What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case


3:00 pm - June 21st 2010

by Carl Packman    


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Thanks to recent posts on Gary McKinnon by the blogger Jack of Kent (David Allen Green), we have a far more nuanced understanding of the Gary McKinnon extradition case than we would have if we’d only listened to the mainstream media.

JoK mentioned that reporting on the case often left the public confused as to what the actual allegations consisted of.

The mess of artists and musicians, like Pink Floyd, who came out in support can be forgiven for their slapdash reasoning, but the following is the reasoning of Jane Asher, president for the National Autistic Society.

She was:

“horrified” at the way Gary was being treated by the criminal justice system. People with Asperger Syndrome, a form of autism, might appear normal but are often “extremely vulnerable”

Views such as the above, and other examples, have often been the cover with which critics use to suggest McKinnon couldn’t have any idea what he was doing.

What JoK did best was to show the other side to this argument by spelling out what had been said in and out of court. An indictment made in 2002 noted that ‘Gary McKinnon knowingly and wilfully caused the transmission of commands via the Internet’. This was related to the allegation that McKinnon posted on an army website:

US foreign policy is akin to Government-sponsored terrorism these days … It was not a mistake that there was a huge security stand down on September 11 last year … I am SOLO. I will continue to disrupt at the highest levels.

As JoK makes note of, the allegations held by the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service):

do not relate to a few isolated and chance examples of hacking, where Mr McKinnon perhaps opportunistically took advantage of lax US security, but instead to a sustained hacking exercise which took place over fourteen months and involving 96 computers in five US government departments, and which came to an end (it seems) only with his detection and arrest.

In 2003 a plea bargain was made. JoK continues that:

Had Mr McKinnon taken this plea bargain, and had the US complied with its terms, then if he had voluntarily gone to the US for trial in 2003 he would have been returned to a UK prison in 2004 and probably released in 2004 or 2005.

Despite the fact that enough was known of the severity of McKinnon’s the case, the client felt confident enough that revelations would arise to get him off the relatively moderate 37 months in prison offered, or pure fear stood in the way of accepting sound legal advice.

It was soon after that McKinnon’s asperger’s syndrome was first spoken of.

A High Court hearing in 2009 made a number of assertions relating to McKinnon’s asperger’s syndrome. JoK focuses on paragraphs 28 and 83, which assures the UK government that careful consideration of McKinnon’s condition would be made.

Two Deputy US Marshals would go to the UK, pick up McKinnon and transport him back to the US. At least one of those Marshals would be qualified as an emergency medical technician, or if the UK covered the costs, a UK psychiatric professional could assist in the extradition. Upon arrival McKinnon would be transported to Alexandria Adult Detention Center (AADC) with psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers and staff able to carry out medical and mental-health examinations.

If found guilty, a pre-sentence report would be made of McKinnon before the court makes an appropriate sentence based in consideration of his medical reports. If McKinnon faced prison, he would be entitled to a stay in a facility “which would provide such care and supervision” as stated above.

Paragraph 83 runs through the Bureau of Prisons’ (BOP) psychology services, which would cater for all of McKinnon’s mental-health needs.

To hear some people speak on the subject of AS one would think that the US was a lawless place where prisoners with mental-health issues were systematically treated to abuse. This is far too oversimplified on this case.

As we know now, plea bargains and tailored medical services were bestowed upon McKinnon for his crimes involving 96 computers in five US government departments. And more has been spoken on the criminal damage McKinnon caused than any hacking based on UFO obsession. JoK’s blog entries on this subject are a credit to those who don’t believe everything they read in the newspapers.

But what campaigners for Gary do now remains to be seen.

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About the author
Carl is a regular contributor. He is a policy and research analyst and he blogs at Though Cowards Flinch.
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Reader comments


And more has been spoken on the criminal damage McKinnon caused than any hacking based on UFO obsession

That sentence doesn’t make any sense. Assuming the facts are as both parties suggest,

FACT: GMK did *no* damage – he didn’t delete files or break programs. The USA’s estimates of ‘damage’ are based on the cost of fixing the flaws that allowed him (or, if they’d been less lucky, Osama Bin Laden) to get in. If you disagree with the concept that he didn’t cause any damage, you’re an idiot or a liar.

FACT: *despite not causing any damage*, GMK committed a severe breach of both Scottish and US criminal law by accessing secret information on computer systems he wasn’t authorised to access. And that’s not something that having Aspergers would make you unaware of.

Most Maily-Telegraph pieces on GMK ignore the second fact. You’re not only ignored, but completely lied about, the first fact.

In short – yes, he broke the law; no, he didn’t hurt anybody and therefore IMO doesn’t deserve jail time. While the right-wing media and the US government are both lying about the case, in this context – unusually – the right-wing media’s lies will help ensure that someone who didn’t do any harm won’t be harmed, whereas the US government and your lies will subject someone who didn’t do any harm to a great deal of harm.

“you’ve ignored”, not “you’re ignored”, sorry – tense-based editing mistake…

It is interesting how selective both JoK and Carl Packman are on this case.

The plea-bargain was full of holes and not worth the paper it was written on.
Ditto for paragraph 83. CP’s use of the word ‘bestowed’ is misleading and disingenous in the extreme, as was JoK’s analysis.

The US criminal justice record on the mentally ill and AS in particular is not what anyone would call impeccable – and this must be considered in the context of what US prosecutors have said regarding prosecuting GMK “to the max” and wanting “to see him fry”.

As for the offence itself – ie that for which admissions and evidence do exist – that was a Summary Offence and not extraditable, so irrelevant to the question of extradition.

The extradition rests upon a case described in court by CPS and forensic evidence (reported here for eg by one of the many media crammed into the last court hearing) as ‘hearsay’, and ‘no evidence’, and described by the judge as ‘an embarrassment to the prosecution’. GMK’s attempt to plead guilty to CMA2/3 was dismissed by LJB since it was not supported by the evidence. A guilty plea that is, as in this case, contradicted by the evidence must surely be viewed with some skepticism, and certainly cannot be taken by any reasonable person as an indication of guilt.

Whatever you make of JoK and his very misleading analysis, the fact remains that without the ‘damage’ allegations, GMK’s actions were not an extraditable offence. Those same allegations have been shown in court to be groundless (see Comment 1).

I’d say JoK has done more to damage his own reputation than anyone else’s!

4. gwenhwyfaer

If you disagree with the concept that he didn’t cause any damage, you’re an idiot or a liar.

Hold on, I know this one. Is the next bit “or the risen Lord”?

JoK has read the case material. Sadly, it appears that you have not.

@gwenhwyfaer Right, and I’m sure you can cite the part of the case material where it is shown that JoK caused any damage beyond the damage required to fix the security holes that he abused (and exposed). Oh no, wait, you can’t, because there isn’t one. FAIL.

JoK? GMK, even.

Whilst we’re on the topic, I’m also fairly sure that JoK’s analysis of the case specifically didn’t find that GMK caused any damage – that’s Mr Packman’s personal view, based on absolutely fuck all.

I read the JoK article when he first published it. McKinnon admitted to hacking and damaging US computer systems. He deleted thousands of files.

johnb FAIL?

@7 so did I. You’re basically relying on section 4 of the charge sheet, which is obvious and patent bullshit. “Critical operating systems files” is meaningless; “user accounts” != files, and “it a critical time immediately following 11 September 2001” is the most pathetic, security-industry-pretending-it’s-important emotional blackmailing crap ever.

McKinnon deleted nothing which wasn’t immediately recoverable and recovered, and which anyone with the slightest knowledge of IT systems knew wouldn’t be immediately recoverable and recovered. If you pretend otherwise, you’re a stooge for the assclowns of the US military-industrial complex who’re embarrassed at having their uselessness uncovered; no more, no less.

@john b

For the record, Mr McKinnon’s legal team have indicated that their client is ready to admit damage.

@clarice

Thank you for your kind words.

@9, as would I; doesn’t make it true (particularly given the insane way in which, in cybercrime, deleting something with a trivially restorable backup is viewed as equivalent to actually destroying a real thing).

11. Shatterface

The extradition is based on an entirely asymmetric agreement between a right wing Republican government on one side and cowardly New Labour arselickers on the other.

There are new governments in both countries which have claimed to want to restore civil liberties, and they can both withdraw from the agreement made by their predessessors without losing face.

Home Secretary Alan Johnson has Misled Parliament and the public re-the seriousness of Gary’s crime and publicly accused Gary McKinnon of things that even the U.S hadn’t: http://bit.ly/9Laeg6

JOK blog used only outdated info superceded by 2009 CPS disclosure showing no evidence only hearsay was given by U.S prosecutors and also evidence from Professor Peter Sommers.
All court hearings prior to July 2009 did not have the benefit of seeing the CPS Disclosure or the evidence from Professor Sommer showing that there was no damage and the financila damage claimed by the U.S was for security they should have installed in the first place.

I’m afraid by using only outdated court hearings and not being up to date with the facts JOK blog is probably an embarrassement to him.

The Quote from Gary McKinnons police interviews re-“No accident there was a standown” was edited by Alan Johnson presumably to make it sound anti American. Mr McKinnon did in face say “It was not the fault of the American people” etc
His words that he would continue to disrupt at the highest level, were the cybernotes he left on the U.S systems telling them that their security waas virtually non existent. He was a whistleblower and until someone at the very top listened and sorted out U.S security he announced that he would disrupt by leaving the notes.
Gary McKinnon was guilty of believing that there is a shadow government involved in removing democracy, covering up info re-reversed engineered UFO’s and alien technology and that 9/11 was an inside job.

Regarding attackes. Detective Constable Donson said in Gary McKinnon’s police interviews: “Yes, intruded upon, my apologies, when I say attack, I actually mean a “hack”
DC Donson “It really should be intrusion”.

All of these right wing bloggers desperate to have Gary McKinnon to be the first person in the world to be extradited for computer misuse, to face exaggerated and trumped up charges and a show trial in the U.S are sad individuals and traitors to their own citizens.
At least America stands up for its own. This extradition Treaty is one sided and America would never extradite it’s own unless for murder etc and even then would want evidence that the accused could contest in their own courts.

Baroness Scotlands letters online where she re-re-assures American Senators that suspected Irish American terrorists won’t be extradited. So much for her claims that the treaty waas for Terrorists. http://bit.ly/9zR4bj

Ex boss of Hi- Tech crime unit says: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/05/10/mckinnon_support/

U.S prisons by Stephen Fry: http://www.youtube.com/user/OwilsonO#p/a/f/2/gwT6CisM0mU

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=8289

A lot of hysteria and disinformation going around about McKinnon. Makes you wonder why lawyer and blogger JOK who had no previous interest in the McKinnon case and never attended any of the court hearings should pop up with a 6 part anti McKinnon blog!!! at exactly the time McKinnon’s case is being considered by the Government. JOK also sends links to his blog to various politicians. Is it to gain attention or to attempt to destroy McKinnon with outdated information that has been discredited at the last court hearing?

All lawyers know that the detail and facts are in the transcripts, not in a Judgment for public consumption.

At the moment The Liberal Conspiracy seems awash with right wing zealots’ from a bygone Thatcherite age. Lets hang him brigade!

Shameful

@JoK – For the record, GMK has ALWAYS denied the damage, as you well know. He has offered to plead guilty to CMA2/3, which is not the same as admitting the damage AT ALL. But in any case, as you also know, that offer was declined by the judge, because it was contrary to the evidence.

I am very surprised that a lawyer would either not grasp this subtlety, or else waste his reputation on seeking to mislead.

I am also very surprised that in his fine forensic analysis, JoK has seemed to show such little interest in either the CPS note on the prosecution evidence, or the forensic IT report on same, or the judge’s comments (see transcript of hearing – widely reported, publicly accessible to anyone who asks, and weirdly not in the judgement). JoK seems to be taking rather a lot on faith, for someone who is supposedly skeptical and balanced.

Personally, I wonder what Sunny and Bertia are doing hosting this ill-founded rubbish.

14. Shatterface

‘Personally, I wonder what Sunny and Bertia are doing hosting this ill-founded rubbish.’

You do have to wonder why a liberal site would run an article arguing a man with a mental condition should be carted off to some foreign hell-hole under an extradition treaty we’d still think unjust if he’d been a bona fide terrorist.

15. Charlieman

I think that john b underestimates the implications of GMK’s intrusions.

A couple of months ago, I wasted a week of work time investigating a very silly hacking incident. If you add up all of the time of everyone involved, it was probably about twenty work weeks of very expensive labour. When I first read about the GMK case, I disbelieved the claimed costs until I performed a back of an envelope calculation.

When you suffer an intrusion, the cleanup work is not just about re-imaging the PCs, resetting user accounts and tightening security. Every illegal visit requires analysis to determine which files might have been accessed or modified. Not just the servers to which a user might have immediate access using domain credentials, but external servers for which credentials have been cached. The organisation has to know a lot more about what happened than is required for a legal prosecution. (This means that you may trample over evidence that pisses off the forensic team at your local plod.)

Plus there is the impact on those whose user account has been invaded. I’ll bet that everyone reading this has an awkward personal titbit stored in their mail box or work documents (eg the last appraisal). Careers may be affected if others decline to share data with people who are victims of an intrusion.

“Damage” should not be defined by deletion of files. “Damage” is the cost to the business of the clean-up and investigation, and the investigation will be bloody expensive. Then there is damage to reputation and damage to trust.

Personally, I have little sympathy for the system administrators of the intruded PCs. They do not appear to have done a good job. Management are culpable too for permitting insecure working practices.

However that is not a defence argument. If I forget to close my window before retiring this evening, it does not excuse anyone from robbing my home. In the GMK case, the fact that his intrusions made the system administrators look foolish or improve their security is irrelevant. A few smart arse system probers will mail you to say that they have spotted a vulnerability that needs fixing; GMK exploited vulnerabilities and only informed people afterwards.

16. the a&e charge nurse

So, the Americans still want their pound of flesh, eh – the world’s greatest military might brought to it’s knees by a mischievous, and possibly autistic hacker?

Does anybody know – will Gary be served the usual menu of torture, sexual degradation, forced drugging and religious persecution when the cowardly Brits hand him over?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guantanamo_Bay_detention_camp

@14 – Really?
With the Pentagon hacked 6 million times a day, it seems to me those ‘costs’ you’re describing would be bigger than their GDP!

http://www.presstv.ir/detail.aspx?id=129399&sectionid=3510203

What JoK conveniently glosses over is that the cost of the alleged ‘damage’ has been shown in court to represent nothing more than the cost of installing the basic firewalls and passwords that should have been on the machines in the first place. When I say ‘should’, I’m referring of course to the US military’s legal obligation to take ‘reasonable steps’ (referred to at last court hearing) to protect their systems.

The US prosecutors are claiming that the information Gary accessed was ‘protected’, or top-secret – but as was shown at the last court hearing, it was neither.

The ‘damage’ claims on which the extradition request crucially rests have been shown, effectively, to be trumped-up.

Note also the very neat concidence that the sums of ‘damage’ alleged just so happen to match the exact dollar amount per machine required to create an extraditable offence.

18. Charlieman

@16 Clarice: “With the Pentagon hacked 6 million times a day, it seems to me those ‘costs’ you’re describing would be bigger than their GDP!”

You read the misleading headline and first paragraph, not the quote. Pentagon computer systems are allegedly *probed* six million time a day. That is entirely different from being hacked.

What you should be asking is what JOK’s blog has done for JOK.

Using outdated court hearings and judgements from Judges that had no knowledge of 2009 CPS disclosure nor 2009 evidence from Professor Peter Sommer seriously ruins any credibility JOK might have had. He’s a lawyer and should have researched the case rather than using mostly outdated Judgements that were superseded in July 2009.

Any lawyer knows that Judgements are for public consumption and the real detail and nitty gritty is in the court transcripts, and that the McKinnon 2009 court transcript discredited most of the allegations from the previous court hearings, as was widely reported by credible journalists including Duncan Campbell from the Guardian.

I’m also suspicious as to why a lawyer-come-blogger who had no previous interest in the McKinnon case and did not attend any of the court hearings should suddenly write a 7 part blog that seemed very anti Gary McKinnon at exactly the time when the government are considering whether to stop the extradition and to try him in the U.K

Is the blog a bid for attention and a little bit of fame on the back of McKinnon’s misfortune, or is there another agenda going on here.

JOK sends links to his 7 PART! McKinnon blog to MP’s. Why I wonder? Agenda?

All this right wing Thatcherism hang them brigade is quite frightening to see as I thought we’d left all that behind.

Quite frankly I think Orwell would turn in his grave at the thought of JOK being given any award in Orwell’s name as this is exactly the kind of witch hunt Orwell was against and the U.K/U.S Extradition treaty is exactly the kind of injustice Orwell was against.

2009 CPS disclosure showed the U.S allegations had no evidence to back up their claims and that they submitted, only hearsay.

At the most recent McKinnon court hearing in July 2009 Professor Peter Sommer’s evidence shows that the financial damage was for firewalls and security that should have been installed in the first place and that what McKinnon did would not have shut down any machines.

We have now learned via serious investigative journalism that Home Secretary Alan Johnson Misled Parliament and the public re-the seriousness of Gary McKinnon’s crime and publicly accused him of things that even the U.S had not. See link: http://bit.ly/9Laeg6

Re-attacks: Computer Intrusions are referred to as ‘attacks’ by the prosecutors.
Extract below from Gary McKinnon Police interviews:

DC Donson: and again then there was NASA who said that they were also attacked from September onwards ..

Mr McKinnon: Intruded upon

DC Donson: Yes, intruded upon, my apologises, when I say attack I actually mean a ‘hack’

DC Donson: It really should be, it really should be intrusion

Mr McKinnon: Unauthorised access

Here’s a link to Baroness Scotland’s letter where she re-re-assures U.S senators that suspected Irish American terrorists will be protected from extradition, showing that Baroness Scotland had scant regard for the extradition of suspected terrorists: http://bit.ly/9zR4bj

You think U.S prisons are like prisons in the U.K then think again: U.S prisons by Stephen Fry and from original source. http://bit.ly/ara9fv
http://bit.ly/1UIEwt global research

NOTES: Gary McKinnon did not delete any files other than his own and he did not cause any damage that would have shut down U.S machines. (From Professor Peter Sommer’s Evidence)

Lord Justice Burnton at Gary McKinnon’s last court hearing said, what Gary did was significantly less serious than that of other accused British hackers who have appeared before our courts. After reading CPS disclosure saying they were given no evidence by U.S authorities re-the allegations against Gary, Lord Justice Burnton said of the Law Lords assertion that Gary’s crimes were serious: ”and pigs might fly”.

The Hi-Tech police and the CPS officially referring to computer intrusions as “attacks” is very misleading to the public and to the courts.

The current U.K /U.S extradition treaty orders police, politicians, lawyers and courts to refer to suspicions/allegations as “Facts” which is also extremely misleading.

It’s not acceptable for the U.S to publicly and privately threaten to ‘Fry’ a U.K citizen, in whatever context such a threat was made. The evidence that these threats were made against Gary McKinnon is backed up by several sources and was reported by Associated Press. BBC Playwright John Fletcher even posted first hand evidence of the Fry threats being made against Gary McKinnon on this very Liberal Conspiracy website.

It’s not acceptable for a Home Secretary to mislead Parliament and to publicly lie about the seriousness of the charges in order to make Gary McKinnon’s crime appear much more serious than it actually was. Nor for Alan Johnson to use a quote/cyber note mentioned in Gary McKinnon’s police interviews and to then publicly quote an edited version of this quote, in order to make it sound anti American.

Nor for a U.S prosecutor to present Affidavits to our Law Lords that are lies.

Keith Vaz and the cross party Select Committee of which Keith Vaz is chairman, is launching an investigation into Gary McKinnon’s case and also into the one sided Extradition Treaty. http://ow.ly/1ZCwV

The Select Committee have the power to call any politician to give evidence, including Alan Johnson, Nick Clegg or the Prime Minister.

It seems the truth is coming to light and the fact that the new Coalition Government has pledged to change the one sided extradition treaty to make it even handed for British citizens is good news.

Let’s hope the right wing hang ‘em brigade some of who have recently commented on this website will try and bring themselves to look at the actual evidence, rather than discredited, outdated information/allegations that have been disproved.

And also: America won’t Extradite its own: http://bit.ly/9z5Ym2

Apologies to all for the comment duplication, by the way. My earlier comment seemed to have been removed from the site for some reason, but I see it has now reappeared…

Just a point of clarifcation re Asperger Syndrome (AS). Both my husband and son have this neuro-developmental impairment so I speak from experience. People with AS have poor theory of mind and empathy – they do not understand that other people have a point of view or understand the impact of their sometimes maladapted behaviours. Therefore, while Gary probably intellectually understood what he was doing was ‘wrong’ or ‘against the law’ in the abstract, he had no real understanding of the impact or consequence of what he was doing while he was doing it. Additionally, while he was hacking away he was probably thinking about completing what he was doing to the exclusion of all else – it is his obsession or special interest. He will have felt and almost overwhelming and unbearable need to finish what he was doing. People with AS also find it very hard to apply what they have learned in one situation (that hacking is wrong or illegal) to other situations. Essentially they lack ‘common sense’ in the true meaning of the word – applying and adapting sensible thinking and knowledge to different situations. This is because their neurological impairment prevents them making the necessary connections in their brain. While not all people with AS have mental health problems, rates of serious depression are very high in this group because they live with extreme anxiety and social isolation every day which inveitably leads to low-self esteem and sometimes self harm and suicide. A prison sentence anywhere would have a hugely damaging effect on Gary’s mental health but one in the US would be catastrophic as there would be nothing familiar about the world there that he could cling on to.

22. the a&e charge nurse

[21] “A prison sentence anywhere would have a hugely damaging effect on Gary’s mental health” – a prison sentence would have a hugely damaging effect on ANYBODY’S mental health, especially when their only so-called crime was to have infringed the security of an inadequate computer system?

I am very greatly for Jay’s “idiot’s guide” to the evidence [19] – by this account it seems clear to me that the only person to comes out of this incident with any integrity is Gary himself?

As others have asked – why is JoK straining at the leash to see harm done to him? Does he honestly think the world will be a better place if a now rather persecuted outsider is left to rot in a brutal American jail?

23. the a&e charge nurse

[22] Eh – I’m very greatly!!

Apologies, should say I’m very GRATEFUL.

A&E,

why is JoK straining at the leash to see harm done to him? Does he honestly think the world will be a better place if a now rather persecuted outsider is left to rot in a brutal American jail?

Given that Jack of Kent says, “in my view, Mr McKinnon should not be extradited … I oppose the extradition of Mr McKinnon”… um, no.

I refer anyone interested in what I actually said to my blogposts and to the comments, where many of the points above have been squarely addressed.

I do not want to see Mr McKinnon extradited or imprisoned; but I did want to explain the legal position in a source-based and calm manner. A source-based approach simply provided a different picture to that presented by the “Free Gary” campaign and the mainstream media.

I am disappointed in the ongoing personal attacks now being made against me for having conducted this exercise.

26. the a&e charge nurse

[24] thank you, ukliberty – I was wrong on that score.

I freely admit the red mist descends when ordinary individuals are persecuted by a powerful, and aggressive state.

On the other hand I am not too interested in legal nuances – this case smacks of a butterfly’s wing being broken on a wheel.

[25] “I did want to explain the legal position in a source-based and calm manner. A source-based approach simply provided a different picture to that presented by the “Free Gary” campaign and the mainstream media”.
Yes, but why, I mean what’s the bottom line – if your point is that the law can be twisted in a number of ways, especially when a powerful country the like the US are involved?

Gary was a bit naughty – no more and no less ………. an apology would have sufficed.

America won’t Extradite its own:

Um, at 31 July 2009, and “Since 2004, 46 people have been sent from the UK to the US for trial, and 27 from US to UK”.

Fair enough for people to be passionate and strident in their attacks on injustice, but to be belligerent (John B) and make things up (Jay, A&E) seems counterproductive.

actually no, strident is the wrong word.

29. the a&e charge nurse

[27] “make things up” – well I’m sure you’ll agree there is a VITAL difference between an on-the-hoof comment on a blogging board, and a concerted, and prolonged attempt by the American legal system to persecute somebody for highlighting deficiencies in their military computer?

[27] “make things up” – well I’m sure you’ll agree there is a VITAL difference between an on-the-hoof comment on a blogging board, and a concerted, and prolonged attempt by the American legal system to persecute somebody for highlighting deficiencies in their military computer?

I think there is a huge difference, yes, but what’s your point? That it’s OK to invent things about other people because worse things are happening in the world?

31. the a&e charge nurse

[30] oh, don’t be so obtuse, ukliberty – I’ve already put my hand up to the mistake.

Take a position on the central issue or we will drift off on some pointless and boring tangent.

>@john b

>For the record, Mr McKinnon’s legal team have indicated that their client is ready to admit damage.

I’m not getting into the nitty-gritty of the GK case – others know more of the detail, but I think that that indicates a problem with the plea bargain system.

That you accept one says very little about whether you did the crime, surely, as it is a device to balance the court’s time against the defendant’s belief about winning the case.

I’d make the same point about “cautions” here, and – at a lower level – discounts on traffic offence tickets.

In all of these the external pressures are such that conclusions cannot be reliably drawn about actual events whihc are the subject of guilty please.

Sceptical, but that’s how I see it.

@ukliberty – You make a very strong claim against Jay – the accusation of ‘making things up’ is false and a slur, from someone who appears not to be in possession of the facts.

As to JoK, he claimed at the outset to be against the extradition, then proceeded to put forward some very misleading arguments, based upon the prosecutors’ unsubstantiated and now discredited allegations, for some reason declined to source either the transcripts or the evidence, and then miraculously ‘changed his mind’, to decide that GMK *should* be extradited. Again, you do not appear to be in any position to comment on JoK, as you don’t seem to have read what he did.

And that, by the way, is not a personal attack, just a summary of his process. By the same token, the surprise that I and others have expressed at JoK’s conduct, while claiming to be balanced and skeptical and a lawyer, is just that – surprise.

I noticed that JoK tried to claim on Twitter and elsewhere that he has been the subject of a ‘torrent of abuse’ from those who support GMK, yet despite being asked to substantiate this claim, it seems this ‘torrent’ consisted of a single, humorous tweet. While the accusation of abuse has since been publicly retracted by the person who originally made it, JoK has declined to RT that retraction, and seems happy to continue to attempt to slur those who object to the injustice represented by the case of GMK. Again, I can’t help wondering why? Is this the conduct of a reputable person?

Surely, if JoK’s analysis was correct, he wouldn’t need to ‘attack’, undermine or slur those who support Gary McKinnon in an apparent attempt to discredit those who *have* bothered to ascertain the facts. Would he?

“I noticed that JoK tried to claim on Twitter and elsewhere that he has been the subject of a ‘torrent of abuse’ from those who support GMK, yet despite being asked to substantiate this claim, it seems this ‘torrent’ consisted of a single, humorous tweet.”

I’ve no axe to grind in this debate, but do you think that Jack of Kent’s treatment on this thread (or generally if you read round) for simply clarifying facts which had been mispresented has really not been a torrent of abuse? If so, have you read much of this thread – polite abuse, but still abuse (I tend to assume that denying someone believes what they state they believe is abuse for example).

Clarice,

@ukliberty – You make a very strong claim against Jay – the accusation of ‘making things up’ is false and a slur, from someone who appears not to be in possession of the facts.

I supplied evidence @27 for my assertion.

JoK’s a legal expert, not a technical one.

His analysis based on the facts is brilliant. The facts he has to base it on are pretty much a pack of lies. No criminal damage was caused, by any definition. US courts are also subject to far more executive meddling than ours.

McK’s guilty of a great many counts of unauthorised access, but the rest is a fix-up.

“His analysis based on the facts is brilliant. The facts he has to base it on are pretty much a pack of lies. No criminal damage was caused, by any definition.”

But the whole point of the case is that the Americans allege that he did delete files (Paragraph 4).

Given that he admits to accessing the computers and installing hacking tools (Paragraph 8) and no-one disputes that he did hack them, it seems prima facie reasonable that he could have done so.

And that’s all JoK was claiming. He was not claiming that Gary is guilty of those additional charges, merely that given the established facts, he could be, so it is reasonable to put him on trial and reasonable, under international law, for him to extradited.


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Rachel

    @dandelion101 libcon What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/bsxs88

  2. Westminster Skeptics

    RT @libcon: What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/bsxs88

  3. Tony Kennick

    What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/9mjSbo

  4. John Band

    It's disappointing to see @libcon republishing shitty pro-US propaganda on the McKinnon case: http://bit.ly/bsxs88

  5. Liberal Conspiracy

    What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/bsxs88

  6. Rachel

    RT @libcon: What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/bsxs88

  7. Joanne Cash

    RT @libcon: What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/bsxs88

  8. TCK GR

    @thegreatgonzo What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case: Thanks to recent posts on Gary McKinnon by the bl… http://bit.ly/9mjSbo

  9. In Kent

    Had Mr McKinnon taken this plea bargain, and had the US complied with its terms, then if he had voluntarily gone t… http://bit.ly/aZqcWV

  10. Martin Searle

    RT @libcon: What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/bsxs88

  11. Raincoat Optimism

    RT @libcon What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/9m4U5N

  12. Dandelion

    RT It's disappointing to see @libcon republishing shitty pro-US propaganda on the McKinnon case: http://bit.ly/bsxs88

  13. CANADA'S WORLD

    RT @libcon @earwicga What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/9m4U5N < Shoddy post but good discussion underneath

  14. earwicga

    RT @libcon What Jack of Kent did for the Gary McKinnon case http://bit.ly/9m4U5N < Shoddy post but good discussion underneath





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