In case you missed it, Channel 12's Joe Dana rolled over a new stone in the Honduran scam last night, revealing that the MCSO had plans to install a high-tech facial recognition system in Honduras, which Arlie Thompson, Governor of the Bay Islands, said included, "...security systems and programs...at the airports, and docks, near the ferry bays, all the different points of entry."
Dana's report also revealed that the MCSO received a $264,450 grant from the Department of Homeland Security to buy equipment for facial recognition technology, though the MCSO denied any of this was used in Honduras. And guess what? One of the pioneers of this technology -- Hummingbird Defense Systems -- just happens to have offices in the PHX, and its head honcho is buddies with the MCSO's Chief Deputy David Hendershott. They've taken plane rides together, even, said Dana. (Oddly, Channel 12 did not mention the corporate exec's name.) And according to the Channel 12 report, Jabba the Hendershott's apparently pimped this technology to the feds and to the European Union.
Suddenly we're starting to see how Hendershott might have been using the Honduran enterprise to possibly help his cronies. Has Hendershott enriched himself somehow from the Honduran scam? That's the big Q. If it's ever shown that he did benefit from this Honduran boondoggle, he would almost certainly have to resign his post as Joe's top deputy dawg.
Kudos to Dana for advancing the story. Every reporter in town should be on this. It may just turn out to be Arpaio's Watergate.
Check out Dana's report from last night, here:
PS: I tried contacting Hummingbird Defense Systems, and weirdly, I first got someone who said he works for the building, and that there's no company by that name there. The second time I called, I got a generic recording that said the subscriber does not use the voice mail system.
Curiouser and curiouser...
PPS: In several places online, guess who's listed as the Chairman of the Board of Hummingbird Defense Systems? None other than former Arizona Governor Fife Symington III.
Alas, I called the ex-Guv's consulting/PR org., The Symington Group, and exec Camilla Strongin there told me that Symington has not been affiliated with Hummingbird in some time.
PPPS: Have just learned that the phone number and address listed on Hummingbird Defense System's site is actually for this company Regus, which offers "virtual office" packages to doctors, lawyers and different companies. Basically, it's a place to pick up the mail, meet clients if need be, and have someone answer phones for you. Hummingbird's address and phone number are actually shared by scores of Regus clients.
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When I called Camilla Strongin back to ask what she knows, she said the Symington Group is located in the same building.
According to sources, Hummingbird stopped paying its virtual office bill a few months back, and so has ceased to exist at that address. No forwarding address was given, according to these same sources.
That's all for now, sports fans...