Right Thinking From The Left Coast
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Allah’s Blow

I’ve written a number of posts regarding the use of the PATRIOT Act to prosecute other kinds of crimes.  While I’m of the opinion that the act should be used specifically to prosecute terrorism cases, and that “terrorism” should be as tightly defined as possible, there are definitely other avenues where it is appropriate.  In this post about gang prosecutions under the PATRIOT rubric I wrote:

I remember a few years back there was a prosecution of an interstate cigarette smuggling operation which was funneling money to Hamas.  And think of the DC Sniper case.  That was definitely a form of terrorism, yet it doesn’t fit a traditional terrorist-style operation. So I don’t think that prosecutors should be limited in how they apply these laws, provided they don’t overstep the laws’s boundaries.  If lawmakers want to revise the laws to limit how prosecutors may use them then that’s the appropriate process.

I think my views on this subject ha thus been vindicated by this report.

OSAMA bin Laden tried to buy a massive amount of cocaine, spike it with poison and sell it in the US, hoping to kill thousands of Americans one year after the September 11 attacks.

The evil plot failed when the Colombian drug lords bin Laden approached decided it would be bad for their business - and, possibly, their own health - US law enforcement sources familiar with the Drug Enforcement Administration’s inquiry into the aborted transaction said.
US authorities were told of the plan this year, but its existence had never been made public.

The New York Post has reviewed a document detailing the DEA’s findings in the matter, in addition to interviewing sources familiar with the case.

Sources said US officials were told that bin Laden personally met leaders of a Colombian drug cartel in 2002.

This was to negotiate the purchase of tonnes of cocaine, saying that he was willing to spend tens of millions of dollars to finance the deal.

So there you have it.  Another example of how something as general as drug smuggling can be totally intertwined with a major terrorist attack.  I stand by what I wrote earlier, we should more clearly define the scope of the PATRIOT Act, but its use in investigations that might not initially appear to be terrorist investigations seems, to me, to be completely reasonable.

Posted by Lee on 07/28/05 at 02:12 AM in War on Terror/Axis of Evil • Permalink

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