Crime experts are expecting Montreal’s gang wars to heat up this year.
Leonardo Rizzuto and Stefano Sollecito walked out of the Montreal courthouse on Monday, February 19 as free men. That this caused surprise among organized crime observers is understandable. That it caused extreme frustration among law enforcement is probable, given that this is yet another case against Quebec-based organized crime figures botched by the cops and the Crown.
The two alleged high profile Mafia leaders had their charges of conspiracy to traffic cocaine and gangsterism tossed out of court after Quebec Superior Court Judge Eric Downs ruled that key evidence was inadmissible. That evidence stemmed from wiretaps planted by police in 2015 in the office of lawyer Loris Cavaliere—wiretaps that the judge said violated the sanctity of solicitor-client privilege. The accused argued that investigators didn’t put in enough safeguards to guarantee the privacy of Cavaliere’s other client. The judge sided with them and threw the wiretap evidence out, leaving the Crown with little else to prove Rizzuto and Sollecito’s guilt.
Full Read – https://www.vice.com/en_ca/article/evmq3p/a-mafia-acquittal-is-the-latest-l-for-quebec-law-enforcement
Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán’s family members are refusing to cough up attorney’s fees unless they hear the kingpin himself order the payment, it was revealed in court Thursday.
Guzmán – in what would have been his first public words since his extradition in Jan. 2017– stood shakily, clutching a piece of paper in his hand, before prosecutor Andrea Goldbarg interjected and said she was worried he’d use the opportunity to pass secret messages.
“He desires to speak to the court directly,” defense attorney A. Eduardo Balarezo said in Brooklyn federal court Thursday, as his client was overheard telling his interpreter in Spanish, “I am sick for all the situation.”
“He wants his family to know they should pay his attorney,” Balarezo continued. “Obviously he wants me to take my fees, and sometimes people need to hear that directly from the horse’s mouth.”
Read Full Article – https://nypost.com/2018/02/15/family-wont-pay-el-chapos-lawyer-without-kingpins-sign-off/
A New York judge has delayed for almost a month the hearing of Mexican drug kingpin Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman, one of the world’s most notorious criminals.
Guzman’s attorney Eduardo Balarezo had wanted Judge Brian Cogan to push back the hearing to April. But Cogan of his own accord already delayed it from January 19 to February 15.
Balarezo said he needs more time to address the 290,000 pages of documents and thousands of other documents in the case.
The 60-year-old kingpin, accused of running one of the world’s biggest drug empires, has been held in solitary confinement since being extradited on in January 2017.
Guzman — who twice escaped from prison in Mexico — is accused of running the Sinaloa cartel, one of the world’s biggest drug empires.
They’ve fled violence, poverty, and terrorism – and made the often perilous journey across the Mediterranean from Africa and the Middle East. But for the more than 100,000 migrants who’ve arrived in Italy so far this year, the life that awaits them can be almost as dangerous as the one they left behind.
This is particularly true for economic migrants, who don’t have the same legal status as refugees, and aren’t given the same work permits or financial aid to help them survive. Barred from the legal workforce, and with few financial options, many are targeted by criminal gangs — supported by the Italian mafia — and thrust into a life of sex slavery and drug trafficking.
That’s what VICE News discovered after visiting Ballarò, a small market area, and traditional mafia stronghold near Palermo, Sicily, where the infamous Cosa Nostra mafia syndicate continues to wield power.
Full Read – https://news.vice.com/story/the-mafia-and-a-nigerian-gang-are-targeting-refugees-in-sicily
BY MALLORY SHELBOURNE – 09/26/17 12:13 PM EDT
Civil rights groups on Tuesday filed a complaint with the Department of Homeland Security, demanding a review of allegations by pregnant women who were detained by Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
“The policy violations and inhumane treatment addressed in the complaint are of especially great concern given the Trump administration’s executive orders directing ICE to dramatically expand immigration enforcement actions and increase the number of individuals subject to immigration detention,” the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said in a statement.
The administrative complaint includes accounts from multiple women who were detained by ICE while pregnant, including one woman who said she was unable to obtain medical attention after telling officials she was pregnant and bleeding.
Read Full – http://thehill.com/homenews/administration/352472-civil-rights-groups-slam-ice-over-detentions-of-pregnant-women