The creepy side of the PATRIOT Act

Suppose you are a suspect/perpetrator of a crime and are subsequently placed under arrest.

You are known to the police and the neighborhood as a habitual offender/career criminal.

As you are being led away, the crowd points at you and starts chanting “Al Qaeda! Al Qaeda!”

You aren’t actually a terrorist…just a common criminal. A pain in the ass.

However, back at the precinct, they’re sick and tired of seeing you…again.
So they invoke the PATRIOT Act and ship your ass to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba…
…where you DON’T have the right to remain silent,
you DON’T have the right to an attorney,
and you DON’T have the right to a speedy trial.

Is any of this plausible?

No, because the Patriot Act doesn’t let them ship your ass to Gitmo, or take away your right to remain silent, to an attorney or to a speedy trial.

What exactly do you think the PATRIOT Act is?

Since the OP is asking about plausibility of a highly implausible scenario, let’s move this to IMHO.

Colibri
General Questions Moderator

Could you cite the part of the Patriot Act that would allow the extradition of a US citizen (or even US resident) to Guantanamo?

Since it’s the local cops that want to get rid of you, why would the federal government go along with this?

This could be just the break the Kerry campaign has been waiting for!

From what I’ve learned on TV (which would never lie to me), that section of the Act only applies to NCIS and various New York homicide departments, and even then is used only as a threat to get people to talk.

That’s where I got the idea.:rolleyes:

Nevertheless domestic terrorists do exist and require an effective “handle” to deal with them.

I figure, this set of laws is old enough that somebody can figure out how to work the system.

Domestic terrorists are handled under existing criminal statutes in civil courts.

The government does not rely on the PATRIOT Act to detain enemy combatants in GITMO. Instead, the GITMO detainees are subject to unlawful combatant laws, which go back to at least WWII.

How, exactly? Given that nobody has done so in the 12+ years the law has existed suggests it’s extremely unlikely.

Besides that, there are simpler and more low-profile ways to railroad somebody if you want to railroad them. Invoking the Patriot Act against a low-level criminal and attempting to send them to Guantanamo would get national attention and become a major cause celebre. It would be hard to imagine a strategy that would be more likely to blow up in the government’s face.

So the gist of this is that the Patriot Act doesn’t work like this, but man, wouldn’t it be creepy if it did? Sure.