Archive for the ‘Crime’ Category
The U.S. general who opened the Guantanamo detention camp said Thursday it was a mistake and should be shut down because “it validates every negative perception of the United States.”
“In retrospect, the entire detention and interrogation strategy was wrong,” Marine Major General Michael Lehnert wrote in a column published in the Detroit Free Press.
Lehnert, now retired from the military and living in Michigan, was the first commander of the task force that opened the detention camp in January 2002 at the Guantanamo Bay U.S. Naval Base in Cuba.
He said the United States opened it “because we were legitimately angry and frightened” by the September 11 hijacked plane attacks in 2001 and thought the captives sent there would provide “a treasure trove of information and intelligence.”
He quickly became convinced that most of them never should have been sent there because they had little intelligence value and there was insufficient evidence linking them to war crimes, he wrote.
“We squandered the goodwill of the world after we were attacked by our actions in Guantanamo, both in terms of detention and torture,” Lehnert wrote. “Our decision to keep Guantanamo open has helped our enemies because it validates every negative perception of the United States…”
He added, “It is time to close Guantanamo. Our departure from Afghanistan is a perfect point in history to close the facility.”
But, that’s OK – because any attempt to redress legitimate grievances, to make things right by battlefield prisoners and kidnap victims held in violation of international law – will be met with disdain and denial by our Congress. The one body in US government which stinks worse than the Guantanamo prison camp.
Uruguay became the first country to legalize the growing, sale and smoking of marijuana on Tuesday, a pioneering social experiment that will be closely watched by other nations debating drug liberalization.
A government-sponsored bill approved by 16-13 votes in the Senate provides for regulation of the cultivation, distribution and consumption of marijuana and is aimed at wresting the business from criminals in the small South American nation…
Cannabis consumers will be able to buy a maximum of 40 grams each month from licensed pharmacies as long as they are Uruguayan residents over the age of 18 and registered on a government database that will monitor their monthly purchases.
When the law is implemented in 120 days, Uruguayans will be able to grow six marijuana plants in their homes a year, or as much as 480 grams and form smoking clubs of 15 to 45 members that can grow up to 99 plants per year.
Registered drug users should be able to start buying marijuana over the counter from licensed pharmacies in April…
Uruguay’s attempt to quell drug trafficking is being followed closely in Latin America where the legalization of some narcotics is being increasingly seen by regional leaders as a possible way to end the violence spawned by the cocaine trade.
Rich countries debating legalization of pot are also watching the bill, which philanthropist George Soros has supported as an “experiment” that could provide an alternative to the failed U.S.-led policies of the long “war on drugs…”
Other countries have decriminalized marijuana possession and the Netherlands allows its sale in coffee shops, but Uruguay will be the first nation to legalize the whole chain from growing the plant to buying and selling its leaves.
RTFA. All the pros and cons are trotted by – though, regular readers will know my only problem would be figuring out a decent muffin recipe if I wished to partake. I don’t smoke anything.
I don’t doubt American politicians will be watching and listening – and ignoring positive results as thoroughly as many have, for example, ignored a national non-profit health service. Our politicians are so accustomed to pimping for unproductive useless profiteers like insurance companies, it’s not likely many would learn anything about revoking the sillyass War on Drugs.
Who’s that knocking at my door? I’ll open it and look.
An Alberta man who stabbed a friend in the chest as a test for what turned out to be an ineffective stab-proof vest was sentenced to six months in jail.
Calvin Clackson, 21, of Edmonton, pleaded guilty Tuesday to criminal negligence causing bodily harm in the Oct. 15, 2012, incident that required friend Justin Harder, 18, to undergo emergency surgery for a bleeding chest wound…
The court heard Harder had been wearing a purportedly stab-proof vest and invited Clackson to test it out with a folding knife.
“Unfortunately, the vest didn’t work and the knife went through the vest and into the chest cavity and Mr. Harder was seriously injured,” prosecutor Mark Huyser-Wierenga said.
Provincial Court Judge Michael Allen said the stabbing was a serious incident that could have been worse.
“It was foolish for the friend to offer the invitation,” Allen said. “It was criminally negligent for the accused to take up the invitation.
Not a month goes by without former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, unleashing new government surveillance allegations, but on Wednesday, the Washington Post dropped a bombshell: The NSA is tracking cellphones around the world at a rate of almost five billion records per day. This revelation is particularly shocking because it affirms fears that the government is keeping tabs on the physical location of Americans.
1. The NSA can find you in a hotel and can probably tell if you’re having an affair…
2. Americans are definitely being tracked, but providing the exact number is “awkward”…
3. All the collected location data wouldn’t fit in the Library of Congress…
4. Don’t bother trying to hide. The NSA knows if you’re trying to avoid them…
5. And you don’t need to be a suspect to be targeted…
The Feds say that this kind of data collection is not protected by the Fourth Amendment; so, as far as Uncle Sugar is concerned, we’re all legitimate targets.
Read the full report over here.
The US government has agreed to pay $50 million after it was said to have pirated “thousands” of copies of military software.
Apptricity, based in Texas, has provided logistics programs to the army since 2004…The company said it had discovered last year the software had been installed on many more machines than had been licensed.
The Department of Justice has not commented on the settlement.
The Dallas Morning News reported a DoJ spokeswoman had confirmed the agreement, but would not give more details.
Apptricity’s software allows the military to track the movements of soldiers as well as key supplies…
According to court documents filed in 2012, the deal with the military meant up to 500 named users could access the software.
Apptricity later estimated that 9,000 users were accessing the program, in addition to the 500 that had been paid for.
The unauthorised copying only came to light after a US Army official mentioned “thousands” of devices running the software during a presentation on technology.
Apptricity called for $224 million to be paid to cover costs…The settlement of $50 million falls some way short – but in a statement the company said Apptricity would spend the sum on expanding the company…
In recent years, the US government has stepped up efforts to combat piracy, announcing a wide-ranging strategy for clamping down in 2010.
“Piracy is theft, clean and simple,” remarked vice-president Joe Biden at the time.
Don’t you love it when the crooks don’t read the script. Like – if you’re an officer it somehow ain’t theft. The same holds true for the folks under your command.
The rest of us poor SOB’s not only get to pay retail – we pay the salaries of the brass hats who boosted the software.
A Minnesota man accused of stealing a newspaper delivery truck from a gas station told police he took it because he was running from zombies according to criminal charges filed this week.
Garrett Howard Hurlbut, 23, of Apple Valley was charged with stealing a motor vehicle during the September incident, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.
A police report said officers found Hurlbut near the truck, several blocks away from the gas station where it was reported stolen.
Hurlbut told police he had “jumped or fell from the truck” and was “running from zombies,” the report said…
Hurlbut had a blood-alcohol level of 0.198, which is more than twice the legal limit for driving. He was taken to a local hospital to be treated for cuts on his head.
It’s beginning to feel like zombies are the standard excuse for anything. We need something new – and stupid, of course.
…Four people have been arrested after a remote-controlled helicopter was allegedly used to fly tobacco into Calhoun state prison, Georgia…
Prison guards at the Calhoun state jail spotted a drone hovering over the prison yard and alerted police who began a search of the local area.
Inside a nearby car they found a six-rotor remote-controlled helicopter, between 1lb and 2lb of tobacco and several mobile phones.
Four people were arrested and could face up to 20 years in prison if found guilty of attempting to smuggle contraband into the prison.
“It is a surprise. I’ve never seen a helicopter,” Sheriff Josh Hilton told reporters.
It follows a similar attempt at the weekend in a prison in Canada.
A drone was spotted flying over the Gatineau jail in Quebec on Sunday. Guards there failed to find either the device, its payload or those flying it.
Remote-controlled flying devices are becoming the tool of choice for those determined to smuggle in contraband, Stephane Lemaire, president of Quebec’s correctional officers’ union, told the Ottawa Sun.
“Usually the drones are carrying small packages of drugs or other illicit substances,” he said…”Now that drones are relatively cheap to buy, they’ve become the best way to smuggle drugs inside,” he added.
Makes sense to me. Once again, our military demonstrated new and useful technology to civilian society. Why expect the criminal portion of our nations to avoid technological progress.
A police squad car was reported missing this morning during a burglary call and turned up shortly afterward blocks away, police said.
About 4:15 a.m., police officers reported the squad car missing after a premises check in the 3500 block of South California Avenue in the Brighton Park neighborhood on the Southwest Side, Chicago Police Department News Affairs Officer Janel Sedevic said. The officers had been investigating after the activation of a burglar alarm in a building on the block.
Officers found the squad car abandoned shortly after, blocks from where the officers had left it, Sedevic said.
No suspects were in custody as of early this morning.
Yup. Every police department in the country lectures us about never leaving our keys in the car.
Not certain what sort of administrative hassles these coppers will be up for. Probably won’t match the embarrassment they feel.
Would you buy a used car from this man?
Police in Arkansas said a car dealership owner allegedly plotting to have a former employee killed inadvertently telephoned the man while talking to a hit man.
Jonesboro police said Larry Barnett, 68, owner of Legend Motor Company, called a former employee while speaking to a hired killer about having the former employee killed…
Sgt. Doug Formon said the conversation had ended by the time police arrived at the former employee’s home, but the call made from Barnett’s phone was still active.
Police said Barnett allegedly wanted to have the former employee killed because the suspect owed the intended victim a large sum of money.
“I’ve been here now for 25 years and I’ve never recalled a time when a subject has accidentally, if you will, ‘butt-dialed’ someone they’re either trying to commit a crime against or the possible victim of the crime,” Formon said.
Barnett, who police said was also allegedly falsifying documents to get loans for non-existent vehicles, faces charges of conspiracy to commit murder, felony theft greater than $25,000 and felony forgery.
Nice guy. I’ve known Mafiosi in the car business with better business ethics than this thug.
Free enterprise Florida style
The mayor of Hampton, Barry Layne Moore, was arrested Monday afternoon in Polk County after a Bradford County Sheriff’s Office investigation revealed he had obtained and sold oxycodone…
A deputy was given information while working on an unrelated investigation that alleged Moore was selling prescription medication. That led to the extended investigation by the agency’s drug unit.
Polk County Sheriff’s Office deputies served an arrest warrant with a bond of $45,000 for Moore and took him to the Polk County Jail.
“This isn’t Toronto. We will not tolerate illegal drug activity, in my jurisdiction, by anyone to include our elected officials,” Bradford County Sheriff Gordon Smith said, referring to Mayor Rob Ford who has admitted to smoking crack cocaine.
Capt. Brad Smith, spokesman for the Bradford County Sheriff’s Office, said Moore has been charged with one count of possession of a Schedule I or II drug — in this case, oxycodone — and one count of possession with the intent to sell, both of which are felonies.
Florida family values apparently extend to all levels of government. The governor’s previous business paid the largest fine in history for Medicare fraud. A leading Republican light in Congress was just busted for cocaine use. Now we have the mayor of small town Florida caught in the state’s leading illegal business – selling oxycodone.
America’s corrupt politicians apparently have decided there’s more profit to be made – and pleasure gained – from illegal drug sales than old fashioned theft from taxpayers.