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Posted at 7:30 PM ET, 12/21/2010

BackChannel Chatter: Top FBI counterterror guy moves on

By Jeff Stein

Donald F. Borelli, who retired last week as head of the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task Force in New York, today joined a private security consulting company headed by Ali Soufan, another notable FBI agent who worked against al-Qaeda.

Borelli was involved in countless terrorism cases, including “the 2009 plot to bomb the New York subway system by Najibullah Zazi; the 2008 capture and extradition of Bryant Neal Vinas, who plotted with Al Qaeda to plant bombs in the Long Island Railroad; the kidnapping of New York Times investigative journalist David Rohde in Afghanistan; and the 2009 hijacking of the Maersk Alabama by Somali pirates,” according to a biography supplied by his new employer.

“In July,” it continued, “Mr. Borelli led a team of more than 60 FBI Agents to Kampala, Uganda, to assist the Uganda Police Force in their investigation of the simultaneous suicide bombing attacks during the final game of the 2010 World Cup.”

Borelli will work on “two parts of the business--training and consulting,” including in the Middle East, a company spokesman said.

His new boss, Soufan, gained a measure of renown by objecting to CIA “enhanced interrogation techniques,” including waterboarding.

"I was in the middle of this, and it's not true that these [aggressive] techniques were effective," he said in a 2009 Newsweek interview. "We were able to get the information about Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in a couple of days. We didn't have to do any of this [torture]. We could have done this the right way."

By Jeff Stein  | December 21, 2010; 7:30 PM ET
Categories:  Financial/business, Intelligence, Justice/FBI  
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