Tasers with Wings

I’ve been focusing on Edward Snowden’s NSA revelations, but I didn’t want this tidbit of news to go unnoticed. Among the other documents EFF has gotten in its FOIA on drones in the United States is a planning document for Customs and Border Patrol’s use of the  Predator drone. In it, there’s one line that suggests future upgrades (the report dates to 2010) might include non-lethal immobilization technology.

Customs & Border Protection (CPB) report, released in response to EFF’s Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the agency, shows CBP has considered adding weapons to its domestic Predator drones.

The report, titled “Concept of Operations for CBP’s Predator B Unmanned Aircraft System” and submitted to Congress on June 29, 2010 shows that, not only is the agency planning to sharply increase the number of Predator drones it flies and the amount of surveillance it conducts by 2016 (detailed further in a separate blog post tomorrow), but it has considered equipping its Predators with “non-lethal weapons designed to immobilize” targets of interest. (p. 63).

And remember: CBP loans out its drones to other Federal agencies. I suspect when Robert Mueller testified recently that FBI had used drones he had CBP ones in mind.

So the next time LAPD uses loaner drones in a manhunt across Southern California, that drone may well be armed with industrial sized tasers.

 

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Emptywheel Twitterverse
emptywheel I think @jamesrbuk has just invented the Super Injunction Canary. Or perhaps Stork.
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JimWhiteGNV Huge loss, so sad: "Sierra Leone's top Ebola doctor dies from virus" http://t.co/hUh5TNISVt via @reuters
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emptywheel @KevinBankston Lose Verizon willingness to go along with the bill. They're the make or break provider, it seems to me. @Krhawkins5
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bmaz RT @MikeScarcella: Judge permits DOJ to file secret declarations in FOIA suit over the govt's investigation of @wikileaks supporters: https…
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bmaz @JimWhiteGNV I actually thought his graduation speech there was pretty good.
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bmaz @robertcaruso Guess that explains why Commander McWherter had to go recently.
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emptywheel @KevinBankston Seriously, they'd lose VZ and w/o VZ you don't have a dragnet. @Krhawkins5
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emptywheel @onekade And so you ate a head-sized donut to prepare to see her again?
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emptywheel @KevinBankston Or maybe the IC is happy accessing address books as a connection. ;p (And also knows they'd lose VZ) @Krhawkins5
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emptywheel @onekade LOL. Now you're gonna pass out in 3...2... ZZZZzzzzzz
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bmaz @theurbansherpa NOOOOOOO!
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bmaz Hey @IDFSpokesperson can you arrange for Wolf Blitzer and @CNN to "investigate" Siberian Hole Terror Tunnels please?http://t.co/VkEN4ttSBZ
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