People have long suspected they can be targeted for long term law enforcement attention. Such practices are of course usually denied, and the debate has raged on. One presumed vehicle has been umbrella Watchlists, those national scope devices which are all the rage lately, but any agency worth its salt would have a database of its own – or so the culture goes – which means there is a good chance any given Agency not only targets people, but makes long term plans based on such targets.
One problem with oversight of these systems has been the environment in which they thrive. Targeting seems to ride upon the information provided by Confidential Reliable Informants, or Confidential Human Sources, who wield secret identities, and whose records are hidden. CRIs and CHSs then become the secret gatekeepers for who should be treated to a life of suspicion.
What we have found in studying this matter, and as this U.S. Supreme Court Amicus Briefmakes clear, is that such a life of suspicion is a very difficult life. The question then becomes what part of our constitution allows such treatment and punishment without Due Process. Our research here shows there is no way to square our Consititution with how current watchlists are implemented.
Another facet is the prevailing mentality surrouding Confidential Sources: The mentality is that ‘it takes one to know one,’ so it takes a criminal to know a criminal. Now we know that CRIs and CHSs are comprised largely of experienced and well known criminals, and that this is how criminals get to dictate whose life will be effectively destroyed.
Up to now it has been difficult to obtain evidence of Agency targeting, but one of our most recent cases yielded that note above, plainly admitting that our client has been targeted, and by whom. We are bringing that document here so you can see what targeting looks like, first-hand. That is the document at the header of this blog entry.
So there it is, a government document saying someone is an Active Target of a certain Agency, in black and white. And there is the reference to the ‘Confidential Reliable Informant,’ as one expects with these systems.
There is more that was found from the records search on this client, suffice it to say we will be discussing this case as soon as we are able. For now rest assured, we are working to show unwarranted targeting exists, how it is damaging people, and how it should be stopped.
It’s the price of a magazine or newspaper that might have left you drained and sleepy at the end, with no change and no real information in sight. We are doing it different, making positive change happen because we believe in the community and what it can achieve together. Thanks.
How would you like your perp’s name on a two year restraining Order ?
Early this Morning we were in a California Court and got a C.C.P. 527.6 Order, to prohibit harassment and stalking.
The victim is a 60 year old woman, subject to stalking and harassment by her neighbor. Her efforts to get government assistance yielded little.
What merits a C.C.P. 527.6 Order ?
Well I can describe the facts of this case so you can get an idea what is needed:
–Stalking: Respondent repeatedly appearing at Respondent’s kitchen window, sometimes wielding a camera and snapping pictures of the inside of Petitioner’s home; combed through Petitioner’s facebook, and cobbled her information into a defamation campaign, using flyers to pre-dispose her neighbors against her. Here is one example:
He used this to question Petitioner’s mental sanity, mostly by referring to her work on emerging medical technologies, which is information that is outside of the common experience. Then the perp prepared another document, alleging she engaged in violence – again a total fabrication – and this created the false impression of physical danger.
People who hear those combined labels of insanity and potential violence don’t want to talk to subject – they worry they might set them off – so this combintion makes it very hard to find out what is happening, and even harder to dispel those lies.
The goal was to unhinge the Petitioner. After defamation and stalking Respondent pressed onto veiled threats of violence, including rape; and uttering these words at her kitchen window. Petitioner is alone much of the time. Is it by fear of violence that victims are usually keept silent.
That is usually enough for most stalkers, but this case had a unique angle: The Respondent tried to trap Petitioner inside a 12 foot high, 36 foot long Wall of plastic tarp. Something he built just outside Petitioner’s windows.
He built this haphazard structure with wooden poles and staple guns, raising a wall of darkness around Petitioner’s home, robbing the Petitioner of sun and fresh air; making her feel like a prisoner in her own home. It looked like he was trying to build a cage.
While he was building this he sat just outside Petitioner’s kitchen window, mouthing vile sexually charged insults at the 60 year old Petitioner, who initially stood there in disbelief, in her own kitchen, watching herself being boxed in.
She called the police, and they did not solve the problem. The city was apparently too busy.
Respondent had already threatened to shoot someone for serving legal papers on him. A well founded fear of violence kept other people from doing anything. To top it all off, there were no funds to hire a regular firm.
That’s where the Legal Coop got involved. People have a right to live peaceful, law abiding lives, free from a power-tripping stalking neighbor. It doesn’t matter who they are, too many alarm bells brought unwanted attention and we went in to restore peace.
We started investigating as described elsewhere. And this very morning months of resolute picture taking, legal work, and journaling paid off. The evidence was clear, the result incisive:
The gavel came down on a 2 Year Restraining Order against Respondent. This is a promise of jail time if the conduct continues. In addition, People may be soon be compensated for their losses, and peace may yet prevail there.
There is an added benefit. Those Restraining Orders go into a Police computer system known as CLETS, and immediately show up on the squad cars’ computer screens in any related call. Police know who they are dealing with, before they arrive on the scene. It also means the stalker’s record now reflects what they have done.
The Respondent was heard in his true colors at the end of the hearing. He said strange things like “the police” told him to do that. As if he was just doing what he was told. Well, no legitimate police would do such a thing, and it is he that will be held fully responsible.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this bit of positive action on this sparse front. We will continue to fight for people affected by harassment and stalking. We simply ask that you help support our work by making a $5 or $10 donation and comment right here:
The United Nations has jurisdiction over ill-treatment and harassment by government actors. By right of treaty, said jurisdiction extends within the United States.
Though such jurisdiction has been used to curtail abuses in conflict zones abroad, the UN has recently turned towards addressing what it calls ‘Cyber Torture.’
Cyber Torture is an insidious practice featuring misused medical implants, neurotechnological devices, weaponized psychology, information technology, and mobbing to create dramatic abuse and mistreatment of innocent people. Not surprisingly, the abuse is sometimes streamed live to voyeuristic clients for their ‘entertainment.’ Such practices are not limited to conflict zones, and the more exposure on this practice, the better.
The Legal Coop is working with individuals who are currently targets of such networks, and we will continue to endeavor to protect their rights.
There is now a call for feedback from the UN on the causes and potential solutions to ill-treatment, harassment, and torture. This is an opportunity to inform one of the few international bodies dealing with an issue that affects many.
There is a very short deadline to perform this action, three days from now: June 21, 2020 is the deadline for submissions. Accordingly, we will accept two paragraphs from each person interested in presenting feedback, and we will edit, anonymize and send an overall response by the deadline.
Simply email us with one paragraph on what you perceive as the causes for harassment and ill treatment by government actors, and one pragraph on what you perceive as potential solutions. Please send your contribution to thelegalcoop at protonmail dot com by 5PM U.S. PST, on June 21st, 2020.
You can also send your own report, and can find specific details here:
As The Legal Coop continues addressing the many causes of harassment, there is one difficult topic that keeps coming up: misdirected police and intelligence resources.
These types of cases recur on corruption or flaws within our law enforcement system, and are difficult but not impossible to address. One common denominator is false charges or rumor, translating into prolongued surveillance, watchlisting, and harassment of law abiding citizens.
If you do not believe such situations occur, FNU Tanzin v. Tanvir (“Tanvir”) is an excellent source of clarity. In Tanvir the allegations are of persons watchlisted who did not commit a crime. Rather, in a very good example of a flaw in the system, they were allegedly watchlisted because the government wanted to recruit them.
That’s right, watchlisting, as a means to eager labor.
This alleged ground for watchlisting is interesting, and one of the most baseless reasons we see : some official wanting a certain person, to rope them into their prized den of Confidential Human Source informants.
As in, they wanted a snitch, and they thought watchlisting would make the recruiting easier.
Little credence if any, seems given to the individual’s wishes on the matter. Once watchlisted, some leaders in the community are told to ‘watch’ the person for reasons unkown, and word gets around. Then, lore has it that some will endeavor to expedite a calamitous ‘fall,’ where recruitment offers are more likely to succeed. Exclusion, job losses, and harassment eventually become the norm; there is no chance to confront the accuser, and no amends made for the ensuing suffering and economic losses.
Tanvir is among the cases aimed at changing that, first by establishing the destructive nature of watchlisting. There are many harrowing tales of pursuit, derision, and aggression, all of which establish watchlisting is not really subtle watching, rather devolving into baiting and thus bringing undeserved and devastating consequences on good people. Tanvir also implicates religious freedom, due the well documented practice of heavy watchlisting, entrapment, and surveillance being leveled against muslim communities.
The second critical aspect of Tanvir is enabling fee awards to the few attorneys who pursue such cases. Fee awards make sense: Most victims are bewildered, shamed, and otherwise paralyzed by the inexplicable obloquy; they wait too long before enforcing their rights. This predictably renders many of them destitute. As a result, legal avenues for relief become inaccessible and underutilized, simply because victims lack means to hire counsel. Absent fee awards, even pro bono attorneys are not incentivized to stand up for these people.
The presence of this case on the US Supreme Court docket has already created additional benefits. Scholars have been motivated to expose flaws in our watchlisting system, resulting in several useful amicus briefs. Amicus briefs are authored by “friends” of the court, who supplement the work of counsel in an important case. Quite frequently, the presence of several amicus briefs signals an important case. There are over a dozen amicus briefs in Tanvir.
These amicus briefs are frequently from leaders in the field, and useful for educating legal scholars, lawyers, law enforcement. They will provide a means to stem the excesses that are occuring within our current watchlisting and surveillance system. Two of the amicus briefs discuss current flaws in the process and the effects watchlisting is having on good citizens. Discussion Sections of interest include:
“The Combination of Substantial Control and Low Oversight Invites Error and Misuse.”
“Once Individuals Have Been Swept Up Into The System, It Is Almost Impossible For Them To Escape It.”
“Watchlisted Individuals Suffer Profoundly.”
The Legal Coop is providing the briefs for download here, so they can be used to enlighten people who fail to understand the consequences of our current watchlisting system:
In our country we have established that certain impairments to our freedom or property require notice of the causal charge, and a meaningful opportunity to contest it. These principles are mostly embodied in our right to trial by a jury of our peers. Flaws in our current watchlisting system allow the transformation of simple rumors into secret and devastating charges, from which no one can extricate themselves through a trial, nor have the opportunity to confront the accusers. Our will and resources should align to prevent these unlawful practices from continuing – to preserve the essential and delicate freedoms that protect us all.
Here is a link to the Tanvirdocket, the case is up for Oral Argument at the U.S. Supreme Court this Fall.
In viewing cases like Tanvir, it is good to see good work being done by good people, trying to put an end to the flawed practices which imperil our basic freedoms. If you appreciate this work, please encourage us by going to https://gofundme.com/thelegalcoop and making a small donation.
The United Nations has one courageous torture expert who is on the trail of several weaknesses in our global law enforcement system. As we have been exposing here at The Legal Coop, these legal and investigative loopholes allow systematic harassment of our citizens.
Such harassment inflicts loss of livelihood, loss of social circle, and loss of well being on good people. All to satisfy revenge, profit, and even for the entertainment of “voyeuristic clients.”
According to a recent report by Mr. Nils Melzer, and as discussed at a 2/28/20 proceeding at the United Nations, the practice can misuse medical implants, neurotechnological devices, weaponized psychology, and mobbing – all to achieve the utter destruction of any one individual. We cite from Mr. Melzer’s report below, to aid and support people who are going through these challenges.
How is it done ?
Well for one thing, the expert finds these practices are not limited to rogue states, but are rather easily wielded by:
“corporate actors and organized criminals”
That means it can be done for revenge, profit, or sadist entertainment. These practices cause financial ruin and isolation by
“intimidation, harassment, surveillance, public shaming and defamation, as well as appropriation, deletion or manipulation of information.”
The resulting powerlessness and silence are easily enforced by the use of
“mobbing, cyber-bullying, and state-sponsored persecution depriving victims of any possibility to effectively resist or escape their abuse”
Finally, the misuse of high tech devices, allows severe mental suffering to be remotely inflicted:
“manipulation of stun-belts (A/72/178, para.51), medical implants and, conceivably, nano- or neurotechnological devices.”
The practices are not complicated, rely on various human weaknesses, and clearly thrive in authoritarian times. His presentations sternly warns of mobbing, ‘threats, intimidation,‘ and ‘inducing phobias,’ or ‘inducing anxiety’ all of which render people unable to work, and frightens them away from help. The result is devastating.
The report ends with the following paragraph:
“Challenges of new technologies: In order to ensure the adequate implementation of the prohibition of torture and related international legal obligations in present and future circumstances, its interpretation should evolve in line with new challenges and capabilities arising in relation to emerging technologies not only in cyber space, but also in areas such as artificial intelligence, robotics, nano- and neurotechnology, or pharmaceutical and biomedical sciences including so-called “human enhancement”.
Sound familiar ? Many people in the United States are presenting each of these situations, and many are increasingly getting our support to overcome these challenges. With your help, we reach more people every day.
Here is a video of Mr. Melzer discussing Psychological torture generally.
The Legal Coop is also proud to present Mr. Nils Melzer’s more complete report below, which contains all the material cited above, and where he twice makes reference to “targeted individuals.” It is hot off the presses, quickly formatted into a PDF, and is therefore not final.
Most people are surprised to see anyone at the United Nations openly expressing such a complete grasp of the situation. You should know that his is very much another case of one person, standing to stem a tide. Mr. Melzer is therefore facing resistance, including the recent withdrawal of $100,000 in earmarked funding, leading to the recent loss of his investigative team.
It is hoped that the particular country engaging in such de-funding can realize the shame and infamy that would befall anyone who ignores and therefore aids and abets these vile practices. It is also hoped that everyone reading this will take a moment and immediately support Mr. Melzer’s current effort on his twitter account (https://twitter.com/NilsMelzer), share this article, review the resulting dialogue and videos, and then seriously think aboutemailingthe UN’s OHCHR’s donor and external relations team to express support for Mr. Melzer’s worthy efforts concerning the pressing issue of Cyber Torture.
Mr. Melzer’s Bio:
“Mr. Melzer’s expertise in torture and CIDT was forged in the field: he is a 12 year veteran of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), there serving as Delegate, Deputy Head of Delegation, and Legal Adviser in various conflict zones. He also led the University of Zürich’s Swiss Competence Centre on Human Rights, and was Senior Adviser on Security Policy for the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs. Mr. Melzer has written several books, including Targeted Killing in International Law (Oxford University Press, 2008), which was awarded a prize in International Law. He also co-authored manuals and policy guidance for the Red Cross, and Nato.
Mr. Melzer latest and perhaps greatest pursuit looks at the enemies of our freedom, and he leads the charge head on. Mr. Melzer has identified the gap in International Law regarding Torture – the one that allows psychological torture – a gap being expanded by technological advances, misuse of behavioral sciences, and plain old statutory loopholes.”
Mr. Melzer’s groundbreaking report can be downloaded at the link below:
Ray Schumann appeared on a PODCAST for Ella Free. The podcast was posted by Ella F. on February 23, 2020.
Lively session included reviewing an instance where we used a Civil Rights Observer to monitor a person under alleged harassment. There we documented that she is telling the truth: we caught these guys on video, with fairly obvious following, blocking, aggressing and harassment of a good person whose simply trying to shop – at a store she never uses – by people she’s never met, and who therefore have no pretext to engage in that conduct. A restraining order could issue in those circumstances and cause them a tangible financial loss.
A situation in Pittsburgh was discussed, where a person faced a phony “wellness” inquiry by a county employee repeatedly knocking on her door and leaving messages where no words are spoken, but only the employees breathing can be heard. This was addressed with an urgent Letter of Concern addressed to the agency directly, regarding her civil rights directly from attorney Ray Schumann.
We also discuss a lawsuit currently in the making by an Arizona lawyer who is getting ready to file a lawsuit to address harassment. As an attorney suing regarding harassment, her action may encourage hundreds of people.
Evidence collection techniques and some potential technologies for detecting electronic harassment are being explored, questions were fielded live.
Ray Schumann appeared on a PODCAST this past Wednesday.
This podcast was organized by Derrick Robinson and was hosted by Former Police Chief Daymond Jones. It included former DARPA scientist Robert Duncan and our founder Ray Schumann as guests.
Chief Daymond Jones is an experienced former Police Chief who supports victims of harassment. Robert Duncan is former DARPA and Ivy League trained scientist. His resume includes government sponsored research on advanced technologies now used in high tech harassment.
Topics included Legal Strategies and High Tech Harassment tools. This was followed by a lively discussion on the misuses and future of Artificial Intelligence. Law Enforcement abuses & corruption were also discussed. Questions were fielded live.
Ray Schumann appeared on Ella Free’s PODCAST this past Monday.
Lively session included reviewing an ongoing harassment case involving harassment via a false Restraining Order; tips on assembling Evidence of harassment; Surveillance Industry abuses & corruption; questions fielded live.
A matter came to us which illustrates the need for understanding the difference between a Cease and Desist, and an Advisory or letter of concern.
A Cease and Desist is a letter which issues to an identified perpetrator due to documented and ongoing pattern of conduct.
When these factors are lacking, an Advisory or letter of concern is more appropriate.
Take cases which involve a pattern of mobbing within premises, like stores, for example. If it is unclear whether the owner of the premises is aware of the conduct, a duty to remedy may nonetheless arise by the issuance of an Advisory or Letter of Concern, which properly puts the owner on notice of the situation. We now have a blank Advisory form that individuals may use, along with local counsel, to address a situation of mobbing.
We are also now working on the applicability of Advisories for public settings, and have a test case for its use.