February 14, 2006, - 4:16 pm
By Debbie Schlussel
Federal officials knew all along about a top law enforcement official’s arrest on a sex crime against the underaged and, yet, promoted him every step of the way–even to the leadership of a federal law enforcement agency’s child sex crime enforcement program. Worse, Homeland Security officials may have LIED about it to a U.S. Senator investigating the episode.
It’s the story that keeps on giving: the bizarre story of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Agent 007, Frank Figueroa a/k/a “Frankie the Fig.”
We recently raised the question about how ICE Princess Julie L. Myers, Assistant Homeland Security Secretary who oversees enforcement of our nation’s immigration laws, could continue to employ Fig, the ICE agent who exposed and fondled himself to a teenage girl in a shopping mall.
Today’s Tampa Tribune details the events surrounding Figueroa’s crime at an Orlando mall while he was ICE Special Agent in Charge in Tampa. His attempted escape and apprehension sounds like an episode of “24″ . . . except the apprehended sex criminal isn’t a terrorist, he’s the one who was supposed to be stopping the terrorists.
Fig was recently head of ICE’s national sex crime “Predator” program. All along, ICE and Homeland Security officials have been claiming they never knew about Figueroa’s 1977 arrest on a similar charge near Buffalo.
But, yesterday, reliable sources in the know told us that, in fact, ICE and then-Customs knew all along about Frank Figueroa’s prior sex crime arrest. They say that Figueroa declared the arrest on various federal forms and applications required from federal agents for background checks and security clearance renewal. They say ICE and then-Customs officials knew all along of Frank Figueroa’s record, but promoted him anyway, including to the national directorship of “Operation Predator” and Special Agent in Charge in Tampa. (This helps educate us as to why another Special Agent in Charge remains on the job despite, among many other egregious episodes, his deep relationship with a “former” Islamic terrorist who openly supports homicide bombers.)
Lucy–or is that Julie (Myers) or Marcy (Forman-Friedman, ICE Director of Investigations)?–someone has some ‘splaining to do.
According to Tampa Trib editor and reporter Howard Altman, in a letter to Senator Charles Grassley (R-Iowa)–who is investigating Fig and how he got clearance to investigate sex crimes–Pamela J. Turner, Homeland Security Assistant Secretary for Legislative Affairs, wrote that because of Figueroa’s earlier arrest, “ICE has initiated a review of all background investigations of employees who work on Operation Predator.” Further, ICE spokeswoman Jamie Zuieback told Altman that “ICE has put measures in place to ensure that employees working on child exploitation cases are suitable for this highly specialized and sensitive assignment and is reviewing the background investigations of all those assigned to child exploitation cases.”
This tap-dancing by ICE and DHS officials implies to Grassley–AND the American public–that ICE and DHS never knew of Figueroa’s past arrest. But, in fact, they did. Again, despite this, they promoted him anyway!
Will new–and newly renominated–cronyism beneficiary, Julie Myers, stop the nonsense and discipline those who willingly overlooked Frank Figueroa’s arrest on a very serious crime? Will she come clean to Senator Grassley about the improper protectzia forwarded Fig’s way? Will she end the evasive answers to a U.S. Senator and the public, which is emanating from her press people and Homeland Security’s legislative people? Will she investigate and discipline those responsible for knowingly promoting a possible sex criminal and stop protecting his pension?
Don’t count on it. We’re beginning to thank they should change the name to Department of Family Security. DHS seems to be only about protecting the organized family of cronies, not the American family.
Tags: Assistant Homeland Security Secretary, Buffalo, Charles Grassley, David A. Lunde, Debbie Schlussel, Department of Family Security, Director of Investigations, editor and reporter, federal law enforcement agency, Fig, Frank Figueroa, head, Homeland Security Assistant Secretary, Howard Altman, ICE Director, ICE Special Agent, ICE spokeswoman, Iowa, Jamie Zuieback, Julie L. Myers, law enforcement official, Orlando mall, Pamela J. Turner, Princess, Senator, Special Agent, Tampa, Tampa Trib, Tampa Trib editor, Today's Tampa Tribune, United States