• July 24, 2024

The Checkered Past of the FBI Cyber Contractor Who ‘Spied’ on Trump

 The Checkered Past of the FBI Cyber Contractor Who ‘Spied’ on Trump

By Paul Sperry, RealClearInvestigations:

Long before FBI computer contractor and Clinton operative Rodney L. Joffe allegedly trolled Internet traffic for dirt on President Trump, he mined direct-marketing contact lists for the names and addresses of unwitting Americans to target in a promotional scam involving a grandfather clock.

Not just any clock, mind you, but a “world famous Bentley IX” model, according to postcards his companies mailed out to millions of people in the late 1980s claiming they’d won the clock in a contest they never entered. There was just one hitch: the lucky winners had to send $69.19 in shipping fees to redeem their supposedly five-foot mahogany prize.

Tens of thousands of folks forked over the fees, only to discover the grandfather clock that arrived was nothing as advertised. It was really just a table-top version made of particle board and plastic and worth less than $10. Some assembly was required.

The scheme generated thousands of complaints, sparking federal and state investigations. Joffe and his then-California partner, Linda M. Carella, were eyed by federal postal authorities and several state attorneys general for allegedly operating a multi-state mail-order scheme. Joffe settled several state lawsuits by agreeing to refund hundreds of thousands of dollars mainly to elderly victims, according to several published reports at the time.

Joffe and his attorney did not respond to requests for comment. But in a phone interview, Carella told RealClearInvestigations that Joffe ran the operation. “I was just the secretary, the receptionist,” Carella, 76, said from her home in Florida, where she is now retired. She did say she picked up the returned postcards and checks from mailboxes.

Carella said she quit after the investigation: “I said I don’t want anything more to do with this … I have not seen Rodney since then.” But Joffe pressed on with his direct-mail marketing business before packing up for Arizona a few years later. Federal and state tax lien records reveal Joffe — who also sent out mailers for skin care and other beauty products — owed more than $110,000 in back taxes on his property in Los Angeles in 1995.

Joffe’s checkered past now has national security ramifications after the South African-born computer expert was outed as a key player in Special Counsel John Durham’s ongoing Russiagate probe. To date he has not been charged with a crime. But in a September indictment of former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann, and a court filing last week, Durham has suggested

Source: The Gateway Pundit

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