FaceBook as Criminal Evidence In Federal Court?

By Doug Knowles – It Matters How You Stand – March 20, 2017

Las Vegas – As the fifth week of the first of three 2014 Bundy Ranch Standoff trials gets under way, prosecution continues its second week of Facebook evidence and supporting testimony. FBI agents made a methodical presentation of sections of more than 12,000 pages of Facebook posts and messages collected in a government search. FBI Agent Sara Draper, testified that over 1000+ FBI agents were used to gather and review the Facebook evidence being introduced. 

Navarro rejected a steady litany of defense objections that the Facebook messages were more prejudicial than probative. Not all defendants were mentioned in the posts, nor have all yet been directly tied to militia organizations. While some militia groups portray themselves as constitutionally focused fraternal organizations that aid their local communities in times of crisis, others espouse anti-government rhetoric and even nationalistic and white supremacist views while advocating violence against federal employees.

So far everything with any “Facebook” relationship to any of the defendants is being cited as evidence to intent in each of their individual cases as well as to the case as a whole. As well anyone connected via like, share or comment are also “Unindicted Co-Conspirators”, allow those things and people to be entered into evidence as well.

Activity such as posts, shared information, comments and messenger direct communications, are being used to incriminate each or all defendants. As if that is not enough, they are assigning guilt based on being a member of a group that has posts, shared information and comments by others that were in that group. Whether read or not, commented on or not, or liked or not, by any of the defendants.

God forbid that anyone tag you in a photo or a post, you will be assumed for the purposes of the court, to share that view or belief however the agents and prosecution are interpreting it.

Not only is it clearly evident that neither the FBI or Prosecution, has any idea what information being posted, shared or liked truly means and represents in reality, they are trying to apply the same false logic and understanding to things that may and have not been seen, liked and/or said by any of the defendants individually or as a group.

This should be getting national attention. It would clearly appear that the results that a conviction using Facebook history in this manner could and would be a devastating precedence to 1st Amendment freedoms and liberties everywhere.

All of this information was said to be obtained either by public access and/or warrants issued for the specific case.

There are still many unresolved or untested definitions of what is and is not protect in the realm of internet and social media communications.  Within this case, it appears that a parallel comparison to other type of protected communications outside of the internet and social media will not even be considered.

One of the complaints often expressed by many users of the Facebook Social Media platform, is not only privacy, but the constant changes that are made in the platform about how and what you as a users can control.

Facebook, at this time offers several tools to deal with your understanding of what you can and cannot control.  This page provides a general overview tutorial about your data and privacy. Additionally the Facebook online Help  has searchable information, including how to download and archive of all your data on the platform.

In recent reports such as this one March 13th 2017, in the Washington Post, Facebook is growing concerned as well about the policies and practices of Law enforcement in relationship to their Platform.

Facebook is cutting police departments off from a vast trove of data that has been increasingly used to monitor protesters and activists.

The move, which the social network announced Monday, comes in the wake of concerns over law enforcement’s tracking of protesters’ social media accounts in places such as Ferguson, Mo., and Baltimore. It also comes at a time when chief executive Mark Zuckerberg says he is expanding the company’s mission from merely “connecting the world” into friend networks to promoting safety and community.

Also referenced in the article is this undated paper on the details of that vision titled “Is Connectivity A Human Right?”. When reviewing this document, the very obvious, missing piece is the Human Rights of the Data and use of the platform.

Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg in particularly needs to involve themselves in this case. Not only to protect the success of the platform but, to reaffirm their commitment to Human Rights and Constitutional protections of it users and customers.

How about it Facebook? You up for a subpena to testify for the defense? Our patriot Political Prisoners are sitting in Pre-Trial custody for over a year and need your help?

Posted in Bundy Ranch, Court, Editorial, News.

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