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Feds Seize Houses for Illegal Downloading
Here's an interesting civil forfeiture story. Feds catch a guy
downloading naughty child pictures in a multinational raid, and
immediately file to seize his house. Guy commits suicide.
Feds say that civil forfeiture of homes where improper downloading
takes place is a wonderful new weapon in the WarOnSomeThoughts(tm),
and that they plan to do a lot more of it in the future.
Kenneth Nighbert lived a block from the beach in Kennebunk, Maine. Two
weeks ago, the retired Air Force pilot flew his American flag upside
down from his second-floor sun deck, a universal cry for help. Then he
went inside, tied a plastic bag around his head and died.
People who think they're indulging in forbidden fantasies in the
solitude of their homes, only to be interrupted by a firm knock on
their doors in the dead of night.
The suspects range from a high school teacher to a 15-year-old boy to
a quadriplegic man. Three women also were caught in the sweep.
On the night of the Sept. 3 raids, Kennebunk police and Customs
authorities crept up to Mr. Nighbert's home and peered through a back
window, said Sgt. David Gordon.
Mr. Nighbert was charged with possession of child pornography, a
felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison, and authorities
simultaneously filed a civil action seeking forfeiture of the house,
which was assessed at $168,000 and owned jointly with his sister. Mr.
Nighbert was freed on $10,000 bond.
"He was obviously extremely upset and nervous and, actually, crying at
the time he appeared in court," said U.S. Attorney Jay McCloskey.
Mr. Nighbert's lawyer, Rick Berne, said he believed his client was
facing too harsh a penalty for someone who only downloaded pictures.
Eric Michael Cordian 0+
O:.T:.O:. Mathematical Munitions Division
"Do What Thou Wilt Shall Be The Whole Of The Law"