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Nigeria: SSS Intercepts Arms Shipment in Lagos – Rockets Launchers, Grenades Found

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Codewit.com — The State Security Service (SSS) yesterday seized an illegal arms shipment containing “rocket launchers, grenades and other explosives,” at the Apapa Wharf, Lagos, the largest shipping port in the country. SSS said the shipment was in 13 containers.

Security was immediately tightened at the Apapa Wharf last night as SSS, Police, Customs and naval officials condoned off the area where the ship was being detained and its contents examined.

The seizure came on the heels of the October 1 Independence Day bombings in Abuja which killed at least 12 people and injured many others.

Former leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), Henry Okah, is at present facing terrorism charges in South Africa in respect of the bombings, while his brother Charles and six others were dragged to court last week in Lagos in connection with the blast

Charges have not been preferred against Charles and others in Lagos.SSS Spokeswoman Marilyn Ogar, who confirmed the seizure, said security agents had only gone through eight crates inside one of the shipping containers labelled as carrying “building materials”

Four crates contained floor tiles and marbles, while the other four crates contained military-grade armaments,” she said.She said agents would continue to search the containers through the night, hoping to have more information.Ogar failed to identify the ship carrying the container or its final destination.But a source at the port said the ship was coming from Iran and might be headed for The Gambia.

“There was no declaration about the arrival of the ship and the information we got was that it was meant for Gambia,” he said.

The SSSâ-àspokeswoman said in a terse statement: “Today at the Apapa Wharf, the State Security Service as part of its extra security surveillance since the October 1 incidence, intercepted 13 containers.

“On opening the first container, the service operatives discovered rocket launchers, grenades and other explosives. The contents and findings from the other detained 12 containers, which the service is opening after the first, would be made public.”The service has launched investigations immediately on the discovery and the circumstances surrounding it.”

Okah denied the charges against him and also said he was not MEND leader or the one writing the organisation’s correspondence under the pseudo name Jomo Gbomo.

The bid by Okah last Friday to view evidence used by South African prosecutors to link him to the October 1 Abuja bombings was dealt a blow by the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court.

Also, Okah’s wife, Azuka, faced contempt of court charges at the same Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court. Her phone rang during hearing of the bail application for her husband last Thursday.

Meanwhile, the five persons arrested with Charles in connection with the bomb blasts regained their freedom from detention last weekend.

Handing down judgment, Magistrate Hein Louw only granted Okah’s defence team access to the hard drives of computers and cell phones confiscated from his home during an October 2 raid.

“I order that a mirror copy image of computer hard drives, cell phone hard drives and memories be made available to the applicant in no later than three working days,” Louw said.

He refused to give the defence permission to access information underpinning the state’s latest revelation in Okah’s bail application.

“In due course the defence will have opportunity to access such information,” Louw ordered.

The prosecution had said in an affidavit that Okah had exchanged emails, text messages with the alleged bombers and even bought two cars for the operation.

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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US congressmen seek explanation from Facebook founder

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Read Time:2 Minute, 14 Second

WASHINGTON — Two members of the US Congress have asked Facebook to explain how applications transmitted information about users to advertising and Web tracking companies in violation of the social network’s rules.

Representative Joe Barton, a Republican from Texas, and Representative Edward Markey, a Democrat from Massachusetts, asked Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg to reply to 18 questions about what they called a “privacy breach.”

Facebook on Monday acknowledged that some popular third-party applications had passed on user identification (UID) information but played down the privacy implications.

“Nevertheless, we are committed to ensuring that even the inadvertent passing of UIDs is prevented and all applications are in compliance with our policy,” Facebook engineer Mike Vernal said in a blog post.

“Our policy is very clear about protecting user data, ensuring that no one can access private user information without explicit user consent,” Vernal said. “We take strong measures to enforce this policy, including suspending and disabling applications that violate it.”

In their letter, Burton and Markey, co-chairmen of the House BiPartisan Privacy Caucus, said: “Given the number of current users, the rate at which that number grows worldwide, and the age range of Facebook users, combined with the amount and the nature of information these users place in Facebook’s trust, this series of breaches of consumer privacy is a cause for concern.”

They asked how many users were impacted, what information was transmitted to other parties and how many third-party applications were involved.

They also asked whether Facebook will “seek the deletion of its users’ personal information from data bases of the Internet or advertising companies who received it as a result of this series of privacy breaches?”

Andrew Noyes, a Facebook spokesman, said Facebook “is committed to safeguarding private data while letting people enjoy meaningful social experiences with their friends.

“As our privacy policy states, when a Facebook user connects with an application, the user ID is part of the information that the application receives,” he said.

“The suggestion that the passing of a user ID to an application, as described in Facebook’s privacy policy, constitutes a ‘breach’ is curious at best,” Noyes said.

The Wall Street Journal said applications were providing access to Facebook members’ names and, in some cases, their friends’ names, to companies that build detailed databases on people in order to track them online.

All of the 10 most popular applications on Facebook were transmitting unique user ID numbers to outside companies, it said. They include Zynga’s FarmVille, with 59 million users, Texas HoldEm Poker and FrontierVille.

Facebook is the world’s most popular social network with around 500 million users, but it has been dogged by complaints about privacy protection.

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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South Africa is under pressure, says Henry Okah’s lawyer

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Rudi Krause, lawyer to Henry Okah has told presiding judge, Hein Louw that he is ‘not bound’ to ensure ‘the interests of a community thousands of kilometres away from this court.’
Mr. Krause was responding to points raised by prosecution lawyer, Shaun Abrahams on Monday when he cross-examined Mr. Okah.
‘You have no onus to save face in the international community by refusing the applicant bail,’ Mr Krause said, urging the judge not to give in to ‘statements of ideology’ he attributed to the prosecution.

Mr. Krause said Mr. Okah should be granted bail because the South African state’s case is ‘a case subject to substantial and serious doubt.’ He also said Mr Okah is entitled to medical treatment ‘which he will not receive in prison.’

Mr. Krause also said based on ‘the conflicting statements’ issued by the Nigerian government, ‘little or no reliance can be placed on any evidence emanating from that part of the world.’
Mr. Krause cited the contents of an affidavit which the prosecution stated it received from the Nigerian government, saying the document was ‘sweeping, vague…to the extent that it is actually embarrassing…’

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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French police break fuel blockades in pensionstrike

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Read Time:2 Minute, 48 Second

Police cleared protesters blockading French fuel depots on Wednesday as the government warned of economic damage from prolonged strikes against its plan to raise the retirement age from 60 to 62.

A third of France’s filling stations ran dry on Tuesday, the government said, while cars were set alight and police fired tear gas at rioters on the sidelines of protests that brought a million people into the street.

“If it is not stopped quickly, this disorder which is aimed at paralysing the country could have consequences for jobs by damaging the normal running of economic activity,” President Nicolas Sarkozy said in a statement Wednesday.

Workers in several key sectors have been on strike for a week to protest the pensions reform which the government says is essential to reduce France’s public deficit. Unions and political opponents say it penalises workers.

Sarkozy said he had ordered police to break the blockades at all fuel depots blocked by protests, refusing to back down on the reform which is scheduled to be voted on definitively by the Senate on Thursday.

Three depots were peacefully reopened overnight on Sarkozy’s orders, Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux said on Wednesday, but protesters have blockaded several more, police and AFP reporters said.

“We will continue to unblock these depots as much as necessary,” Hortefeux said. “We will not let the country be blockaded and we will not let the thugs go unpunished,” he added, referring to those arrested in street riots.

Ongoing disruption was forecast on the national railways with a third of TGV express trains cancelled, operator SNCF said.

At France’s main air hub, Roissy-Charles de Gaulle, unions announced blockades of access roads. Airport authorities said flights were normal on Wednesday morning but warned of disruptions later in the day.

A quarter of flights were cancelled at Paris’s second biggest airport, Orly.

Sarkozy’s reform would raise the standard retirement age from 60 to 62 and the full benefits threshold from 65 to 67.

Unions have proposed alternative ways to cut the deficit but say the government has refused to negotiate with them. They are to meet Thursday to decide their next action.

Business associations were anxious about the impact of drawn-out strikes.

“After three years of economic crisis, we do not have the means today to endure long strikes,” the head of the CGPME small and medium business association Jean-Francois Roubaud said on Europe 1 radio Tuesday.

Television news was dominated on Tuesday by scenes of clashes between riot police and youths in Lyon and suburbs of Paris, which Hortefeux blamed on a rogue minority of “thugs” who joined ongoing protests by high school pupils.

The minister, who heads a crisis cell to deal with the disruption, said police had arrested 1,423 “rioters” over the past week.

Hundreds of schools remained blockaded in the strike, the government and a schools union said, while youths torched another car in Lyon city centre, where riot police were deployed.

CNIR traffic info service counted a dozen roadblocks or go-slows on Wednesday morning after truckers joined in the strike action this week. Rubbish piled up in the streets of Marseille due to a strike by collectors.

A poll by BVA published Wednesday said 59 percent of the French supported a continuation of the strike even if the Senate passes the reform this week.

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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No Sex in this Relationship

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Read Time:1 Minute, 54 Second

Hey guys, Mgbeks here!

Lately I’ve been pondering on this issue of sex in a relationship and why it is SO important to men. I keep having conversations with guys who insist that if their girls aren’t giving it up then she got to go. They say things like ‘body no be firewood o’ or ‘Even if I agreed to not wait with her till marriage, I would have a jump off on the side’. I’ve even heard things like ‘You have to test drive the car before you buy it’ and even worse…’If she isn’t giving it up, she will be NEXTED’.
I once had a conversation with a guy who had been in a 5 year relationship and when I asked the no sex question, he replied and told me that if his girlfriend had asked him to wait till marriage, they would not have lasted for 5 years.

Once again, I’m picking on you men because I can’t tell you that I’ve ever heard a female tell me that if there was no sex in a relationship, a guy would be instantly NEXTED. Honestly, I realize that body no be firewood etc etc but seriously guys, is sex the ultimate thing that makes or breaks a relationship?
Imagine if you met a woman who was everything that you wanted and more, would you really let her go because she wasn’t willing to hit the sheets with you?
What is the huge fuss over a maximum of 1 hour of pleasure…and please I’m cutting y’all some slack up in here ‘cos if we have to keep it 100, it probably wouldn’t even reach one hour. LOL, I’m just saying though…

I mean, the thing just tire me o. My ladies, are you feeling me on this or am I alone on this one?

My dudes, please feel free to comment o. I welcome all questions, comments and insults. Ha Ha! I’m just trying to get a general understanding of this right here.

Why is sex so important in a relationship?

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Kuala Lumpur: Nigerian Student Detained With Heroin Worth RM160,000

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KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 19 (Bernama) — The activities of a Nigerian student, believed to have been distributing drugs at a private college under the pretext of attending classes was exposed when he was detained with 700gm of heroin worth RM160,000 at the Low Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) in Sepang on Oct 12.

Kuala Lumpur Narcotics Crime Investigation Department chief ACP Kang Chez Chiang said the 28-year-old, believed to be a member of an international drug trafficking syndicate, was carrying the drugs in a bag.

“The drugs were packed using carbon paper with sponge and aluminum foils attached to avoid the scanners,” he told reporters at the Kuala Lumpur police headquarters here Tuesday.

He said the man, pursuing a business management course at the college and staying in the country since last year, claimed that he was going to China and waiting for his friend but he did not have any flight ticket.

Kang said police believe the drugs were brought into the LCCT by someone else and would be taken out by locals who act as drug mules.

“He was waiting for someone and when police conducted a check on him, top grade heroin, normally from countries like Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan was found. They drugs may not be for local distribution,” he said.

Initial investigations also revealed that the suspect tested positive for opiate (opium) and police have obtained a remand order to detain him until Oct 13 and carry out investigations under Section 302 of the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952.

Kang added that since the start of the year, 29 Africans were detained for drug related offences and from that total, 20 were from Nigeria, including eight students.

“Total amount of drugs seized from them amounted to 3.1kg heroin worth RM600,000, 39kg of ganja worth RM96,000 and 3.4gram syabu worth RM1,500,” he said.

— BERNAMA

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Nigeria: Matters arising from the 1st oct, 2010 bomb blasts in Abuja

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Read Time:7 Minute, 27 Second

Nigeria’s Golden jubilee celebration was surrounded by some unpalatable events. A few days to the D-Day, the kidnap of fifteen school pupils aged between five and ten took place in Osisioma, Abia state. They were later released on the day of the celebration. There was joy in Umuahia, the capital city of Abia as the helpless, hapless and innocent children were taken to the Government House to be received by the state governor, Theodore Orji, Ochendo I of Abia. I have not heard the details of how their release was secured. But those kids have obviously been thrown to the national light by that act of terrorism. They are now national heroes for being kidnapped and released.

On that same day, as Nigerians and foreign visitors thronged to the Eagle Square, Abuja, no one ever imagined the internal construct of the terrorists and their sponsors. The victims themselves never imagined that they would move from the venue to the mortuary as corpses to cool their heads for some time before being committed to the mother earth. Those who were injured by the emissaries of death never gave it the faintest imagination that they would end up in the hospital beds. But it happened! Two heavy bangs left them in their pitiable conditions. Vehicles and human beings were charred and the celebration was turned to mourning. However, the government spokespersons still described the celebration as successful because the perpetrators’ intention of disrupting the celebration did not materialize. Secondly perhaps, no children of theirs lost their lives.

It must be noted that the celebration of a country’s independence always showcases its military might. We saw such in abundance as the country’s military displayed their weapons of warfare and combatant readiness. Significantly, the October 1 celebration of this year was the country’s Golden Jubilee. Biblically, the jubilee is the year of freedom (Lev.25). However, in our own case, it turned out to be bondage for the country. It was not the bondage of the Transatlantic Slave Trade. It was not the bondage of the colonial masters which is now thought to be better than the present day freedom. It was the bondage of our people, by our people and for our people. The scene of the blast is said to be just about a hundred and fifty metres from the Eagle Square and about twelve people were killed and many others injured. What a way to celebrate the Golden Jubilee.

The bomb blast triggered off a chain of events. The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger-Delta (MEND) was said to have claimed responsibility for the bomb blasts. Later, it was said that MEND was not responsible and many leaders of the ex-militants led by their ‘Generals’ went on a solidarity visit to the president and disclaimed the e-mail that attributed the act to them. They also dissociated themselves from the prime suspect and the former leader of MEND, the South-African-based Henry Okah. In their own words, MEND died last year when former President Umar Yar’Adua granted amnesty to the then Niger-Delta militants.

Then came the great twist. A day after the blast, Henry Okah, who was arrested in South-Africa in connection with the October 1 mayhem, shocked the world with an interview he granted to the Arab cable TV, Al-Jazeera. He claimed that an aide to President Goodluck Jonathan had called him to recant the claim that MEND was responsible for the bomb blasts so that the presidency would put the blame on his northern political opponents. Though he did not mention the name of the president’s aide, he said that the president’s hasty exoneration of MEND was in hope that he (Okah) would do his bidding. As the presidency described Okah’s claim as mere fabrication of his criminal imagination, it went on to associate some persons with some text messages believed to be in connection with the Abuja bombing. This led to the arrest and quizzing of the director-general of the IBB Campaign Organisation, High Chief Raymond Dokpesi, the CEO of Daar Communications Ltd. by the State Security Service (SSS). Dokpesi had earlier alleged a threat to his life for accepting to work with the former head-of-state and the presidential aspirant on the platform of the PDP, General Ibrahim Babangida. The arrest of Dokpesi attracted some press statements from the IBB Campaign Organization which described the act as intimidation and political intolerance. Coming at the heels of this was the call of the Northern Political Leaders Forum (NPLF) on President Goodluck Jonathan to resign or be impeached for his inability to protect the lives of the citizens and for exonerating the MEND.

Another dimension to the bomb blasts was that immediately after the incident, text messages were alleged to have been sent threatening that if Gov. Peter Obi of Anambra State does not bring an end to the lingering strike of the south-eastern state universities, the Anambra State Government House would be next target within sixty hours. This generated some ripples in the state in spite of the state government’s assurance that all was under control. Apart from this, the Three Arms Zone (TAZ) which houses the National Assembly and the Judiciary was also said to be under the bomb threat. Again, at the National Secretariat, Abuja, there was another bomb scare which led to a stampede. The NNPC Headquarters, also at Abuja was rumoured to be another target and there was another stampede. In fact, since October 1, many people have carefully avoided some public gatherings and areas for fear of losing their dear lives to bomb blasts. Any slightest noise is now attributed to bomb blast and leads to people running for safety. We now live out the popular children’s song, “There is fire on the mountain, run, run, run!”

President Goodluck Jonathan, in various speeches after the blast, has assured the citizens that the perpetrators of the dastardly act must be brought to book. The law enforcement agents also said that the investigations are in full force to uncover those behind the unfortunate incident. However, if there is anything our people have learnt, it is never to trust the law enforcement agents especially the police. Be that as it may, many people have noted the political coloration to the incident. That is why there are accusations and counter-accusations which definitely may influence the outcome of the investigation, negatively or positively. Some people have also begun to doubt the ability of the law enforcement agents to unravel such acts of criminality. They cited the deaths of Dele Giwa through a parcel bomb; the assassination of the former minister of justice and attorney-general of the federation, Chief Bola Ige; the assassinations of Dikibo and Harry Marshal as some of the mysteries that the police have not unraveled. Some however were of the view that since the casualties were mainly law enforcement agents, they may be forced to work this time. We just watch them

As all these happened, I was able to come up with just one conclusion. Whether we want to admit it or not, Nigeria is preparing for the 2011 general elections with vigour and the gladiators are up in arms. As the elections approach, there is an obvious graduation from politically-motivated kidnapping to politically-motivated bombing and innocent citizens suffer the dire consequences and the country is portrayed in bad light. Writing on this, Chidiebere Onyemaizu said that with the recent bombing, Nigeria has “… joined the likes of Pakistan, Iraq and Afghanistan in the club of countries where street and car bombing has been elevated to an art” (The Source, October 18, 2010, p.15).  What then does it take to brand a country “terrorist”?

Another perplexity is that the security agents got the intelligence report five days before the incident and could not stop it. Marilyn Ogar, the SSS spokeswoman claimed that the security agents did their best and that was why it ended the way it did. The antecedents have shown that the country’s security remains porous and that the security agents’ best is almost zero. Right now, MEND is threatening another bomb blast to show their might over our country’s trained security agents. Will they succeed again? I have learned to take my destiny in my own hands. Whenever I hear any blast, whether of a balloon or a toy gun, I will bail myself with my legs. Frankly speaking, the 2011 general elections is pregnant and at the same time, nursing a baby. May God save Nigeria from the threatening chaos. Who killed and maimed innocent Nigerians on October 1, 2010?

*Rev. Fr. Clement Muozoba writes from Awka, Anambra State.

okochacm@yahoo.com 07060843010

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Detroit- AbdulMuttallab seeks to represent himself in court

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Read Time:1 Minute, 25 Second

DETROIT—NIGERIAN accused of trying to blow up a US-bound airliner with a bomb sewn into his underwear, last December 25, yesterday, said he wanted to represent himself in court.

Appearing in a Detroit court for the first time since January, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab rejected a judge’s advice that he retain a lawyer.

Abdulmutallab indicated he intended to plead guilty to some of the charges because of the conspiracy theory that some US personels are involve in the plot .

He was charged with the attempted murder of 290 jet passengers on December 25, 2009.
Abdulmutallab is also charged with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction.

The jet landed safely in Detroit after crew and passengers overpowered him.
In federal court in Detroit on Monday, Abdulmutallab asked US District Judge Nancy Edmunds how he could go about pleading guilty to some of the counts.

She replied that she could not advise him on the matter, and assigned a lawyer to be available to assist him in representing himself.

Abdulmutallab is reported to have co-operated with investigators who have questioned him about alleged ties to violent Islamic extremists.

Soon after his arrest, Abdulmutallab said he had been trained by al-Qaeda-linked militants in Yemen. Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, which is based in Yemen, claimed responsibility for the failed bomb attack.

Abdulmutallab caught the flight to Detroit from the Netherlands, after connecting from a flight from Nigeria. His father, a prominent banker, had previously warned US authorities about his son’s extremist views.

Abdulmutallab was on a US watch list before the alleged Christmas Day attempt but not a no-fly list.

 

 

 

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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New York: Dozens charged with largest Medicare scam ever

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Read Time:2 Minute, 42 Second

NEW YORK – A vast network of Armenian gangsters and their associates used phantom health care clinics and other means to try to cheat Medicare out of $163 million, the largest fraud by one criminal enterprise in the program’s history, U.S. authorities said Wednesday.

Federal prosecutors in New York and elsewhere charged 73 people. Most of the defendants were captured during raids Wednesday morning in New York City and Los Angeles, but there also were arrests in New Mexico, Georgia and Ohio.

The scheme’s scope and sophistication “puts the traditional Mafia to shame,” U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said at a Manhattan news conference. “They ran a veritable fraud franchise.”

Unlike other cases involving crooked medical clinics bribing people to sign up for unneeded treatments, the operation was “completely notional,” Janice Fedarcyk, head of the FBI’s New York office, said in a statement. “The whole doctor-patient interaction was a mirage.”

 

The operation was under the protection of an Armenian crime boss, known in the former Soviet Union as a “vor,” prosecutors said. The reputed boss, Armen Kazarian, was in custody in Los Angeles.

Bharara said it was the first time a vor — “the rough equivalent of a traditional godfather” — had been charged in a U.S. racketeering case.

Kazarian, 46, of Glendale, Calif., and two alleged ringleaders — Davit Mirzoyan, 34, also of Glendale, and Robert Terdjanian, 35, of Brooklyn — were named in an indictment charging racketeering conspiracy, bank fraud, money laundering and identity theft.

The indictment accused Terdjanian and others of hatching other schemes involving stolen credit cards, untaxed cigarettes and counterfeit Viagra. It also alleges that during a meeting last year at a Brighton Beach restaurant, Terdjanian pulled a knife on someone who owed him money “and threatened to disembowel the individual if the debt was not paid.”

A judge jailed Terdjanian without bail on Wednesday at a brief hearing. Afterward, his attorney said his client denies the charges.

Kazarian and Mirzoyan were scheduled to appear in court Wednesday in Los Angeles.

Authorities began the New York-based investigation after information on 2,900 Medicare patients in upstate New York — including Social Security numbers and dates of birth — were reported stolen.

The defendants in the New York case also had stolen the identities of doctors and set up 118 phantom clinics in 25 states, authorities said. The names were used to submit fake bills for care that was never given, they said.

Some of the phony paperwork was a giveaway: It showed eye doctors doing bladder tests; ear, nose and throat specialists performing pregnancy ultrasounds; obstetricians testing for skin allergies; and dermatologists billing for heart exams.

In the New York portion of the case, more $100 million in fraudulent bills were submitted and Medicare paid out at least $35 million, sometimes by wiring it to the clinics’ banks accounts, investigators said.

Most of the defendants “were Armenian nationals or immigrants and many maintained substantial ties to Armenia” and criminals there, the indictment said. Couriers would often carry cash proceeds from the fraud back to Armenia, it added.

Prosecutors were seeking forfeiture of real estate in Las Vegas; Palm Springs, Calif.; and elsewhere, and of a 2007 Maserati and a 2006 Jaguar.

About Post Author

Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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Liberia player Dulee Johnson arrested in Sweden

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Read Time:1 Minute, 29 Second
Liberia international midfielder Dulee Johnson is in custody in Sweden for allegedly raping a 22-year-old woman, according to Swedish prosecutors. “With regard to the identity, that will come out in court but, yes, it is Dulee Johnson, but other than that I don’t have a lot to say at the moment,” Stockholm prosecutor Henrik Soderman told Reuters.
Local newspaper Aftonbladet quoted Johnson’s lawyer Michael Linden as saying the player denied the charges.

“My client rejects the allegations that have been made against him,” Linden said, adding that he expected the case to be dropped.

The Local reported that the club’s main backer, the brewer Ã…bro, issued an ultimatum on Wednesday telling the club to suspend Johnson within 24 hours or lose its sponsorship. Other sponsors such as Peab endorsed the move.

“We give AIK a day to get rid of Dulee Johnson. He harms the club too much,” Ã…bro CEO Henrik Dunge said. “It harms us too much if he remains. He is a talented footballer player but he has to go.”

“It is a personal tragedy how he blusters and wrecks AIK’s and the sponsors’ trademarks,” Peab vice-CEO Mats Johansson added.

Swedish champions AIK said on Wednesday they had suspended midfielder Johnson. “We will come back when there is something more to say in the matter,” said a statement on the club website (www.aikfotboll.se).

Johnson, who has played in five World Cup qualifiers for Liberia, made his debut for AIK in 2006 and returned to the Stockholm club last year after a spell at Maccabi Tel Aviv in Israel.

He has played 20 times this season, scoring two goals as AIK have struggled to repeat the form that took them to a league and cup double last year.

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Anthony Claret

Anthony-Claret is a software Engineer, entrepreneur and the founder of Codewit INC. Mr. Claret publishes and manages the content on Codewit Word News website and associated websites. He's a writer, IT Expert, great administrator, technology enthusiast, social media lover and all around digital guy.
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