Customs' Hamfisted Attempts To Intimidate Wikileaks Volunteers

from the witch-hunts dept

Computer security expert (and US citizen) Jacob Appelbaum, who is well known for his work on Tor, had been having some issues lately concerning his involvement as a volunteer with Wikileaks. He was among those who had their info requested by the Feds via Twitter. And he's been having issues traveling to and from the US lately. Last July, he was detained upon flying into the country and it looks like something similar has happened again, where he was detained, searched and questioned after flying into Seattle from a vacation in Icleand.

He was careful to travel with no computers or gadgets whatsoever, other than some USB keys with encrypted versions of the Bill of Rights. He noted that the initial customs agent, to whom he handed over the declaration form was friendly until she pulled up his account, and from there things went sour. He asked to speak to a lawyer, which was denied on the grounds that he wasn't being arrested.

Apparently he was told initially that he was pulled aside as part of a "random" search, which leads Appelbaum to joke about the actual randomness -- which was also shown to be false when one of the agents mentioned his pre-flight Twitter activity.. He also pointed out that those detaining him were disappointed that he wasn't traveling with computers or mobile phones, and that Iceland had plenty of computers, such that he didn't need to bring his own.

In the end, after about half an hour's detention and search, they did let him go. Some might consider that to not be that big of a deal, but it clearly has something of a chilling effect. He notes that the mental stress of being in such a situation is not at all enjoyable. This is unfortunate. If he's done something wrong, arrest him. If he has not, harassing him every time he crosses the border is just obnoxious.


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  1.  
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    The eejit (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 1:46am

    Those oifficer, and wheichever numbnuts diceded that this was a good idea should be fired for abject stupidity.

     

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  2.  
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    Radical Subjectivist., Jan 13th, 2011 @ 2:07am

    Spelling.

    those detaining him were disappointed that he wasn't traveling with computers or mobile phones, and that ICLEAND had plenty of computers, such that he didn't need to bring his own.

    Spelling mistake

     

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  3.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 2:27am

    Re: Spelling.

    Hey what do you have against Icleland? It's a perfect valid counrty :)

    No offense to "The eejit" either, but if you want spelling mistakes check out that comment!

     

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  4.  
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    The Joker, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 2:31am

    For a country that prides itself on freedom in all things, it has a startling frequency with which its citizens are abused by the government just because they're against the status quo, or they do something the government disagrees with.

     

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  5.  
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    egbert, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 2:34am

    you all know the rules. 'even though you do or have done nothing wrong, i know who you are, i can stop you, i can detain you, i can make you life difficult, unnecessarily, so i will'. good ol' USA! land of freedom, my ass!!

     

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    AJ, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 3:27am

    I'm surprised he's not in jail like everyone else in America.

    wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_incarceration_rate

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:08am

    I think the message here is clear. If you have anything to do with any attempt to expose government corruption, you WILL be Freedom Fondled.

     

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  8.  
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    The eejit (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:08am

    Re: Re: Spelling.

    Always good for a giggle, I am. :D

     

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  9.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:35am

    Re: Spelling.

    Oops. Fixed. Thanks.

     

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  10.  
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    btrussell (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:36am

    "He asked to speak to a lawyer, which was denied on the grounds that he wasn't being arrested."
    I'm not under arrest? Bye!

     

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  11.  
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    Lin Mu (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:42am

    Plenty of computers

    So he lands somewhere, barrows any computer, downloads TOR, logs into a private server anywhere, logs into a turecrypt partition, downloads a copy of his favorite OS, checks the hash, burns a disk or thumb drive, loads new OS, and boots into a now known secure computer. ...

    Duh ... "I don't cary no stinking computer" ...

     

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  12.  
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    The Mighty Buzzard (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:42am

    Re:

    That sound you just heard was the sound of every 30/yo guy living in his parents' basement making flight arrangements at the same time.

     

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  13.  
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    Pen & Ink (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:43am

    btrussell is right; they don't understand the definition of arrest either.

     

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  14.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:50am

    Re:

    Erm, I think that sitting around the immigrations office of the country of which you're a citizen and which you're trying to enter is a place where that doesn't apply. On the street? Sure. But, where would you suggest he goes after saying "bye" if they won't let him enter without going through the detainment first?

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:54am

    As long as Mr Applebaum continues to be part of a group committed to distribute stolen US confidential documents, he will find himself on the receiving end every time he deals with authorities.

    That he is stupid enough to tweet about it while in customs only shows that he doesn't take any of this seriously. It also proves that he doesn't understand the difference between "detained" and "arrested". Failure on the basic stuff makes me wonder what else wikileaks screws up.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:54am

    Man, that's just wrong. I'm betting one day it will be China asking the US to knock it off with the privacy and human rights violations, and not the other way around.

     

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  17.  
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    ibforum (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:54am

    WikiLeaks

    Poke a Bear in the eye once too many times and the results will be quite predictable.

     

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  18.  
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    btrussell (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:59am

    Re: Re:

    "An arrest is the act of depriving a person of his or her liberty usually in relation to the investigation and prevention of crime or harm to others and oneself as well. The term is Anglo-Norman in origin and is related to the French word arręt, meaning "stop".

    The word 'arrest' when used in its ordinary and natural sense, means the apprehension or restraint of a person, or the deprivation of a person's liberty. The question whether the person is under arrest or not depends not on the legality of the arrest, but on whether the person has been deprived of personal liberty of movement. When used in the legal sense in the procedure connected with criminal offenses, an arrest consists in the taking into custody of another person under authority empowered by law, to be held or detained to answer a criminal charge or to prevent the commission of a criminal or further offense. The essential elements to constitute an arrest in the above sense are that there must be an intent to arrest under the authority, accompanied by a seizure or detention of the person in the manner known to law, which is so understood by the person arrested. (Para 46 of Directorate of Enforcement v. Deepak Mahajan (1994)3 SCC 440)"
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arrest

     

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  19.  
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    The eejit (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 5:03am

    Re:

    No, YOU don't understand the difference. You can be detained AND arrested pending an investigation. And the imormation is not 'stolen', it is 'infringed'. Get it right.

     

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  20.  
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    Michael, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 5:06am

    Re:

    Are you missing a sarcmark or something?

    Yes, he is being investigated. However, he is being investigated by a completely different authority. Since they have been unable (so far) to find something he has done to be illegal, they have decided to place him on a list of people that is to be detained and extensively searched every time they enter the country despite not even being ACCUSED of ever illegally transporting anything out of or into the country.

    That seems like the same thing as having the police stop his car every time they see it and give him a sobriety test. Either charge him with a crime, or leave him alone. A country that harasses citizens that it cannot legally jail is not the land of freedom.

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 5:07am

    Re:

    "As long as Mr Applebaum continues to be part of a group committed to distribute stolen US confidential documents, he will find himself on the receiving end every time he deals with authorities."

    Uh, if you are referring to Wikileaks, newsflash: No document was stolen. They are still available. In fact, now you have even more copies (free backups!).

     

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  22.  
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    Marcel de Jong (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 5:15am

    Re:

    As long as you continue to anonymously misrepresent Wikileaks' actions, despite the many corrections people have given you, you don't have to expect any kind of respect from the people here.

    Where does it say he tweeted about his trip while in customs?
    The fact that the customs officers pointed his tweet out, proved that the detainment wasn't random.

     

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  23.  
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    btrussell (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 5:23am

    Re: Re:

    (Me)Am I under arrest? (Them)No
    (Me)Bye! (Them)Stop right there.
    I keep walking. (Them)Places hands on me to "detain" me.
    (Me)Am I under arrest or are you assaulting me for which I will legally take steps to defend myself including the use of physical force?

     

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  24.  
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    btrussell (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 5:26am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Forgot to include that I and my belongings have been thoroughly searched and nothing illegal or incriminating has been found. I have gone through your "detainment" process.

     

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  25.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 5:46am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Erm, yeah? That doesn't exactly answer my point. If you're not under arrest, they're still detaining you until they decide to let you in the country. The country in which you reside. Where are you supposed to go if you say "bye" before they do that?

     

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  26.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 5:47am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    The search is the detainment, moron, and they can take as long as they want, every time you go through customs. Where do you get to say "bye" before that?

     

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  27.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:11am

    Maybe some public comment is needed---

    Instructions for reporting unprofessional conduct by US Customs agents found HERE

    If the public says nothing, then government thinks no one cares when a few individuals are mistreated.

     

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  28.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:13am

    More of the best money can buy.

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:15am

    Applebaum is also a member of other groups, including CDC. I have a feeling that some of those involved will wish they hadn't messed with some of the more technically competent American citizens; we're talking about people responsible for discovering major PKI weaknesses, among other things. I'd doubt they'll see as much friendly cooperation from them...

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:18am

    The U.S. really has turned into a tyrant nation. In terms of airport searches and whatnot we are probably by far the worst. Everyone who comes into the country always complains of the difficulty it takes to enter. I myself have been searched (though I cooperated and it was quick and uneventful) for no apparent reason and others I know have also complained about being searched and having airport security take their time delaying their entrance. Everyone says that going to any other country is not a problem, but entering the U.S. is a problem. I even know someone who had his laptop searched upon entering. After a long time of searching his stuff and his laptop, they found nothing and let him enter. He says that going anywhere else (even Israel) isn't such a problem. and they waste all this money and everyone's time to do this and it doesn't improve security much.

    BTW, what ever happened to that wikileaks Bank of America leak? Has Bank of America plugged that leak with some dollar bills? Did they pay Wikileaks off not to leak it?

     

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  31.  
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    Steve R. (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:19am

    "He was careful to travel with no computers or gadgets whatsoever, other than some USB keys with encrypted versions of the Bill of Rights. Well did Customs figure out what he was carrying?

    Really you don't need computers or even a USB device to transport data that could be highly sensitive. There are many ways to "hide" data on your person, assuming that you have to go this route. Encrypted emails would be a more efficient route since it would bypass Customs ability to intercept.

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:23am

    On the bright side...

    On the bright side, this is the best the government could come up with... or is that a downside? I dunno anymore...

     

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  33.  
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    abc gum, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:26am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    They can also tell you to pick up that can.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:28am

    Re: Re: Spelling.

    Another instance of same typo, 'vacation in Icleand'.

     

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  35.  
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    abc gum, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:29am

    Re:

    Those jack boots look good on you

     

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  36.  
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    bosconet (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:31am

    Next time he should bring a computer

    Not one he actually uses mind you but a through away one. get a cheap surplus one for $100 or so, install and OS on an encrypted partition and then fill up the partition with another encrypted file with the output of /dev/random. Let them confiscate it and enjoy themselves. As a added bonus they might think that the encrypted /dev/random file is some new encryption they can't break...

     

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  37.  
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    The Groove Tiger (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:46am

    Re: WikiLeaks

    In Fascist America, A Bear Pokes You.

     

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  38.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 6:56am

    Re: WikiLeaks

    Yeah, just look at what poking Wikileaks did.

     

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  39.  
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    btrussell (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 7:06am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Sorry , but re-read what I wrote.

    I'll try to simplify it for you.
    Your words:
    The search is the detainment, moron, (Name calling? What are you upset about? Can't someone disagree/have different opinion with you?)

    My words:
    I and my belongings have been thoroughly searched and nothing illegal or incriminating has been found. I have gone through your "detainment" process.

    Where did I say "bye" before the thorough search?
    Why are you needlessly detaining me further? Harassment?

    Need more time for what? Time to plant something?

     

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  40.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 7:13am

    Re:

    they waste all this money and everyone's time to do this and it doesn't improve security *at all*.
    There, fixed that for you.

    Don't forget, people still walk on to planes with loaded guns in their carry-on, and we still have 2 very large buildings in New York missing...

     

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  41.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 7:21am

    Re: Next time he should bring a computer

    Just make sure you wipe the drive to at least DoD standards. Don't want to be held accountable for what the previous owner was doing...

     

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  42.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 7:22am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I was referring, of course, to the little play you wrote out in the comment directly above the one I replied to.

    ...and again you didn't answer the question. He's not under arrest, he's being detained while being searched before they allow him into the country. At what point in that is "I'm not under arrest? Bye!" an option?

     

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  43.  
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    MD2000, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 7:36am

    Customs is disappointed

    A foreigner they can simply deny entry to for any reason - hey look suspicious, they disagree with the government of the land of the free, or the customs guy is just having an off day. Several suggestions above invlolve mouthing off to the customs guy or asserting your "rights". As a foreigner asking to enter the country, you have less than zero rights. Smile and say "yessir".

    Unfortunately, an actual citizen of the USA, they eventually have to either charge him or allow him back in.

     

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  44.  
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    ComputerAddict (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 8:49am

    Re: Next time he should bring a computer

    yea do that... then the egg-heads will probably just happen to conveniently "decode" the random characters into a terrorist death threat... It's easy to decode stuff when you decide what the message is gonna say anyways...

     

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  45.  
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    ComputerAddict (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 8:50am

    Re: Customs is disappointed

    FORTUNATELY, an actual citizen of the USA, they eventually have to either charge him or allow him back in.

    There Fixed that for ya ;)

     

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  46.  
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    Stephen Paulger, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 8:58am

    Encrypted bill of rights

    I don't think he encrypted the bill of rights. Just 'dd'ed it onto a USB key.

     

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  47.  
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    DCL, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 9:38am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Isn't he a US Citizen? If he walks out the door onto US non-controlled-by-Customs soil without going through their checks I guess he could be charged with something.

    His other option is to turn around and sit on a bench in the waiting area until the shift change or he decides to get a ticket... wasn't that the plot of the Terminal (with Tom Hanks)?

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 9:42am

    Re: Re: Re:

    When you enter into a customs area, you are voluntarily giving yourself over to authorities for inspection. Until they accept that you are legally entering the country, and not carrying contraband or otherwise breaking import laws, you are voluntarily restrained.

    Arrests only happen when you have been charged. Otherwise, you are detained. In customs, there is only one way to go if you don't want to go through the process, which is back where you came from.

     

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  49.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 9:46am

    Re: Re:

    I get so bored of this stupid argument.

    Documents obtained illegally, secret documents obtained by someone illegally making copies of them. Contraband.

    if that is your entire argument, you already lost the discussion. You know Applebaum is part of an organization that is part of potential act of treason, and that it is very likely that any member of the group may be carrying additional documents or copies of documents with them that would be illegal. Wikileaks is under investigation, and everyone member of that organization that presents itself to enter the US should expect to get themselves and all of their luggage and carry on belongings checked very, very closely.

    He should considering himself lucky that he didn't get the rubber glove treatment.

    You know it, you are just being a moron and playing word semantic games. That is a losing position.

     

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  50.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 9:49am

    Re: Re:

    he was stopped at customs. Last I knew, the transport of classified documents to export them outside of the country (even in digital form) would be considered illegal, and as such, a member of Wikileaks should expect such checks at every entry and exit of the US.

    Wikileaks is known to have possession of documents of this type, and it is a very good conclusion that members of the organization are likely to have similar documents on their person, on their laptops, or in their luggage. How hard is that to understand?

    If he doesn't like it, he can move to sweden or wherever full time and stop trying to get into the US.

     

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  51.  
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    Gwiz (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 10:55am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I get so bored of this stupid argument.

    Umm..ok. Why are you here commenting on this article then?

    You know Applebaum is part of an organization that is part of potential act of treason...

    Well actually, I don't know that at all. If you are talking about Manning, who presumably took the info in the first place (not sure, no trial yet) well then maybe.

    Wikileaks is under investigation, and everyone member of that organization that presents itself to enter the US should expect to get themselves and all of their luggage and carry on belongings checked very, very closely.

    He should considering himself lucky that he didn't get the rubber glove treatment.


    I don't dispute either of the statements. But realizing that they are true doesn't change my opinion that they morally wrong.

     

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  52.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:04am

    Things nobody has mentioned yet:

    Firstly, this atrocity against Applebaum took place outside of American jurisdiction - that is, assuming he was not let into the country prior to being detained, then he has no constitutional rights as he is not on American soil.

    Secondly, there is no right to a lawyer except when being interrogated by the police (or authorities). Thus, if he is having a "nice" discussion around the water cooler, there is no right to an attorney.

    Lastly, he was just back from a "vacation to Iceland." Has no one noticed that one of the three Wikileaks volunteers in the news of late (along with Applebaum) is an Icelandic citizen? No one mentioned this, that's for sure. I venture to say it did not go unnoticed by the American "authorities."

     

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  53.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:17am

    Re: The Terminal

    About The Terminal: it was purportedly based on the case of Mehran Karimi Nasseri, who lived in Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris, France, for 18 years. There was an autobiography; the case presents an interesting case in the disaster of the "no man's land" that exists between exiting one country and entering another.

     

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  54.  
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    ltlw0lf (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:26am

    Re: Re:

    That sound you just heard was the sound of every 30/yo guy living in his parents' basement making flight arrangements at the same time.

    Do I have to make flight arrangements? Figure I could just go on Craig's List and find someone that can give me a Freedom Fondle and bypass the whole travel/airport thing.

     

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  55.  
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    ltlw0lf (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:31am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    That doesn't exactly answer my point. If you're not under arrest, they're still detaining you until they decide to let you in the country. The country in which you reside. Where are you supposed to go if you say "bye" before they do that?

    Under the law, a detainment is not necessarily an arrest. They can detain you legally long enough to determine that a crime has not been committed, and then must let you go. The question is how long can they legally detain you, and the Supreme Court has said that it can only be as long as necessary to determine whether or not a crime has occurred, and no longer.

    You cannot leave when you are being detained, just as you can not leave if you are being arrested, but with a detainment, the clock starts automatically, and if they detain you for a period longer than what is reasonable to determine whether a crime has been committed or not, then you have a case for a violation of your 4th Amendment Rights.

     

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  56.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:36am

    Re: Israel and the US and Airport Security

    The safest airline in the world is generally accepted to be Israel's El-Al Airlines, and their security procedures, while not completely uncontroversial in themselves, have little in common with their American counterparts. Officials in other countries have criticized and ridiculed American efforts at airport security.

    Seems to me like American airport security is all about show and politics - and cost-cutting - and not about real security (not to mention the trampling of rights of all forms).

     

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  57.  
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    ltlw0lf (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:38am

    Re:

    btrussell is right; they don't understand the definition of arrest either.

    No, unfortunately you are wrong, and neither of you understand the definition of arrest as it relates to legal detainment. A law enforcement officer can legally detain you without arresting you, such as during a traffic stop, with nothing more than reasonable suspicion that you committed a crime. However, they must determine probable cause of you committing a crime before they can arrest you. If they can't, in a reasonable amount of time, they have to let you go. When entering a country, they may detain you long enough to determine whether you haven't committed a crime, and whether or not you're authorized to enter the country, and then they have to let you go.

    So, they under the definition of arrest fine, and so long as he was not held longer than reasonable to determine if a crime was committed, no rights were violated.

     

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  58.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:40am

    Re: Moving to Sweden?

    If he doesn't like it, he can move to sweden or wherever full time and stop trying to get into the US.

    Perhaps he should leave Fascist America for places that place a much higher value on individual human rights - like Sweden and Iceland for instance...

     

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

  59.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:42am

    Re: Re: Re:

    It's amazing how "treason" can apply to non-US citizens and organizations.

    Or are you just arrogant enough to think your country encompasses the entire world?

     

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

  60.  
    icon
    ltlw0lf (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:42am

    Re: Re:

    No, YOU don't understand the difference. You can be detained AND arrested pending an investigation. And the imormation is not 'stolen', it is 'infringed'. Get it right.

    He is right. But only about the difference between detainment/arrest.

    Wikileaks has not, and I'd argue that they will never be found to have, committed a crime. Being part of the organization should not be grounds for additional scrutiny. And what I believe is happening here is absolutely wrong. However, an arrest is always a detainment, but detainment is not always an arrest under the law.

     

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

  61.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 12:19pm

    Re: Re: Customs is disappointed

    > FORTUNATELY, an actual citizen of the USA, they eventually have to either charge him or allow him back in.

    > There Fixed that for ya ;)

    FOrtunate for him; but, unfortunate for the customs officials, they did not have any valid reason to hold him longer, deny him entry, and otherwise throw their weight around.

     

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

  62.  
    icon
    Chargone (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 1:41pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    all evidence points to 'yes' ... :S

     

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

  63.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 1:51pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Yeah im sure they would use sneaker net for this clandestine endeavor. With all the secure comm tech in use everyday these folks are not stupid enough to take hours to move the documents. It would be through secure channels and transmitted in seconds.

    This country is out of control and watching it degenerate into the likes of stupid high school argurments and he said shoot em argumets is both funny as Fuck and terrifying. Its plain to see the people in office have never not gotten their ways.
    To quote another techdirt poster..."the sooner were hit by a extinction event metor the better"

     

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

  64.  
    icon
    teka (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 1:54pm

    Re: Things nobody has mentioned yet:

    wow.

    You are truly terrifying.

    Actions taken inside the geographic area of the United States, performed by agents of the United States government inside a building built on the soil of the United States, against a citizen of the United States who was lawfully traveling home to the United States from a country which we are not at war with or having any standing terror alert against..


    These actions can be declared to be "outside of American jurisdiction" by a simple wrinkle of law?

    Fun.

    And being held, against your will, for an indeterminate period, with no right to leave is not being "arrested" because this same United Stated Government organization, which has proclaimed that it does not operate under US jurisdiction, also claims that a Citizen has no rights while being so detained.

    You can say all that and still say that it is the victim who was being foolish? that he should expect such treatment for being thought to be connected to a group who has not been charged with any crime?

    scary.
    And thus liberty dies, with the applause of the confined.

     

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

  65.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 2:20pm

    No big deal?

    "In the end, after about half an hour's detention and search, they did let him go. Some might consider that to not be that big of a deal, but it clearly has something of a chilling effect."

    You know, if I were to just grab someone off the streets and detain and search them, even for half an hour, I'd probably be committing a FELONY punishable by some serious prison time.

    No big deal? Hardly!

     

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

  66.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 2:27pm

    Re: Re: Things nobody has mentioned yet:

    "These actions can be declared to be "outside of American jurisdiction" by a simple wrinkle of law?"

    According to the Supreme Court, the answer is YES.

    In fact, thanks to a neocon-packed Supreme Court, the bill of rights doesn't even apply within 100 miles of the border. That's really terrifying.

     

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

  67.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:15pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You cannot leave when you are being detained, just as you can not leave if you are being arrested, but with a detainment, the clock starts automatically, and if they detain you for a period longer than what is reasonable to determine whether a crime has been committed or not, then you have a case for a violation of your 4th Amendment Rights.

    But apparently no right to a lawyer to help you make that case.

     

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

  68.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:15pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    In customs, there is only one way to go if you don't want to go through the process, which is back where you came from.

    Except TSA doesn't generally let you do that, either.

     

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

  69.  
    identicon
    Winston Smith, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:36pm

    Re: Re: Moving to Sweden?

    Good idea. Packing bags as I type this... while there is still a chance of leaving. (Not to Sweden though; not saying where.) As a child, I wondered about the "good Germans" and the Third Reich. Now, I wonder about the "good Americans" and the Fourth Reich.

     

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

  70.  
    identicon
    Who Me?, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 4:42pm

    Re: Re: Israel and the US and Airport Security

    Yep. It might be a good idea to startup an airlines called Paranoid Airlines ("Fly Paranoid") - based on the procedures of an Oakland, California bar I heard about where every customer is frisked upon entering and, if no weapon is found during the pat-down, a weapon is issued to the customer - for the duration of the visit to the premises. All passengers, when "Flying Paranoid" would be issued a taser, with instructions to watch each other. (Yes, I know this is off topic in re: Yankee returns to "homeland"... but close enough to make a point (about absurdity and abuse of power).

     

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

  71.  
    icon
    ltlw0lf (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 8:33pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    But apparently no right to a lawyer to help you make that case.

    True, and don't let my statement make you believe that I am making excuses for what is happening here. I do not like what is happening here, and I've said so before and since. But this is the way the law works, and if Jacob Appelbaum's rights are being violated (which I believe is occurring because he is being unjustly persecuted for supporting a site which isn't violating any current laws,) then the law allows for him to sue the government for grievances.

    In this case, however, detainment is not arrest, and until he is arrested, his right to have a lawyer present has been found to be unnecessary by the courts. I suspect this is because they are worried that by allowing lawyers to be present during entry to a country (or during a traffic stop) would be an unnecessary distraction and would cause more stress than it solves. I guess that they figure that afterwards, if a person's rights have been violated, they can contact a lawyer and go through the courts to become whole again.

     

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

  72.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 13th, 2011 @ 10:22pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I suspect this is because they are worried that by allowing lawyers to be present during entry to a country (or during a traffic stop) would be an unnecessary distraction and would cause more stress than it solves.

    I suspect they are worried that having a lawyer present would make it more difficult to violate someone's rights.

    I guess that they figure that afterwards, if a person's rights have been violated, they can contact a lawyer and go through the courts to become whole again.

    Once your rights have been violated, they can't be un-violated. That would be like trying to un-rape someone.

     

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

  73.  
    icon
    ltlw0lf (profile), Jan 13th, 2011 @ 11:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I suspect they are worried that having a lawyer present would make it more difficult to violate someone's rights.

    Maybe, but since it is judges and not TSA behind this case law, I find it difficult to see them (who were once lawyers themselves) being part of some grand conspiracy. I suspect if TSA keeps doing what they're doing, eventually the Supreme Court is going to take this away from them.

     

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

  74.  
    identicon
    BBT, Jan 14th, 2011 @ 7:27am

    Re: Re: Re:

    If you're tired of being corrected, stop saying things that are wrong.

     

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


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