Making Unique Observations in a Very Cluttered World

Friday, 19 February 2010

Eleven 2010 Games police officers removed for alleged misconduct One officer charged with shoplifting -

Reading - Eleven 2010 Games police officers removed for alleged misconduct
One officer charged with shoplifting -

Eleven officers with the 10,000-member Integrated Security Unit police force providing security for the 2010 Olympics have been ordered to return home because of allegations of misconduct, including one senior officer charged with shoplifting and two police officers under investigation by the Vancouver police.

Staff Sergeant Suzanne Denise Marie Martel from Ottawa was charged with a single charge of theft under $5,000 over an alleged shoplifting incident in a retail store in Burnaby while off-duty.

Martel, a 19-year veteran was part of the 2010 ISU detachment composed of municipal and RCMP and Canadian military officers brought into Vancouver from various parts of the country. Seven police officers and four Canadian Forces officers have been sent home. Martel is the only one to be criminally charged.

ISU spokesman Staff Sergeant Michel Coté said two other officers are under investigation by the Vancouver police department.

Coté said the other officers were sent back to their home detachments because of alleged misconduct. Those misconducts can range from not showing up for shifts on time to drunk and disorderly behaviour, according to Coté, but he could not confirm exactly why the officers were sent home.

Coté said he could not confirm whether the two incidents under investigation by the Vancouver police occurred on the cruise ship organizers have brought in to house the large security force. He denied that alcohol, which is allowed in the temporary officers' quarters, played a factor in the alleged incident under investigation by the VPD.

“There's lots of rumours and innuendos that's been going on in terms of life on the ship. I'd like to make it clear right now there have been allegations of sex trade workers brought on the ship. I can emphatically state today that is absolutely not true,” said Coté. “None of those incidents took place. It's disturbing to paint our security workforce with such a large brush.”

Coté said Canadian military and police officers are working 24/7 in difficult circumstances and living in very cramped quarters.

Security for the Games composes one of the largest budgets in putting on the Olympics. The federal government has committed just under $1 billion to provide security for the Games but has not guaranteed that number will not go up before the end of the two-week event.

Vancouver police spokeswoman Constable Jana McGuiness confirmed the investigation against the two officers.

“As the investigations are ongoing, there are no further details to release at this time,” she said in a statement.

The ISU has released information about two security breaches that happened on the first few days of the Games.

On Feb. 15, a suspicious item inside a bag that went through the x-ray machine was picked up by the owner who disappeared into the crowd. Coté said the item was suspicious but was not considered dangerous. By the time the screener alerted the supervisor who contacted the supervising ISU officer, the bag had left the screening area before a secondary hand search could be conducted.

Despite a sweep of the venue and bringing in extra personnel to search, neither the person nor the bag were located at the B.C. Place Stadium.

“Unfortunately the bag was gone. We regret that. It's totally unacceptable,” Coté said.

As a result of that incident, Coté said protocols and procedures have been changed so the police officer supervising the screening will take a more hands-on role if something suspicious is spotted by the screening machines.

Earlier this week, the RCMP confirmed a man carrying fake credentials was able to wander into the VIP area near where U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden was sitting during the Opening Ceremonies.

Read more -http://olympics.thestar.com/2010/article/768403--11-games-police-officers-removed-for-alleged-misconduct

64 Students safe after Canadian boat S.V. Concordia capsizes off Brazil - “Everybody is safe” -

Reading - 64 Students safe after Canadian boat S.V. Concordia capsizes off Brazil - “Everybody is safe” -

All 64 students and crew aboard a sailing ship that operates as a floating classroom for a Nova Scotia school are safe after a night in lifeboats off the coast of Brazil.

“Everybody is safe,” said a spokesman for the Brazilian Navy on Friday morning. Asked if anyone was sick or injured, he said, “Everybody is fine.”

The S.V. Concordia, a three-masted sailing ship, sank to the bottom of the Atlantic in “hard winds” and swelling waves, he said. “It has gone to the deep.”

The 48 students, eight teachers and eight crew were due in Rio de Janeiro Friday afternoon, he said.

They abandoned ship for lifeboats equipped with blankets and food at 5 p.m. Thursday, Rio time (2 p.m. Toronto time). A Brazilian Navy helicopter spotted them three hours later and dropped medical supplies.

Three merchant ships answered the distress call and reached the lifeboats first.

Three lifeboats carrying about 48 people were rescued by the merchant ship Hokuetsu Delight, said Capt. Cmdr. Maria Emila de Moura Estevao Padilha, communications director of the 1st Naval District.

Naval planes and the tug Sea-Admiral Guillobel remained at the scene where the Concordia sank after the rescue, Estevao Padilha said in a news release.

The life boats are sturdy and safe for the open seas, the spokesman said. The ship sank about 300 nautical miles off the coast of Brazil.

The students were on a course taught by West Island College International, based in Lunenburg, N.S., and had left Recife, Brazil, on the Concordia Feb. 8. They were due in Montevideo, Uruguay, on Tuesday.

Canada’s Joint Rescue Coordination Centre helped with logistics after receiving the Concordia’s distress beacon. Kate Knight, head of the school, said everyone was picked up between 4 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. Friday morning by Brazil’s Navy.

“They spent a significant amount of time” in the small craft, Knight told CP24. The life rafts are equipped with blankets and food and are designed to keep people safe until a rescue, she said.

The sailors are aboard two Brazilian merchant marine ships en route to Rio, she said.

Maurice Tugwell, a retired Acadia University professor, is among the rescued, his family said Friday morning.

“The Tugwell family were notified last night that the Concordia had sent out a distress signal and we were later notified that everyone aboard the ship had been rescued off the coast of Brazil, after spending several hours in life rafts,” Tugwell’s children posted on his voyage blog.

Knight “ensured everyone was kept up to date with as much information as was available.”

On his blog, Tugwell described an international crew led by Capt. Bill Curry, with an Australian second mate, Polish engineers and an Alaskan ship’s doctor.

West Island College, founded in 1984, provides students from around the world with experience sailing as well as classroom instruction.

The ship was expected to dock in Montevideo, Uruguay, on Tuesday. The voyage was to continue to South Africa.

The Concordia was designed and built for the school’s Class Afloat program in 1992. It is classified as a 100A-1 Yacht, the website said. The crew consists of two officers, two engineers, a bosun, a bosun’s mate, a cook, a cook’s mate and a medical officer.

“Concordia is one of the most sturdy ships on the water,” Pat Grieve, an alumnus of the Class Afloat program of 2003-04 said in an interview.

“It has sailed Cape Horn, the roughest seas in the world. It was not just a ship. For 10 months and 32,000 nautical miles, it was our home.

“The oceans can be very unforgiving,” said Grieve, who lives in Cobourg, Ont. “There is no doubt the crew was more than capable. The training is rigorous and precise.”

Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon said of the incident, “All crew and passengers have been recovered and are uninjured. This is good news. I thank Brazilian authorities, who led a search and rescue operation and acted swiftly to assist the ship and its passengers.”

Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Simone MacAndrew said Canadian diplomatic personnel are working with the Brazilian government to monitor and assist with the situation.

She said consular officials are ready to provide assistance to any affected Canadian citizens.

Canadians with friends and relatives who were aboard in can contact the department’s Emergency Operations Centre in Ottawa by calling either 1-800-387-3124 or 1-613-996-8885.

Read more -http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/768065--students-safe-after-canadian-boat-capsizes-off-brazil?bn=1

Police accused of sending agents provocateurs to Olympic protests in Vancouver -

Watching - Police accused of sending agents provocateurs to Olympic protests in Vancouver -

FDIC Opens A Massive New Office to handle The Coming Tidal Wave Of Midwest Bank Closings they are expecting -

Reading - FDIC Opens A Massive New Office to handle The Coming Tidal Wave Of Midwest Bank Closings they are expecting -

Is the Midwest about to see a massive wave of bank closings? That is apparently what the FDIC is expecting. The FDIC is opening up a massive new satellite office in the Chicago area that will be dedicated to managing receiverships and liquidating assets from failed Midwest banks. This new facility will occupy 7 floors in an 11 floor building. The office space that the FDIC is leasing is well over 100,000 square feet and will employ approximately 500 temporary employees and contractors. This is a huge expenditure by the FDIC. So will there really be so many bank failures over the next couple of years in the Midwest that a 100,000 square foot facility is required to deal with it?

Apparently someone at the FDIC thinks so.

But this is not the first time the FDIC has done something like this.

The FDIC has already opened similar offices in Irvine, California and Jacksonville, Florida. Each time, the number of bank failures in those states increased dramaticallyafter the FDIC opened those facilities.

So what is going to cause such a massive wave of bank failures that the FDIC will need hundreds of new employees just to deal with it?

Well, as we have reported previously, the financial powers in the U.S. are now movingto reduce the money supply, hoard cash and tighten credit. All of those things cause a slowdown in economic growth.

At the same time, a gigantic "second wave" of adjustable mortgages is scheduled to reset starting this year. This could push the U.S. economy into "part 2" of the housing crisis. Just check out the chart below....

In fact, one new study has been released that estimates that 5 million houses and condominiums on which mortgages are now delinquent will go through foreclosure and be put on the market within the next few years.

Another devastating housing crisis would absolutely destroy the vast majority of small to mid-size banks in the United States. In such a scenario, the FDIC would definitely be able to make use of the new facilities that they are opening up around the United States.

There are even rumors that the big bankers do not intend for most small and mid-size bankers to survive the coming crisis. There are whispers that the big bankers see all of this economic turmoil as a great opportunity to "consolidate" the banking industry.

So what should you and your family do to get prepared? Get out of debt and get rid of any unnecessary expenses. Try to start developing alternate streams of income and come up with a plan for what you will do if you lose your job.

The reality is that hard times are coming and a lot of people are going to lose their homes and their jobs. Don't just blindly trust "the system" - now is the time to make sure that you and your family will be prepared even if a total economic collapse happens.

Read more -http://www.blacklistednews.com/news-7472-0-13-13--.html