Climate Cops Raid Blogger, Obama DoJ Aiding UK Manhunt for “Climategate” Leaker
By Christopher C. Horner
I have learned that last week DoJ sent a search-and-seizure letter to the host of three “skeptic” blogs. Last night, UK police raided a blogger’s home and removed computers and equipment.
The leaked records derailed domestic “cap-and-trade” legislation in the U.S. and, internationally, talks for a successor to the Kyoto Protocol. The emails and computer code were produced with taxpayer funds and held on taxpayer-owned computers both in the US and the UK, and all were subject to the UK Freedom of Information Act, the US FOIA, and state FOI laws.
They also were being unlawfully withheld in both the UK (by the University of East Anglia) and the US (Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, including stonewalling me for two years, and three others for longer).
The hunt involving US and UK law enforcement is now escalating.
Wednesday night, UK time, six detectives with the UK police (Norfolk Police Department) raided the home of at least one blogger, removing his equipment to look for clues to the identity of leaker “FOIA 2011”.
On December 9, DoJ sent a preservation letter under 18 U.S.C 2703(f) to the publication platform (website host) WordPress. This authority authorizes the government to request an ISP to preserve all of the records of a specific account for 90 days while the feds work on a warrant.
Norfolk PD affirmed to the subject of at least one of their raids that this international law enforcement hunt is for the leaker, meaning not for those whose acts the leaker exposed, releasing admissions in their own words.
In the U.S., the academic and other political Left have had fits about the Virginia Attorney General, Ken Cuccinelli, exercising even more specific, anti-fraud authority to seek further records from University of Virginia, following up on indications from the first Climategate release of possible fraud against the taxpayer.
Apparently, that represented an abuse of the police power. No word yet if they are outraged by DoJ’s current foray or the UK raiding team.
The DoJ attorney sending the preservation letters, as it hapens in this small world, a graduate of the University of Virginia (UVa). UVa is also the subject of litigation a group I am associated with, the American Tradition Institute (ATI), has filed on behalf of Virginia taxpayers seeking Climategate-related emails it holds.
This is a case which, I have it on reliable authority, has the Virginia faculty and establishment beside themselves and demanding an all-out effort to oppose production wear us down (and also Attorney General Cuccinelli).
So far UVa has spent upwards of a million dollars in privately donated money just to fight the AG’s request. They continue to fight us in court every step of the way. Clearly, this is no small matter in the quarters insisting that this taxpayer-financed information ever see the light of day.
Even the criminal legal apparatus of the US and UK must be invoked against this threat, apparently.
So, to review, the UK police and the US Department of Justice, Criminal Division, are pursuing a leaker of public records subject to one ore more freedom of information laws, unlawfully withheld under those laws, which leaks indicate, e.g., apparent civil violations (tortious interference by seeking dismissial of certain “skeptics”), and raising reasonable questions of fraud against taxpayers.
And they are pursuing the leaker.
The content of what your Department of Justice has sent follows:
Pursuant to Title 18, United States Code, Section 2703(f), this letter is a formal request for the preservation of all stored communications, records, and other evidence in your possession regarding the following domain name(s) pending further legal process: [DELETED] (“the Accounts”) from 00:01 GMT Monday 21 November 2011 to 23:59 GMT Wednesday 23 November 2011.
I request that you not disclose the existence of this request to the subscriber or any other person, other than as necessary to comply with this request. If compliance with this request might result in a permanent or temporary termination of service to the Accounts, or otherwise alert any user of the Accounts as to your actions to preserve the information described below, please contact me as soon as possible and before taking action.
I request that you preserve, for a period of 90 days, the information described below currently in your possession in a form that includes the complete record. This request applies only retrospectively. It does not in any way obligate you to capture and preserve new information that arises after the date of this request. This request applies to the following items, whether in electronic or other form, including information stored on backup media, if available:
- The contents of any communication or file stored by or for the Accounts and any associated accounts, and any information associated with those communications or files, such as the source and destination email addresses or IP addresses.
- All records and other information relating to the Accounts and any associated accounts including the following:
a. Names (including subscriber names, user names, and screen names);
b. Addresses (including mailing addresses, residential addresses, business addresses, and e-mail addresses);
c. Local and long distance telephone connection records;
d. Records of session times and durations, and the temporarily assigned network addresses (such as Internet Protocol (“IP”) addresses) associated with those sessions, including any log history of when username “FOIA” uploaded posts to the Accounts;
e. Length of service (including start date) and types of service utilized;
f. Telephone or instrument numbers (including MAC addresses);
g. Other subscriber numbers or identities (including the registration Internet Protocol (“IP”) addresses); and
h. Means and source of payment for such service (including any credit card or bank account number) and billing records.
If you have questions regarding this request, please call me at 202-XXX-XXXX.
Christopher C. Horner serves as a Senior Fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute