Thursday, 26 November 2009

The right to silence.

Computer programmers and software engineers tend to score highly on the autistic spectrum. They are not actually all mad as hatters, but those that are do well in that introspective and highly focussed career.

Little surprise then to find that one of their number is ever so slightly odd. Gary McKinnon odd. Interested in peculiar things, like model rockets.

'J' ran true to course, had his own software business and a model rocket making hobby. Declared himself to be a Libertarian. Moved to the Netherlands because he thought the UK was becoming a police state. Obviously certifiable.

He had at one point attempted to go to Canada without the required visa. Further evidence of his increasing mental instability was that he then took a train back to England to keep an appointment with HM Customs in respect of this offence - an offence for which no charges have been laid..

The authorities needed little more. The new French/English customs/anti-terrorism/passport control at the Eurostar terminal in Paris detected by cunning use of an x-ray machine that he had a model rocket about his person. No fuel, no explosives, nothing else, just a model rocket still in its packaging. Fool that he was.

They promptly radioed ahead to operation headquarters in England, and by the time our friend landed at St Pancreas, a full complement of our friendly local anti-terror Gestapo were waiting for him.

They broke into his hotel room and impounded his computer. Being a software developer he had a considerable amount of open source software code on his machine, as you do, and he had taken the precaution of encrypting his work. The police demanded the encryption key, they gave him one hour to hand it over under the UK Regulation of Investigatory Powers act (RIPA). Our friendly computer programmer, already believing the UK to be a police state, and having left the country to escape this sort of treatment, remained silent for the entire hour.

The police charged him with 'remaining silent', when he tried to get another passport to escape this hell hole, they also charged him with trying to obtain a new passport whilst they were still holding his old one. At no point have they charged him with anything to do with his model rocket, nor with anything found on his computer, nor with his earlier transgression regarding his attempted entry into Canada.

His crime was refusing to speak during that hour.

"There could be child pornography, there could be bomb-making recipes," said one detective.
"Unless you tell us we're never gonna know... What is anybody gonna think?"

He was sentenced to 13 months in Winchester Jail.

In his judgment, Judge Hetherington accepted 'J' was no threat to national security and noted his outsider lifestyle. "You... wished to involve yourself in a world which was largely based upon the access to the internet and using computers and not really interacting with other people in the ordinary outside world to any great extent," he said. "It is said on your behalf that you lead an existence rather akin to that of a monk, and that there is nothing sinister in any of this but it is essentially private matters and you do not see why you should have to disclose anything to the authorities."

Despite referencing his solitary existence, Judge Hetherington appeared not to know about 'J's mental health problems and criticised him for not speaking to authorities.
Abandoning normal court procedures, he said: "It was because I was satisfied you would not tell the Probation Service anything significant further that I saw no purpose in obtaining a pre-sentence report which is normally a prerequisite for someone of no previous convictions who has not previously received a prison sentence," he said.

Originally sentenced to 13 months for ten separate charges relating to ten separate requests of provide encryption keys, he was subsequently interviewed by a police psychiatrist.

"Do you think they are out to get you?"

Indeed he did. Little wonder! He says he felt harassed by authority and helpless against police he believed were determined to pin a crime on him.

The psychiatrist diagnosed him as a paranoid schizophrenic, and he is now held at a secure hospital, where his release date is subject to approval by his Doctors that he no longer thinks 'they are out to get him'.

OH Update: As if by magic, the Police were wrong to arrest someone for being too tall


Kingbingo said...

So much I could say.

In the end I settled for this: 'nineteen eighty four'

Anonymous said...

Poor bloody sod...We're fucked...totally and utterly fucked...

Sue said...

That's just horrible. I admit to being a little "odd and antisocial" too... scary to think it might now be against the law!

bofl said...

nothing to hide=nothing to worry about!!!!!!

i used to play in a band with a copper.he told me that there are thousands of laws at their disposal.##

if they want to get you they will find one!

rather odd that they dont arrest brown,darling,fat jacq,the lords etc?

Edgar said...

One ray of hope in all this is that the fuckers who take it on themselves to sit in judgement on people's attitudes to society might have failed to realise the scale of the opposition that could be brought to bear on them.

Wouldn't it be wonderfully paradoxical if it was the 'antisocial misfits' who, in the end, saved society?

Giolla said...

that's he's being held in such a manner might rather prove his point though as they have indeed got him.

JuliaM said...

"rather odd that they dont arrest brown,darling,fat jacq,the lords etc?"

Their top men know which side their bread is buttered. And more to the point, who's buttering it...

Reluctant Agent Of The State said...

I don't see how he can be under judicial investigation for attempting to enter Canada without the requisite visa, we don't even prosecute people in the UK for entering/attempting to enter THIS country without the requisite visa. The Canadians are unlikely to kick up a fuss, they'd just stick him on the next plane back and tell him not to try for a while or ever again.

And it certainly wouldn't be Customs, their 'detection' excise duties have been split from the revenue duties and merged with the immigration service to form the UK Border Agency.

But their (immigration) interest lies only with non-EU nationals entering the UK, and even then it is now only a passing interest (as the Home Office has removed all scope for experienced officers to use their own bloody initiative), certainly not with UK nationals seeking to enter Canada.

Furthermore, the x-ray scanners at Paris Gare du Nord are operated by a private security firm who scan people before they pass through the French Douanes and Police Aux Frontieres controls, and then through the UKBA controls before they board the train (the immigration controls, UK customs controls are still at St. Pancras, the French won't have UK Customs officers working in France, even though they are now united with immigration in the new UKBA) these scanners are not run under the control or oversight of the French or UK government agencies.

If they'd had any concerns they would have stopped him travelling and referred it to the PAF. They certainly (hopefully) wouldn't have allowed someone to board the train with the prospect of an explosive rocket and then just called ahead to St. Pancras.

Belive me, I know, I've spent enough time working this control and wishing I were somewhere else entirely.


Not that the police's and courts actions are incorrectly reported, it just sounds like it's been a little over-cooked to me, which is a shame because the way this guy has been treated is a fucking scandal.

Michael said...

I don't believe this, Anna. I thought I had read all of Kafka's short stories. Where did you find this one?

FTAC Watch said...

He was lucky to get his day in court; I never.

When they came for me, the police arrested me for breach of the peace while I was sitting chatting to them drinking my coffee. Once outside the building they dropped that arrest and used section 136 to cart me off to hospital. I’ve tried to complain to the IPCC about this unlawful detention but they whitewashed the ‘investigation’ with the police lying about the events of the arrest and said there was no case to answer.

I spent the next five months locked up and abused (bordering on torture), with ‘doctor’ Ferdinand Jonsson fabricating reasons to hold me on orders from the FTAC. Towards the end of my imprisonment, Jonsson decided to start forcibly administering drugs even though none had been used before just so he could claim that I was now receiving ‘treatment’. Privately, every member of the ward staff told me that what they were doing to me was wrong.

In the end I was released by a tribunal chaired by the wife of Keith Vaz. In their questioning of Jonsson the tribunal humiliated and ridiculed him and ordered my discharge.

However, the damage has been done and I face the rest of my life living in disgusting squalor with no hope of any improvement, and the high probability of things getting far worse. I’ve had enough and I will be ending it soon.

All I ever wanted to do is earn a living in peace.

Fausty said...

Just recently, the government amended the FTAC law such that only one medical bod is needed to put someone away, Soviet-style (stripped of all rights).

Instead of two.

Worse, the bod now needn't be a doctor; s/he just needs to be recognised by the HO as being capable of delivering a suitable medical opinion.

Tell me this law wasn't intended to be a political tool.

voice of reason said...

ftac.........dont do anything stupid....if you do then the bastards have won!!!!!!!!!

better to get yourself a new start.i know it seems hard.........then save up some money and go abroad........

margarita island looks good (google it....near venezuela)

these people in power do not care a shit about you and i or what is dont bow down.......leave.stick 2 fingers uop to them!

stasination said...

@ Reluctant Agent Of The State
It was apparently sniffer dogs at the Paris end that detected the rocket kit. More details at

microdave said...

"arresting people for being too tall might not be a very good idea."

Wasn't there something in a Monty Python sketch about being "sentenced to hang by the neck until you cheer up"???

Almost seems a better choice......

Anonymous said...

Please can we start killing the fucking useless traitors now?

FTAC Watch said...

Please can we start killing the fucking useless traitors now?

Well, I have the motive if anyone would care to add the means and the opportunity then I’d be a very willing volunteer; I have nothing left to lose.

Reluctant Agent Of The State said...

@ Stasination:

That makes a good deal more sense as the sniffer dogs would have been in operation at St. P station.

Cheers for clearing that up, a pedantic point maybe, but accuracy is very important and prevents accusations of US spinning like THEM.

BenS said...

That's pretty disgusting. What's the source (been busy and haven't seen this story)?

FTAC Watch said...


More info on this said...

As per

By wtwu on November 26, 2009 10:06 AM

By wtwu on November 26, 2009 1:52 PM

@ sam_m - the usual:

1. Political lobbying and education of MPs, of all parties, to reform RIPA to provide some proper, effective, checks and balances. This will also mean:
* Reform of the RIPA Commissioners,
* Reform / re-training of the technologically inept Crown Prosecution Service
* Reform of the dangerously bureaucratic Police Counter Terrorism Command.
2. Briefing of mainstream media journalists on encryption, privacy and proportionate security issues and policies
3. Education of defence lawyers on encryption, privacy and proportionate security issues and policies
4. Support for civil liberties organisations and think tanks like
* The NO2ID Campaign -
* The Foundation for Information Policy research -
* The Open Rights Group - etc.
5. Support for charities and lobby groups who campaign for better treatment of people with mental health problems, when they are victimised by the criminal (in)justice system.
6. Encouragement of people to make use of strong encryption routinely, even for non-sensitive files and communications.
7. Promotion of privacy or anonymity enhancing technologies which make heavy use of encryption, such as Tor - especially Tor servers and Exit nodes
8. Naming and shaming of the "architects of repression", who try to hide behind bureaucratic secrecy and media spin, who are helping to achieve the aims of our terrorist enemies, by destroying our freedoms and liberties.

Are you willing to help ?

We have been informed that "JFL" is now out of prison on probation, so no need for Prison PIN Phone credits etc.

This sort of thing must not be allowed to happen again.

Anonymous said...

We recently toured the North West, mainly around Liverpool / manchester, and was amased at how many railway stations had teams of police and sniffer dogs waiting by the ticket barriers.

Escape from New York said...

FTAC Watch please stop the record of saying that you are going to kill yourself. You are better than that and you are only talking yourself into it, rather than out of it. If you can, how about leaving the UK and living elsewhere? You do not require a work permit for another EU country.

Ireland is nice. You may also be able to still draw UK benefits aboard. For example, if they have forced you onto (Mental) Incapacity Benefit perhaps you can still draw that from aboard? That would be a good way of getting back at the gits that locked you up and a good way to escape to a new life.

Just trying to help.


To infinity and beyond! said...

Does anyone here know of the forthcoming new UK law to make it illegal to fly radio controlled first person view toy airplanes?

What are they fearful that various places in the UK get buzzed by these things? FFS, following on that same mental logic they should ban GPS receivers cause they can be used to more actually guide model planes.

Such "toys" "they" use themselves to remotely kill women and children in various places like Pakistan.

How about they just ban all toys the fuck wits.... Those Buzz Lightyears can be really dangerous.

shitting in our faces said...

meanwhile in la-la land.......

bofl said...

more fun with the uk bankers!

they wont stop until we are all broke!

Anonymous said...

Of course, if all else fails and they can't plant a naughty photo on his computer or an email disagreeing with officially ordained truths then they can always stick an ashtray near the scene of his crime and convict him on the charge of anti-social smoking while computing which is always good reason for handing out a lengthy prison term and nice sized fine and one to which the general public will nod in agreement and not raise a fuss when BBC makes the announcement.

heads up said...

heads up. bnp continue to be correct on various matters

Mapping out the strain on your NHS: 243 sick babies treated in one London hospital ward.... and just 18 mothers come from Britain

Last updated at 6:35 PM on 26th November 2009

Rogerborg said...

Kill yourself FTAC Watch? Nonsense, that'll be the last thing you'd ever do.

Fair point though. Clock this technobabble: "It would appear Mr Hynd has moved from pre-contemplation to being on the cusp of the contemplative and active stages of the change process."

You know, I'm beginning to think those Scientology loons may have a point about psychiatrists after all.

Old Holborn said...


Click this link and then be thankful for every single minute you live.

If they survive, you survive.

Tarquin said...

hey, I'm 5'11 and 12 stone - I'm threatening?

Ron Broxted said...

Being a certifiable lunatic who looks as if I might have a model rocket in my trouser pocket when I am thinking dirty thoughts about Peter Mandleson, I find this all very worrying.
On the bright side I wouldn't mind being locked up in a cell for 13 months with a large muscular black drug dealer.......Oooh matron.

Joe Public said...

Temporary Amnesia?

Jess The Dog said...

According to The Register, "J" pleaded guilty to all charges. This might not have been the best move....

mark said...

Will all the above kindly remove their tin-foil hats and rejoin the real world.

Anonymous said...

bit of a loon, but ffs.

poor bastard.

VotR said...

This country is a prison, keeping you all in. Fight the shameful system any way you can, even if it is picking a jailer on general election day. It is perhaps the only freedom we have here, despite the corruption and postal ballot fixing, it is something at least.

Those bastards.

Abroad is a great escape, but the jailers are not very forgiving in that department, much to "J's" unfortunate discovery.

bofl said...

holborn.that post re the pakistani women really does show what a bunch of medieval peasants their men are......

and we keep helping them.and we keep letting them in.........and we keep letting them spread their venomous religion!!!!!!!!

maybe you should do a post wholly on this.......?

i suppose they were all 'honour' realated?

any man that does that has no honour!

Old Holborn said...

just google acid attack.

Plenty of home grown nonsense

caesars wife said...

It is rather a sad world of of the cruelty of electronic social networks on those who design and understand them .

Imagine if ever one was to be elected PM oh er hold an a minute .......

Steve Libertine said...

This post makes no sense. Sorry OH. But it just doesn't.

And stop encouraging FTAC Watch you cunts. Please. I've been that low too. Speak to the man, normally, if you insist. Or else say nothing.


Ethan said...

Saw this in The Register. Disgraceful as is the MSM complete silence. Police state fuckwads need castrating.

adam said...

is there a source or is this your friend?

adam said...

sorry. found it

caesars wife said...

I think you will like the hospital one OH , step this way were here to make you better ??

Bullying UK State said...

The UK state and its cohorts is simply a bully.

If this was a school with such a bullying headmaster then parents would withdraw their children from the school until such times as the headmaster was removed.

If this was a school with such a bullying child then parents would withdraw their children from the school until such times as that child was removed.

Think of any aspect of UK life in which the State is not bullying you, your family or your nearest and dearest.

Still thinking aren't you, because there is nothing which the UK State is not bullying about.

Perhaps we could start by reporting the UK State to their own anti-bullying hotline ...

Anonymous said...

Best wishes to you, FTAC Watch - hang in there & don't give your erstwhile 'doctors' the pleasure of realising they've broken you - living well is the best revenge.
Re those 'acid' pictures OH. They made me so, so very angry - particularly as this seems to be accepted behaviour since the perps don't really seem to have been punished (or it omits to say so). Is this something all we British women can look forward once Gordon & Labour have fully realised their goal of 'diversification' & Sharia Law ('law'? I'd question that description) is rampant in this land? It also raises the question of why the fuck are we even engaging in debate with these animals (apologies to animals at this point)? To me, it makes a very good case for voting BNP as neither the Cons nor the Limp Dems will do anything to tackle immigration so they are encouraging the spread of this type of behaviour within the UK.

Eaton Socon Wunderkind said...

The same Ron Broxted who is attending a human rights conference? No, surely not, he has a blog in "The Independent" whereas you are a cyberstalking nonentity!

Ewanme said...

Eaton Socon Wunderkind would that be the same Ron Broxted also known as Wesley Groves the amateur female impersonator? The one who was sectioned under the mental welfare act to a secure unit and escaped by flushing himself down the toilet?

Ron Broxted said...

Ewanme there is no truth in what you say. I didn't flush myself down the toilet to escape. The orderlies did it because I would not stop crwying. So there.

JFL said...

From JFL.

The worst part was the start. They were ready and aiming to kill me, for missing an appointment. A knock at the door by a couple of Bobbies would have sufficed; "Found you."

I've contacted MSM heaps and they've shown less interest than the rejecting legal industry. Chris Williams was going to do a multi-page article in the Sunday Times yet at the last moment the editor cancelled due to my anonymity. ran a piece. The PSD (police compliants) have uptaken my case.

I'm open to questions.

From JFL.

Markoff said...

The Fixated Threat Assessment Centre (FTAC)

Do we never learn from history?

“Rise UP!
Like lions after slumber.
In unvanquishable number.
Shake your chains to earth like dew,
Which in your sleep have fallen on you.
Ye are many!
They are few.”

- Percy Bysshe Shelley, 1819

Anonymous said...

When Labour start their cull of the mentally impaired here in the UK could I please nominate Gordon Brown to be the first recipient of the service?
I saw him on TV this morning - he & the French midget (complete with stacked heels) have now come up with this whizzo plan of giving money (our money, presumably) to underdeveloped nations to help them achieve climate change..... Following in the footstep of his cuntish 'The Rev' father who distributed largesse left, right & centre. such largesse obtained not through his own works but by scrounging from the family of his Mrs - who had 'married beneath her' as the quaint phrase goes.

JFL said...

From JFL.

Impermanence. Season's Greetings.

The PSD apparently cannot say anything about the RIPA issue as it is the law. They are unwilling to take action against CTC for framing me, because of my 'Guilty' pleas. Here yet again justice is scant, hiding in their words unsaid, lingering just before their tongue. _If_ I hadn't spoken in court and attempted to interact my way out of jail, then they could investigate their own. So they claim now.

"Most people think," Bob Marley

From JFL

Neil Jones said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Neil Jones said...

This sounds frighteningly familiar, with my own dilemna, and that of a friend Dave Carroll.



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