New York Case Offers Insight Into Secret War Against Somali Militants

Then, with little or no judicial review in Djibouti, the men were flown to New York. After first being detained in secret, they were charged in November and ordered held without bail. SEEKING INFORMATION A main objective of the U.S. operation appears to have been to collect intelligence about al Shabaab. Information on the group has become more urgent for security services following the deadly attack by militants on the upscale Westgate shopping mall in Nairobi. At least 67 people were killed in a four-day siege. Ahmed Godane, the leader of Shabaab’s dominant, pro-al Qaeda faction, claimed credit for the attack. Defense lawyers said that once Ahmed, Yusuf and Hashi, all of Somali extraction, were in the United States, investigators began pressuring them to provide information about al Shabaab’s leaders and operations. “It’s all about getting information,” said Susan Kellman, a lawyer for Ahmed. But the three have not agreed to cooperate, legal sources familiar with the case said. The suspects intend to challenge their indictments in court, though a trial date has not been set.

New York AG subpoenas Airbnb in ‘bad actors’ battle

Brian Chesky on "CBS This Morning."

Airbnb bristles at New York AG subpoena in ‘bad actors’ battle The rent-out-your-home service says that the attorney general’s request for user data will not be taken lightly, and that it will fight for its community. October 7, 2013 8:15 AM PDT CEO Brian Chesky says Airbnb wants to help root ‘bad actors’ out of its community. (Credit: CBS) Airbnb, the social service that provides an in-home alternative to hotels, is under fire from the New York Attorney General’s Office. Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has subpoenaed data on all Airbnb users in New York who have offered to rent out their homes to customers. According to a person familiar with the investigation, Schneiderman’s effort stems from a New York state law signed in 2010 that places limits on residents’ ability to rent out their homes to others. Airbnb, which helps people rent out their houses or apartments for a period of time, said last week that it has 225,000 community members in New York. The Attorney General’s office has been investigating Airbnb for more than a month, a person familiar with the investigation told CNET. The investigation stemmed from complaints by lawmakers and housing advocates. Related stories Tampa is the nicest city in America, says Airbnb The crux of the issue appears to be so-called “bad actors” who find short-term rentals and run amok, according to a person familiar with the investigation. Some of those renters could be sidestepping paying taxes, the person indicated. In addition, the attorney general’s office wants to target those who are renting out multiple units in violation of state law or who are renting out their properties for longer than expressly allowed under the state’s tax laws, a person familiar with the investigation said.