Sunday, August 13, 2006

Reach Out And Bust Someone

Jesus. Just watch this one fall completely and totally apart. AP (08.13.06):
"Three Texas men were arraigned Saturday on terrorism-related charges after police found about 1,000 cellphones in their minivan, and prosecutors say they believe the men were targeting a bridge connecting Michigan's Upper and Lower peninsulas." 3 Found With 1,000 Cellphones Held on Terrorism Charges in Michigan
These guys were arrested last Friday after they went into the Wal-Mart in Caro, Michigan, and bought 80 phones. The clerk who sold 'em the things "thought the purchases were suspicious" and called the cops. After they were busted, they told the cops the phones are in such demand down in Texas, they're usually not in stock. So in the finest traditions of American entrepreneurial spirit, they'd come up to Michigan, where the things sell for $20, to buy as many as they could and take 'em back to Texas, where they sell for up to $38 each. That, my friends, is a healthy profit. Instead, they get busted by the local constabulary, who have clearly popped big wood over this one. "The men, all from the Dallas area, were being held on charges of soliciting or providing material support for terrorism and obtaining information of a vulnerable target for the purposes of terrorism, [Caro] police Sgt. Dale Stevenson said." Believe it or not, Dale "declined to elaborate on how the case relates to terrorism". As well, Caro's police chief also weighed in. In addition to mentioning how cell phones have been, could be, might have been, and are sometimes used as detonators, the batteries "can be disassembled and used to make methamphetamine [ed. - this is the first time we've ever heard this one]." As if these guys were spending $20 for a phone so they could take the battery out and make $1.00 worth of meth? As if they couldn't just buy the batteries, without also buying the phones? Then there's the Tuscola County Prosecutor Mark E. Reene. He "told the Saginaw News that investigators believed the men were targeting the 5-mile-long Mackinac Bridge", but "declined to say what led investigators to that belief." On the other hand, it sounds like the FBI already knows all about these guys. During arraignment, one of 'em told the judge that "authorities had previously stopped the group in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin. 'We've been checked by the FBI before. They even gave us their card and everything.'" Ahhh, poor Mark. He's gonna catch a ration and a half once he finally figures out all he's got is a bunch of nothing. Everyone up there's gonna start calling him Mark "Barney Fife" Reene.


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