There have been major stories regarding cannabis over the last 15 months. On August 29, 2013, the Department of Justice announced, “Based on assurances that those states [that have legalized cannabis] will impose an appropriately strict regulatory system, the Department has informed the governors of both states that it is deferring its right to challenge their legalization laws at this time.” Further, Deputy Attorney General James M. Cole sent a memo to all United States Attorneys explaining the DOJ’s stance. see more…
Tag Archives: DOJ
Every year the FBI releases what it calls the Uniform Crime Report, which details numbers of arrests – which counts one arrest for each separate instance in which a person is arrested, cited, or summoned for an offense – and various other data on crime, criminals, and law enforcement officers.
One of the numbers that jumped out to me was that arrests for cannabis possession makes up a smaller percentage of drug related arrests out west (18%) compared to the rest of the country (~50%). see more…
On October 7, Twitter, which is called by some the champion of free speech among social networks, filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), and the FBI. Reuters reports, “In the lawsuit… Twitter said that current rules prevent it from even stating that it has not received any national security requests for user information.”
A blog post from Twitter stated, “It’s our belief that we are entitled under the First Amendment to respond to our users’ concerns and to the statements of U.S. government officials by providing information about the scope of U.S. government surveillance – including what types of legal process have not been received. We should be free to do this in a meaningful way, rather than in broad, inexact ranges.”
The “broad, inexact ranges” mention by Twitter is a reference to an “agreement between Internet companies like Google and Microsoft with the government about court orders they receive related to surveillance,” according to Reuters. For example, a tech company that received 456 FISA orders and/or national security letters, would be able to say it received between zero and 999 orders. see more…
From his twitter account, Kim Dotcom continues trying his legal battle in the court of public opinion by explaining the shams foisted upon him by the U.S. DOJ and their puppets in New Zealand:
Fact #1: All my assets are still frozen. I have no funds to pay lawyers & defend myself in the biggest copyright case in world history.
Fact #2: NZ courts ruled: Restraining order illegal. Search warrants illegal. But I still have no access to my files. Not even copies.
Fact #3: NZ court ruled: FBI removed my data from NZ illegally. But the FBI reviewed my hard drives anyway and didn’t send them back.
Fact #4: The DOJ argues in US court that I should not get a penny unfrozen for my defense cause I should be treated like a bank robber.
Fact #5: The DOJ argues in US court that I should not have the lawyers of my choosing because of a conflict of interest with rights holders.
Fact #6: There is no criminal statute for secondary copyright infringement in the US. The DOJ doesn’t care. Let’s just be creative.
Fact #7: Only 10% of our users and 15% of our revenue came from US users. Yet the DOJ argues in US court that all assets are tainted.
Fact #8: The DOJ told the Grand Jury that Megaupload employs 30 staff. In reality 220 jobs were lost because of the US actions.
Fact #9: The DOJ shut down several companies for alleged copyright infringement including N1 Limited – A fashion label making clothing.
Fact #10: The DOJ is charging us with Money Laundering and Racketeering cause Copyright Infringement isn’t enough for Extradition from NZ.
While it is very easily arguable that Megaupload and Megavideo were being used for copyright infringement at some level — something he’s acknowledged and had a response system in place to remove said infringing content — the DOJ’s response to the daily onslaught of Google/YouTube infringement claims in an entirely different manner can only explained as quid pro quo.
The unfortunate lesson: if you want to run a large internet company unmolested by Uncle Sam, you had better grease the right palms in DC.
UPDATE: According to a report last month from Stuff.co.nz, Dotcom is being denied access to evidence (except 40 pages of the prosecution’s “cherry-picked” items from over 22 million emails) as he fights the ongoing and financially exhaustive extradition battle, he has threatened to publish what little information has been released by the DOJ to his legal team to the public in a bid to win sympathy.