Urges FBI to Launch Criminal Investigation Into Chamber of Commerce Watergate-like Campaign

National Business Group Uses Illegal Tactics to Intimidate and Undermine Opposition

WASHINGTON, May 10, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Two advocacy coalitions urged the FBI this week to launch a full-scale criminal investigation into unlawful activities committed by the Chamber of Commerce (COC) and those of its law firm, Hunton & Williams (H&W), and three military intelligence contractors hired by the law firm – HBGary Federal, Berico Technologies and Palantir Technologies, collectively called Team Themis. (STC) and (VR) sent letters to the FBI detailing how these organizations jointly conspired and conducted a proposed $12 million Watergate-like campaign against STC, VR and their staff, as well as other organizations and reporters.

Although this apparent criminal operation violated both federal laws and constitutional protections, neither the FBI nor the Department of Justice (DOJ) has announced any investigation.

STC is dedicated to exposing excesses and unethical activities of the COC. It had targeted the COC through reward posters and advertisements and complaints to the FEC, DOJ, FBI, and the IRS.

Only Congressman Hank Johnson (D-GA) has spearheaded an inquiry with two congressional hearings on the matter. He has demanded copies of all government contracts with the Team Themis contractors from the DOD, NSA and DOJ, and alleged that the contractors illegally used applications developed to track terrorists against Americans engaged in constitutionally protected activity.

And former counter terrorism and cyber security chief Richard Clarke stated in March that the activities of the COC in this matter are illegal under both criminal and military code and that the perpetrators "should go to jail."

Dozens of damning emails and documents from the Chamber, its lawyers and their contractors were attached to the letter sent to the FBI.

"The Chamber allegedly planned the use of forged documents and fake personas to discredit advocacy groups, the use of software to illegally scrape social media sites to undermine the organizations, the use of malware to spy on and destroy computers and documents, the use of information discovered illegally to extort concessions from those associated with the groups, the leaking of damaging information to the press to destroy the ability of the groups to raise funds, and cyber stalking to harass the groups," said attorney and spokesman Kevin Zeese. "This apparent criminal activity must be investigated and prosecuted to the full extent of the law."

The letter is a follow up to a bar complaint the group filed against the H&W lawyers involved in the Watergate-like campaign against STC, VR and their staff. That complaint, also provided to the FBI, includes dozens of emails and other documents proving the existence of crimes and criminal conspiracy by those involved, including cyber stalking, spear phishing, fraud, extortion, harassment, destruction of property, domestic spying, computer scraping, identity theft, violation of civil rights and conspiracy.



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