The Justice Department closed more than 70 percent of its Federal Bureau of Investigation whistleblower retaliation cases within one year of receiving them, says a recently released Jan. 23 Government Accountability Office report. The DOJ closed 44 of the 62 FBI whistleblower retaliation complaints within one year, took up to four years to close 15 complaints and took nearly 11 years to close the remaining three, the report says.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the Justice Department after seeking records related to the U.S. Air Marshals cellphone tracking system, says a Feb. 10 EFF statement.
The agencies responsible for protecting military technology have taken steps to strengthen oversight, but there are weaknesses that still need to be addressed, says a Feb. 10 Government Accountability Office report.
Inspectors general for several agencies to a House committee that they had trouble getting information from their respective agencies that they need to conduct investigations.
The Merit Systems Protection Board says the Justice Department violated its own procedures when it suspended two DOJ workers for withholding evidence during the corruption trial of former Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska). The two DOJ prosecutors, Joseph Bottini and James Goeke were accused by the department of recklessly, but not intentionally committing professional misconduct.
Timothy DeFoggi was previously convicted of engaging in a child exploitation enterprise, conspiracy to advertise and distribute child porn, and using a computer with intent to view such material.
The Justice Department is expected to update guidance Dec. 8, prohibiting federal law enforcement officials from profiling individuals based on national origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, and gender identity, in addition to race and ethnicity that was banned more than a decade ago.
Wireless provider Cricket Communications has agreed to pay a nearly $2.2 million fine after the Justice Department alleged that the wireless carrier overcharged federal law enforcement agencies for wiretaps. DOJ announced the fine Dec. 1.
The U.S. Marshals Service is using devices that mimic cellphone towers on airplanes to gather information from thousands of mobile phones on the ground, reports the Wall Street Journal in a Nov. 13 expose based on interviews with anonymous sources with close knowledge of the program.
For much of her career in government service, Miriam Nisbet has been on the cutting edge of the intersection of digital technology and the Freedom of Information Act. But more than 35 years after she began government service in 1978, Nisbet will leave her post as the government's top FOIA ombudsman at the end of November to take a break and pursue a career in the private sector.