Clarence Walker

Stingray: Privacy, Surveillance, the War on Drugs, and Your Phone

Raymond Lambis is a free man—at least for now.

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Sneak and Peek: The Outrageous War on Terror Tool Being Wielded Against Alleged Drug Dealers

One night in 2006, somebody broke into the home of suspected Cleveland drug dealer Chevalier "Chevy" Robinson, making off with $2.8 million in cash and a half-ton of marijuana. A furious Robinson suspected the rip-off was the work of a rival dealer and vowed to kill him for the theft. He even played CSI investigator, trying to lift finger prints off a broken window pane.

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Video Killed the Drug Conviction: Chicago Narcs Busted Lying Through Their Teeth

It was just another pot bust by Chicago's crack dope squad and should have resulted in an easy conviction, but thanks to a forgotten camera, things didn't exactly work out the way the cops planned. Now, the pot dealer is free, he has a bunch of cash in pocket, and it's the cops who are facing justice.

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Praying to a Saint Is Evidence You're a Criminal? That's the Insanity of the Drug War for You

Does praying to a "narco saint" constitute evidence that someone is a drug trafficker? In an unusual case out of the 10th US Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver, the court said "no." In overturning the conviction of the woman doing the praying, the court both acted to protect First Amendment freedoms and opened a window into Santa Muerte, the unofficial Saint Death venerated by hundreds of thousands, possibly millions, of poor Mexicans, some of whom are members of the criminal underworld.

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The New War on Drug Dealers: Charging Them With Murder When Their Customers Die of Overdose

You may think the war on drugs is winding down in America, and in some ways it is, but old habits die hard. Prosecutors and politicians confronted by a new wave of prescription opiate and heroin addiction and abuse are finding new ways to punish drug dealers, especially if there is a death involved.

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Drug Warrior DA Failed to Dismantle a Huge Meth Operation in His District

A Northern California attorney plunged into a full-blown methamphetamine addiction, then made a storybook recovery, running successfully for county prosecutor on a "Death to Meth" platform just a few years later. But now that attorney, Del Norte County District Attorney Jon Alexander, is on the ropes again, and it's not the drug itself but a different aspect of his meth mania that's doing him in.

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Cops Plead Guilty to Helping Plant Drugs on Woman Sexually Harassed by Judge

With a plot out of a Hollywood movie or a gripping Lifetime TV show, a mesmerizing drama of sex, power, frame-ups, planted drugs, and lies unfolded in real life in Georgia when two Murray County sheriff's deputies recently pleaded guilty in federal court for their part in a scheme to send an innocent woman to prison. Now both deputies await sentencing on charges of obstruction of justice and perjury stemming from an FBI civil rights investigation into the odd goings-on Down South.

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The Other IRS Scandal: Outright War Against Marijuana Dispensaries

Dispensaries providing marijuana to doctor-approved patients operate in a number of states, but they are under assault by the federal government. SWAT-style raids by the DEA and finger-wagging press conferences by grim-faced federal prosecutors may garner greater attention, but the assault on medical marijuana providers extends to other branches of the government as well, and moves by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to eliminate dispensaries' ability to take standard business deduction are another very painful arrow in the federal quiver.

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Can the DEA Hide a Surveillance Camera on Your Property?

A case that began with reports of suspicious activity in northeast Wisconsin forest land last spring may be headed for the US Supreme Court. That's because a US district court judge ruled in the case last fall that it was okay for the DEA to enter the rural property without a warrant and install surveillance cameras that were used to help convict five members of a family on charges they were growing marijuana.

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