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Crimes / Music22.04.2015

The Man Who Broke the Music Business

Witt’s reporting focuses on Kali, the leader of RNS, and Dell Glover, an employee of a CD pressing plant in Kings Mountain, North Carolina. Recounting 15 years of IRC chat-room history, Witt chronicles the major label leaks and hacks of piracy collectives the Scene, which initially shared single mp3s, and Rabid Neurosis, a.k.a. RNS, which was the first of these groups to traffic in full, pre-release albums.


Crimes / Heists28.10.2014

Art of the Steal: On the Trail of World’s Most Ingenious Thief

Gerald Daniel Blanchard is a Canadian criminal described by police as one of the most sophisticated criminal masterminds the country has ever seen, who orchestrated never seen before high tech crimes crossing 3 continents.



How Gangs Took Over Prisons

“How can you tell what type of cellphone an inmate uses,” he asked, “based on what’s in his cell?” He let me think for about two seconds before cheerily giving me the answer: you examine the bar of soap on the prisoner’s sink. The safest place for an inmate to store anything is in his rectum, and to keep the orifice supple and sized for the (contraband) phone, inmates have been known to whittle their bars of soap and tuck them away as a placeholder while their phones are in use. So a short and stubby bar means a durable old dumbphone; broad and flat means a BlackBerry or an iPhone.


Crimes / Drugs19.08.2014

Kid Cannabis: The Wild Rise and Violent Fall of a Teenage Weed Kingpin

Nate Norman was hanging out with his buddy Topher Clark when he came up with The Idea. The two friends were sitting around Nate's house, a dumpy little place near the cemetery, and both of them were extremely stoned. And yet The Idea had more legs than your typical pot-inspired idea. It did not involve a second Twinkie inside the first one. It did not involve genetically modifying the bugs so their blood would not be blood but windshield-wiper fluid. It was, in fact, based on a practical application of global economic theory. That, and cheap weed in Canada.


Crimes / Politics / Riots17.07.2014

S21 – Video-Schocker vom Wasserwerfer

Fünf Prozesstage lang haben die beiden angeklagten Polizisten ihre Sicht des Polizeieinsatzes am Schwarzen Donnerstag dargestellt. Am sechsten Tag genügten zehn Minuten auf Video, und alle Aussagen waren Makulatur. Im Gerichtssaal herrschte Entsetzen über das Vorgehen der Wasserwerfer.


Crimes / Drugs / Technology19.04.2014

Shropshire criminals ‘using unmanned drones and infrared cameras to find illegal cannabis farms’ – and then steal from the growers

Criminals in Shropshire have reportedly started using unmanned drones fitted with heat-seeking cameras to steal from and extort illegal cannabis farms. Apparently taking a leaf out of the book of the police themselves, violent robbers said that the growers make perfect targets because the victims will not report incidents to the authorities.


Crimes / Strange29.01.2014

The Mark – The F.B.I. needs informants, but what happens when they go too far?

Grimm started working as an F.B.I. agent in 1995. His “most notable case,” as he described it to Van Susteren, was called Wooden Nickel, and it began in 2002. Working out of a corner office in the World Financial Center, Grimm adopted the persona of Michael Garibaldi—nicknamed Mikey Suits, for his impeccable dress—a Mob-connected stock and currency trader who ran a hedge fund called Centurion Consulting. The main investigation concerned a company that was suspected of illegally manipulating currency markets. Some months into the case, the F.B.I. added a further target: Albert Santoro, a thirty-one-year-old lawyer from Queens, who had recently come into contact with a man named Josef von Habsburg, one of the Bureau’s more colorful—and complicated—paid informants.


Business / Crimes / Politics23.01.2014

Highlights of Offshore Leaks so far

The month of April, 2013, marked the beginning of one of the biggest financial leaks in history. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists had just released the first stories from a global collaborative project into the world of offshore money. The Tax Justice Network, an advocacy group, claims that a large part of the world’s wealth is tied up in the secret area of offshore. For over two years, journalists from more than 50 countries have worked together to shed light on this issue.


Arts / Business / Crimes / Heists18.11.2013

What Is the Value of Stolen Art?

There is a black market for stolen artworks, and according to the head of the F.B.I.'s art-crime team, Bonnie Magness-Gardiner, their prices are inevitably a small fraction of the works’ legitimate value. Some estimates put the average at 7 to 10 percent of perceived open-market value. A painting doesn’t need to be sold at auction to hold value. Even if it stays forever on the black market, it can be used as a kind of promissory note in a weapons or drug deal. Career criminals also believe they can extort a ransom from insurers or use the stolen work as a bargaining chip. A prison sentence, for instance, might be reduced in some jurisdictions in exchange for a criminal’s help in retrieving a missing Monet. In effect, an unframed canvas, easier to move across borders than its equivalent in cash or drugs, acts as a high-value and extremely pretty bank note.


Crimes / Wikipedia13.11.2013

300 million yen robbery

The 300 million yen robbery (三億円事件 San Oku En Jiken?), also known as the 300 million yen affair or incident, was the single largest heist in Japanese history at the time. It occurred on the morning of December 10, 1968 in Tokyo, Japan. It remains unsolved.


Crimes / Drugs02.11.2013

Albania: hundreds fall ill after harvesting cannabis

Doctors in Albania say hundreds of people have fallen ill from harvesting cannabis in a lawless region that for years has been out of bounds to police, local media reported on Friday. "In the last two months about seven to eight people arrive in the emergency ward each day and many more have come earlier with disorders from hashish," Hysni Lluka, a Gjirokastër doctor, told Top Channel television. Some 2,000 people, including poor Roma who have set up a camp near Lazarat, have been working for months in the cannabis fields, where producers pay €8 per 10 kilos of processed drug. The illegal practice has flourished in Lazarat over two decades of turbulent transition in Albania since the end of hardline communist rule. Lazarat has become a byword for lawlessness in Albania, with cannabis growers brazen enough to shoot at police officers who venture near their fields. Aerial pictures suggest some 60 hectares have been cultivated in Lazarat, with 300,000 cannabis plants, capable of yielding 500 tonnes or half the total cannabis production in Albania.


Crimes / Drugs / Politics / Strange01.11.2013

Kanada – Der Bürgermeister und das Crack-Video

Er ist einer der umstrittensten Politiker in Kanada: Seit Rob Ford vor gut drei Jahren zum Bürgermeister von Toronto gewählt wurde, sorgt er für einen Skandal nach dem anderen. Er polarisiert mit rechten Parolen, liefert sich Prügeleien mit Journalisten und pflegt dubiose Freunde im Drogenmilieu. Im Frühjahr war er in ein handfesten Skandal um ein Video verwickelt, das ihn angeblich beim Rauchen einer Crack-Pfeife zeigte. Der schwergewichtige Bürgermeister aber trotzte allen Gegnern. Bis zuletzt regierte er die viertgrößte Stadt in Nordamerika mit harter Hand und schüttelte alle Vorwürfe ab. Auch weil außer zwei Journalisten lange niemand das angeblich kompromittierende Drogen-Video gesehen hatte. Selbst eine über Crowdfunding finanzierte Belohnung von 200.000 Dollar förderte die Aufnahmen nicht zu Tage. Viele Kanadier hatten den Skandal fast vergessen. Am Donnerstag dann der Paukenschlag: Auf einer Pressekonferenz berichtete Torontos Polizeichef Bill Blair völlig überraschend vom Fund des Drogen-Videos.


Crimes / Wikipedia01.11.2013

H. H. Holmes

Herman Webster Mudgett, better known under the alias of Dr. Henry Howard Holmes, was one of the first documented American serial killers in the modern sense of the term. In Chicago at the time of the 1893 World's Fair, Holmes opened a hotel which he had designed and built for himself specifically with murder in mind (the upper two floors contained his personal office and a maze of over 100 windowless rooms with doorways opening to brick walls, oddly-angled hallways, stairways to nowhere, doors openable only from the outside, and a host of other strange and labyrinthine constructions). While he confessed to 27 murders, of which four were confirmed, his actual body count could be as high as 200. He took an unknown number of his victims from the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, which was less than two miles away, to his "World's Fair" hotel.


Berlin / Business / Crimes / Drugs / Howtos01.11.2013

Zucht und Ordnung: Vom Schmuggel zur Schattenindustrie

Es hat ein Wirtschaftswandel stattgefunden: weg von globalen Handelsstrukturen hin zu einer Regionalisierung, wie bei Gemüse aus dem Bioladen. Das gilt für die gesamte Bundesrepublik. Auch das Bundeskriminalamt beschreibt in seinem Lagebericht 2012 den »umfangreichen Cannabisanbau«, den es inzwischen in Deutschland gibt. Wurden 2010 noch 394 Plantagen von der Polizei entdeckt, waren es 2012 bereits 809. In den allermeisten Fällen handelt es sich um sogenannte Indoor-Plantagen, also Cannabis, das nicht unter freiem Himmel wächst, sondern in Kellern, Fabrikhallen oder eben in Berliner WGs.


Crimes / Sports24.10.2013

Mike Tyson – My Life As a Young Thug

When we started running, the huge crowd in the park opened up like Moses parting the Red Sea. It was a good thing they did, because, boom, one of my friends opened fire. Everybody scrambled when they heard the gun. I realized that some of the Puma Boys had taken cover between the parked cars in the street. I had the M1 rifle, and I turned around quickly to see this big guy with his pistol pointed toward me. “What the fuck are you doing here?” he said to me. It was my older brother, Rodney. “Get the fuck out of here.” I just kept walking and left the park and went home. I was 10 years old.


Conspiracy Theories / Crimes / Documentary / Politics22.10.2013

Dirty Wars

Investigative journalist Jeremy Scahill travels to Afghanistan, Yemen, Somalia, and other countries where the United States has taken military action. In Afghanistan, he investigates a night raid conducted by the Joint Special Operations Command. He also investigates the U.S. assassination of Anwar al-Awlaki. The documentary also shares testimonies from CIA agents, Special Forces operators, military generals, and warlords backed by the United States. Dirty Wars premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival on January 18, 2013. The film competed in the U.S. documentary section, and it won the Cinematography award.

Berlin / Crimes / Documentary18.10.2013

Verbrecher aus TV-Doku sitzt wieder im Knast

In der Arte-Dokumentation „Gangsterläufer“ wurde die kriminelle Karriere des Intensivtäters aus Berlin-Neukölln bereits umfassend dokumentiert. Aus eben dieser Rolle scheint Yehya el-A. nicht ausbrechen zu können. Seit Dienstag sitzt der 23-Jährige aus Neukölln, mal wieder, hinter Gittern.


Conspiracy Theories / Crimes / Media / Politics04.09.2013

Syrians In Ghouta Claim Saudi-Supplied Rebels Behind Chemical Attack

As the machinery for a U.S.-led military intervention in Syria gathers pace following last week’s chemical weapons attack, the U.S. and its allies may be targeting the wrong culprit. Interviews with people in Damascus and Ghouta, a suburb of the Syrian capital, where the humanitarian agency Doctors Without Borders said at least 355 people had died last week from what it believed to be a neurotoxic agent, appear to indicate as much. However, from numerous interviews with doctors, Ghouta residents, rebel fighters and their families, a different picture emerges. Many believe that certain rebels received chemical weapons via the Saudi intelligence chief, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, and were responsible for carrying out the dealing gas attack. “My son came to me two weeks ago asking what I thought the weapons were that he had been asked to carry,” said Abu Abdel-Moneim, the father of a rebel fighting to unseat Assad, who lives in Ghouta. Abdel-Moneim said his son and 12 other rebels were killed inside of a tunnel used to store weapons provided by a Saudi militant, known as Abu Ayesha, who was leading a fighting battalion. The father described the weapons as having a “tube-like structure” while others were like a “huge gas bottle.” Ghouta townspeople said the rebels were using mosques and private houses to sleep while storing their weapons in tunnels. “They didn’t tell us what these arms were or how to use them,” complained a female fighter named ‘K.’ “We didn’t know they were chemical weapons. We never imagined they were chemical weapons.”


Business / Crimes / Drugs / Politics / Society13.08.2013

Merchants of Meth: How Big Pharma Keeps the Cooks in Business

Meth users called it the "shake- and-bake" or "one-pot" method, and its key feature was to greatly simplify the way meth is synthesized from pseudoephedrine, a decongestant found in cold and allergy medicines like Claritin D and Sudafed. Shake and bake did two things. It took a toxic and volatile process that had once been the province of people with Breaking Bad-style knowledge of chemistry and put it in the bedrooms and kitchens of meth users in rural America. It also produced the most potent methamphetamine anywhere. Since 2007, the number of clandestine meth sites discovered by police has increased 63 percent nationwide. In Kentucky, the number of labs has more than tripled. The Bluegrass State regularly joins its neighbors Missouri, Tennessee, and Indiana as the top four states for annual meth lab discoveries. As law enforcement agencies scramble to clean up and dispose of toxic labs, prosecute cooks, and find foster homes for their children, they are waging two battles: one against destitute, strung-out addicts, the other against some of the world's wealthiest and most politically connected drug manufacturers. In the past several years, lawmakers in 25 states have sought to make pseudoephedrine—the one irreplaceable ingredient in a shake-and-bake lab—a prescription drug. In all but two—Oregon and Mississippi—they have failed as the industry, which sells an estimated $605 million worth of pseudoephedrine-based drugs a year, has deployed all-star lobbying teams and campaign-trail tactics such as robocalls and advertising blitzes.


Crimes / Movies / Wikipedia29.07.2013

Pink Panthers

Pink Panthers is the name given by Interpol to an international jewel thief network, named after The Pink Panther series of crime comedy films, which is responsible for some of the most audacious thefts in criminal history. They are responsible for what have been termed some of the most glamorous heists ever, and one criminologist even described their crimes as "artistry".They have targeted several countries and continents, and include Japan's most successful robbery ever amongst their thefts. Some law enforcement agencies suspect that the group is responsible for over US$500 million in bold robberies in Dubai, Switzerland, Japan, France, Liechenstein, Germany, Luxembourg, Spain and Monaco. Law enforcement suspect their involvement in the robbery of the jewellery store Harry Winston in Paris, on December 9, 2008. The thieves escaped with more than €80 million worth of jewellery.


Berlin / Crimes / Documentary / Movies / TV25.06.2013


Bei uns hier in Neukölln gibt's so ein Spiel, das spielen wir jedes Wochenende mit 30, 40 Jungs. Einer ist der Fänger und die anderen laufen weg. Und wenn er einen gefangen hat, darf er ihm 30 Sekunden lang Todesschläge geben und der darf sich nicht mal wehren. Danach ist er auch Fänger und darf seine Wut an den anderen auslassen. Einer bleibt am Ende übrig, der beste. Der, den sie nicht gekriegt haben. Und das ist dann der Gangsterläufer.


Business / Crimes23.06.2013

Fake fingers help ex-yakuza lead lawful life

“The first joint of a little finger can be sliced easily,” he said. “You tie the bottom of it with thread tightly and put your body weight on a kitchen knife. But the second joint was tougher than I thought.” Luckily, there was a brother to hand, who could stand on the knife and slice through the knuckle. The loss of the tip of the pinkie on his right hand was his own fault — he got drunk and started throwing furniture around in a bar. Unfortunately for him, the bar belonged to a friend of his boss. Out came the kitchen knife again, and off came the top of his little finger. But his fourth amputation bore a whole different significance.


Arts / Crimes / Wikipedia19.06.2013

Stéphane Breitwieser

Stéphane Breitwieser is a Frenchman notorious for his art thefts between 1995 and 2001. He admitted to stealing 239 artworks and other exhibits, worth an estimated US$1.4 billion (£960m), from 172 museums while travelling around Europe and working as a waiter, an average of one theft every 15 days. The Guardian called him "arguably the world's most consistent art thief."

snowden interview

Conspiracy Theories / Crimes / Internet / Interviews / Politics / Society / Videos10.06.2013

Edward Snowden: the whistleblower behind the NSA surveillance revelations

The individual responsible for one of the most significant leaks in US political history is Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old former technical assistant for the CIA and current employee of the defence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton. Snowden has been working at the National Security Agency for the last four years as an employee of various outside contractors, including Booz Allen and Dell.