Ticketmaster Pays $10 Million Criminal Fine for Intrusions into Competitor's Computer Systems – Department of Justice

Earlier today in federal court in Brooklyn, Ticketmaster L.L.C. (Ticketmaster or the Company) agreed to pay a $10 million fine to resolve charges that it repeatedly accessed without authorization the computer systems of a competitor.  The fine is part of a deferred prosecution agreement that Ticketmaster has entered with the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York to resolve a five-count criminal information filed today charging computer intrusion and fraud offenses.  Previously, on October 18, 2019, Zeeshan Zaidi, the former head of Ticketmaster’s Artist Services division, pled guilty in a related case to conspiring to commit computer intrusions and wire fraud based on his participation in the same scheme.  Both cases are assigned to U.S. District Judge Margo K. Brodie.

Seth D. DuCharme, Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, and William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s New York Field Office, made the announcement.

“Ticketmaster employees repeatedly – and illegally – accessed a competitor’s computers without authorization using stolen passwords to unlawfully collect business intelligence,” stated Acting U.S. Attorney DuCharme.  “Further, Ticketmaster’s employees brazenly held a division-wide ‘summit’ at which the stolen passwords were used to access the victim company’s computers, as if that were an appropriate business tactic.  Today’s resolution demonstrates that any company that obtains a competitor’s confidential information for commercial advantage, without authority or permission, should expect to be held accountable in federal court.”

“When employees walk out of one company and into another, it’s illegal for them to take proprietary information with them. Ticketmaster used stolen information to gain an advantage over its competition, and then promoted the employees who broke the law. This investigation is a perfect example of why these laws exist – to protect consumers from being cheated in what should be a fair market place,” stated FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Sweeney.

The Scheme to “Choke Off” the Victim Company

According to Ticketmaster’s admissions and publicly filed court documents, Ticketmaster, a wholly owned subsidiary of Live Nation Entertainment, Inc. (Live Nation), was primarily engaged in the business of selling and distributing tickets to events and concerts.  The victim company offered artists the ability to sell presale tickets – sold in advance of general ticket sales – on an online ticketing platform.  It also offered artists an Artist Toolbox (the Toolbox), which was a password-protected app that provided real-time data about tickets sold through the victim company. 

Instrumental to the criminal scheme was Coconspirator-1, a former senior employee of the victim company, who worked in the company’s Brooklyn, New York offices from approximately May 2010 to July 2012.  In approximately July 2012, Coconspirator-1 signed a separation agreement with the victim company, in which he agreed to maintain the confidentiality of that company’s confidential information.  He then joined Live Nation in approximately August 2013.

In November 2013, while employed by Live Nation, Coconspirator-1 shared with Zaidi and another Ticketmaster employee the URLs for draft ticketing web pages that the victim company had built for an artist, but had not disseminated to the public.  In response to a Ticketmaster executive explaining that the goal was to “choke off [victim company]” and “steal back one of [victim company]’s signature clients,” Coconspirator-1 offered that Ticketmaster could “cut [victim company] off at the knees” if they could win back presale ticketing business for a second major artist that was a client of the victim company.

Ticketmaster’s Intrusions Into the Victim Company’s Password-Protected Artist Toolboxes

In January 2014, Coconspirator-1 emailed Zaidi and a second Ticketmaster executive multiple sets of usernames and passwords for Toolboxes.  Coconspirator-1 encouraged the executives to “screen-grab the hell out of the system,” but also warned, “I must stress that as this is access to a live [victim company] tool I would be careful in what you click on as it would be best not [to] giveaway that we are snooping around.”  (Emphasis in original.)  The information from the Toolboxes was then used to prepare a presentation for other senior executives that was intended to “benchmark” Ticketmaster’s offerings against those of the victim company. 

In early May 2014, a senior executive of Live Nation (Corporate Officer-1) asked Zaidi and others how Ticketmaster’s presale online offering compared with the Toolbox.  Coconspirator-1 was then asked to “do a screenshare/demo” at an upcoming “Artist Services Summit.”  Coconspirator-1 agreed to “pull together a list of the log-ins and URL’s that I still have access to for this so I can give the team as much insight as possible.”  At least 14 Live Nation and Ticketmaster employees attended the Artist Services Summit, in San Francisco.  There, in front of those employees, Coconspirator-1 used a username and password he had retained from his employment at the victim company to log in to a Toolbox, and provided a demonstration.  Coconspirator-1 later also provided Zaidi and other Ticketmaster executives with internal and confidential financial documents he had retained from his employment at the victim company.

In January 2015, Coconspirator-1 was transferred to the Artist Services division, promoted to Director of Client Relations, and given a raise.  Following the promotion, Coconspirator-1 emailed another Artist Services employee, “Now we can really start to bring down the hammer on [Victim Company].”  Ticketmaster employees continued to access password-protected victim company Toolboxes through December 2015.

Ticketmaster’s Surveillance of the Victim Company’s Draft Ticketing Web Pages

Between approximately July 2014 and June 2015, Coconspirator-1 and others monitored draft ticketing web pages created by the victim company.  Although these pages were not password-protected, they were not indexed in search engines, and therefore could not be located without determining the exact URLs, which included a series of numbers.  Until the victim company or artist publicly disseminated a URL, the victim company intended to restrict access to itself and the artist.

After joining Live Nation, Coconspirator-1 explained to Zaidi and others how the “store ID” numbers in the URLs were numbered sequentially, enabling Ticketmaster employees to monitor new pages and to learn which artists planned to use the victim company to sell tickets.  Coconspirator-1 used this information to search for new victim company ticketing web pages, and sent the URLs to Ticketmaster executives.  In or about January 2015, a Ticketmaster employee was assigned to learn about this system from Coconspirator-1, and maintained a spreadsheet listing every victim company ticketing web page that could be located, so that Ticketmaster could identify the victim company’s clients and attempt to dissuade them from selling tickets through the victim company.  Zaidi explained that “we’re not supposed to tip anyone off that we have this view into [the victim company’s] activities.” 

The Deferred Prosecution Agreement and Criminal Information

Under the terms of the deferred prosecution agreement, Ticketmaster will pay a criminal penalty of $10 million and will maintain a compliance and ethics program designed to prevent and detect violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and other applicable laws, and to prevent the unauthorized and unlawful acquisition of confidential information belonging to its competitors.  Ticketmaster will also report to the United States Attorney’s Office annually during the three-year term of the agreement regarding these compliance measures.  If the Company breaches the agreement, it will be subject to prosecution for the charges in the criminal information that was filed today, charging the Company with one count of conspiracy to commit computer intrusions, one count of computer intrusion for commercial advantage, one count of computer intrusion in furtherance of fraud, one count of wire fraud conspiracy and one count of wire fraud.

The investigation is being conducted by the FBI’s New York Field Office.  The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s National Security and Cybercrime Section.  Assistant United States Attorneys Allon Lifshitz, Craig R. Heeren and Ian C. Richardson are in charge of the prosecution. 

The Defendants:

TICKETMASTER L.L.C.

E.D.N.Y. Docket No.  20-CR-563 (MKB)

ZEESHAN ZAIDI
Age:  46
New York, New York

E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 19-CR-450 (MKB)

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Industry insiders lay out 5 ways legal tech will shake up the legal profession in 2021, from Big Law partnerships to transforming in-house counsels' roles

Legal Tech Trends

Summary List Placement

2020 has been the year for legal tech. As law firms and businesses across industries shuttered their physical offices and shifted to remote work, legal tech companies stepped in to offer digital solutions to help streamline this transition, from client relationship management to contract analysis.

Shrinking budgets and increasing client demands for efficiency further spurred lawyers’ adoption of technology.

“In a nutshell, what we saw was the most significant transformation in how lawyers work in the last century,” said Jack Newton, CEO of Clio, a legal practice management software. “10 years of legal transformation happened in 10 months.”

Investors are taking note, too. In October, Disco, a cloud-based ediscovery platform, raked in a blockbuster $60 million in its Series F, bringing total investment to $195 million and valuing the company at $785 million. Another up-and-coming contract lifecycle management startup, Contractbook, raised $9.4 million in its Series A in December from investors like Bessemer Venture Partners and Gradient Ventures.Jack Rives

“It’s an exciting time for the legal profession,” said Jack Rives, executive director of the American Bar Association. “Attorneys are embracing and growing more comfortable with technology.”

Insider spoke with six legal tech experts on the biggest trends of 2020, and how they shape their predictions for the year ahead.

The legal tech market will become increasingly consolidated

VC investors aren’t the only active players in the market. Legal tech companies themselves are investing in and snapping up other startups as they look to grow their business.

In December, Exterro, an e-discovery and information governance software platform used by Visa and American Express, announced that it acquired AccessData, a digital forensics firm, for an undisclosed nine-figure amount.

Bobby Balachandran, the CEO and cofounder of Exterro, previously told Insider that the fragmented legal tech market is becoming increasingly consolidated as a result. “The market is driving it,” he said.

George Psiharis Headshot

“Legal tech is an exploding market and we’re still in the early days of new apps and new technology to explore. It’s a very frothy space for tech investments, with a lot of opportunity and growth in 2021,” said George Psiharis, COO of Clio.

Legal tech companies will seek to expand their offerings to provide clients with an end-to-end platform

Accompanying the wave of consolidation in the legal tech market is the second, related trend of “platformization” as companies expand their offerings to provide a complete suite of services to their clients.

With many law firms and businesses working remotely, they’re looking for a single end-to-end solution that’s both easy and convenient to use, said Sarvarth Misra, CEO of ContractPodAI, a contract lifecycle management platform for in-house counsel.

DocuSign, for instance, acquired both Seal Software and LiveOak Technologies in May and June this year respectively, boosting its product offerings in the contract space with contract analysis and agreement-collaboration capabilities. 

Harshad Oak_200

Harshad Oak, general manager of the customer adoption and value department at Icertis, a contract management platform, said that he expects moves toward a broader platform that includes contract management as one part of it.

“Contract management was once seen as something in isolation, but it’s now regarded as part of the bigger enterprise solution, especially given how crucial contracts are across all businesses and industries,” said Oak.

Big Law firms are upping their tech games with investments and partnerships

The rise of legal tech has also piqued the interest of law firms, many of whom doubled down on tech investments this year due to the pandemic. Tech-savvy law firms made nearly 40% more in revenue than old-school ones, according to the 2020 Legal Trends Report by Clio.

On top of this, law firms have seen mounting competition from the Big Four accounting firms, as well as from smaller companies offering parts of the legal process, like contract review or due diligence.

To maintain their competitive edge, some Big Law firms have turned inwards to develop their own in-house technology, while others, like Baker McKenzie and Allen & Overy, have tag-teamed with legal tech companies to develop innovative solutions for contract review, litigation support, and client relationship management. By streamlining work processes, law firms are able to produce more value to their clients, many of whom faced tighter budgets this past year.

“Adoption of technology by law firms seems to have been fairly robust this year, since they have to prove their top dollars,” said Misra of ContractPodAI. “The ones that do really well as we move into the new year will be those with truly tech-led solutions.”

The role and shape of in-house legal departments will see further transformation

Nearly a third of in-house counsel expect their spending on outside counsel to decrease over the next six months, according to a survey released in December by the law firm Morrison & Foerster.

newman_david_press_3800x4600As a result, industry experts predict that in-house legal teams will be expected to take on more responsibility, and legal tech can help bolster their work. In fact, while in-house departments were historically seen as cost centers, that’s changed with the pandemic.

“The companies that have been the most successful in navigating the pandemic were those with in-house counsel that are very integrated into all manner of contingency planning and risk-based decision-making,” said David Newman, a partner at Morrison & Foerster.

Bernadette HeadshotBernadette Bulacan, who identifies trends and innovations affecting corporate legal departments as lead evangelist at Icertis, said that the evolution of legal tech “100% increases” the importance of “data-driven” general counsel. By using insight that these tech solutions provide — for example, about specific clauses in contracts — in-house lawyers are able to make data-powered decisions that inform a company’s broader business strategy.

The accelerated maturity around the legal industry’s thinking about transformation and tech adoption in the past year also will lead to changes in how in-house departments look.

“The whole look and shape of in-house departments will change,” said ContractPodAI’s Misra, who explained that 2021 may see the creation of new job profiles, such as legal engineers — lawyers who can code.

Legal tech will drive more equitable business practices and increase access to justice

By offering cheaper and more accessible legal solutions, technology can also increase access to justice. 

“77% of what could be legal problems go without legal service. It’s not just about free access to services for free, but about free access to information,” said Clio’s Psiharis. He explained that technology can remove friction in the process of finding and using information, which can facilitate cheaper legal services.

Companies can also use the data from legal tech to make more equitable business decisions, said Bulacan of Icertis.

“General counsel are the guardians of a company’s reputation,” she said. “Data can provide insight into who the company does business with and who its employees are.”

The summer of 2020 was a watershed moment for renewing calls for social justice and diversity across industries, and Bulacan sees these as “accelerants” for companies’ adoptions of data.

“As consumers’ desires change, general counsel can understand that, use data, and make sure the right clauses are in place to create more diverse supply chains and workplaces,” she said. “The companies that have these large data pools will be the true winners of 2021.”

SEE ALSO: Legal-tech startups are catching the eye of DocuSign and other big strategic investors. These 21 deals showcase how a huge consolidation wave is underway.

SEE ALSO: The CEO of Disco, a legal tech that sells cloud-based discovery software, walked us through a 20-page pitch deck the startup used to nab $60 million

SEE ALSO: Meet 10 investors who are pouring money into legal-tech startups, from Silicon Valley VCs to Big Law firms

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: A cardiologist revealed the truth behind red wine’s health benefits

Source link

When Criminal Minds fans think the show lost its magic – Looper

Criminal Minds follows a similar structure as other shows such as NCIS or Law & Order: SVU. What set the series apart in the beginning was that it focused on the agents in the FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU), who used psychological profiling to hunt down some of the worst criminals in the country. In the early seasons, the emphasis on profiling often led to the characters taking a unique path to finally solving the crime. However, as the show went on, some fans began to notice that the series relied more and more on generic patterns to crack the investigations.

User Hiiiiiiiiii_10, who started the thread, described the formula that emerged in the later seasons of the show: “characters are just able to look a few clues, cross check, then somehow make a completely accurate prediction […] one character just casually mentions something, and the team starts pursuing without doubt even though there are other possibilities […]”

Another user, masterbaiter9000, pointed out a similar issue related to the simple solutions to the crimes. They wrote, “I think over the years they shifted the focus to the crimes and the unsub instead of focusing on the process to investigate said crimes, which turned [Criminal Minds] into a sort of police series rather than showing the day to day of the BAU as it was in the beginning.”

According to many viewers, that shift in the way the show portrayed the investigations didn’t just make the plot aspects of the show less compelling, it also flattened the characters.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

The New York prosecutor investigating Trump's tax records is calling in reinforcements as the president's time in office comes to an end

Donald Trump wildcard

Summary List Placement

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office currently running a probe into President Donald Trump’s finances has tapped forensic accounting specialists for help, The Washington Post reported. 

District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. has expanded his initial 2018 probe into hush money paid to two women who say they had sexual relationships with Trump before he was president. Vance has now asked FTI Consulting to look for discrepancies among some property deals and consult with prosecutors on whether or not Trump’s company altered the value of some assets for tax breaks. 

Earlier this year, Vance asked a judge for eight years of Trump’s tax records on the grounds that media reports had identified “extensive and protracted criminal conduct at the Trump Organization. Trump has fought the release of those records in court, but Vance has also expanded the scope of the investigation since then. 

Vance interviewed bankers and insurers who work for the president this month. Investigators at the DA’s office spoke with employees of Trump’s primary lender, Deutsche Bank and Aon, his main insurer. 

Trump has recently expressed concern over the large scope of the investigation as his presidency comes to an end. 

“Now I hear that these same people that failed to get me in Washington have sent every piece of information to New York so that they can try to get me there,” Trump said in speech earlier this month. “It’s all been gone over, over, and over again.”

According to Jason Zirkle with the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners who spoke to The Post, Vance may have hired the firm to help counter any arguments that the investigation is driven by political animus.

One source who asked to remain anonymous told The Post analysts with FTI Consulting may have already reviewed some of Trump’s dealings as part of a grand jury investigation and could potentially testify if criminal charges are filed. 

Vance’s office could not be reached for comment by phone at the time of publication and the Trump organization has not replied to Insider’s request for comment.

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: July 15 is Tax Day — here’s what it’s like to do your own taxes for the very first time

Source link

Defense lawyer gives grim outlook for court system next year due to pandemic – WJXT News4JAX

Next year could shape up to be a devastating year for the criminal justice system, according to Shannon Schott, president of the Florida Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers Northeast Chapter.

News4Jax spoke with Schott concerning issues with courts being able to get enough people to respond to jury summons to seat a jury. That’s when Schott said: “There’s going to be a complete collapse of the criminal justice system if we don’t take action, and really, it’s not the defense bar who needs to be worried about this issue. It’s going to be the prosecutor’s office who needs to be triaging the cases that are important to take to trial versus DUIs, possession of drugs, petit theft.”

News4Jax started looking into the issue of case backlog after learning about a recent attempt by Clay County to seat a grand jury. It would have been the first jury seated in the county since the coronavirus pandemic began.

Here’s what Clay County sent to News4Jax:

400 citizens were mailed summons (pool based on list provided by the DMV)

Of the 400, 160 citizens’ excusals were granted for various reasons:

  • COVID-19 options list (similar to CDC guidelines used for entrance screening)
  • Other health-related and/or age-related conditions
  • Residency (no longer a Clay County resident)
  • Mental capacity
  • Summons returned in the mail (inaccurate address on file with DMV)

240 citizens remained in the pool as potential jurors.

14 appeared in court as directed/requested (one extra was turned away for recently being in contact with someone who was COVID-19-positive).

Due to only 15 showing up to the courthouse, Clay County Clerk of Courts Tara Green said: “We were disappointed in the turn-out, certainly. It does, however, serve as an indicator of the level of concern that may remain in our population. Our team will continue to partner with the judiciary and with county leadership to provide the best venue possible to conduct safe court proceedings. The right to a fair trial by a jury of our peers is the cornerstone of the U.S. Constitution’s Sixth Amendment. Every citizen should take their jury summons seriously and respond in good faith if no valid excuse applies.”

Clay County has put out a video to residents showing all the cleaning going on at the courthouse to make it a safe environment for prospective jurors. There is a jury trial slated for Jan. 19 in a grand theft case, and jury summons will be going out in the next week.

News4Jax also reached out to St. Johns County, which has had a little more success. The county has actually seated some juries in the past few months.

Here is the county’s data:

September 2020

Sept. 14: 500 summons sent out – 30 attendees (1st jury selection since pandemic)

Sept. 24: 500 summons sent out – canceled

Notes:

756 excused

1 panel of jurors seated – jury trial took place on Sept. 15

October 2020

Oct. 12: 180 summons sent out – 30 attendees

Oct. 19: 200 summons – 30 attendees

Notes:

127 excused

Fall grand jury empaneled

1 panel of jurors seated – jury trial took place on Oct. 19

November 2020

Nov. 11: 240 summons sent out – canceled

11/16 240 summons sent out – 30 attendees

Notes:

393 excused

1 panel of jurors seated – jury trial took place

December 2020

Dec. 7: 240 summons sent out – 50 attendees

Dec. 14: 240 summons sent out – canceled

Notes:

387 excused

1 panel of jurors seated – jury trial took place

The jury selection and trial scheduled for Dec. 14 was canceled by Chief Judge Raul Zambrano.

January 2021

Jan. 19: 240 summons sent out

Jan. 25: 240 summons sent out

Notes:

Summons mailed on Dec. 8 – 34 excused so far

Overall, this is an issue at least at the state level — if not beyond.

“We were seating jurors for five, 10, 20 trials, and that has ceased completely. Up until Oct. 12, when there were two trials maybe going and just the important ones,” said Schott. “If you have a civil dispute or car accident case or any sort of contract dispute or business dispute, and now your case is deprioritized. So the only cases prioritized are the felony trials.”

News4Jax also asked Schott about the issue of speedy trials. A right to a speedy trial is laid out in the Sixth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. Schott said the Florida Supreme Court had put a stay on that for the time being, meaning jury trials are delayed and criminal defendants can’t use it to have their charges dropped. But she pointed out that it hasn’t been litigated yet and someone could feasibly challenge the Florida Supreme Court order.

“To be completely candid,” said Schott, “I don’t think this issue has been completely litigated.”

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

The only state Criminal Minds never visited – Looper

Through 15 seasons, Criminal Minds never once covers a case in the state of Hawaii. 

A devoted Criminal Minds fans who goes by u/Emily_kruegerr on Reddit made an extensive map detailing all the places the series goes in every episode; Arkansas, North Dakota, and Hawaii are the only ones left blank. As one Redditor in the thread noted, both Arkansas and North Dakota never receive their “own episode” of Criminal Minds, but both states are mentioned in the series, and part of an episode takes place in Little Rock, Arkansas. North Dakota, on the other hand, gets a shoutout as the state in which Sydney Manning (Adrianne Palicki) from the episode “The Thirteenth Step” murdered the girlfriend of Ray Donovan (Jonathan Tucker) prior to the events of the episode.

The place with the most visits is Washington D.C., with 40 episodes of Criminal Minds featuring the location. Looking specifically at states, California wins with 38 episodes; comparatively, Hawaii doesn’t even get a mention.

The fact that Hawaii’s a bunch of islands surrounded by water can’t excuse this, as the FBI team constantly travels for cases in their own jet, but one legitimate reason for the exclusion might be the show Hawaii Five-0. The television series, a remake of the older version that ran from 1968 to 1980, shared a network with Criminal Minds. Both shows aired on CBS, with Hawaii Five-0 also ending in 2020, so it’s possible that the network didn’t want the two hit shows to cross wires in any way. It would’ve been cool to see a crossover between Criminal Minds and Hawaii Five-0, but despite both focusing on crime, the two shows have vastly different tones. Plus, it’s too late now.

All in all, it would’ve been quite the accomplishment if Criminal Minds had been able to hit all 50 states throughout its run.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

'I'm in the Dark': Shock After Connecticut Lawyer Kills Wife and Himself | Connecticut Law Tribune – Law.com

Law.com

Zooming Through 2020: COVID-19, Surviving Remotely and a Few Silver Linings


Vanessa Blum

|


Zack Needles

|
December 18, 2020

As we say goodbye to 2020, we’re taking a look back at some of our standout Legal Speak podcasts during the past year. Among the topics were law firm leadership amid the COVID-19 pandemic, remote business development strategies, virtual trials and the challenges and benefits for young lawyers working remotely.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Criminal lawyer says former Death Row Scot Kenny Richey was his most 'aggressive client' – Daily Record

A leading criminal lawyer has revealed former Death Row prisoner Kenny Richey was his most aggressive client.

Ronnie Renucci QC said Richey’s conduct made him question whether the decision to free him was the right one.

He also told how his client tried to intimidate police when he was interviewed in connection with an assault and robbery.

The former US Marine, originally from Edinburgh, was sentenced to death for the murder of two-year-old Cynthia Collin who died in a fire at her mother’s apartment in Columbus Grove, Ohio, in June 1986.

Ronnie Renucci QC said Richey’s conduct made him question whether the decision to free him was the right one
(Image: Daily Record)

He claimed it was a miscarriage of justice and was eventually released in 2008 after entering a “no contest” plea to manslaughter, child endangering and breaking and entering in a plea bargain.

Richey returned to Scotland upon and Renucci acted for him at the High Court in Paisley in 2009 when he was charged with assault and robbery.

The 56-year-old went to the US and was jailed for 12 years earlier this year for threatening a prosecutor who was involved in his original trial.

Renucci, who is vice dean of the Faculty of Advocates, chose his dealings with Richey as his most memorable case in an interview with online legal platform Hey Legal.

He said: “I got instructed to do a trial for Kenny Richey, the guy who had been on Death Row in Ohio.

“He was originally from Edinburgh and after he got pardoned he came back to live in Edinburgh.

“He got charged with assault and robbery and I appeared for him at Paisley High Court.

“It was memorable mainly for Richey himself who was probably the most difficult client I’ve ever had.

“I still remember his police interview where it was the most bullying, hectoring, aggressive, intimidating interview I have ever seen and that was Richey to the police.

Kenny Richey was on death row for 21 years in Ohio after being convicted in January 1987 of murdering two year-old Cynthia Collins by arson in 1986. In December 2007, he accepted a plea bargain, which led to his release from death row and return to Scotland on January 9, 2008.
Kenny Richey was on death row for 21 years in Ohio after being convicted in January 1987 of murdering two year-old Cynthia Collins by arson in 1986
(Image: Danny Lawson/PA Wire)

“Obviously he got pardoned and we know there are wrongful convictions.

“But you begin to wonder if there is such a thing as a wrongful pardon.

“I wouldn’t imagine it would be very pleasant being on Death Row but he was a very difficult guy.

“Since then he has moved back to America and I remember reading a few years ago that he had got back into trouble and he was facing trial in America again.”

Top news stories today

Richey had been charged with assaulting a 64-year-old man and robbing him of a mobile phone and money at a flat in Edinburgh in July 2008.

The charges were dropped during the trial because of a lack of corroboration but he pled guilty to threatening a fiscal dispute after being refused bail in the case.

Lord McEwan decided to free him at the time because he had already served seven months on remand and the judge said he had suffered enough.

Top news stories today

Richey’s latest jail sentence came after he made threats towards Randall Basinger in videos posted on Facebook last year.

Basinger was a prosecutor who in 1987 helped secure the murder conviction against Richey.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now – Gizmo Story

Criminal Minds is one of the best mystery-solving television series that you can watch right now. The critically acclaimed multi-award-winning police procedural series began in 2005 and concluded its fifteen seasons run in February 2020. Criminal Minds follows a group of criminal profilers working at the Behavioral Analysis Unit of the FBI. The profiling team uses behavioral analysis to investigate crimes and find the perpetrators.

The series has a total of 324 episodes with a new case in every episode. So for those who haven’t watched the show yet, there is a lot of catching up to do! But if you have started the show from the middle, you can finish the series and go back to the start without worrying about continuity. However, if you are the kind of viewer who wants to watch the best episodes of the lot, you will definitely like this list of the best episodes of Criminal Minds.

Best Criminal Minds Episodes to Binge-Watch

1. Masterpiece

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

  • Season: 4
  • Episode: 8
  • IMDb: 8.4/10

A narcissistic psychopath confesses to killing seven people. The serial killer also claims to kill five more people and challenges the BAU to find him before he kills them. This episode starred Jason Alexander as the killer, Henry Grace, and gave a fantastic performance. His performance as the villain made the viewers despise him.

2. 100

100

100

  • Season: 5
  • Episode: 9
  • IMDb: 8.6/10

This episode featured the final showdown between Hotch and The Reaper. The Reaper (portrayed by C. Thomas Howell) was one of the most dangerous and hated villains in Criminal Minds. In this episode, the BAU comes together to help and protect Hotch and his family when The Reaper comes back into town. The Reaper had previously killed Hotch’s ex-wife Haley and 20 other people. Hotch took on the case but couldn’t find any leads. The Reaper then stopped killing for eleven years and resurfaces later.

3. The Fisher King

The Fisher King

The Fisher King

  • Season: 1
  • Episode: 22
  • IMDb: 8.1/10 (Part 1) and 8.7/10 (Part 2)

This case takes place over two episodes. A man named Randall Garner lost his family in a fire. He became severely disfigured by the fire and became institutionalized due to his mental illness. He is later released but he decides to target the members of the BAU and torment them. Despite the episode’s unexpected anticlimax, it is thrilling and engaging.

4. Revelations

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

  • Season: 2
  • Episode: 15
  • IMDb: 9/10

One character who the viewers learn a lot about is Spencer Reid. Reid is an intelligent man but has a lot of personal problems. His own mother suffers from schizophrenia and is institutionalized. In Revelations, Reid is captured by a serial killer named Tobias Hankel who suffers from a split personality disorder. The BAU team tries to locate Reid after a video of Hankel abusing Reid goes on air. Reid also gets flashbacks of his childhood due to being drugged by his captor.

5. True Genius

True Genius

True Genius

  • Season: 7
  • Episode: 11
  • IMDb: 8.6/10

This episode is inspired by the real-life Zodiac killer who left cryptic messages at the scenes where he/she committed murders and was never caught. This episode follows a young child named Caleb who is a prodigy but has been inspired by the Zodiac killer. Spencer Reid tries to solve this case and tries to rebuild his own confidence as he feels that he hasn’t lived up to his own expectations.

6. Amplification

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

  • Season: 4
  • Episode: 24
  • IMDb: 8.6/10

This episode follows a terrorist serial killer named Chad Brown who has a motive. He wanted to show people how vulnerable counties could be to terrorist attacks. He carries out an anthrax attack which infects Spencer Reid. Reid solves the case from quarantine before he runs out of time but luckily gets the vaccine.

7. Zugzwang

Zugzwang

Zugzwang

  • Season: 8
  • Episode: 12
  • IMDb: 8.7/10

Another episode that is thrilling and has an anticlimactic ending, which impacts Reid and leaves him broken. This episode follows a stalker named Diane (portrayed by Michelle Trachtenberg) who kidnaps Reid’s girlfriend, Maeve. The BAU race against time to find Diane and rescue Maeve.

8. Date Night

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

  • Season: 15
  • Episode: 6
  • IMDb: 8.7/10

Aubrey Plaza reprises her role as hitwoman Cat Adams who was brought down by Reid. In this episode, she wants a final meeting with Reid as a date before her execution. To get Reid to see her, she has Reid’s girlfriend’s sister and father kidnapped.

9. Entropy

Entropy

Entropy

  • Season: 11
  • Episode: 22
  • IMDb: 9.2/10

This is the episode where Reid tries to outsmart assassin Cat Adams and bring her down. In this episode, the BAU implements an intricate strategy to try and take down a hitman ring (which Adams is a part of). Reid is undercover where he is supposed to be on a blind date but in reality, is meeting up with Adams to catch her. This episode is brilliant and terrific as it features two characters with great intellect just battling it out.

10. Mr. Scratch

Mr. Scratch

Mr. Scratch

  • Season: 10
  • Episode: 21
  • IMDb: 8.8/10

This episode goes deeper into the psychology and mindset of serial killers and is also the start of a major story arc. In this episode, Mr. Scratch escapes and along with him, many more serial killers escape. Mr. Scratch later goes on to target members of the FBI in the later seasons.

11. The Replicator

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

  • Season: 8
  • Episode: 24
  • IMDb: 8.2/10

This episode featured the talented and impeccable Mark Hamill portraying John Curtis aka the Replicator. John Curtis is a unique villain as he is a former FBI agent turned serial killer with great intellect and high IQ. Curtis is here for revenge as he was left alone to take the blame on an old case. He starts replicating crimes from previously solved cases of the BAU. This episode has a bittersweet yet great climax and ended the season perfectly.

12. Demons

Demons

Demons

  • Season: 9
  • Episode: 24
  • IMDb: 7.9/10

A well-woven episode where the BAU continues the murder investigation in the state of Texas. There they learn that corruption could be the motive behind the murders and continue to dig deeper. They come across a corrupt organization with sinister motives. Meanwhile, Garcia is forced to take action to help a colleague and inadvertently puts herself in trouble.

13. Extreme Aggressor

Extreme Aggressor

Extreme Aggressor

  • Season: 1
  • Episode: 1
  • IMDb: 7.9/10

The very first episode of Criminal Minds is one of the best and simply cannot be missed. In Seattle, a woman goes missing, and later her dead body is found. However, her death later gets connected with three unsolved murders. The BAU spring into action and race to find the killer before another murder is committed.

14. Sex, Birth, Death

Sex, Birth, Death

Sex, Birth, Death

  • Season: 2
  • Episode: 11
  • IMDb: 8.7/10

In the Washington metropolitan area, several prostitutes are found murdered. During the investigation, Reid starts suspecting a high school student (played by Anton Yelchin) and feels that he could have committed the heinous crimes. Hotch meanwhile is pressured by a powerful political figure to keep the case low and to get the case closed. This episode shows the dirty side of politics and how power can be misused from providing justice.

15. Hit

Hit

Hit

  • Season: 7
  • Episode: 23
  • IMDb: 8.3/10

Another thrilling and tense episode. The BAU tries to find a gang of bank robbers who also happen to operate as serial killers in Washington D.C. The team attempts to diffuse the situation at the bank but matters take for the worse when one of their own is taken, hostage.

16. Jones

Jones

Jones

  • Season: 2
  • Episode: 18
  • IMDb: 8.4/10

A serial killer assumed to be dead for two years returns and resumes his crimes in New Orleans. The BAU finds a solitary clue, to begin with. They work with a New Orleans Police Department Detective to decipher the clue and find the killer.

17. Conflicted

Conflicted

Conflicted

  • Season: 4
  • Episode: 20
  • IMDb: 8.6/10

This episode throws some light on difficult situations that crime units face while sending out teams to solve cases. Two college students are sexually assaulted and suffocated fatally while vacationing in Texas. The BAU is forced to rethink sending two-person teams after an unexpected turn in the investigation.

18. Hamelin

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

  • Season: 14
  • Episode: 12
  • IMDb: 7.6/10

This episode is an unexpected revenge story where a man attempts to take revenge against those who wronged him by kidnapping their children and torturing them. Three children in Iowa are abducted on the same night. Surveillance cameras in a park reveal that the children freely entered their captor’s van. Armed with this evidence, the BAU attempt to profile this kidnapper who the children likely knew. A kidnapper with dark motives.

19. 300

300

300

  • Season: 14
  • Episode: 1
  • IMDb: 8.6/10

A decade after taking down a cult leader Benjamin Cyrus, the cult returns under a new leader who has married one of Cyrus’ wives and is back for revenge. The new cult leader, Benjamin Davis Merna was also known as The Strangler and killed 299 people. He intends to make Spencer Reid his 300th victim. Members of the cult begin infiltrating the BAU to try and take them down. At the same time, Reid and Penelope Garcia are captured by the cult. This episode has a lot of stress and emotional turmoil which is too much to handle.

20. Hashtag

Hashtag

Hashtag

  • Season: 10
  • Episode: 7
  • IMDb: 7.6/10

In Bethesda, Maryland, an online celebrity is found dead. The BAU attempts to profile a serial killer who uses social media to find his victims. The team tries to track the killer through his MO. This episode shows the dangerous and bad side of social media and how it can wreak havoc and chaos in people’s lives if not used properly.

21. And In The End

And In The End

And In The End

  • Season: 15
  • Episode: 10
  • IMDb: 7.6/10

Reid ends up in the hospital due to an injury to his brain caused by a standoff. This episode is filled with thrills, keeps you engaged, and also gives a satisfying conclusion to every story arc and the series as a whole. A couple of team members retire and Reid eventually recovers.

22. Ghost

Ghost

Ghost

  • Season: 15
  • Episode: 5
  • IMDb: 7.5/10

A sniper who the BAU hunted down fifteen years prior returns and kills several people in Illinois. They start assessing the killings and track down the killer but two of them get kidnapped which changes the course of the case completely.

23. JJ

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

  • Season: 6
  • Episode: 2
  • IMDb: 8.2/10

A teenage girl from Maryland goes missing and the BAU is forced to deal with the girl’s overprotective parents. At the same time, they try to extract a confession from the prime suspects. However, the prime suspects pass the polygraph test despite being the last to see the girl alive. Meanwhile, JJ is offered a promotion that would take her to work in a different city. She struggles to choose between accepting the promotion and getting separated from her team or to stay and stick with her team.

24. The Pact

The Pact

The Pact

  • Season: 8
  • Episode: 2
  • IMDb: 7.5/10

Two murders have been committed, one in San Diego and the other in Los Angeles. The BAU begins investigating and starts to suspect that the two murders could be connected and committed by the same people. The murders have been committed within hours of each other which leads the BAU to suspect two killers who are working with each other and are killing criminals who were released.

25. Doubt

Doubt

Doubt

  • Season: 3
  • Episode: 1
  • IMDb: 7.8/10

Three women are killed by stabbing in a college in Arizona. The BAU suspects a security guard on campus and takes him into custody. However, another murder takes place on the campus despite the prime suspect being in custody. This causes the BAU to question their profiling skills.

26. The Bunker

The Bunker

The Bunker

  • Season: 13
  • Episode: 6
  • IMDb: 8.1/10

A chef from Richmond and more citizens from both Richmond and Culpeper go missing. The BAU sets out to connect these abductions and find out the kidnapper’s motive.

27. The Capilanos

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

  • Season: 13
  • Episode: 17
  • IMDb: 8/10

In Oklahoma, a man is stabbed and killed in his home. His seven-year-old son witnesses the killing and says that the killer was dressed as a clown. The BAU then further investigates the area when reports of a clown terrorizing the area come to light. At the same time, they try to find out if the child is saying the truth or not.

28. Anonymous

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

The 30 Best Criminal Minds Episodes of All Time To Watch Now

  • Season: 10
  • Episode: 12
  • IMDb: 7.5/10

Three people in Florida are shot dead. The BAU starts profiling a person who reports the crimes before actually committing them. They try to find him before he kills more people.

29. The Job

The Job

The Job

  • Season: 11
  • Episode: 1
  • IMDb: 7.5/10

Two men are found dead with distinctive masks painted on their faces. The BAU tries to profile a skilled hitman who is targeting former clients.

30. Pariahville

Pariahville

Pariahville

  • Season: 11
  • Episode: 6
  • IMDb: 7.4/10

A registered sex offender is killed in her own home in Florida. The BAU is faced with the overwhelming task of questioning over two thousand people in the community made for offenders who have no violent history.

These episodes of Criminal Minds are some of the best to watch. Viewers will greatly enjoy watching them and crime and mystery lovers will definitely love them. Happy Watching!

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link

Northern District of Iowa US Attorney's Office collects over $14000000 in civil and criminal actions in 2020 – KCRG

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) – U.S. Attorney Peter E. Deegan, Jr. announced this week that the Northern District of Iowa collected $14,652,603.88 in civil and criminal actions in Fiscal Year 2020.

Of this amount, $13,388,019.63 was collected in civil actions and $1,264,584.25 was collected in criminal actions.

The Justice Department collected more than $15.9 billion in civil and criminal actions in fiscal year 2020 (which included the time period between October 1, 2019 through September 30, 2020). The $15,988,516,670 in collections represents more than five times the approximately $3.2 billion appropriated budget for the 94 U.S. Attorneys’ offices and the main litigating divisions of the Justice Department combined in that same period, according to a statement from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

The total includes all monies collected as a result of Justice Department-led enforcement actions and negotiated civil settlements. It includes more than $13.5 billion in payments made directly to the Justice Department, and more than $2.4 billion in indirect payments made to other federal agencies, states and other designated recipients.

“Collecting money on behalf of taxpayers and crime victims is a vital part of the U.S. Attorney’s Office mission,” said U.S. Attorney Peter E. Deegan, Jr. in the statement. “Each year, these collections far exceed the total amount of our office’s budget and result from the hard work of many individuals in our office.”

The U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, along with the department’s litigating divisions, are responsible for enforcing and collecting civil and criminal debts owed to the U.S. and criminal debts owed to federal crime victims.

The law requires defendants to pay restitution to victims of certain federal crimes who have suffered a physical injury or financial loss. While restitution is paid to the victim, criminal fines and felony assessments are paid to the department’s Crime Victims’ Fund, which distributes the funds to state victim compensation and victim assistance programs.

The largest civil collections were from affirmative civil enforcement cases, in which the United States recovered government money lost to fraud or other misconduct or collected fines imposed on individuals and/or corporations for violations of federal health, safety, civil rights or environmental laws.

In addition, civil debts were collected on behalf of several federal agencies, including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Health and Human Services, Internal Revenue Service, Small Business Administration and Department of Education.

Copyright 2020 KCRG. All rights reserved.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Source link