S. 372 repeals existing FBI protections and expands state secrets privilege
Washington, D.C. March 10, 2010. Prominent national security whistleblowers and advocacy groups issued a letter today urging the Senate to vote against the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2009 (S. 372) unless the dangerous national security whistleblower provisions are corrected. This bill, which is currently being “hotlined” for unanimous consent, repeals existing FBI protections and strengthens the state secrets privilege.
The letter, signed by national security whistleblowers and respected advocates for national security employees, explains in detail the deficiencies in the Senate bill that will harm national security by covering up intelligence failures and civil liberties abuses:
Washington, D.C. March 3, 2010. Nationally recognized FBI whistleblower Dr. Frederic Whitehurst issued a letter today strongly opposing the repeal of FBI whistleblower rights contained in the current Senate version of the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act (S. 372). This bill is currently being "hotlined" for unanimous consent.
Washington, D.C. February 17, 2010. Today, the National Whistleblowers Center released evidence regarding the case of UBS whistleblower Bradley Birkenfeld , which demonstrates his heroic efforts to expose tax fraud. Attached to the fact sheet prepared by the NWC are scanned original documents related to the illegal UBS tax scandal.
Washington, D.C. February 4, 2010. According to Time Magazine , German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaüble announced on Tuesday that the German government has agreed to buy a CD from an anonymous informant that contains the details of up to 1,500 people who are suspected of holding secret bank accounts in Switzerland and evading German taxes.
In statements released today by the National Whistleblowers Center, Director of Advocacy Lindsey M. Williams said, “Germany should be applauded for their efforts to combat banking secrecy that steals tax revenue from developed countries and hides development money from the world’s poorest countries.”
FBI Whistleblower Urges Strong Corrective Action
Washington, D.C. January 20, 2010. Today the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General released a report that confirms the allegations regarding an illegal FBI domestic surveillance program, which were reported on the front page of the Washington Post yesterday, January 19, 2010.
Attorneys for Bassem Youssef , the highly decorated Chief of the FBI's Communications Analysis Unit in the Counterterrorism Division, are requesting that Attorney General Eric Holder take strong corrective action to ensure that civil liberties are protected and that the FBI properly conduct counterterrorism investigations. According to a letter sent today by Mr. Stephen Kohn, the Executive Director of the National Whistleblower Center and one of Mr. Youssef's attorneys:
FBI Whistleblower Instrumental in Exposing Constitutional Violations That Threaten National Security
Washington, DC. January 19, 2010. In response to the front-page article appearing today in the Washington Post, the following statements were released by Stephen M. Kohn, attorney for Mr. Bassem Youssef (Chief of the FBI’s Communications Analysis Unit/Counterterrorism Division) and National Whistleblowers Center Executive Director:
“Since 2005, when he first learned of the abuses reported in today’s Washington Post, Mr. Youssef has attempted to ensure that the FBI complied with the law. Between 2006-08 he provided extensive testimony before the DOJ Office of Inspector General. In 2008 and 2009, his counsel provided three detailed letters to the Attorney General of the United States setting forth details on the misconduct committed within the FBI and urging that effective corrective actions be taken."
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Bradley Birkenfeld. In an open letter to President Obama, the groups request a presidential pardon for Mr. Birkenfeld, or commutation of his prison sentence to time served in order to "reverse the devastating impact Mr. Birkenfeld's case will have on international law enforcement efforts."
The National Whistleblowers Center, with support from public interest groups, is urging people to personally endorse the clemency campaign for Mr. Birkenfeld through their TAKE ACTION program.
Minersville, PA. January 8, 2010. At 2 pm today UBS whistleblower Bradley Birkenfeld surrendered to U.S. authorities and commenced serving a three-year and four-month sentence at the Schuylkill County Federal Correctional Institution in Minersville, Pennsylvania.
Stephen M. Kohn, the Executive Director of the National Whistleblower Center and one of Mr. Birkenfeld’s attorneys issued the following statement:
“An American tragedy. A disgraceful miscarriage of justice. An insult to every honest American who must work hard and pay their taxes. The imprisonment of Bradley Birkenfeld, the most important tax whistleblower in history, is shocking and unjustified. This decision is not only grossly unfair and personally harmful to Mr. Birkenfeld, it will also have a radical chilling effect on the willingness of other bankers to step forward and expose fraud. This is devastating to any efforts to expose the use of illegal offshore bank accounts by criminals who want to avoid taxes.”
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