Print Story Dumb criminals.
Funny stuff
By aphrael (Thu Apr 23, 2009 at 09:38:26 PM EST) (all tags)
One of the best parts of studying law are the cases involving stupid criminals. Sometimes it seems as if criminal law is less a means to punish the guilty and more a tax imposed upon the stupid.

One story from recent first amendment law, below the break. WARNING: involves child pornography.



[Excerpted from United States v. Williams, handed down last year. Paragraph breaks and emphasis added by me.]

On April 26, 2004, respondent Michael Williams, using a sexually explicit screen name, signed into a public Internet chat room. A Secret Service agent had also signed in to the chat room under the moniker "Lisa n Miami."

The agent noticed that Williams had posted a message that read "Dad of toddler has 'good' pics of her an [sic] me for swap of your toddler pics, or live cam." The agent struck up a conversation with Williams, leading to an electronic exchange of nonpornographic pictures of children. (The agent's picture was in fact a doctored photograph of children).

Soon thereafter, Williams messaged that he had photographs of men molesting his 4-year old daughter. Suspicious that "Lisa n Miami" was a law-enforcement agent, before proceeding further Williams demanded that the agent produce additional pictures. When he did not, Williams posted the following public message in the chat room: "HERE ROOM; I CAN PUT UPLINK CUZ IM FOR REAL--SHE CAN'T." Appended to this was a hyperlink that, when clicked, led to seven pictures of actual children, aged approximately 5 to 15, engaged in sexually explicit conduct and displaying their genitals. The Secret Service then obtained a search warrant for Williams' home, where agents seized two hard drives containing at least 22 images of real children engaged in sexually explicit conduct, some of it sadomasochistic.

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So let me get this straight. Afraid that Lisa was a narc, he decided to warn the rest of the group by posting images where the woman he thought was a narc could see them.

WTF?

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Dumb criminals. | 3 comments (3 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback
Ah the internet by duxup (2.00 / 0) #1 Fri Apr 24, 2009 at 12:17:18 AM EST
1. 1up the person next to you if at all possible.
2. Go to jail.

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The secret service looks for child pornography? by garlic (4.00 / 1) #2 Fri Apr 24, 2009 at 08:12:19 AM EST
I thought they were all about protecting the president and counterfeiting.


Yeah, that's strange by fluffy (2.00 / 0) #3 Fri Apr 24, 2009 at 06:40:22 PM EST
I thought kiddie porn was the FBI's, er, beat.

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Dumb criminals. | 3 comments (3 topical, 0 hidden) | Trackback