Federal agencies

Lawyer: Russian developer's staffer also at Trump Tower meet

July 18, 2017
 Associated Press
A representative of the Russian developer who partnered with President Donald Trump to bring the Miss Universe pageant to Moscow was the eighth person at a Trump Tower meeting arranged by Donald Trump Jr. during the campaign, a lawyer for the developer said Tuesday.
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Trump tests legal limits by delaying dozens of Obama's rules

July 13, 2017
 Bloomberg News
It typically takes years for presidents to kill federal regulations they dislike, but Donald Trump has found a shortcut: He’s just putting them on long-term hold.
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Sessions said to target opioid care in crackdown on fraud

July 12, 2017
 Bloomberg News
Attorney General Jeff Sessions is poised to announce a major law enforcement action this week targeting health-care fraud, focusing on opioid treatment programs exploiting Obamacare insurance plans, according to two people familiar with the matter.
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FBI nominee Wray pledges the `impartial pursuit of justice'

July 12, 2017
 Bloomberg News
Christopher Wray pledged “the impartial pursuit of justice” if confirmed as FBI director, as senators focused on his ability to pursue investigations independently against the backdrop of revelations about a meeting the president’s son held with a Russian lawyer during last year’s campaign.
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Trump Jr. releases emails on Russian lawyer contacts

July 11, 2017
 Associated Press
Donald Trump Jr. eagerly accepted help from what was described to him as a Russian government effort to aid his father’s campaign with damaging information about Hillary Clinton, according to emails he released publicly on Tuesday.
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Feds probe Indianapolis police shooting of black driver

July 11, 2017
 Associated Press
Federal investigators are going to review last month’s fatal shooting of unarmed black driver Aaron Bailey by Indianapolis police officers.
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Court vacates union representation, citing unclear deciding vote

June 21, 2017
Olivia Covington
The regional director of the National Labor Relations Board erroneously counted a ballot in favor of union representation of a northern Indiana company and impacted the outcome of an election to determine whether the union would represent the company, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals held Tuesday.
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Trump administration calls for overhaul of Wall Street rules

June 13, 2017
 Bloomberg News
The Trump administration laid out its highly anticipated plan for overhauling bank rules, calling on the government to ease, though not eliminate, many of the strictures that were imposed on Wall Street after the financial crisis.
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McKinney grad named to rural affairs USDA post

June 13, 2017
 Associated Press
An Indiana native and graduate of Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law has been named to a U.S. Department of Agriculture post overseeing rural issues. U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced Monday that Anne Hazlett will lead the USDA's rural development agencies.
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No bond for woman accused of leaking top-secret documents

June 9, 2017
 Associated Press
A federal judge in Augusta, Georgia, ordered a young woman charged with leaking classified U.S. documents to remain jailed until her trial after prosecutors argued she might possess more stolen government secrets.
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Comey's release of Trump memo to newspaper: Was it legal?

June 9, 2017
 Associated Press
When former FBI Director James Comey revealed Thursday that he orchestrated a disclosure of damaging details about his conversations with President Donald Trump, he demonstrated his savvy use of media and his skills as a Washington operator. He also kicked up a hornet's nest of questions about the legal and ethical implications of the move.
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Labor secretary defends merging anti-discrimination agencies

June 7, 2017
 Associated Press
Cutting and merging two agencies that investigate workplace discrimination won't reduce the government's enforcement power, Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta said Wednesday. But Democrats pointed to what they say is President Donald Trump's broader effort to roll back decades of civil rights protections.
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US contractor arrested after leak of Russia hacking report

June 6, 2017
 Associated Press
A federal contractor has been arrested following the leak of a classified intelligence report that suggests Russian hackers attacked at least one U.S. voting software supplier days before last year's presidential election.
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Bosma Enterprises files lawsuit over VA contracting changes

May 25, 2017
 Associated Press, Indianapolis Business Journal
Indianapolis-based not-for-profit Bosma Enterprises and other advocacy groups for the blind on Wednesday sued the Department of Veterans Affairs in federal court, alleging the agency ignored a long-standing law when it changed contracting rules that have been used for decades to give jobs to the visually impaired.
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Justice Department: School bullying persists, sex assaults up

May 16, 2017
 Associated Press
One in every 5 middle and high school students has complained of being bullied at school and the number of reports of sexual assault on college campuses has more than tripled over the past decade, according to a federal study released Tuesday.
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Indy HeartBeat targets youth violence with $1M federal grant

May 16, 2017
 Associated Press
A new program targeting youth violence and public safety in Indianapolis is set to launch with help from a $1 million grant from the U.S. Justice Department.
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Trump launches commission to investigate voter fraud

May 12, 2017
 Associated Press
President Donald Trump signed an executive order Thursday launching a commission to review alleged voter fraud and voter suppression, building upon his unsubstantiated claims that millions of people voted illegally in the 2016 election.
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Trump: Comey better hope there are no ‘tapes’ of talks

May 12, 2017
 Associated Press
President Donald Trump, in a warning to his fired FBI director, said Friday that James Comey had better hope there are no “tapes” of their conversations. Trump’s tweet came the morning after he asserted Comey had told him three times that he wasn’t under FBI investigation.
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ACLU slams, prosecutors welcome Sessions' call for tougher charges

May 12, 2017
 Associated Press
The American Civil Liberties Union says Attorney General Jeff Sessions is "repeating a failed experiment" by encouraging prosecutors to pursue tougher charges against most suspects.
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Appeals court won't reconsider net neutrality ruling

May 1, 2017
 Associated Press
A federal appeals court said Monday it won't reconsider its ruling to uphold the government's "net neutrality" rules that require internet providers to treat all online traffic equally.
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FCC chief lays out attack on 'net neutrality' rules

April 26, 2017
 Associated Press
The head of the country's telecommunications regulator says there will be a vote in May on ditching Obama-era "net neutrality" rules that keep telecoms from favoring some sites and apps.
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Lawsuit alleges SEC investigation, financial cover-up at Celadon

April 20, 2017
Indianapolis Business Journal, Susan Orr
A Celadon Group Inc. investor has filed a lawsuit alleging that the Indianapolis-based trucking company is misleading shareholders about its financial status and covering up a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into the company.
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Sessions: Ferguson emblem of tense relationship with police

March 31, 2017
 Associated Press
Ferguson, Missouri, has become "an emblem of the tense relationship" between law enforcement and those it serves, especially minority communities, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Friday during a visit to St. Louis.
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Lawsuit seeks data over searches of electronics at US border

March 28, 2017
 Associated Press
A group of First Amendment attorneys sued the Trump administration on Monday over access to data showing how often U.S. citizens and visitors had their electronic devices searched and the contents catalogued at American border crossings.
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SCOTUS takes securities-fraud clash involving Indiana pensions

March 27, 2017
 Bloomberg News
The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to use a case stemming from a New York City contract fraud to clarify investors’ ability to sue companies for omitting information from shareholder reports. Investors led by the Indiana Public Retirement System urged the Supreme Court not to take up the dispute.
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  4. Mr. Levin says that the BMV engaged in misconduct--that the BMV (or, rather, someone in the BMV) knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged fees but did nothing to correct the situation. Such misconduct, whether engaged in by one individual or by a group, is called theft (defined as knowingly or intentionally exerting unauthorized control over the property of another person with the intent to deprive the other person of the property's value or use). Theft is a crime in Indiana (as it still is in most of the civilized world). One wonders, then, why there have been no criminal prosecutions of BMV officials for this theft? Government misconduct doesn't occur in a vacuum. An individual who works for or oversees a government agency is responsible for the misconduct. In this instance, somebody (or somebodies) with the BMV, at some time, knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged. What's more, this person (or these people), even after having the error of their ways pointed out to them, did nothing to fix the problem. Instead, the overcharges continued. Thus, the taxpayers of Indiana are also on the hook for the millions of dollars in attorneys fees (for both sides; the BMV didn't see fit to avail itself of the services of a lawyer employed by the state government) that had to be spent in order to finally convince the BMV that stealing money from Indiana motorists was a bad thing. Given that the BMV official(s) responsible for this crime continued their misconduct, covered it up, and never did anything until the agency reached an agreeable settlement, it seems the statute of limitations for prosecuting these folks has not yet run. I hope our Attorney General is paying attention to this fiasco and is seriously considering prosecution. Indiana, the state that works . . . for thieves.

  5. I'm glad that attorney Carl Hayes, who represented the BMV in this case, is able to say that his client "is pleased to have resolved the issue". Everyone makes mistakes, even bureaucratic behemoths like Indiana's BMV. So to some extent we need to be forgiving of such mistakes. But when those mistakes are going to cost Indiana taxpayers millions of dollars to rectify (because neither plaintiff's counsel nor Mr. Hayes gave freely of their services, and the BMV, being a state-funded agency, relies on taxpayer dollars to pay these attorneys their fees), the agency doesn't have a right to feel "pleased to have resolved the issue". One is left wondering why the BMV feels so pleased with this resolution? The magnitude of the agency's overcharges might suggest to some that, perhaps, these errors were more than mere oversight. Could this be why the agency is so "pleased" with this resolution? Will Indiana motorists ever be assured that the culture of incompetence (if not worse) that the BMV seems to have fostered is no longer the status quo? Or will even more "overcharges" and lawsuits result? It's fairly obvious who is really "pleased to have resolved the issue", and it's not Indiana's taxpayers who are on the hook for the legal fees generated in these cases.

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