Carrie Johnson http://iowapublicradio.org en Justice Dept. Declines To Step Into Dispute Between CIA And Senators http://iowapublicradio.org/post/justice-dept-declines-step-dispute-between-cia-and-senators The Justice Department has declined to bring criminal charges against anyone at the CIA or the Senate Intelligence Committee, in a dispute over access to sensitive materials on enhanced interrogations. The power struggle relates to a long-running Senate probe over the mistreatment of detainees after Sept. 11. Thu, 10 Jul 2014 20:02:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 43540 at http://iowapublicradio.org No Criminal Charges In Senate-CIA Spat, Justice Department Says http://iowapublicradio.org/post/no-criminal-charges-senate-cia-spat-justice-department-says The Justice Department has declined to bring criminal charges against anyone at the CIA or the Senate Intelligence Committee in a dispute over access to documents about the enhanced interrogation program the U.S. deployed against detainees after the attacks of Sept. Thu, 10 Jul 2014 18:59:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 43529 at http://iowapublicradio.org No Criminal Charges In Senate-CIA Spat, Justice Department Says In Oslo, Attorney General Warns Syria May Be A Cradle Of Terrorism http://iowapublicradio.org/post/oslo-attorney-general-warns-syria-may-be-cradle-terrorism In a speech in Oslo, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder urged European partners to do more to find and disrupt plans of would-be terrorists who head to Syria — and, once trained, might return to the West. Tue, 08 Jul 2014 20:13:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 43404 at http://iowapublicradio.org Case Against Benghazi Suspect Is Complex, Justice Department Says http://iowapublicradio.org/post/case-against-benghazi-suspect-complex-justice-department-says The Justice Department says its case against a man accused in the 2012 attacks on a U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, is unusually complex and involves "novel questions of fact and law."<p>In a Washington, D.C., federal courtroom Tuesday, Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael DiLorenzo said the government had already begun sharing sensitive documents with defense attorneys. But many of the hundreds of people interviewed by the FBI remain overseas, and many documents are either top secret or in Arabic, or both. Tue, 08 Jul 2014 18:27:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 43400 at http://iowapublicradio.org Case Against Benghazi Suspect Is Complex, Justice Department Says Benghazi Suspect Spends A Day In Court http://iowapublicradio.org/post/benghazi-suspect-spends-day-court Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>Well, now the latest on the Benghazi case - the man accused in the attack on the U.S. diplomatic post in Libya, which killed four Americans, appeared in federal court. At the end of a brief hearing, a judge ordered Ahmed Abu Khattala to remain in federal custody. And prosecutors outlined some new details about the violent events that night in September 2012, and of Khattala's alleged role in them. NPR justice correspondent Carrie Johnson was in the courtroom and she's here with us now to talk about the case. Wed, 02 Jul 2014 20:06:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 43129 at http://iowapublicradio.org Report Questions U.S. Policy On Overseas Drone Strikes http://iowapublicradio.org/post/report-questions-us-policy-overseas-drone-strikes U.S. Thu, 26 Jun 2014 04:03:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 42812 at http://iowapublicradio.org Report Questions U.S. Policy On Overseas Drone Strikes Murdered Voting Advocate's Brother Wants Protections Back http://iowapublicradio.org/post/murdered-voting-advocates-brother-wants-protections-back One year ago, the Supreme Court threw out a key section of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. The law gave the federal government a kind of veto power over voting arrangements in states with a history of discrimination. Now, without those protections, civil rights activists say many states are moving polling places and enacting laws that disproportionately hurt minorities.<p>This week, they're turning to Congress for help. Consider David Goodman, who stands on a patch of grass outside the U.S. Wed, 25 Jun 2014 09:04:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 42750 at http://iowapublicradio.org Murdered Voting Advocate's Brother Wants Protections Back In 'Drone Memo,' A Step Toward Transparency On Targeting Americans http://iowapublicradio.org/post/drone-memo-step-toward-transparency-targeting-americans On Monday, a federal court made public a long-secret memo that lays out the Obama administration's legal justification for killing an American citizen in a drone strike. The memo, which concerns the 2011 killing of Anwar Al-Awlaki, says that the man presented an imminent threat to the United States. Mon, 23 Jun 2014 20:07:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 42668 at http://iowapublicradio.org FBI Director Comey Looks Ahead To His Next Nine Years http://iowapublicradio.org/post/fbi-director-comey-looks-ahead-his-next-nine-years FBI Director Jim Comey brushed back a dark curtain last Thursday morning and emerged to greet his audience, <em>Tonight Show</em> style.<p>"I feel like a talk show host," Comey told a group of new recruits, the first hired on his watch since he joined the FBI nine months ago.<p>The FBI director serves for a decade, longer than the president who appointed him, and longer than any other member of the national security establishment. That tenure's designed to insulate the FBI from political influence. Mon, 09 Jun 2014 13:33:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 41916 at http://iowapublicradio.org FBI Director Comey Looks Ahead To His Next Nine Years Prison Rape Law A Decade Old, But Most States Not In Compliance http://iowapublicradio.org/post/prison-rape-law-decade-old-most-states-not-compliance The clock is ticking on a decade-long effort to prevent sexual violence inside American prisons. In a recent survey, the vast majority of states said they will try to comply with federal rules. But several others, led by Texas, have protested to the Justice Department.<p>Jan Lastocy served 15 months in a Michigan prison for attempted embezzlement — her first brush with the law. Fri, 06 Jun 2014 21:11:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 41851 at http://iowapublicradio.org Prison Rape Law A Decade Old, But Most States Not In Compliance One Year Later, Snowden Still Evades U.S. Charges http://iowapublicradio.org/post/one-year-later-snowden-still-evades-us-charges Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish. A year ago today, one of the country's most sensitive national security programs was dragged out of the shadows. U.S. government had managed to keep the massive phone surveillance program a secret for more than a decade after 9/11. And then former NSA contractor Edward Snowden began to share with reporters documents he had taken from the agency. Snowden went on the run, ending up in Russia where he's found temporary asylum. In a moment, the impact of his revelations on the tech industry. Thu, 05 Jun 2014 20:16:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 41788 at http://iowapublicradio.org House Vote Aims To Derail DOJ Processing Of Clemency Petitions http://iowapublicradio.org/post/house-vote-aims-derail-doj-processing-clemency-petitions The House of Representatives has voted to prohibit the Justice Department from hiring more attorneys to deal with thousands of backlogged clemency petitions in a bid to block one of the Obama administration's top criminal justice priorities.<p>In a vote Thursday evening, House lawmakers blessed the fiscal year 2015 spending bill for the departments of Commerce, Justice and State. Fri, 30 May 2014 20:47:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 41496 at http://iowapublicradio.org A Year On, What's Changed (And What Hasn't) On Drone Oversight http://iowapublicradio.org/post/year-whats-changed-and-what-hasnt-drone-oversight Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>The ability to monitor remotely is one hallmark of the post 9/11 world. Another is the ability to kill remotely. It's what the drone has made possible. But now the practice known as targeted killing may become harder to veil in secrecy. NPR's Carrie Johnson reports.<p>CARRIE JOHNSON, BYLINE: One year ago in that speech at the National Defense University, President Obama defended his use of drones as legal and effective. Fri, 23 May 2014 22:04:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 41146 at http://iowapublicradio.org New DOJ Policy Urges Agents To Videotape Interrogations http://iowapublicradio.org/post/new-doj-policy-calls-videotaping-questioning-suspects Senior Justice Department officials have quietly notified U.S. attorneys and federal agents that they're establishing "a presumption" that agents will electronically record statements made by individuals in their custody.<p>In a memo obtained by NPR, Deputy Attorney General Jim Cole strongly encourages agents to videotape suspects in custody before they appear in front of a judge or magistrate on federal charges. The memo says FBI special agents in charge of field offices or U.S. Wed, 21 May 2014 21:15:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 41011 at http://iowapublicradio.org New DOJ Policy Urges Agents To Videotape Interrogations A Narrow High Court Win For Prayer Before Government Meetings http://iowapublicradio.org/post/narrow-high-court-win-prayer-government-meetings The Supreme Court ruled 5 to 4 that the government can use Christian prayers to start town meetings, so long as legislators don't discriminate against non-Christians. It's a new chapter in the long-running fight over prayer in public places and on public occasions. NPR's Carrie Johnson explains what happened in the town of Greece, New York. Mon, 05 May 2014 20:02:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 40177 at http://iowapublicradio.org FBI Director: Radicalization Of Westerners In Syria Is Of Great Concern http://iowapublicradio.org/post/fbi-director-radicalization-westerners-syria-great-concern FBI Director James Comey says the flow of Western fighters into Syria — and the prospect they'll return home radicalized — represents one of his biggest day-to-day concerns.<p>In an interview with reporters in Washington, Comey says the situation in Syria is "getting worse," with a couple of dozen more Americans heading overseas in recent months, beyond the 60 or 70 individuals who've already ventured to the Middle East to take part in a civil war inflected with al-Qaida influences. He says the FBI has evidence that Americans in Syria are presently recruiting other U.S. Fri, 02 May 2014 20:56:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 40074 at http://iowapublicradio.org FBI Director: Radicalization Of Westerners In Syria Is Of Great Concern Lawyers Use High Court Petition To Highlight Prosecutorial Misconduct http://iowapublicradio.org/post/lawyers-use-high-court-petition-highlight-prosecutorial-misconduct Lawyers for a computer support technician convicted of possessing ricin to use as a weapon are asking the Supreme Court on Thursday to hear his appeal, as a way to send a message about widespread prosecutorial misconduct.<p>The technician, Kenneth R. Olsen, says the Justice Department's failure to disclose an investigation that uncovered persistent misdeeds by a forensic expert who testified at his 2003 trial robbed him of a strong defense and violated his Fifth Amendment due-process rights. The forensic scientist was later fired "for incompetence and gross misconduct," the petition states. Thu, 24 Apr 2014 15:07:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 39634 at http://iowapublicradio.org Justice Dept. Opens Door To Freedom For Some Nonviolent Offenders http://iowapublicradio.org/post/justice-dept-opens-door-freedom-some-nonviolent-offenders Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>The Justice Department wants to grant an early release to thousands of nonviolent drug offenders in crowded federal prisons and they've unveiled a plan to do it. Inmates will receive notice starting next week that they may be eligible to apply. That has government lawyers gearing up for a huge amount of work. Wed, 23 Apr 2014 20:09:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 39591 at http://iowapublicradio.org Longtime D.C. Lawyer Is White House's Next Top Counsel http://iowapublicradio.org/post/longtime-dc-lawyer-white-houses-next-top-counsel Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>President Obama is getting a new lawyer. Longtime Washington attorney Neil Eggleston will be the next White House counsel. The news comes just in time for midterm elections that could deliver the Senate to Republicans, and launch a new wave of oversight investigations.<p>NPR's Carrie Johnson reports Eggleston will have to muster all of his legal and political skills.<p>CARRIE JOHNSON, BYLINE: Pick any Washington scandal over the last 30 years and odds are, Neil Eggleston's been there. Tue, 22 Apr 2014 20:06:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 39529 at http://iowapublicradio.org Justice's 'Peacemaker' Unit Focuses On Transgender Rights http://iowapublicradio.org/post/justices-peacemaker-unit-focuses-transgender-rights A groundbreaking survey reports that <a href="http://transequality.org/PDFs/Executive_Summary.pdf" target="_blank">nearly 2 out of 3 transgender people</a> say they've been victims of physical assault. Most of those crimes are never reported to police. Wed, 16 Apr 2014 21:05:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 39231 at http://iowapublicradio.org Justice's 'Peacemaker' Unit Focuses On Transgender Rights Welcome To Voting Rights Boot Camp http://iowapublicradio.org/post/welcome-voting-rights-boot-camp Election season is getting underway in states all over the country, and voting rights advocates worry some of those places may move to disenfranchise minorities by exploiting a Supreme Court ruling.<p>That ruling last June blew up a system that had forced states with a history of discrimination to win federal approval before making election changes.<p>Now, legal groups are responding by training a new generation of activists to sue. Mon, 07 Apr 2014 07:24:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 38711 at http://iowapublicradio.org Welcome To Voting Rights Boot Camp Unanimous Jury Convicts Al-Qaida Propagandist In Manhattan http://iowapublicradio.org/post/unanimous-jury-convicts-al-qaida-propagandist-manhattan Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Robert Siegel.<p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>And I'm Audie Cornish.<p>Today, in New York City, just blocks from where World Trade towers stood, a jury convicted Osama bin Laden's son-in-law of conspiring to kill Americans. Sulaiman Abu Ghaith was a chief propagandist for al-Qaida. He was seen in videos with bin Laden immediately after the 9/11 attacks. Wed, 26 Mar 2014 21:38:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 38179 at http://iowapublicradio.org Karl R. Thompson Tapped To Lead Key Justice Department Unit http://iowapublicradio.org/post/karl-r-thompson-tapped-lead-key-justice-department-unit Karl R. Thompson has been named to lead the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel, an under-the-radar but critically important unit that approves executive branch legal arguments on armed drones, surveillance and other national security issues.<p>Thompson has been advising Attorney General Eric Holder on civil litigation and Supreme Court issues since 2013. But he worked for nearly four years in the Office of Legal Counsel earlier in the Obama administration. Tue, 25 Mar 2014 15:53:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 38086 at http://iowapublicradio.org Prosecutor David O'Neil To Head Justice's Criminal Division http://iowapublicradio.org/post/prosecutor-david-oneil-head-justices-criminal-division Longtime prosecutor David O'Neil will become the acting head of the criminal division at the Justice Department, a position that puts him in charge of a vast portfolio ranging from financial fraud investigations to public corruption and kleptocracy among foreign leaders.<p>O'Neil had most recently worked as chief of staff to the Deputy U.S. Attorney General, focusing on oversight of criminal cases and white collar fraud investigations as well as the fallout from cascading leaks by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. Fri, 21 Mar 2014 20:06:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 37917 at http://iowapublicradio.org Prosecutor David O'Neil To Head Justice's Criminal Division Senators Want Watchdog To Investigate Federal Prosecutorial Misconduct http://iowapublicradio.org/post/senators-want-watchdog-investigate-federal-prosecutorial-misconduct A <a href="http://www.pogo.org/our-work/reports/2014/hundreds-of-justice-attorneys-violated-standards.html">new report</a> from the Project on Government Oversight documents 650 ethics infractions including recklessness and misconduct by Justice Department lawyers over the past decade or so.<p>Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee and Montana Democratic Sen. Jon Tester cited those findings to introduce legislation Thursday that would require an independent watchdog to investigate those breaches. Thu, 13 Mar 2014 21:25:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 37539 at http://iowapublicradio.org Holder Steps Forward For Shorter Drug Sentences http://iowapublicradio.org/post/holder-steps-forward-shorter-drug-sentences Attorney General Eric Holder is before the U.S. Sentencing Commission to support changes in sentencing for drug offenses, which could shave time off prison terms and reduce federal prison populations. Thu, 13 Mar 2014 20:16:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 37521 at http://iowapublicradio.org Feinstein: CIA Tampered With Senate Panel's Work http://iowapublicradio.org/post/feinstein-cia-tampered-senate-panels-work Senator Dianne Feinstein has accused the CIA of interfering with efforts by Congress to oversee the agency. Feinstein said the CIA had removed documents from computers used by her committee's staff. Wed, 12 Mar 2014 10:12:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 37432 at http://iowapublicradio.org On Senate Floor, Rift Opens Between Lawmakers And CIA http://iowapublicradio.org/post/senate-floor-rift-opens-between-lawmakers-and-cia Transcript <p>MELISSA BLOCK, HOST: <p>This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Melissa Block.<p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>I'm Robert Siegel.<p>In Washington today, a remarkable dispute between the CIA and the lawmakers who oversee its operations. Tue, 11 Mar 2014 20:12:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 37401 at http://iowapublicradio.org Holder Speaks Out On Snowden, Drone Policy, Softening Sentences http://iowapublicradio.org/post/holder-speaks-out-snowden-drone-policy-softening-sentences Virtually any time a major event ripples across Washington, the Justice Department is positioned near the center of it.<p>From the disappearance of a Malaysian airliner that carried three Americans on board to the fate of voting rights for millions of people, the attorney general has an enormous portfolio. Tue, 11 Mar 2014 07:27:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 37360 at http://iowapublicradio.org Holder Speaks Out On Snowden, Drone Policy, Softening Sentences Rights Advocates See 'Access To Justice' Gap In U.S. http://iowapublicradio.org/post/rights-advocates-see-access-justice-gap-us Too many poor people in the U.S. lack access to lawyers when they confront major life challenges, including eviction, deportation, custody battles and domestic violence, according to a new report by advocates at Columbia Law School's Human Rights Clinic.<p>Risa Kaufman, acting co-director of the clinic, is one of dozens of lawyers traveling to Geneva, Switzerland, this week to talk with a U.N. Human Rights Committee examining how the U.S. complies with an international covenant on civil and political rights. Mon, 10 Mar 2014 04:08:00 +0000 Carrie Johnson 37299 at http://iowapublicradio.org