from H.A. Goodman:
by Michael Snyder, The Economic Collapse Blog:
When Donald Trump gets hit, he always hits back even harder. So when the deep state decided to conduct a legal witch hunt against President Trump and his family, they should have expected that Trump would return the favor. In recent days, there have been all sorts of rumblings about sealed indictments, pending arrests and a “deep state takedown”. Many believe that we are on the verge of seeing some of the most prominent Democrats in the entire nation being arrested and thrown in prison. We shall see how all of this plays out, but in this article I am going to focus on the things that have been confirmed so far.
First of all, let’s talk about the documents that are going to be released on Friday. According to Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton, the State Department is scheduled to release 2,800 government documents which were found on Anthony Weiner’s laptop…
.@StateDept will publish releasable portions of 2800 government docs that @FBI found on Anthony Weiner laptop tomorrow (Dec. 29th). Again, thanks to @JudicialWatch lawsuits. Will @RealDonaldTrump DOJ finally take action on Clinton/Abedin misdeeds?
Remember, this is just a portion of the documents that were found on his laptop, and the really juicy stuff is almost certainly not going to be found in these government docs.
There are persistent rumors that the really juicy stuff on his laptop contains evidence of sexual misconduct by top Democrats that would far surpass anything that has come out about members of Congress so far. We are potentially talking about the type of stuff that could send people to prison for life, and we need to keep demanding for that material to be released to the public as soon as possible. I understand that there are ongoing investigations that cannot be compromised, but there is no excuse for things to drag on for this long.
But without a doubt, there could potentially be some gamechanging material in the docs that we will get to see tomorrow. The following is what Judicial Watch previously had to say about these documents…
“This is a disturbing development. Our experience with Abedin’s emails suggest these Weiner laptop documents will include classified and other sensitive materials,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “When will the Justice Department do a serious investigation of Hillary Clinton’s and Huma Abedin’s obvious violations of law?”
Judicial Watch previously released 20 productions of documents in this case that show examples of mishandling of classified information and instances of pay to play between the Clinton State Department and the Clinton Foundation. Also, at least 627 emails were not part of the 55,000 pages of emails that Clinton turned over, and further contradict a statement by Clinton that, “as far as she knew,” all of her government emails had been turned over to department.
Based on just the evidence that we have so far, Hillary Clinton should clearly be going to prison, and let us hope that this latest development will move things in the right direction over at the Department of Justice.
Meanwhile, one of the other pieces of the puzzle that has been confirmed is a very curious executive order that was just issued by President Trump. The following comes from Zero Hedge…
The Trump Administration quietly issued an Executive Order (EO) last Thursday which allows for the freezing of US-housed assets belonging to foreign individuals or entities deemed “serious human rights abusers,” along with government officials and executives of foreign corporations (current or former) found to have engaged in corruption – which includes the misappropriation of state assets, the expropriation of private assets for personal gain, and corruption related to government contracts or the extraction of natural resources.
Furthermore, anyone in the United States who aids or participates in said corruption or human rights abuses by foreign parties is subject to frozen assets – along with any U.S. corporation who employs foreigners deemed to have engaged in corruption on behalf of the company.
Many believe that this executive order is directly related to ongoing investigations into corruption within the Democratic Party.
More specifically, the wording of this executive order definitely sounds like it could have been written with Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Tony Podesta and Uranium One in mind. Here is more from Zero Hedge…
Now consider that if reports from The Hill are accurate – an FBI mole deep within the Russian uranium industry uncovered evidence that “Russian nuclear officials had routed millions of dollars to the U.S. designed to benefit former President Bill Clinton’s charitable foundation during the time Secretary of State Hillary Clinton served on a government body that provided a favorable decision to Moscow (the Uranium One approval)” – a deal which would eventually grant the Kremlin control over 20 percent of America’s uranium supply right around the time Bill Clinton also collected $500,000 for a Moscow speech, as detailed by author Peter Schweitzer’s book Clinton Cash and the New York Times in 2015.
A very dangerous game is being played behind the scenes, and I believe that Trump is going to come out the big winner in the end.
Read More @ TheEconomicCollapseBlog.com
by Kenneth Whittle, Disobedient Media:
On December 21, 2017, the U.S. Department of Treasury announced new sanctions against human rights abusers and corrupt actors across the globe.
The new executive order, signed by President Donald Trump, was built on the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act passed by Congress last year. The order imposes sanctions on thirteen human rights abusers and corrupt actors, as well as 39 affiliated individuals and entities.
The first individual named, former Gambian President Yahya Jammeh, is accused of serious human rights abuses and corruption, including the creation of a terror and assassination squad known as the “Junglers”. Jammeh used the Junglers to kill “…a local religious leader, journalists, members of the political opposition, and former members of the government.”
Jammeh is also responsible for the unlawful withdrawal of nearly $50 million in state funds. In sanctioning Jammeh, the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) further announced that it would be sanctioningthe following business entities associated with Jammeh: “Africada Airways, Kanilai Group International, Kanilai Worni Family Farms Ltd, Royal Africa Capital Holding Ltd, Africada Financial Service & Bureau de Change Ltd, Africada Micro-Finance Ltd, Africada Insurance Company, Kora Media Corporation Ltd, Atlantic Pelican Company Ltd, Palm Grove Africa Dev’t Corp. Ltd, Patriot Insurance Brokers Co. Ltd, and Royal Africa Securities Brokerage Co Ltd.”
A second individual listed in the latest sanctions is Roberto Jose Rivas Reyes. During his time as President of Nicaragua’s Supreme Electoral Council, Rivas received a government salary of $60,000 per year, yet was able to amass a large personal fortune, multiple properties, private jets, luxury vehicles, and a yacht. Rivas is accused of perpetrating electoral fraud, and has been described by a Nicaraguan Comptroller General as “above the law”, as investigations into Rivas have been blocked by the Nicaraguan government.
An Israeli billionaire, Dan Gertler, has also been sanctioned, as a result of his corrupt business deals in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), which has earned him hundreds of millions of dollars. Gertler is also a close friend of DRC President Joseph Kabila. Because of their relationship, Gertler was able to get President Kabila to require some multinational companies to go through Gertler in order to do business with the DRC. This would result in a loss of revenue of over $1.36 billion in two years for the DRC.
In sanctioning Gertler, the OFAC further announced that it would be sanctioning the following business entities associated with Gertler: “Pieter Albert Deboutte, Fleurette Properties Limited, Fleurette Holdings Netherlands B.V., Gertler Family Foundation, Oil of DR Congo SPRL, Jarvis Congo SARL, International Diamond Industries, D.G.D. Investments Ltd., D.G.I. Israel Ltd, Proglan Capital Ltd, Emaxon Finance International Inc., Africa Horizons Investment Limited, Caprikat Limited, Foxwhelp Limited, Caprikat and Foxwhelp SARL, Lora Enterprises Limited, Zuppa Holdings Limited, Orama Properties Ltd, DGI Mining Ltd, and Rozaro Development Limited.”
Read More @ DisobedientMedia.com
Huma Abedin’s first cousin, Omar Amanat, 44 and an associate were convicted of Fraud on Tuesday for deceiving shareholders in their tech company by falsely inflating revenues. They face a 10 years in prison at his scheduled April 25th sentencing.
Notably, the jury was “not permitted to hear a recorded telephone conversation in which Amanat tells a government cooperator that his first cousin is Huma Abedin, a former aide to last year’s Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton,” according to the Associated Press. Amanat and his partners deceived shareholders of “Kit Digital” between 2010 and 2012, falsely inflating revenues to hide losses. During the trial Amanat introduced fabricated emails as evidence.
Ironically, court documents also reveal Amanat tried to destroy evidence before the trial – asking his brother over email to “delete all of my emails from the yahoo site,” over concern that they might be subpoenaed at some point.
“The evidence of their criminal schemes was so overwhelming that Amanat actually tried to fool the jury by introducing fake emails into the record as exculpatory ‘evidence’ in this trial,” said Acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney Joon H Kim, adding “Unfortunately for Tuzman and Amanat, the jury saw through their tangled web of lies, convicting them on all counts.”
Amanat was ordered immediately jailed by US District Court Judge Paul G. Gardephe after U.S. Attorney Andrea Griswold argued he was a flight risk, due to the “substantial” sentence likely to be handed down.
Another first cousin of Huma Abedin Irfan Amanat, was charged on December 5 in Manhattan Federal Court in the KIT Digital case. He was busted by The SEC in a separate case for tricking the Nasdaq exchange into giving him $50,000 with a computer program he wrote.
And as Luke Rosiak of the Daily Caller reports, in 2013 Omar Amanet partnered with businessman Vladislav Doronin, known as The Russian Donald Trump, to buy a luxury resort for $358 million.
An in-depth 2014 profile in Fortune magazine says Doronin is “referred to in the British press as the ‘Russian Donald Trump.’” Dorinin was born in what was then Leningrad before moving to Geneva to work for Marc Rich, a financier who fled the U.S. after being indicted for fraud and trading with Iran, and was pardoned by former President Bill Clinton on Clinton’s last day in office.
“Clinton’s motive for pardoning Rich on his last day in office was questioned,” USA Today reports, “because Rich’s ex-wife, Denise Rich, was a wealthy Democratic donor who made a $450,000 donation to Clinton’s presidential library foundation and more than $100,000 to Hillary Clinton’s Senate campaign.” The pardon was investigated by the FBI in 2001.
After Doronin and Amanat parted ways, Doronin began calling Amanat a “serial swindler,” who forged signatures on million dollar contracts. As the Daily Caller also reports, Amanat was permanently barred by FINRA in 2008 “from associating with any FINRA member firm in any capacity” for repeatedly failing to disclose legal judgments and an SEC investigation.
In 2002, he sold a company called Tradescape for $100 million to E*Trade, which charged that Amanat hid that before it was sold, the company had “no money! Zero. Zilch. Nada… We can’t pay any of our bills,” as one employee wrote in a contemporaneous email, according to the Forbes piece.
Read More @ ZeroHedge.com
Luke Rosiak of The Daily Caller pointed out a mysterious twist in the case of Pakistani national and long-time DNC IT contractor, Imran Awan – who was arrested in July at Dulles Airport while trying to flee the country after having wired nearly $300,000 to Pakistan.
Awan’s court date on four counts related to bank fraud, which had already been reschedule twice, has disappeared from the docket altogether:
Which begs the question – did Imran Awan cut a deal with Federal prosecutors?
Of note – Imran’s wife, Hina Alvi – who had fled to Pakistan in March with the Awan children, struck a deal with federal prosecutors in September to return to the U.S. and face charges. One wonders why Alvi would willingly leave the relative security of her family in Pakistan to face arraignment in the United States?
To briefly recap, our report from last week, the Awan family – which was employed by quite a number of House Democrats, had full access to highly sensitive Congressional computer systems, both on-site and remotely from Pakistan, with which they are suspected of committing a variety of crimes – including brokering classified information to hostile foreign governments.
Read More @ ZeroHedge.com
by Peter Maass, The Intercept:
IN LATE JANUARY, George Papadopoulos did what a lot of Americans do when FBI agents ask for a few minutes of their time — he agreed to talk. It’s a decision he likely regrets, because in October the former adviser to President Donald Trump’s election campaign pleaded guilty to making false statements to the FBI. He is now a key figure in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election.
The court files in the Papadopoulos case say little about the conditions of his chat with the two FBI agents. We don’t know how long it lasted, where in Chicago it took place, what its tenor was, or whether Papadopoulos was aware the agents probably knew the answers to most questions they asked. One thing, though, is clear: Papadopoulos engaged in a form of self-harming behavior that defense lawyers always advise against — saying “yes” when a pair of friendly FBI agents knock on your door and ask to chat.
His interrogation was recorded but the transcript has not been released, so it’s impossible to know precisely what the FBI agents might have said that gave Papadopoulos the impression it would be in his interests to talk and to lie. But in another high-profile case, involving former NSA contractor Reality Winner, the government released a transcript of the interrogation. It provides a verbatim example — and a rare example — of how FBI agents ingratiate themselves with unsuspecting suspects and intimidate them into saying things that bring doom upon them.
The interrogations of Winner and Papadopoulos were what the FBI likes to call “noncustodial,” so they were not read their Miranda rights — because, the FBI claims, they were not arrested or detained at the time of the interrogation. (Winner’s lawyers have argued in court filings that she was effectively detained and should have been Mirandized.) By avoiding the obligation to inform suspects of their right to a lawyer and the right to stay silent, the FBI makes it easier to get Americans to say things — whether truths or lies — that will be used against them. The Fifth Amendment protects people from testifying against themselves, of course, and the Sixth Amendment provides the right to legal counsel, but law enforcement authorities get around these constitutional protections by contending that some interrogations are noncustodial. The result is that suspects are enticed into talking before they realize the jeopardy they face and the rights they possess.
“Because warnings are only required prior to custodial interrogation, one way to minimize the impact of Miranda on investigations is to try to conduct interrogations whenever possible in noncustodial settings (such as the suspect’s home or on the street, without arrest-like restraints),” notes an article in Police Magazine, which caters to the law enforcement community. The article bore the headline “How to talk to suspects without Mirandizing.”
There’s a problem with that kind of advice — the presence of law enforcement officers can turn homes and sidewalks into coercive environments, making the distinction between “custodial” and “noncustodial” a murky if not artificial one. The Winner transcript, which was released in September, offers an unusual look inside one of these home interrogations. In its early we’re-on-your-side phase, the interrogation pivoted on Winner’s love of dogs and her CrossFit workouts.
ABOUT A DOZEN FBI agents arrived at Winner’s rented house in Augusta, Georgia, on the afternoon of June 3, as she returned from grocery shopping.
“The reason we’re here today is that we have a search warrant for your house,” one of the agents told her, according to the transcript.
“OK,” she replied.
“All right,” Special Agent Justin Garrick said. “Do you know what this might be about?”
“I have no idea,” Winner replied.
“OK, this is about possible mishandling of classified information.”
“Oh my goodness,” Winner responded.
The agents soft-pedalled the reason for their visit. It can be relatively innocuous, in the eyes of the law, to mishandle classified information — it might not even be a crime, if the information is not too serious and the reasons for mishandling it not too nefarious. But this wasn’t, in the eyes of the FBI, an innocuous case. Garrick, who asked most of the questions, is a specialist in espionage and counterintelligence, according to court documents. The government’s charging documents make clear that at the time of her interrogation, Winner was suspected of what the government was treating (probably cynically) as a very serious offense that jeopardized national security. The interrogation ended with Winner being arrested and charged under the draconian 1917 Espionage Act.
The agents did not mention the Espionage Act while they talked with her. And they did not hint at the possible prison-for-a-decade consequences of what they suspected she had done: mail a classified NSA document to a media outlet. On June 5, the day Winner’s arrest was belatedly announced, The Intercept published a story based on a leaked NSA document detailing Russian attempts at cyberattacks against the U.S. election infrastructure. Though The Intercept has no knowledge of who sent the document, several publications reported that Winner mailed it to The Intercept, which has published a statement about its role in the case.
Her interrogation on June 3 began innocently enough. The first few minutes revolved around making her house safe for agents who would search it, which meant making sure her dog wouldn’t bite anyone, and making sure her guns (she had three) were secured. The conversation then took a decidedly casual turn.
“How long have you had your dog?” Garrick asked.
“She’s actually a foster,” Winner replied. “I’m rehabilitating her so hopefully she can get adopted later on.”
“How old is she?”
“Oh, we don’t really know. She’s one of those.”
“Yeah,” Garrick said. “One of my dogs was a rescue and when I got him … I was the only guy who could touch him.” He later added, “If you can tell, we’re all dog people.”
Read More @ TheIntercept.com
by Anders Hagstrom, Daily Caller:
Hundreds of protesters raged against Swedish police Tuesday after the nation’s law enforcement warned women to “stay inside or walk in pairs” to avoid the slew of gang rapes that have plagued the country this fall.
Police issued the warning Sunday after a 17-year-old was gang raped early Saturday morning in Malmo, Sweden, by an unknown number of attackers, the Daily Mail reported Wednesday. The first of the series of rapes occurred on Nov. 4, followed by another just a week later. Malmo police have opened a preliminary investigation into the rape, and they have defended their comment, claiming their words are being taken out of context.
“It’s about common sense. We are not warning people not to be outside, but to think twice and maybe not walk alone late at night and instead go with others or take a taxi,” said Anders Nilsson, a Malmo police officer.
Despite their defense, however, Malmo police yielded to protesters Tuesday and retracted the statement.
Sweden’s rape rate is among the highest in the world. This summer, a Swedish music festival decided to cancel its 2018 event due to the spree of rapes that took place at the event. Attendees reported three rapes and 22 sexual assaults by the festival’s conclusion in early July, and the festival’s founder said he can no longer allow the festival to go on. (RELATED: Swedish Music Festival Solves Rape Problem By Banning All Men)
The country’s immigrant rape problem has also escalated as it has taken in more and more refugees from conflicts in the Middle East. Sweden has also shown great reluctance to deport refugees and foreigners who have been convicted of rape. Only 13 percent of foreigners registered as Swedish residents found guilty of raping children between 2010-2014 were sent home. Among those not registered as Swedish residents, only 40 percent of foreign child rapists are deported.
Read More @ DailyCaller.com
by Dr. Susan Berry, Breitbart:
According to the report, federal agents found the four whole human fetuses in December 2013 during a raid of a warehouse owned by Arthur Rathburn, a former body broker who has been accused of defrauding purchasers by sending them diseased body parts.
Rathburn has reportedly pleaded not guilty to the charge and faces a trial in January.
The fetuses appeared to have been in the second trimester of their mothers’ pregnancies and were reportedly submerged in a fluid that included human brain tissue.
How Rathburn acquired the fetuses and what he intended to do with them is unclear. Rathburn’s lawyers did not respond to requests for comment, and neither the indictment nor other documents made public in his case mention the fetuses.
In its caption of the photos of the fetuses, Reuters’ editors note the wire service “has pixelated this image; editors judged the original image to be disturbingly graphic.”
Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) – chairman of the House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives – was shown the photographs of the fetuses and reportedly “recoiled” when a Reuters reporter revealed them.
“This needs to be reviewed,” she said, adding that the discoveries draw further attention to the practices of those procuring human body parts.
Blackburn’s special House panel investigated the procurement of body parts of babies aborted in Planned Parenthood and other clinics throughout the country.
The U.S. Department of Justice has launched a formal investigation into Planned Parenthood over its alleged sale of the body parts of babies aborted in its clinics for a profit.
“The buying and selling of cadavers and other body parts — with the exception of organs used in transplants — is legal and virtually unregulated in America,” Reuters notes, adding:
But trading in fetal tissue violates U.S. law. In most states, including Michigan, public health authorities are not required to regularly inspect body broker facilities. As a result, it’s impossible to know whether body brokers who deal in adult donors are acquiring and profiting from fetuses.
“The actions depicted in these photos are an insult to human dignity,” said Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), who chairs the House Judiciary Committee.
Goodlatte told Reuters if individuals “violate federal laws and traffic in body parts of unborn children for monetary gain,” they should be “held accountable.”
Read More @ Breitbart.com
by Rachel Blevins, The Free Thought Project:
The mainstream media is praising the FBI after their agents targeted a “terrorist” who refused to go through with an attack they were attempting to set up.
It is no secret that agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation often look for and take advantage of vulnerable individuals on the internet by gaining their trust and convincing them to carry out attacks—but even in a case where the “terrorist” backed out of the attack, the mainstream media is still celebrating the FBI’s diligence in the War on Terror.
“FBI thwarts alleged plan to carry out terrorist attack in San Francisco on Christmas,” the Washington Post reported, claiming that the agency was able to prevent “a possible terrorist attack at San Francisco’s Pier 39 after arresting a man who told undercover agents he wanted to carry out an Islamic State-inspired suicide bombing at the popular tourist destination on Christmas Day.”
The New York Post joined in with the headline “FBI thwarts ISIS-inspired Christmas terror attack on San Francisco,” and the claim that the suspect was “former US Marine sharpshooter” Everitt Aaron Jameson, 26, who was discharged from the military for fraudulent enlistment, and now works as a tow truck driver.
The Department of Justice released a statement confirming that Jameson has been arrested for “attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization.” If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison and $250,000 in fines.
“According to court documents, Jameson had several online interactions with a confidential source in which he expressed support for the October 31, 2017, terrorist attack in New York City and offered his services for ‘the cause.’ In subsequent communications with an undercover agent, Jameson referred to his training in the U.S. military and noted he had been trained for combat and war. Jameson later met with another undercover agent whom he believed to be associated with the senior leadership of the foreign terrorist organization, ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, also known as ISIL). During his interactions with this undercover agent, Jameson offered to carry out violent acts and to provide financial support for the terrorist organization.”
Now, the question is—how did FBI agents find Jameson, and did he actually pose a threat of carrying out a terrorist attack?
The Los Angeles Times reported that Jameson began studying Islam one year ago, after he became “depressed and even suicidal over losing custody of his children.” However, his family insisted that he did not have violent tendencies, and had never mentioned anything about becoming involved with the Islamic State.
“He just ain’t no terrorist, no way,” Jameson’s father said. “He would never hurt people. Not ever. It’s just unbelievable. That’s not who he is.”
The criminal complaint filed against Jameson claimed that he first caught the agency’s attention when a “credible FBI Confidential Human Source” flagged his Facebook account as suspicious on Sept. 19, for “Liking” and “Loving” posts that were “pro-ISIS and pro-terrorism.”
“To provide an example of the types of posts Jameson was ‘Liking’ and ‘Loving’ during this time period, the CHS reported to the FBI that Jameson “loved” a post on November 29, 2017 that is an image of Santa Claus standing in New York with a box of dynamite. The text of the post reads, ‘ISIS post image of Santa with dynamite threatening attack on New York.’ The Propaganda poster shows Santa Claus standing on a roof next to a box of dynamite looking out over a crowd of shoppers with the words ‘We meet at Christmas in New York… soon.’ Under this post, Jameson selected the ‘Like’ option and then selected the “Heart” option to signify that he ‘Loved’ the post.”
Read More @ TheFreeThoughtProject.com
by Cristina Laila, The Gateway Pundit:
It was been a rough week and a half for the FBI and Obama holdovers. Deep State FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe is set to retire early next year after a barrage of attacks for his corruption.
McCabe’s retirement announcement comes on the heels of a major shake up at the FBI; Wray just removed Comey “confidant” and suspected leaker James Baker from his top post as general counsel.
Then President Trump blasted Andrew McCabe for his overt corruption and accused him of racing the clock to retire with full benefits with only 90 days to go.
Comey was rattled after POTUS slammed McCabe.
The pressure is mounting for McCabe’s pension to be pulled and rumors are flying that more FBI agents are going to be purged soon.
According to reporter Sharyl Attkisson, the exodus may not be over just yet.
“8 high ranking DOJ/FBI officials have been removed, reassigned or are rumored to be leaving incl. top agents who worked on 2 high-profile probes: Clinton mishandling of classified info, and Trump-Russia collusion investigation,”Attkisson tweeted on Tuesday.
The reporter did not elaborate on the rumbling, but with all that has occurred, it would not be surprising to see more top FBI officials leave.
Rep. Francis Rooney (R-FL) also told MSNBC there needs to be a purge at the FBI and DOJ.
Comey is obviously nervous. He sent out a late night tweet linking to a video of NBA player Lebron James saying he doesn’t lose sleep over games he loses. James goes on to say the most important thing is his family and losses are no big deal in the grand scheme of things.
Comey is probably losing sleep now after realizing that his Deep State operatives and ‘confidants’ are all being purged from the FBI.
Crooked cop Comey’s captioned the tweet, “For years in leadership talks I’ve used LeBron James as an example of the relentless pursuit of improvement. Now he offers another great example – in balance and perspective.”
For years in leadership talks I’ve used LeBron James as an example of the relentless pursuit of improvement. Now he offers another great example – in balance and perspective. https://t.co/ygqPwArVfl
— James Comey (@Comey) December 28, 2017
Read More @ TheGatewayPundit.com
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Federal agents discovered four preserved fetuses in the Detroit warehouse of a man who sold human body parts, confidential photographs reviewed by Reuters show.
The fetuses were found during a December 2013 raid of businessman Arthur Rathburn’s warehouse. The fetuses, which appear to have been in their second trimester, were submerged in a liquid that included human brain tissue.
FILE PHOTO: Arthur Rathburn is pictured at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S. in November 1988. REUTERS/Peter Yates/File Photo
Rathburn, a former body broker, is accused of defrauding customers by sending them diseased body parts. He has pleaded not guilty and his trial is set for January.
How Rathburn acquired the fetuses and what he intended to do with them is unclear. Rathburn’s lawyers did not respond to requests for comment, and neither the indictment nor other documents made public in his case mention the fetuses.
“This needs to be reviewed,” said U.S. Representative Marsha Blackburn, a Republican from Tennessee who recently chaired a special U.S. House committee on the use of fetal tissue.
Blackburn recoiled when a Reuters reporter showed her some of the photographs, taken by government officials involved in the raid.
In four of the photos, a crime scene investigator in a hazmat suit uses forceps to lift a different fetus from the brownish liquid. In three other photos, a marker that includes a government evidence identification number lies beside a fetus.
“The actions depicted in these photos are an insult to human dignity,” said U.S. Representative Bob Goodlatte, chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. A Republican from Virginia, Goodlatte said that if individuals “violate federal laws and traffic in body parts of unborn children for monetary gain,” they should be “held accountable.”