Drink on Emirates flight and go to jail

11/08/2018
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Ellie Holman: criminal drinker. pic: The Guardian

A woman detained in the UAE after drinking wine on an Emirates flight has been released.

Ellie Holman from Kent was arrested after accepting a complimentary glass of wine on her flight to Dubai.  She says she was mistreated while in custody: she and her daughter were refused permission to go to the toilet for some time.

She was finally freed “on Sheikh Mohammed’s orders” and told she was welcome to go back to the UAE at any time.

Such mistreatment eh!  She’s not allowed to go to the toilet!  In the meantime, local criminals are getting flogged for alcohol consumption.  And that’s far from the worst that can happen: for some crimes you can expect to get death by stoning.

Maybe pampered tourists who cry when they can’t use the toilet should go on holiday somewhere else?  Maybe by going to the UAE and other countries under Sharia law, they are tacitly encouraging these medieval punishments? Then again, maybe not.  If you want to go to the UAE and expect to be immune from the local laws, you’ll probably be okay.  Western tourists aren’t usually punished for these crimes.  Or at worst expect to be deported.  Locals can expect the full fury of the law.  But that doesn’t matter, does it?  As long as you can enjoy a drink without any inconvenience…

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The govt need “back doors” to thwart terror attacks? Bullshit: they just need to do their jobs properly.

01/01/2016

Govts everywhere are talking up their need for back-doors in encryption etc by saying how the Paris killers got away with so much because of their encryption opsec skillz… but it turns out their opsec is flaky as shit and backdoors wouldn’t be nearly as useful to the cops as listening to the repeated warnings they’d got from Turkey.

Wired.com reported that “news reports of the Paris attacks have revealed that at least some of the time, the terrorists behind the attacks didn’t bother to use encryption while communicating, allowing authorities to intercept and read their messages…

“Reports in France say that investigators were able to locate some of the suspects’ hideout this week using data from a cellphone apparently abandoned by one of the attackers in a trashcan outside the Bataclan concert hall where Friday’s attack occurred, according to Le Monde. Authorities tracked the phone’s movements prior to the attack, which led them to a safehouse in a Paris suburb where they engaged in an hours-long shootout with the other suspects early Wednesday. These would-be attackers, most of whom were killed in the apartment, had been planning to pull off a second round of attacks this week in Paris’s La Defense business district, according to authorities.”

Other reports indicate that a previous ISIS terrorist plot targeting police in Belgium was disrupted in that country last January because Abdelhamid Abaaoud—suspected mastermind of both that plot and the Paris attacks—had failed to use encryption. He also carelessly left behind a cellphone in Syria, which contained unencrypted pictures and videos, including one now-infamous video showing him smiling from a truck as he dragged bodies of victims through a street.

The killers were guilty of serious OPSEC failures… sometimes they didn’t use encryption at all, sometimes they left plaintext evidence lying round where anyone could find it. But as crappy as the terrorists were, the French cops were worse: Turkish authorities have said they tried to warn French authorities twice about one of the suspects but never got a response.

But Western authorities, notably the US and the Brits, have been complaining that they need their secret back-doors to beat the killers, even suggesting that  “US companies like Apple and Google have blood on their hands for refusing to give intelligence and law enforcement agencies backdoors to unlock customer phones and decrypt protected communications”.

My question for the authorities is this: if encryption products have back doors built into them for law enforcement to use, isn’t it likely that crooks will also be able to use these back doors to steal our personal info, IDs, banking details, our entire fucking lives?  The govt are constantly losing top secret laptops on trains and in taxis, and computer intruders regularly bust into official data centres and make off with piles of sensitive data.  Do the authorities think their new back doors will somehow be magically better than all the fucked up attempts at secrecy and security they’ve tried before?

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Also, if the authorities get their way, they will be able to find out anything they want to about us.  Maybe (ha ha) that’s not a big problem right now.  But who knows what changes in governments will happen?  Far-right parties are getting more popular all the time.  And look at US presidential hopeful cock Trump: one press of a button and he’ll know exactly where to go to round up the Muslims he hates and send them to be tortured and killed by his friend Assad in Syria.

Don’t listen to the authorities when they say why they “need” the ability to access every bit of data on us.  They don’t need it.  They want it.  Just as they’ve always wanted new ways to eliminate those they don’t like.

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Google Maps that tell you where to find your local dope dealer!

03/12/2014

EDIT: WARNING: If you click on the “Map Dealers” link below, you may get a warning that the site is up to no good, possibly injecting malicious code into your browser.  This may be a genuinely malicious site, or maybe the browser companies have been asked by police authorities to warn off potential visitors.  I don’t want to take the chance, and if you want to take my advice, I’d say don’t click on it either.  Of course the choice is yours.  I’m just warning you.  So if you do click on the link and your computer is assimilated into the Borg Collective, or if your personal data is stolen, don’t come crying to me about it.  I’m not clicking on the link, and I’d suggest you also steer clear of it.  But I haven’t taken this page (or the link) down as I believe in freedom – even if that means freedom to screw up big time!  You have been warned!!!

There have been online services to help you find local drug dealers for ages. The Silk Road 2.0 was closed down by a joint operation by the FBI, ICE Homeland Security Investigations, and “European law enforcement agencies acting through Europol and Eurojust” last month (Nov 2014) – but meanwhile for more than two and a half years, the Russian Anonymous Marketplace, or RAMP has maintained a thriving business in the Dark Web drug trade, offering one of the Internet’s widest arrays of narcotics to its Russian-speaking clientele.

The Russian Anonymous Marketplace... a Russo-centric version of the world-wide Map Dealers!

The Russian Anonymous Marketplace… a Russo-centric version of the world-wide Map Dealers!

So, Map Dealers have done some fancy jiggery-pokery so you can locate cannabis dealers on Google Maps!!( Because cannabis dealing is illegal in most places, the “new kid on the block – Map Dealers – are operating via the darkweb and tor. But don’t worry, darkweb and tor are not magical incantations. If you have computer and internet know-how, a bit of reading around the subject should help you install any specialist applications required, as will visiting Tor2web and https://ahmia.fi/address/mapdnzvn7q4esfko It’s worth the effort, if you want to smoke some weed and the only alternative is approaching strangers in a strange town asking to buy illegal drugs! Map Dealers makes it clear that they are not interested in helping dealers of other drugs – theirs is a cannabis-only service. Maybe dealers of other drugs will sneak in, but if/when discovered they will be booted off the system. No dangerous addictive drugs here matey (yes, I know some people believe that cannabis is a dangerous, addictive drug too, but that’s a conversation for another day…).

So, you’re a stranger in a strange land and want to buy some cannabis? Then check out Map Dealers! Or, don’t check it out! Never let it be said that I condone law-breaking…

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The “right to be forgotten” bites thief in ass

16/07/2014

So people who have done dodgy crap in the past have a “right to be forgotten”… meaning Google, Bing, etc have to delete links to stories about what crooks and conmen have got up to in the past. Basically, Google etc have to delete links to online stories that might “damage the reputation” of people who have done stupid and even criminal things they’ve done in the past.

But as Dan Gillmor has pointed out in the Guardian, it’s basically a charter for crooks and idiots to hide their stupidity and criminal actions, censoring their past so it looks like they’re not idiots or crooks… info that potential employers, new acquaintances and the like could well need to know. Are you going to enter into business with someone whose ineptness or criminal behaviour is public knowledge? Probably not. But now people will be employing unsuitable people.

But what’s funny about this charade is the fact that the “right to be forgotten” by Google will mean other news outlets will report on these secretive idiots. Check out the story on Robert Daniels-Dwyer. He wanted Google to remove links to reports that he was was convicted of trying to steal £200 worth of Christmas presents from Boots in Oxford in 2006. Google removed the links… but the Oxford Mail’s editor, Simon O’Neill, argued that it is “an assault on the public’s right to know perfectly legitimate information,” and Dwyers’ naughty past has been re-publicised far more than it would have been before the ruling! The Oxford Mail’s editor, Simon O’Neill, argued that it is “an assault on the public’s right to know perfectly legitimate information.”

Check out the original Oxford Mail story here. If the idiot had kept his gob shut, no one would have known about it… it was in 2006 for goodness’ sake!

Calling it a “right to censorship”, editor O’Neill continued: “It is an attempt to re-write history… We often get complaints from convicted criminals that publishing stories about them invades their privacy or is unfair but the simple fact is if they didn’t go out committing crime and appearing in court then there would not be a story.”

The Guardian reported:

The paper reported that Daniels-Dwyer had previously attempted to have the story removed from the Mail’s websites via a complaint to the Press Complaints Commission.

He demanded that Newsquest “should purge the article from all databases, internally and externally available, and from any news databases to which it provides content.”

Two factual amendments were made to the article, but the PCC dismissed his case.

If Daniels-Dwyer was the complainant to Google then it has rebounded on him because the 2006 story has got renewed, and extra, publicity – a direct consequence of all such complaints about online coverage (see the Streisand effect).

The right to be forgotten could well turn out to be the right to be remembered.

So it looks like Daniels-Dwyer has well and truly screwed himself! Ha ha ha!!

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Racial profiling is alive and well, goddammit… and that’s with the public, never mind the police!

10/04/2014

Do you think police profiling works?  You think racial profiling works?  You think racism is a good way to spot criminals?  Check this out, then tell me in Comments what you think.

 
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CPS drop case against Iceland skip-divers as “not in public interest” anymore…

29/01/2014

In my original post on this issue I wrote “you couldn’t make this stuff up!” And reality goes on to prove I’m right!

The Guardian reported that the CPS was going to prosecute 3 men for “stealing” out-of-date tomatoes, mushrooms and cheese from a skip round the back of a branch of Iceland, after a member of the public told the police he’d seen them climbing over the wall. The Crown Prosecution Service were intent on prosecuting the “thieves” even though Malcolm Walker, the chief executive of Iceland, had asked the CPS not to continue with the case. In a statement, Iceland said “We are currently trying to find out from the Crown Prosecution Service why they believe that it is in the public interest to pursue a case against these three individuals.”

One of the men, freelance web designer Paul May was going to say that he was taking the food because he needed it to eat and does not consider he has done anything illegal or dishonest in removing food destined for landfill from a skip.

This is hardly the first time the CPS have tried to prosecute people for taking out-of-date food from supermarket skips. Many years ago, two of my friends were arrested with chickens they had taken from a Leo’s (now the Co-operative) supermarket bin. They were charged with theft, elected for trial by jury at Crown Court as was their right, and the presiding judge threw out the case, angry that the court’s time was being wasted in such a way.

In this latest case, the CPS originally said there was “significant public interest” in prosecuting the three men caught last year taking tomatoes, mushrooms, cheese and Mr Kipling cakes from the dustbins behind a branch of Iceland. But a public furore persuaded them to see sense.

The case would have brought to the public eye the fact that poor members of society have to go through bins of rotten food looking for something to assuage their hunger, in scenes more reminiscent of the 19th century rather than the present day.

The case has prompted new focus on the phenomenon of “skipping” – taking discarded supermarket waste to cook and eat – and reopened the debate over how much supermarket food is still discarded. Several online petitions were launched, calling on the CPS to reconsider its decision to prosecute.

Baljit Ubhey, the chief crown prosecutor for CPS London, said: “This case has been reviewed by a senior lawyer and it has been decided that a prosecution is not required in the public interest.”

He added: “In reconsidering this case, we have had particular regard to the seriousness of the alleged offence and the level of harm done. Both of these factors weigh against a prosecution. Additionally, further representations received today from Iceland Foods have affected our assessment of the public interest in prosecuting.

“We hope this demonstrates our willingness to review decisions and take appropriate and swift action when necessary. The Crown Prosecution Service is committed to bringing the right charges to court when – and only when – it is proper to do so.”

But of course Ubhey’s explanation is a load of crap. As I reported before, the CPS have considered it correct to prosecute hungry poor people for taking out-of-date food from shop waste bins. The CPS originally valued the food “stolen” from Iceland at £33! And they would no doubt have carried on the case if online petitions hadn’t been produced.

All this case demonstrates is that the police and Crown Prosecution Service are happy to oppress the very poorest members of society.

EDIT: Since posting this, a couple of my friends suggested I might like to see the Daily Mail’s take on this story.  I don’t usually bother reading the Mail (it makes me so furious sometimes, there have been occasions in the past where I have actually shouted at a copy of the paper) but my friends’ comments intrigued me so I had a peek.

I was just about to type “Unbelievable!” but then I remembered: this is the Mail.  The story’s headline reads

A licence to steal? Let off, the ‘freegans’ who raided supermarket bins for £33 of cakes, cheese and mushrooms

The Mail clearly has a problem with “freegans” (their term for the criminals who blatantly steal unwanted garbage out of bins); their angle on the story is horror that such evil crooks are being set free to continue their crime sprees.  They mention that 15 million tons of food are being thrown away each year in the UK, Tesco alone generated 28,500 tons of food waste at its stores and distribution centres in the first 6 months of last year alone, but the Mail’s major problem is the fact that people are being “encouraged” to steal by the CPS’s decision to drop the charges.

Interestingly, they also mention that the three men involved (Paul May, Jason Chan and William James) were held in police cells for nineteen hours before being released!   I hadn’t seen or heard that anywhere else.  It shows how petty and arrogant the police can be, and is another reason why the police do not automatically deserve the respect they think they are due.  Basically, the police stink.  And to think, I wouldn’t have learnt this particular fact but for the Daily Mail’s website.  Keep an eye out for low-flying pigs ha ha!!!

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CPS prosecute 3 men for “stealing” rubbish out of Iceland’s bins!

29/01/2014

UPDATE: CROWN PROSECUTION SERVICE SHAMED INTO DROPPING CHARGES!

Unbelievable but true: check it out.

A man will stand trial next month after being caught taking some tomatoes, mushrooms and cheese from the dustbins behind a branch of Iceland.

It is expected Paul May, a freelance web designer, will argue that he was taking the food because he needed it to eat and does not consider he has done anything illegal or dishonest in removing food destined for landfill from a skip.

Even Iceland, the “victim” of the crime, doesn’t understand why this is going on. The chief executive of Iceland has said he has contacted the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to ask why three men caught taking food from bins outside an Iceland store are being taken to court, stating that the company did not seek their prosecution.

I can remember, years ago, when I was squatting/homeless and frequently went skipping so as to avoid starvation, 2 friends of mine were arrested after stealing chickens that had been thrown out into the skip by Leo’s (now “The Co-operative”). They were charged with theft. They pled not guilty and elected for Crown Court trial, as was their right. The judge threw the case out, furious that the CPS would waste his court’s time with a case of stealing rubbish! Yes, I know that technically the rubbish still belonged to the Co-op… but out of date chickens? I can’t believe the CPS still do this! As for the Co-op, with its “ethical” underpinnings… Gah!

So it’s in the public interest to prosecute hungry people for taking waste foodstuff out of the bin? Good to now… how our corporate overlords (did I say “overlords”? I meant “protectors”) think. Actually, yeah, feed the poor on Soylent Green! Perfect solution to the problem of homelessness and poverty!

Oh, yeah! I just wanted to add: not long after the palaver, a local day centre for homeless and vulnerable people MAGGS Day Centre, Worcester) asked Leo’s (now the Co-operative) if the supermarket might like to donate this waste food to the day centre, to help keep the vulnerable from starvation. Leo’s said no: but the day centre could buy the out of date trash! Seriously, you couldn’t make this stuff up!

EDIT: Our chums at 38Degrees are on this too. Check out their piece and petition here. Maybe the CPS think it’s okay now to brutalize the defenceless, as their lords and masters are up to the same crap. We gotta tell ’em: Nooo!! Online petitions are often a waste of time, but some of them actually achieve stuff! If you check out 38Degrees you’ll see that they frequently help mitigate or even stop some of our government’s most evil plans. I like 38Degrees; so should you!

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