “This is a philanthropy that does life-changing work, which Republicans have tried to turn into a political football. It began with a now long-debunked project spearheaded by Steve Bannon during the presidential campaign. It continues with Jeff Sessions doing Trump’s bidding by heeding his calls to meddle with a department that is supposed to function independently.”

Sources within both the Justice Department and the FBI told The Washington Post they were skeptical that the case would lead to any charges.

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.

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Sessions Investigating Obama for His Role In Project Cassandra

The above comment needs no elaboration except to say that Jeff Sessions is now looking into Project Cassandra which links former President Obama and much of his former cabinet with overt acts of terrorism.




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Baltimore Police Now Blocking FBI from Investigating Murder of Cop Set to Testify Against Fellow Cops

In recent weeks, The Free Thought Project has been keeping a close eye on the developing case of a whistleblower with the Baltimore Police Department named Sean Suiter who was shot with his own gun the day before he was set to testify against corrupt cops within his own department.

Unlike most other shootings where police are the victims, no one has been arrested and there is no suspect to speak of. In fact, this is the only time in the history of Baltimore that a suspect in the shooting of a police officer has gone this long uncaptured.

With each day that passes, more suspicious details are uncovered which cast doubt on the official narrative that has been given by the police department since the shooting and brings suspicion upon the department itself.

Not only was Suiter set to testify in a massive corruptions case the day after his shooting but his partner was off work that day and the commissioner lied about this important detail in a press conference where he revealed the details of the case to the media. The man who filled in as Suiter’s partner on the day of his death is Facebook friends with one of the officers who is facing conviction.

On Wednesday, Congressman Elijah E. Cummings asked the director of the FBI to make the Suiter investigation one of their top priorities.

“I asked him that they use every resource available and do everything in their power to assist the Baltimore police in this investigation and make it a top priority,” Cummings said.

With the killer of a police officer on the loose for weeks and a population beginning to doubt the official word from the police department, you would think that they would be happy to bring in other agencies to help them wrap up the case, or at least prove that their hands are clean and that there is no cover-up.

However, as reported by WBAL-TV, the Baltimore Police department is not allowing the FBI to assist them in the investigation.

Department spokesman T.J. Smith said they will not be allowing any other agencies to interfere with their investigation.

“The Baltimore Police Department handles murder investigations, and the Baltimore Police Department will continue to handle this investigation,” Smith said.

The department’s refusal to allow another set of eyes on the case has even drawn criticism from the state’s governor, Larry Hogan, who told reporters that, “I have a lot of confidence in the Police Commissioner Kevin Davis in Baltimore, but at some point, the more eyes we have on this, the better.”

According to federal law, the FBI is allowed to take over cases from police departments when the death of an officer is involved but they must receive permission from the city’s police commissioner, and it does not look like that will be granted anytime soon.

This is the longest that a manhunt for the killer of a Baltimore police officer has gone on without an arrest or viable suspect. Previously, the record was held by a suspect who fled to Oklahoma over 50 years ago, before the introduction of big brother cameras and tracking technology, and he was caught in just five days. Cop killers do not get away with murder in Baltimore—but everyone else seems to. The homicide clearance rate for civilians is abysmally low, with barely a quarter of the city’s killings being solved.

Baltimore police have a reputation for using strong-arm mafioso tactics to intimidate fellow officers out of turning on the gang. As we reported back in 2014, Baltimore Detective Joe Crystal became a target of intimidation for his entire department after testifying against other officers in a misconduct case. Following his testimony, he received threats from other officers and even found a dead rat on his car one day.

For a history of how corrupt, violent, and deadly Baltimore cops are, take a look at our archives here. 

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