The National Whistleblowers Center Press Room lists the latest press on whistleblower issues, NWC heroes, NWC staff, press releases on top issues, links to multimedia, and upcoming events.
NWC News Highlights
Detroit, Michigan. January 23, 2013. On January 15, 2013 U.S. District Court Judge Robert H. Cleland issued a key ruling in support of Justice Department whistleblower Richard G. Convertino in his longstanding Privacy Act lawsuit against the DOJ. The Court ordered the Detroit Free Press to produce all documents related to how the Justice Department smeared its former star prosecutor, Richard Convertino, after Convertino exposed serous flaws in the government's "war on terror."
Convertino, one of the Justice Department's most successful prosecutors, obtained the first guilty verdicts in a post-9/11 terrorism prosecution. However, instead of lauding the Justice Department's counterterrorism program, Convertino testified that it was fundamentally flawed and administered by incompetent and politically motivated officials. The Justice Department, led by officials appointed by former Attorney General John Ashcroft, struck back and leaked false and highly derogatory information about Convertino to the Detroit Free Press. The leak was designed to discredit Convertino before his peers and force his resignation from the Department.
Washington, D.C. December 27, 2012. The Washington Post published year-end articles that highlighted three ongoing projects of the National Whistleblower Center.
In an article published on December 26, "Top 10 stories in the federal workforce in 2012", The Washington Post cited the scandal involving FDA electronic spying on its own scientists who blew the whistle on agency misconduct. The Post ranked the FDA electronic spying scandal as the number 9 story that affected the federal workforce this past year. The NWC has been actively supporting the scientists who have sued the FDA for whistleblower retaliation and challenged the constitutionality of the FDA's secret monitoring of the scientists' personal and private emails. As revealed by the NWC and the whistleblower scientists, the FDA targeted the whistleblowers for electronic surveillance by installing secret spyware on their computers. The FDA captured confidential emails from the whistleblowers' personal and private email accounts (such as Yahoo and Gmail accounts) and the FDA stole the whistleblowers' confidential communications with their attorneys as well as communications with members of Congress, the Inspector General and others discussing the whistleblowers' allegations of serious wrongdoing by the agency.
Washington, D.C. November 29, 2012 - On November 5, 2012, the National
Whistleblower Center filed a briefing paper/amicus brief with the
Internal Revenue Service addressing key questions of law governing the
IRS Whistleblower program. The brief, linked here, addresses the issue
of "collected proceeds" under the IRS whistleblower law. The "collected
proceeds" issue impacts hundreds if not thousands of cases in which the
IRS must determine whether a whistleblower is entitled to a reward
based on monies obtained by the U.S. government related to tax
November 27, 2012
By Samuel Rubenfeld
President Barack Obama signed new whistleblower protections into law, the White House said Tuesday.
The law, known as the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act (pdf), expands protections for federal workers who blow the whistle on misconduct, fraud and illegality.
Former FBI Agent John Roberts profiled on 60 Minutes.
Recent Press Releases
Directive Lacks Due Process and Real Legal Protections
Washington, D.C. October 11, 2012 – Yesterday, the Obama Administration issued a Presidential Policy Directive designed to “protect” national security whistleblowers. The National Whistleblowers Center recognizes the Directive as a small step forward, but strongly criticizes it as failing to provide any real or substantive legal rights for national security employees.
Washington, D.C. September 27, 2012 — The National Whistleblowers Center and the No FEAR Coalition announce their support for the immediate passage of the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act (WPEA) for federal employee whistleblowers. The decision to support the Senate version (S. 743) of the WPEA came after the Senate removed a final poison pill from the bill.
UBS Bank Insider Celebrated for Exposing $20 Billion Tax Evasion Scheme
$104 Million Paid to the Whistleblower
Washington, D.C. September 11, 2012 – The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has awarded former UBS banker Bradley Birkenfeld a whistleblower reward of $104 Million for his contributions in providing the U.S. Government with insider information on UBS’ illegal offshore banking scheme. This is believed to be the largest reward ever given to an individual whistleblower in the United States and the first major reward issued under the IRS tax whistleblower law.
In a joint statement, Mr. Birkenfeld’s attorneys, Stephen M. Kohn and Dean A. Zerbe stated:
The IRS today sent 104 million messages to whistleblowers around the world – that there is now a safe and secure way to report tax fraud and that the IRS is now paying awards. The IRS also sent 104 million messages to banks around the world – stop enabling tax cheats or you will get caught.
Details to be Revealed Tomorrow at NWC Press Conference
Washington, D.C. September 10, 2012 – The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has issued a decision in the whistleblower case of former UBS banker Bradley C. Birkenfeld.
Mr. Birkenfeld's brother, Douglas Birkenfeld, and his attorneys, Stephen M. Kohn and Dean A. Zerbe, will make statements at a National Whistleblowers Center press conference tomorrow, September 11, 2012, at 10:00am ET. The press conference will be held in the Holeman Lounge of the National Press Club, 529 14th Street NW, Washington, DC.
Copies of each statement will be available at the start of the event. After the statements, Mr. Birkenfeld's attorneys will be available for questions.
The press conference will be streamed live here on www.whistleblowers.org. The live stream will be mirrored on www.whistleblowersradio.org and www.whistleblowersblog.org.
FBI Whistleblower Dr. Frederic Whitehurst on Larry King Live.