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Toms River, New Jersey Sports Medicine Doctor Sentenced to One Year in Prison for Accepting $60,000 in Cash Bribes for Prescription Referrals, Health Care Fraud



CAMDEN, N.J. – A sports medicine doctor with a practice in Toms River, New Jersey, was sentenced today to one year and one day in prison for accepting more than $60,000 in cash bribes in return for referring pain cream prescriptions and falsifying health records on behalf of Prescriptions R Us (PRU), a compound pharmacy in Lakewood, New Jersey, Acting U.S. Attorney William E. Fitzpatrick announced.

James Morales, 47, of Toms River, previously pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Joseph H. Rodriguez to an information charging him with conspiracy to accept kickbacks and commit health care fraud. Judge Rodriguez imposed the sentence today in Camden federal court.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

PRU was owned and operated by Vladimir Kleyman, 46, of Lakewood, New Jersey. As a compounding pharmacy, PRU prepared medication using different types and dosages of drugs in order to provide more personalized medications for patients. PRU supplied a topical cream for pain treatment that was made from ketamine (a Schedule III non-narcotic), lidocaine, diclofenac and other ingredients.

Morales operated Shore Sports Medicine, a medical practice in Toms River. Morales admitted that from February 2013 through December 2013, he accepted at least $60,000 in cash bribes from PRU in exchange for referring pain cream prescriptions.

Morales also admitted that on Dec. 19, 2013, Kleyman told Morales that the quantity of pain cream that Morales had prescribed was too high to get reimbursed by Horizon, a private health insurance plan. Kleyman asked Morales to start omitting quantity information on his prescriptions for the compounded pain cream. Morales admitted that he agreed to omit quantity information on prescriptions for patients enrolled in Horizon in order to help PRU obtain reimbursements.

In addition to the prison term, Judge Rodriguez sentenced Morales to two years of supervised release and pay $78,018 in restitution. The judge also entered a forfeiture order of $90,000 and fined Morales $5,000.

Kleyman previously pleaded guilty to conspiring to pay kickbacks in exchange for prescription referrals and committing health care fraud. He was sentenced on Nov. 4, 2015, to 20 months in prison, three years of supervised release and ordered to pay restitution of $477,000.

Acting U.S. Attorney Fitzpatrick credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Timothy Gallagher; and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Scott J. Lampert, with the ongoing investigation leading to today’s sentencing.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jacob T. Elberg, Chief of the Health Care & Government Fraud Unit in Newark.

The health care fraud practice at the New Jersey U.S. Attorney’s Office was reorganized to create a stand-alone Health Care and Government Fraud Unit to handle both criminal and civil investigations and prosecutions of health care fraud offenses. Since 2010, the office has recovered more than $1.36 billion in health care fraud and government fraud settlements, judgments, fines, restitution and forfeiture under the False Claims Act, the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act and other statutes.

Defense counsel: A. Ross Pearlson Esq., Matthew E. Beck Esq., William Finizio Esq., West Orange, New Jersey

Three Birmingham Area Men Plead Guilty to Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine



BIRMINGHAM –Three Birmingham area men have pleaded guilty in federal court to a conspiracy to distribute large amounts of methamphetamine in the Northern District of Alabama, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Robert O. Posey and FBI Acting Special Agent in Charge David W. Archey.

JOEL PATRICK McCARN, 43, entered his plea Tuesday before U.S. District Court Judge Abdul K. Kallon to one count of conspiracy to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine in Jefferson County between May 2016 and March 2017.

Two other men, MIGUEL GONZALEZ-JIMINEZ, 41, and MATTHEW HEATH RYAN, 39, pleaded guilty to the same charge last week.

The men were part of a ring distributing methamphetamine in northern Alabama. Their May indictment seeks a money judgment as part of their sentence for $64,000, which represents the proceeds of the methamphetamine sold.

The FBI investigated the case, which Assistant U.S. Attorney Brad Felton prosecuted.


Army Captain Now a Coast Guard Ensign — And Happy About It



Capt. Andrew Grady, commander of Company B, 1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 10th Mountain Division, places a splint on Pfc. Deven Dion during Expert Infantryman Badge training Jan. 20, 2016 at Camp Buehring, Kuwait. (U.S. Army photo/Sgt. Dana Moen)

The Daily News of Newburyport, Mass. | 28 Jun 2017 |

NEWBURYPORT — Andrew Grady started the day a captain and ended it an ensign, but he’s happy about that.

“Usually, it goes the other way,” Grady said. “I’ve got to work my way back up the ladder.”

A captain in the U.S. Army until Sunday night, Grady, 30, served eight years as a Ranger, with deployments in Afghanistan and Iraq.

On Monday morning, he walked into the Custom House Maritime Museum and was sworn in as a U.S. Coast Guard ensign.

While his decision may seem curious to some, with his wife, Coast Guard Lt. Dana Grady, stationed in Boston, Andrew Grady knew a demotion — and a switch in his branch of service — was the best way to keep the family together.

Having met while they were students at Norwich University, the Gradys were married in fall 2014. The Army tends to move its officers further inland and with his career moving along, Grady knew that when it came to his marriage, it was time to make a decision.

“The long-term benefit of staying in the Army was good for the job but not so good for the relationship,” he said. “I looked at things and said, ‘If I keep going, I am going to be stationed inland while she is going to be on the coasts.’ The juice isn’t worth the squeeze.”

Grady had met all his contractual obligations, so he finished his time with the Army last week, then jumped ship and was commissioned into the Coast Guard on Monday — with his wife administering the oath of office.

“We have been through a lot over the last couple of years,” Dana Grady said. “But our resolve has grown us closer together. The Coast Guard is really great about the dedication to family. Most people let their job kind of run everything. Then, at the end of a 20-year career, they don’t have a family. Whether the Army would have allowed us to do that, I don’t know. But this is a better avenue in which to get there.”

Navigating the high seas is not new to Ensign Grady, who grew up in Amesbury and spent his high school summers working for his father, Jack’s “Clipper” deep-sea fishing fleet.

Lt. Grady will now be joined by her husband stationed in Boston, and the couple know what they will call home, for at least a little while.

“This guarantees the next three years we will live together.” Andrew Grady said. “We can be a family, instead of living as geographic bachelors.”

On hand to make sure the oath was administered properly, Coast Guard recruiter Corey Landante was more than happy to receive the new ensign Monday.

“This is a great catch,” Landante said. “There are certain programs with the Coast Guard that offer entrance in from different services. Do we see it a lot? No. Is it available? Yes.”

This article is written by Jim Sullivan from The Daily News of Newburyport, Mass. and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@newscred.com.

© Copyright 2017  The Daily News of Newburyport, Mass. . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Alaska Salutes Black Soldiers' Work on Highway During WWII



This Nov. 20, 1942, photo provided by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Office of History, shows opening ceremonies of the ALCAN Highway in the Yukon at Soldier’s Summit, Alaska. (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Office of History via AP)

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Leonard Larkins and nearly 4,000 other segregated black soldiers helped build a highway across Alaska and Canada during World War II, a contribution largely ignored for decades but drawing attention as the 75th anniversary approaches.

In harsh conditions and tough terrain, it took the soldiers working from the north just over eight months to meet up with white soldiers coming from the south to connect the two segments on Oct. 25, 1942. The 1,500-mile (2,400-kilometer) route set the foundation for the only land link to Alaska.

The project to build a supply route between Alaska and Canada used 11,000 troops from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers divided by race, working under a backdrop of segregation and discrimination. The soldiers connected the road in Canada’s Yukon Territory east of the border of what was then the U.S. territory of Alaska. A photo of a smiling black soldier shaking hands with a cigarette-dangling white soldier became emblematic of their effort.

State lawmakers voted this year to set aside each Oct. 25 to honor black soldiers who worked on the Alcan Highway, now called the Alaska Highway. They note the soldiers’ work became a factor in the integration of the Army in 1948.

With the anniversary of the highway’s completion approaching, its history is gaining attention with multiple events in Alaska this summer.

Larkins, now 96 and living in New Orleans, applauds lawmakers for finally recognizing their role.

“It’s way past time,” said Larkins, who recently was back in Alaska for commemoration events.

A road link between Alaska and the Lower 48 was long a dream for territorial officials, but disagreements over a route and necessity caused delays until December 1941. The Japanese attack on Hawaii’s Pearl Harbor sparked an urgency to build the link out of concern that the U.S. territory and West Coast shipping lanes also were vulnerable. The southwest tip of Alaska’s Aleutian Islands chain is just 750 miles (1,206 kilometers) from Japan.

Larkins worked on both sides of the border with the 93rd Engineers, one of several black regiments sent north to help cut and hack through virgin wilderness. Along the way were clouds of mosquitoes, boggy land, permafrost and temperatures ranging from 90 degrees to minus 70 during one of the coldest years on record.

The soldiers slept in tents or in military metal structures called Quonset huts between duties like road cleanup and bridge building, Larkins said. He wasn’t directly touched by the racial discrimination of the time, although he remembers black soldiers doing all the work, while white officers supervised them.

His most vivid recollection remains the bone-chilling temperatures — shocking to the young man from Louisiana.

“So cold,” Larkins recalled in a phone interview. “You can’t stand there too long, you know. It’s entirely too cold.”

Black soldiers also faced racism from military leaders and were kept away from Alaska settlements. The Army’s Alaska commander at the time, Gen. Simon Bolivar Buckner Jr., a Confederate general’s son, wrote that he feared the soldiers would settle in the state and have children with “Indians and Eskimos,” according to a letter cited by historians.

Before the project, black soldiers were considered incapable of front-line duty or sensitive deployments and were largely relegated to housekeeping and clerk duties, said historian and author Lael Morgan, who researched the project for its 50th anniversary. However, a shortage of men prompted the deployment of black soldiers to help carve out the initial route, said Morgan, who is largely credited with introducing their story to modern audiences.

The gravel road opened to supply trucks and other vehicles in November 1942. The following year, contractors worked on the permanent road, following much of the original route. A 1944 military documentary called it “one of the wonders of the modern world.” The highway, which runs from Dawson Creek in British Columbia to Alaska’s Delta Junction, opened to general civilian traffic in 1948.

But little more than a historical footnote mentioned the black soldiers, with only a fraction of photographs showing them.

“I’m delighted that credit is finally going to where credit is due,” Morgan said. “We owe them for a job well done.”

The recognition didn’t come without dissent. Several people testified in favor of honoring all who worked on the highway — a stance adopted by Republican state Rep. David Eastman of Wasilla, who cast the only no vote. Singling out a group for their race is another form of segregation, in his view.

State Sen. Tom Begich said the point of the recognition was not to minimize anyone’s work but to acknowledge a group that played a role in the battle for integration, whose contribution was historically downplayed.

“We often acknowledge the construction of the Alcan,” the Anchorage Democrat said. “This is simply going a step further and saying there was a contribution made by African Americans as well.”

This article was written by Rachel D’Oro from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@newscred.com.

© Copyright 2017  Associated Press . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


ANALYSIS: Preventing Terrorism Requires ‘Deep and Analytical Understanding’


HS Today

By: Ahmet S. Yayla, Contributing Writer

06/27/2017 ( 7:39pm)

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Prevention and intelligence are two essential elements in the fight against terrorism, which are directly tied to each other and can only be achieved with extensive field experience and training.


Counterterrorism officers must have a deep and analytical understanding of the terrorist organizations they are dealing with; should read most of their literature; must know the groups’ history, tactics, methods; what kind of weapons and explosives they use; their recruitment and training schemes; their social media activities and posts; and, more importantly, their past activities and attacks in a given jurisdiction. They also must know the people who support them and the members of the terrorist organizations.


Most of the time, this only constitutes one leg of the proverbial chair, and a chair needs four legs to stand. The second important aspect of a successful counterterrorism officer is having the necessary field experience, where there is direct interaction with possible targets and suspects and where there are opportunities to carry out firsthand field operations. An officer who is not comfortable enough with his background and who does not have enough time in tenure would be unlikely to successfully analyze the situation at hand.


Thirdly, the officers must know their jurisdictions very well, which enables them to better assess and analyze high value targets, possible routes terrorists would use, and be aware of the possible hiding places and safe heavens terrorists would use.


Finally, a counterterrorism officer must be constantly fed with live intelligence. A successful counterterrorism campaign cannot be waged without solid and reliable intelligence. The combination of all four of these elements can lead to a successful terrorism prevention campaign, ensuring that it is very difficult for terrorists to carry out attacks in the first place by eliminating threats before they are able to act.


If this is not possible, especially for important and significant dates, one can take appropriate preventative and mitigative measures to thwart possible attacks by analyzing and overseeing feasible ways of future attacks based on the worst case scenario and prior attack information.


These actions may involve taking extra security measures with extra personnel and additional forces, fortifying possible important targets, communicating the nature of the expected threat to the public, and even disrupting planned attacks by interviewing or visiting possible perpetrators to scare them off so that the terrorist organization in question decides to cancel an attack that would not be stopped otherwise.


Carrying out operations after an incident has already happened (which was not prevented) should not be considered as success, only a duty.

ANALYSIS: Racializing 'Terrorism' Limits DHS Counterterrorism Efforts


HS Today

By: Melissa Harris, Staff Writer

06/27/2017 ( 7:11pm)

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From 9/11 to more recent attacks in Manchester, London, Paris, Melbourne and beyond, terrorism is a term that has relentlessly pushed its way to the forefront of media headlines and has become colloquial in political rhetoric.


With official and media portrayals of terrorism, it has become a concept bound to public thoughts on Islam, Muslims, Al Qaeda and ISIS. The Oxford English Dictionary defines terrorism as the “unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims.” Although terrorist attacks by radical Islam certainly fall under this definition, terrorism is a broad term that the public has come to associate solely with attacks by radical Islamic individuals and groups. Several prominent attacks unassociated with ISIS or other radical-Islamist ideologies have also committed acts of terror, however.


There’s Dylann Roof’s shooting at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina in June 2015. The Robert Lewis Dear, Jr. attack on the Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado Springs, Colorado in November 2015 … and countless other attacks on civilians with political goals in mind that have avoided being characterized as acts of terror, but are just as devastating and troubling as terrorist incidents committed by individuals of radical Islamic ideologies.


According to the Government Accountability Office’s April 2017 report, Countering Violent Extremism, there were 62 fatal “far-right violent extremist-motivated attacks” leading to 106 deaths between September 12, 2001 and December 31, 2016. In the same time frame, the report also lists 23 instances and 119 fatalities — a majority of which came from the 49 deaths of the June 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting — that were documented as “Radical Islamist Violent Extremist-Motivated Attacks.”


There have nearly been just as many deaths of terrorism that have occurred from radical Islamist attackers as there have been from other extremists, and a notably lower number of terrorist incidents committed by radical Islamists. Yet, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary John Kelly referred to terrorism exclusively in terms of radical Islam during his speech in April at the George Washington University Center for Cyber and Homeland Security.


“For a brief moment after the attacks of 9/11, our nation shook off its complacency, and realized our American values had a mortal enemy called radical Islam,” Kelly said. “As I speak these words the FBI has opened terrorism investigations in all 50 states, and since 2013, there have been 37 ISIS-linked plots to attack our country.”


Kelly introduced valid statistics and points about radical Islamic terrorist attacks, but in disregarding the instances and numbers of other extremist incidents, terrorism becomes racialized and bound to Islamic and Muslim identities.


Media outlets also reinforce the racialization of terrorism. After Roof massacred the 9 African-American worshippers in Charleston on June 17, 2015, none of the headlines on the attack included any terms of extremism or terrorism, even though Roof and Dear both had political aims in mind.


Scarlett A. Wilson, the prosecutor who oversaw Roof’s case in state court, said Roof’s “plan was to kill specifically innocent African Americans, and his hope was to start a race war.” Roof said he agreed with Wilson’s testimony. Meanwhile, court documents covering Dear’s case in the aftermath of his attack on the Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood clinic revealed his motives were inspired by previous attacks on abortion clinics and doctors, citing that he told police he envisioned himself being “met by all the aborted fetuses at the gates of heaven and they would thank him for what he did because his actions saved lives of other unborn fetuses.” Dear’s aim was to ensure “that no more abortions would be conducted at the Planned Parenthood facility in Colorado Springs,” court documents revealed.


Roof and Dear are terrorists. They used violence and intimidation to progress their political agendas, just as radical Islamist jihadists do, but nowhere in the media were these individuals cited as terrorists. Roof shot the 9 worshippers to start a race war. Dear attacked the Planned Parenthood with radical Christian anti-abortion intentions. But white-supremacist extremism and radical Christian attacks are never categorized as acts of terror.


Meanwhile, media outlets covering radical Islamic attacks constantly use “terror” and “terrorism” to portray the respective incidents. After the April 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, The Los Angeles Times headlined the news with, “Terror in Boston,” and The Washington Post reported, “An ‘Act of Terror’ In Boston.” Likewise, after the June 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, headlines like The Los Angeles Times’ “An Act of Terror and Act of Hate: 50 Killed in Florida Gay Nightclub,” and The Wall Street Journal’s, “A Night of Terror in Orlando,” classified the attack by Omar Mateen — who self-identified as influenced by ISIS — as terrorist attacks. While these incidents certainly are acts of terror, the exclusive association of terrorism with people of Islamic and Muslim backgrounds reinforces the popular notion that terrorism is only committed by such individuals and organizations.


Racializing terrorism brings forth consequences not only in contributing to the racial profiling of Muslim Americans, but also in developing effective homeland security policies. President Donald Trump’s administration has pushed an executive order demanding a travel ban outlining a 90-day suspension of entry from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen, even though The New York Times reported that Charles Kurzman of University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill said that since the 9/11 attacks, there have been no killings in the US in a terrorist attack by anyone who emigrated from or whose parents emigrated from any of the countries cited in the travel ban. Therefore, the ban — which was mostly upheld by the Supreme Court this week — will likely do little to prevent further acts of terror and will continue to disregard other non-radical Islamic acts of terror.


DHS certainly has strong counterterrorism policies and programs, from building a strong international network of information on terrorists to protecting cyber networks to maintain and enhance the nation’s cyber infrastructure. But in narrowing counterterror rhetoric and efforts to target people of Islamic and Muslim background leaves blind spots in the protection of American citizens. It disregards attacks by other extremists, thereby neglecting national security measures to prevent similar respective events.


The Trump administration and DHS need to hold individuals who and groups that are not necessarily associated with radical Islam accountable. The president has requested a $44.1 billion budget in the administration’s Fiscal Year 2018 budget proposal, which is a $2.8 billion increase from FY 2017.


DHS said the proposal includes “$4.5 billion for DHS to implement Executive Orders that strengthen border security, enhance enforcement of immigration laws and ensure public safety in communities across the United States.”


With a significant amount of financial and personnel resources dedicated to efforts with debated levels of efficacy, such as the travel ban and the US-Mexico border wall, it would benefit our nation’s security greatly if the increase in the DHS budget would include a wider scope on counterterror efforts beyond targeting people of Muslim and Islamic background, as any misguided, politically-fueled violence or attack committed against the American people must be addressed.

Defendant Sentenced to Two Years for Mailing Hoax Anthrax Threats



ATLANTA – Travis Ball has been sentenced to two years in prison for mailing hoax anthrax threats. Ball sent letters to the State Bar of Georgia, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (“LDS”) threatening harm to members of each organization.

“Ball’s threatening letters, which contained a substance he claimed was anthrax, were meant to instill fear in the recipients and diverted critical resources from actual emergencies,” said U. S. Attorney John Horn. “This hoax and the defendant’s subsequent prosecution serve as a reminder that we take threats seriously, and will use every resource available to protect the citizens of this district.”

“The sentencing in federal court of Mr. Ball to two years in a federal prison is commensurate with the wasted resources and concern generated by his hate filled hoax anthrax letter campaign while already incarcerated on a prior arson conviction. While Mr. Ball’s criminal conduct clearly illustrates his lack of concern and compassion for others, it also illustrates an unwillingness to be rehabilitated,” said David J. LeValley, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Atlanta Field Office.

“Any type of criminal activity perpetrated from behind the walls of our facilities will not be tolerated, and we are grateful to our Federal partners for their assistance in bringing this case to a close,” said GDC Commissioner Gregory C. Dozier.

According to U.S. Attorney Horn, the charges, and other information presented in court: On April 7, 2016, while incarcerated in Coffee Correctional Facility in Nicholls, Georgia, Ball mailed letters that were later received by the State Bar of Georgia, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (“LDS”) in Salt Lake City, Utah. The letters stated, “have some anthrax” and contained a granular substance. The letter to the State Bar of Georgia threatened to kill all lawyers while the letter to the LDS Church threatened to kill Mormons and burn their churches. At the time he mailed the letters, Ball was in state custody for a prior arson conviction.

Travis Ball, 50, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge William S. Duffey, Jr. on June 23, 2017 to two years in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $10,704. Ball was convicted of these charges on March 1, 2017, after he pleaded guilty.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Georgia Department of Corrections, Criminal Investigation Division.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jolee Porter is prosecuting the case.

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016. The Internet address for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia is http://www.justice.gov/usao-ndga.

Two Men Sentenced to Prison for Using Stolen Account Numbers at Metro East Walmart’s



This morning, in federal court in East St. Louis, IL, Samirahdam E. Rolley, 25, of Stone Mountain, GA, and Michael A. Gordon, 28, also of Stone Mountain, GA, were both sentenced to more than two years in federal prison for using stolen account numbers at several Southern Illinois Walmarts, United States Attorney Donald S. Boyce announced. Rolley was ordered to serve 26 months in federal prison, followed by four months of home confinement, while Gordon was sentenced to 25 months in prison. The court also ordered both men to pay $19,939.16 in restitution to the victims of their crimes.

In February, both Rolley and Gordon pled guilty to federal charges of using unauthorized access devices, using counterfeit access devices, and aggravated identity theft. At their plea hearings, both Rolley and Gordon admitted that they travelled from Georgia to Southern Illinois in early June 2015. During their trip, Rolley and Gordon had in their possession numerous gift cards. The magnetic strips of these gift cards had been re-encoded with stolen debit card numbers. Some of these debit account numbers were for the accounts of Southern Illinois residents at a local credit union. Rolley and Gordon used the altered gift cards to make purchases at numerous Metro East Walmarts, including the stores in Cahokia, O’Fallon, Belleville, Highland, Wood River, Collinsville, Glen Carbon, Godfrey, Jerseyville, Waterloo, and Carlyle. The purchases made by

Rolley and Gordon were debited to the bank accounts of the victims whose debit account numbers had been embedded on the gift cards.

The investigation was conducted by the Springfield Division, Fairview Heights Resident Agency, of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”). Several Metro East police departments assisted the FBI with the investigation. Those include the Carlyle, Collinsville, Glen Carbon, Jerseyville, Waterloo, and Wood River Police Departments, as well as the Madison County Sheriff’s Department. Walmart’s Global Security Department has also provided significant assistance in the investigation. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Scott A. Verseman.

Man Sentenced to 24 Months in Prison for Possession of Child Pornography



Donald S. Boyce, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, announced that Christopher Edward Pendegraft, 57, was sentenced Friday, June 23, 2017, in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois to 24 months in federal prison, five years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay a $375 fine, restitution of $2,000, and $5,100 in special assessments for possession of child pornography. Pendegraft will also have to register as a sex offender.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. For more information about internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab “resources.”

The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Laura V. Reppert.

FBI, Marietta PD, and Sandy Springs PD Continue Efforts to Identify Female Bank Robber



ATLANTA—David J. LeValley, special agent in charge, FBI Atlanta Field Office, along with Marietta PD and Sandy Springs PD, continue to request the public’s assistance in its efforts to identify and apprehend the individual responsible for two recent area bank robberies.

On Friday, June 16, 2017, at approximately 3:25 p.m., a lone black female entered the Wells Fargo Bank, located at 602 Roswell Street N.E., Marietta, Georgia, and, after approaching a teller, presented a demand note and announced a robbery. After obtaining an undisclosed amount of money, the robber departed the bank without further incident.

On Monday, June 26, 2017, at approximately 4:26 p.m., a lone black female entered the PNC Bank, located at 5640 Roswell Road, Sandy Springs, Georgia, and, after approaching a teller, presented a demand note and announced a robbery. After obtaining an undisclosed amount of money, the robber departed the bank without further incident.

The individual in both robberies is described as being a black female, 25 to 35 years of age, with a slender to medium build.

Anyone with information in this matter should contact Crime Stoppers Atlanta at tel. (404) 577-8477.

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