Canadian Muslim Who Sends Text Urging His Employees To 'Blow Away' The Competition Arrested As A 'Terror' Suspect

from the common-sense-is-dead dept

Boing Boing points us to the crazy story of Saad Allami, a sales manager in Quebec -- who is Muslim -- who sent a text message to some colleagues heading to New York for a trade show, in which he encouraged them to "blow away" the competition. He (quite reasonably) says that he was trying to "pump up" his staff. However, apparently Canadian law enforcement thought differently and arrested him, detained him for a day, searched his house and repeatedly told his wife he was a terrorist. I recognize that law enforcement wants to be careful, but at some point, doesn't someone run these kinds of things through a "common sense" filter?


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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:05pm

    They should get a dictionary

    Everbody knows that real terrorists use the phrase "blow up" when they're texting. If these guys ever read a dictionary they'd catch the terrorists in no time.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:09pm

      Re: They should get a dictionary

      It's good they didn't merch him.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 10th, 2012 @ 7:52am

      Re: They should get a dictionary

      "Everbody knows that real terrorists use the phrase "blow up""

      How would you know this? Are you associated with any terrorist networks? The feds would like to have a word with you.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:06pm

    Wish there were a complete quote of the text message somewhere.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:13pm

    now you're trying to use a 'common sense filter', Mike!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:14pm

    Zero-tolerance for tourism

    ... at some point, doesn't someone run these kinds of things through a "common sense" filter?

    No.

     

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    GMacGuffin (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:15pm

    Reading TechDirt is bad for my blood pressure. It's stories like these that do it... grrrr.

     

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      :Lobo Santo (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:17pm

      Re: Grrrr

      Same here!

      Also, you have an awesome handle.

       

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      DOlz (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 4:43pm

      Re:

      4 out 5 doctors recommend techdirt for people with low blood pressure.

       

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 4:57pm

      Re:

      No kidding

      I used to not really care, I used to laugh at the politicians who were failing to understand technology, the idiots who feel money dictates what is right, and the moronic shills in the comment section who cheer on the destruction of their freedoms.

      Now it gets under my skin in a way that nothing else ever has. I spent 20 minutes reading the front page today to get caught up on the articles that I missed earlier. After the session, it felt like there was a demon in my skull trying to pound his way out to feed on copyright maximalists.

      I almost hate to do this, but I'm going to have to scale back on reading tech-related sites like ars and techdirt just to keep from having a stroke when I'm 30. Maybe from here on out I should just adopt a policy of not caring about how politics hinders technology unless police start going door to door confiscating computers.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:18pm

    Common sense in Canadians?!?!

    One word: poutine.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:20pm

    I knew someone in the 90s using a Usenet signature intended specifically to trigger searches for certain word combinations. The Secret Service just sent him a nice e-mail asking him to stop it.

    Ah, for the days when you could troll law enforcement and they would get the joke. Of course, the Secret Service no longer needs to hire a nerd to run grep across a few thousand newsgroups.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:21pm

    Arrest NFL players!

    If we search twitter messages from NFL players, I bet we can find a bunch of them who have said they were going to "blow away" the other team. Maybe we should try to get some of them arrested just to show how ridiculous this is!!

     

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      DCX2, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 4:21pm

      Re: Arrest NFL players!

      Problem:

      Only people with Muslim-sounding names will get detained for terrorism charges when they use the term "blow away".

       

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    Jeffhole (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:21pm

    You're asking too much, Mike.

    When common sense approaches government officials in a parking lot the government officials scream rape, piss their pants and then run away.

     

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    Good Dog, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:21pm

    The ultimate muslim app

    So now all that's needed is the ultimate muslim app for the iphone and android, something that every muslim would want on their phone. The sneaky bit is that at both psuedo-random and predetermined intervals and dates the app sends messages full of terrorist watchwords to all your muslim friends.

    Watch as government agencies all over the world routinely and collectively shit in their pants.

     

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      anonymous, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 6:23pm

      Re: The ultimate muslim app

      I for one, being a Muslim mind you, find your idea to be absolutely brilliant and hilarious! :D

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:22pm

    I always thought of common sense as one of those filters you use while browsing the web. Imagine browsing without your ad-filters on, oh what a day that was!

     

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    Gwiz (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:22pm

    One thing that appears to be left out of this story is how Canadian law enforcement was tipped off to this text message.

    Have the Canadians imported NSA spying tactics into their country? Did the NSA tip them off? Or was it some other entity spying on personal messages or possibly one of the recipients?

     

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    khory (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:31pm

    Common sense filter? I doubt it. This kind of thing makes me wonder if these aren't automated arrests- some software picks up certain phrases and issues an order to have someone arrested. Then they bother with details like facts and such AFTER the arrest.

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:32pm

    NYT: Radical U.S. Muslims Little Threat, Study Says

    (Canadians won't mind being ignored (again) by US-centric media)

    Radical U.S. Muslims Little Threat, Study Says, by Scott Shane, New York Times, Feb 7, 2012:
    WASHINGTON A feared wave of homegrown terrorism by radicalized Muslim Americans has not materialized, with plots and arrests dropping sharply over the two years since an unusual peak in 2009, according to a new study by a North Carolina research group.

    [...]

    Charles Kurzman, the author of the report for the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security, called terrorism by Muslim Americans a minuscule threat to public safety. Of about 14,000 murders in the United States last year, not a single one resulted from Islamic extremism, said Mr. Kurzman, a professor of sociology at the University of North Carolina.

    [ . . .]

     

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      That Anonymous Coward (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 10:13pm

      Re: NYT: Radical U.S. Muslims Little Threat, Study Says

      Did the study include the ones that the FBI was grooming to be more Radical?

       

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      Josef Anvil (profile), Feb 10th, 2012 @ 3:10am

      Re: NYT: Radical U.S. Muslims Little Threat, Study Says

      "Of about 14,000 murders in the United States last year, not a single one resulted from Islamic extremism, said Mr. Kurzman, a professor of sociology at the University of North Carolina."

      If even 1 of the murders in the US was due to Islamic extremism, the problem would still be minuscule. Now think about the reaction. While I agree that the TSA employs A LOT of people, wouldn't that money be better spent on more police officers.

      The counter to that is to say "Look at how well the TSA is doing, we prevented terrorism." I say great job, now can we cut back on the 14,000 fucking actual murders and not worry so much about the hypothetical plots to "blow away" the competition.

       

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    Torg (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:47pm

    Did he at least remember to text in both French and English?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:50pm

    Welcome to Harper's US.. err, Canada.

     

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    Paradroid (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:52pm

    Very funny

    Making up stories like this just to wind me up!

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:53pm

    You presume too much

    That is: too much intelligence on the part of law enforcement. People join it because they're bullies and cowards, not because they're smart.

     

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    Rapnel (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 2:57pm

    Hey?

    I get my liberty AND my security!? Nice. Franklin didn't know shit.

     

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    Tech42 (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:00pm

    Where do you run if you're already in Canada?

    Is it safe to comment on this article, or should I expect to be disappeared in the wee hours?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:00pm

    Next in the news

    An enraged Canadian businesswoman was arrested for prostitution when she texted her employees to "screw the competition!"

     

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    bjupton (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:01pm

    This blows me away.

     

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    Kevin H (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:05pm

    I believe that there must be a training class for all government agencies anymore where the beat the common sense right out you.

    Terrorist/9-11/New York/Bomb/Gun/Death/Obama/Osama/cross-hairs/rifle/shooting/Explosion.

    There I should get a visit from the ATF/DHS/FBI, and perhaps the NSA will stick a probe up my ass.

     

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    Zachary Hodson (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:13pm

    How did law enforcement happen to get a hold of the text message?

     

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      Anthony (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:44pm

      Re:

      How did law enforcement happen to get a hold of the text message?

      Don't know how law enforcement operates in Canada, but in Australia law enforcement have the power to inspect all SMS & email messages for any reason.

      If they have a system in place to automatically check for key phrases, it shows up.

       

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    Pitabred (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:26pm

    You don't seem to understand that this is a systemic police state issue, Mike. It's the mindset. They ARE using their "common sense" that they should treat everyone like a terrorist so the real ones don't try anything, and the end goal is to make people scared and compliant. Beat the citizens down and it makes the police's job easier, when they can just do whatever they want whenever they want.

    I'm not saying it makes sense. But it's what happens when you have racist thugs going on their gut instinct instead of deferring to logic and facts.

     

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    Overcast (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:26pm

    How did law enforcement happen to get a hold of the text message?

    They monitor whatever they want now - regardless of the legality of it.

    "Law Enforcement" obviously does not care it *they* follow the law, only if they are busting down common citizens who don't - or well, even those who are following the law obviously.

    It's really a stretch to call them "Law Enforcement" anymore - they do not meet the definition for that now.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:44pm

    The sad part is...

    They would have looked for a diaper bomb if he said "Shit all over" the competition.

     

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    Walter Riker, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:53pm

    Bigotry reigns

    Hmm... do we smell bigotry here? Stupid bigotry. To call him a terrorist under these condition says that these public servants do not 1) like anyone who is not like them (highly biased), and 2) they don't get out much. Maybe they are not let out much.

    I do like the question about how did the law enforcement get a hold of the Tweet and as far as Police State I am afraid that this is where we are all headed with current government/political leadership in both countries. Note: I do question my own use of the word leadership under these conditions.

     

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      That Anonymous Coward (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 10:09pm

      Re: Bigotry reigns

      its not just limited to this...
      remember the guy who showed how the G20 plans were flawed and all of the bomb making things they found in his home... like clay with some crystals... and the giggle in court when he pointed out it was cat litter.

       

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    crade (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 3:53pm

    From the looks of the article, that is just his best guess as to why he was arrested. He more likely wasn't given a reason at all other than he was suspected.

    To be honest, our csis has earned a lot of leeway with me. I don't think they should be allowed to arrest for stupid reasons or anything, and if it's just a stupid mistake they should certainly pay retributions but their past history has earned them the benefit of the doubt with me and I'd give them quite a while to explain themselves before condemning them.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 4:44pm

      Re:

      I was going to say something to the tune of, "Wow, at least in the US I can demand to know why I'm being arrested," but then I remembered the NDAA passed, so I probably can't now.

       

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    charlie potatoes, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 4:47pm

    Blowing things ... up?

    I have texted too many times to count, and no one came to arrest me... However, no one came to blow me, either.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 4:55pm

    Lawsuit

    You are missing an important fact, that he is suing them for only $100,000 and a certificate of good conduct.

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 5:47pm

    Your Privacy Is Toast

    This is law enforcement notifying everybody that they are reading all SMS messages. If you do anything with or from a mobile phone, your privacy is toast. Give it up. Mobile phones are not that important.

     

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    abc gum, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 6:29pm

    Dude should've known ... only good 'ol merikan boys 'n girls get away with such metaphors - you know - like a bullseye or sniper scope sight on a political ad with text like "target the opposition".

     

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    TtfnJohn (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 7:09pm

    I'm going to go hide my Canadian self under a bowl of poutine and a Montreal smoked meat sandwich with a side of Salish smoked salmon.

    What utter and complete stupidity.

     

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    robb clarke, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 7:42pm

    If there is anyone from the NSA or vany other company that is reading this the go fuck you self you cunt basdterd.... Fuck who ever you pray to. Its all about "the truth". Sad thing is to know it is to never go back... What am I talking about? Hurry up, clockis ticking.. Vtick tock

     

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    troybuckley (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 7:43pm

    @techdirt

    my neighbor's sister makes $74 every hour on the computer. She has been without work for 7 months but last month her check was $8673 just working on the computer for a few hours. Read more on this site...MakeCash7DOTcom

     

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      That Anonymous Coward (profile), Feb 9th, 2012 @ 10:11pm

      Re: @techdirt

      Sadly her payment was in pesos.
      Because she did stupid things like spam every blog she could find, paying no attention to the fact the average reader here would never bother to follow this sorta jackassed posting.
      You might think the trolls/shill might, they are weak minded, but they are to busy keeping up their correspondence with that Nigerian Banker who is going to get the millions to them as soon as the next payment arrives.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  •  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 9:22pm

    Does anyone else think a robust welfare program would keep stupid people from ruining our lives?

     

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 9th, 2012 @ 10:21pm

    I don't have those issues, VPN tunnels are good for private communications and TOR can deal with the online stuff.

    Governments are getting scary is time people start dealing with their privacy, with 10 of thousands of laws in the books on any one country anything you say can an will be used against you no matter how stupid it is, those people on law enforcement are in game mode, they don't use common sense they want to see how many they can nab for the heck of it apparently and see who scores more in the office.

     

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    Ninja (profile), Feb 10th, 2012 @ 2:22am

    Am I the only one asking myself how did they get access to the messages sent? (Sorry, haven't had the time to read through the comments).

    Sure the fact he was arrested for a figure of speech is disturbing but it's much more disturbing that they actually had access to his messages somehow.

     

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    Lord Binky, Feb 10th, 2012 @ 8:08am

    They knew exactly what they were doing...

    This is really just a joke for the law enforcement that make these "mistakes." The know perfectly well how they are in ZERO danger and then they get to show their good intentions while spouting the same "But what if I was right"/"It's because I CARE for your safety." This is the important parts to remember, They need to make sure people know they are there, They need to make sure people know they are working, and They don't want to be in any REAL danger. Going after actual terrorists, drug rings, organized crime, is REALLY dangerous. You see this on individuals all the time in the states. Which do you think the cop prefers to try and apprehend, the pothead sitting on a couch watching cartoons that sits there wide eyed and says "aw... damn" when cops bust down their door, or the xxxhead that can flip out and fight until his muscles tear without feeling it. Which one do you see in the news getting caught more? Exactly.

     

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    m0deth, Feb 10th, 2012 @ 1:41pm

    yet again, LE goes too far

    and repeatedly told his wife he was a terrorist. I recognize that law enforcement wants to be careful, but at some point, doesn't someone run these kinds of things through a "common sense" filter?


    Really? Common sense? How about a "Not be a piece of lying trash while you have no evidence" filter first?

    That might come in handy, I'm so glad the world rests in hands as skilled as these.

     

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    identicon
    Muhammad awais, May 4th, 2012 @ 10:27pm

    test message

    this is my test message to mobile

     

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