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    Associated Retired Aviation Professionals Whitehurst Affidavit Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Home Last Updated 2001 2002 2003 Robert E Donaldson All rights reserved

    Original URL path: http://twa800.com/sephton/aff-whitehurst.htm (2016-02-13)
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  • We are currently in the process of suing the FBI to force them to release information about objects found by medical examiners
    substantial quantities of forensic lab data withheld from both the NTSB and the coroner But among the 550 pages the FBI has now submitted to the federal District Court in Springfield June 2003 they have only found and surrendered one page of actual forensic results One of the FBI affidavits to the Court acknowledged that the FBI had not and would not do a simple keyword search in either of the two computer databases that a former FBI employee identified as most likely containing the responsive records See Dr Fred Whitehurst Affidavit at http twa800 com sephton aff whitehurst htm Those 550 pages of records eventually surrendered to the federal Court in June 2003 only contained one single page of a forensic laboratory report It was a negative result from an explosive residue test Despite the lack of forensic data the released records do reveal that hundreds of foreign objects were removed during the autopsies by the medical examiners and were immediately seized as evidence by the FBI for identification and detailed lab analysis mostly at the FBI Crime Laboratory The records also show that not even the FBI s own medical forensic team headed by their specially appointed consultant Dr Dennis Shanahan had any access to the foreign object forensic data What those 550 pages fail to provide is very disconcerting The FBI could not find any of the requested physical details or descriptions of those objects their size weight composition or likely point of origin If it accurately reflects the status and contents of the Main File of the investigation produced and maintained by the NY FBI Field Office there was a serious problem in the investigation It implies that Assistant Director Jim Kallstrom and the FBI Office in charge of the investigation never received any of that forensic information or even summaries or assessments of what the foreign objects and shrapnel removed from the bodies were Were they merely pieces of a 747 and its contents The official FBI investigation cost over 20 million and the main record appears to be totally silent on this fundamental issue Was this incompetence or deception on the part of the FBI Only a thorough review by some independent authority will be able to determine that Theoretically the National Transportation Safety Board NTSB was the lead agency in the Investigation However NTSB records released in response to a similar FOI request were equally perplexing Those records revealed that the FBI had never shared any of the descriptions or forensic details with them either When asked about it via phone Burt Simon Chair of the NTSB Medical Group Report subsequently confirmed that revelation It seems particularly remiss that the NTSB did not seek or receive that data It is an important and routine part of the survivability factor analysis of every accident investigation to analyze what particular objects were flying around and hurting passengers if such evidence exists Mr Simon had no reasonable explanation for how he could have completed a professional

    Original URL path: http://twa800.com/sephton/fbi-shrapnel-case-report-nov03.htm (2016-02-13)
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    Judge Frank H Freedman to whom this case originally was assigned denied Sephton s motion and granted the FBI s Specifically Judge Freedman held that the FBI properly withheld information under Exemption 3 Relying on the Hodes declaration he also found that the FBI conducted an adequate search 4 Sephton v F B I No 00 30121 FHF slip op D Mass Aug 29 2001 Sephton appealed both rulings to this court The FBI then surrendered its claim based on grand jury secrecy and agreed to release Document 3 previously redacted in substantive part under Exemption 3 However the FBI requested that we remand the case so that the district court could determine whether the document s release would constitute an unwarranted invasion of privacy of the victims family members Although we granted that request the parties reached agreement regarding the release of Document 3 and the privacy related redactions before the district court considered the case Consequently Sephton renewed his appeal to us on the sole remaining issue the adequacy of the FBI s search pursuant to Sephton s FOIA request In addressing that issue we noted in an order entered on October 16 2002 that the Hodes declaration does not detail the method and mechanism by which this relevant main file was examined Instead it states without elaboration that t his file was reviewed for documents pertinent to plaintiff s request for certain information Order of Court Oct 16 2002 pg 1 2 1st Cir Remand Order Because the Hodes declaration failed to describe the method by which the FBI examined the relevant main file we remanded to the district court while retaining jurisdiction for the limited purpose of requiring the FBI to supplement the record with an affidavit from an appropriate agency official addressing these items 1 the approximate size of the relevant file and 2 the method used to search this file for records responsive to plaintiff s requests We specified that the proceedings on remand were to be completed as expeditiously as possible and in all events within sixty days of the date of this order On December 12 2002 the FBI filed the affidavit of Christine Kiefer the Acting Chief of the Litigation Unit Freedom of Information Privacy Acts Section Records Management Division at FBI Headquarters in Washington D C Along with the affidavit the FBI also filed a supplemental memorandum in support of its motion for summary judgment Six weeks later Sephton countered with an opposition to the FBI s supplemental memorandum and a motion to include new evidence that Sephton claimed further demonstrated the inadequacy of the FBI s search In response the FBI moved for two extensions of time to evaluate the new evidence and to explore settlement of the entire case Without formally ruling on its authority to accept and consider the new evidence argumentation or motions the district court allowed the extensions in light of the ongoing settlement negotiations On April 25 2003 the FBI notified the district court

    Original URL path: http://twa800.com/sephton/appeals-court-ruling-10-24-03.htm (2016-02-13)
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    to resolve the FOIA issues raised by Sephton Graeme Sephton an Engineer at U Mass Amherst filed the suit in 1998 as FOIA officer for Flight 800 Independent Researchers Organization FIRO He requested from the FBI data from forensic analyses of foreign bodies found during autopsy examinations of victims of the 1996 crash of TWA Flight 800 Some of the documents unearthed by Sephton describe pellets consistent with those used in missile warheads No less than twenty such pellets were recovered during victim autopsy exams The FBI report describing the pellets was classified Secret and dated after the FBI officially suspended its investigation into the crash FBI whistleblower Frederick Whitehurst submitted a supporting affidavit which named two FBI laboratory databases where responsive records would most likely be stored None of three affidavits submitted by the FBI describing its search method mention searching any FBI Laboratory database The court s opinion sent a clear signal to the district court when it sympathized with Sephton s charge that the FBI s search for records was inadequate It highlighted the fact that the FBI produced five hundred additional pages of documents responsive to Sephton s FOIA request after the FBI s insistence that

    Original URL path: http://twa800.com/sephton/pr-firo-11-1-03.htm (2016-02-13)
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    crash of TWA Flight 800 on October 8th at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts FIRO claims that their findings account for the evidence more completely than the government s theory of a spark inside a fuel tank TWA Flight 800 exploded and crashed off the coast of Long Island NY in the summer of 1996 Federal investigators took four years to release an ultimately inconclusive final report FIRO has documented evidence the government concealed omitted and misrepresented during the investigation Much of this evidence is used by FIRO to buttress their conclusions According to FIRO Chairman Dr Thomas Stalcup the evidence speaks for itself and is quite convincing once it s all on the table Stalcup will be announcing the probable cause during a talk on the crash sponsored by Worcester Polytechnic Institute s WPI Power of One organization Power of One is a group that aims to increase awareness of the importance of individual acts The talk at WPI is free and open to the public It will focus on the government s mishandling of key pieces of evidence that conflicted with a preconceived crash scenario That evidence will then be shown to support a theory for the crash

    Original URL path: http://twa800.com/news/pr-10-2-03.htm (2016-02-13)
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    watched Significant suspected terrorist activities had been under surveillance and at least one serious threat thwarted while the perpetrators were in the process of mixing their bomb materials When 800 went down and the eye witness accounts came in they immediately assumed it was a terrorist attack He insists however that no evidence supporting such a claim was ever found He agreed with the center fuel overheat explosion theory Ms Negroni began by telling us about her book which sounds like it is about the passengers and crew more than what actually happened We got the distinct feeling that she was just out to sell books She supports the fuel tank explosion theory and massaged the data to help support it She stated that there were 23 similar fuel tank explosions When pressed she said that there were actually 26 and that half were military Further questioning revealed that any fire or explosion that included the fuel tanks was included in that number She mentioned the Thai airways jet that exploded and burned on the ground one hour before the prime minister was to have boarded This again was attributed to the center fuel tank She attempts to make us

    Original URL path: http://twa800.com/news/lecture-7-30-03.htm (2016-02-13)
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    emotion than science and driving some wrong headed policy decisions I agree It would be nice to see a news outlet that is brave enough to use those same angles when examining the forensic and scientific evidence regarding the July 17 1996 TWA Flight 800 disaster Despite the existence of several well documented articles on the subject two of which I wrote and the declassification of formerly secret documents from FBI archives the general public has no idea that the evidence now firmly proves that Flight 800 was shot down by a missile More than any other incident that I am aware of the mainstream media has gone out of its way to ignore or suppress reporting about the truth of this disaster During the research for one of my articles I spoke with former CBS TV reporter Kristina Borjesson now with ABC TV about the wrecking of her career when she looked into certain aspects of the crash investigation What happened to her at CBS became the keystone of her book Into The Buzzsaw which details what happened to several journalists careers when they dared to ask the wrong questions Just like the global warming debate the mainstream view

    Original URL path: http://twa800.com/news/citypaper-8-14-03.htm (2016-02-13)
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    Ellen G Engleman of all Board outreach and public information tools including publications and other media Having our public meetings available to those who are not able to attend in person is a major step to provide better service to the American people said Chairman Engleman Beginning with the Board s August 5 2003 sunshine meeting web site visitors can view the Board s public meetings while in progress by

    Original URL path: http://twa800.com/news/ntsb-7-31-03.htm (2016-02-13)
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