Horn v. Huddle: DOJ Settles Suit for $3 million

This just came from The Blog of Legal Times:

The federal government has agreed to settle for $3 million a long-running suit in federal district court in Washington that alleged a former CIA officer and a State Department official unlawfully eavesdropped on a drug enforcement agent in Burma.

The terms of the agreement were detailed in court papers filed Tuesday night in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The suit, filed by former DEA agent Richard Horn, was filed in federal court in 1994. The litigation had been under seal until this summer.
Former CIA officer Arthur Brown’s lawyer, Robert Salerno, a partner in the Washington offices of Morrison & Foerster, said in a statement today: “Art Brown did not do whatever Horn imagines happened back in 1993, and the settlement agreement does not contain any admissions or otherwise validate Horn’s bizarre allegations.” Former State Department official Franklin Huddle’s counsel, Donald Remy, a partner in Washington with Latham & Watkins, was not reached for comment this morning. The Justice Department has been paying the legal bills for the defendants, who were sued in their individual capacity. The settlement agreement said the government does not admit liability.

Read the whole thing here.

Updated 11/8/09:
The Horn v. Huddle/Brown settlement agreement filed on November 3 is here via Politico.

SFRC Hearings: Zeitlin, Arvanat, Barton, Yohannes, Lomellin


Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Time: 2:30 P.M.
Place: 419 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Presiding: Senator Menendez


Jide J. Zeitlin, of New York
to be Representative of the United States to the United Nations for U.N. Management and Reform, with the rank of Ambassador and to be Alternate Representative of the United States to the Sessions of the General Assembly of the United Nations during his tenure of service as Representative of the United States to the United Nations for U.N. Management and Reform

Gustavo Arnavat, of New York
to be United States Executive Director of the Inter-American Development Bank for a term of three years

Frederick D. Barton, of Maine
to be Representative of the United States on the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations, with the rank of Ambassador

Daniel W. Yohannes, of Colorado
to be Chief Executive Officer, Millennium Challenge Corporation

Carmen Lomellin, of Virginia
to be Permanent Representative of the United States to the Organization of American States, with the rank of Ambassador

SFRC hearing page is here (for video and prepared statements).

Nov 4: The Day the Roof Fell In

A defaced Great Seal of the United States at t...Image via Wikipedia

Today is the 30th anniversary of the takeover by militants of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. According to the Carter Library, of the 66 Americans who were taken hostage, 13 were released on Nov. 19 and 20, 1979; one was released on July 11, 1980, and the remaining 52 were released on Jan. 20, 1981.

The 52 Americans were held hostage for 444 days from November 4, 1979 to January 20, 1981.

Anna Tinsley of the Star-Telegram in Fort Worth, TX wrote recently about Rick Kupke, one the the 52 hostages, who recalled his 444 days as Iranian hostage (As anniversary nears, Arlington man recalls his 444 days as Iranian hostage). Excerpts below:

Rick Kupke was busy encrypting classified messages inside the U.S. Embassy in Tehran when the Marine Corps guard yelled over the radio, “They’re coming over the wall!”
Kupke, then a 33-year-old communications officer and electronics specialist, sent the telegram, closed a vault door to keep workers in the second-floor office safe and began shredding sensitive government documents — including those about unpopular Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, who fled to the U.S. that year.

“The State Department asked me if I destroyed all the cables going back and forth about the shah. They said, ‘You have to confirm to us that you personally destroyed that.’ I said, ‘Yes.’ Then they gave us the order to destroy all of our equipment.”

After Kupke smashed Teletype machines, he began the first of three trips to the roof to keep rifles and shotguns out of the hands of Iranians. After his third trip, he became the 66th — and final — American taken hostage that day.
Kupke said he’ll call a handful of the 42 living hostages Wednesday. But Nov. 4 is not the day many of the hostages choose to remember.

The day they’d rather remember is Jan. 20, when they were released, former charge d’affaires L. Bruce Laingen of Bethesda, Md., has said.

“That’s a good day,” he said. “Nov. 4 is the day the roof fell in.”

Read the whole thing here.

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