I’ll try to add this as a first comment (as a Gary McKinnon supporter and a friend of Janis Sharp, his mother) that will be moderate. Hopefully that will impact others who might leave more inflammatory posts.
I have two issues with Gary McKinnon’s extradition itself. As a web developer, I find it near-impossible to believe the bits of the case which allege criminal damage. From the equipment he was using, it would be near-impossible for that amount of damage. Secondly, the fact that he hacked into US military machines *is* a crime and he should be appropriately tried in a Court of Law – I just don’t see it as necessary as carting him thousands of miles away to do it. There’s scope for having US officials come over here or (for goodness sake!) use teleconferencing!
As for the Extradition Act itself, I think it’s terribly flawed and a worse miscarriage of justice via the Act can be better measured against it’s use against Brian Howes family in Scotland. I thoroughly recommend you get up to speed on the Howes family’s troubles with the Extradition Act, as it doesn’t even look like him and his wife have committed a crime!
30 May 2010 15:25
Thanks for writing this. I’d sort of absorbed the received wisdom that McKinnon was merely a loner searching for evidence that the US were covering up UFO activity or whatever the story was. I wasn’t aware of the severity of the allegations of damage to the US networks.
I’m against the extradition on the general (and very possibly spurious) grounds that I don’t believe the US would be terribly forthcoming if we wanted to extradite a US citizen to face trial for an equivalent offence here. The US always strikes me as a nation which is all in favour of the rule of law when it’s in their interest, but are rather snooty about the idea of anyone else (e.g. the International Criminal Court) having jurisdiction over them. I’m not a lawyer, so I could be completely wrong about this, of course.
But anyway, I’m now satisfied that McKinnon does have a serious case to answer and I’m looking forward to the subsequent posts…
30 May 2010 15:26