Tag Archives: Jacob Appelbaum

How to testify at a grand jury: David House “invokes” on Bradley Manning, Julian Assange, & taking illegal notes

Bradley Manning supporter David House was called last year before the grand jury preparing charges against Julian Assange, in the event Assange is successfully remanded to Sweden. Despite being told a transcript was forbidden, House took notes which have now found themselves (A)nonymously online, reproduced here with David House’s refrain in bold. Here’s Grand Jury, a comedy:  

1. Record of proceedings
2. As recorded by David House
3. Grand Jury, Alexandria VA
4. 15 June 2011, 4:10pm to 5pm
5.  
6. Inside the Grand Jury:
7. DOJ Counterespionage Section: Attorney Patrick Murphy *
8. DOJ Counterespionage Section: Attorney Deborah Curtis *
9. Eastern District of Virginia: AUSA Bob Wiechering
10. Eastern District of Virginia: AUSA Tracy McCormick
11. Eastern District of Virginia: AUSA Karen Dunn
12. Unspecified number of Grand Jurors
13. Court Steganographer
14. David House
15.  
16. Directly outside the Grand Jury:
17. Mike Condon, FBI Agent from Washington, D.C. field office
18. James Farmer, Chief of Anti-Terrorism and National Security Unit at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in D. Mass
19. Peter Krupp, David House’s attorney
20.  
21.  
22. Record begins: 4:10pm
23. [David House is sworn in and informed of his rights]
24. Patrick Murphy: Would you please state your full name for the record?
25. David House: My name is David House.
26. PM: Did you meet Bradley Manning in January 2010?
27. DH: On the advice of counsel, I invoke my right to remain silent under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution. I am concerned that this grand jury is seeking information designed to infringe or chill my associational privacy, and that of others, guaranteed by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, and that it is using information obtained without a search warrant in violation of the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution. I define the preceding statement as “invoke”, and when I say “I invoke” in the future I am referring to this statement.
28. Deborah Curtis: Exhibit 1-A?
29. PM: Mr. House, please direct your attention to the screen behind you, exhibit 1-A.
30. DC: I can’t make it bigger.
31. PM: Try… here, remove that bar on the side.
32. DC: That didn’t work.
33. DH: Do you guys need help?
34. DC: We just need to make it bigger. Can everyone see this okay?
35. PM: Ok… we’re going to continue.
36.  
37. [A still image from the Frontline PBS special is displayed on the screen. Four figures are standing in front of the BUILDS logo, one figure has her back turned.]
38.  
39. PM: Mr. House, can you identify the man on the right?
40. DH: I invoke.
41. PM: Can you identify the man standing second from right?
42. DH: I invoke.
43. PM: Ok, can you identify the person with bright-colored hair, standing here?
44. DH: I invoke.
45. PM: Are we to believe that identifying that individual would somehow incriminate you?
46. DH: On the advice of counsel, I invoke my right to remain silent under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution. I am concerned that this grand jury is seeking information designed to infringe or chill my associational privacy, and that of others, guaranteed by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, and that it is using information obtained without a search warrant in violation of the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
47. PM: Ok, can you identify the man on the left?
48. PM: I would like to observe for the record that Mr. House is taking notes.
49. DH: As to the previous question, I invoke.
50. PM: Why are you taking notes?
51. DH: Invoke.
52. Bob Wiechering: I’d like to recommend, at this point, that we take a break and talk to your counsel.
53.  
54. [AUSAs and House leave the grand jury]
55. [Peter Krupp, House’s attorney, asserts House’s right to invoke]
56. [AUSAs and House return to the grand jury]
57.  
58. PM: What is your birthdate?
59. DH: March 14, 1987
60. PM: Where do you live?
61. DH: Can you restate the question?
62. PM: What is your address?
63. DH: I invoke.
64. PM: What is your current occupation?
65. DH: I invoke.
66. PM: Were you a senior in computer science at Boston University in January 2010?
67. DH: I invoke.
68. PM: Isn’t it true that you told PBS Frontline that you were a senior at Boston University in January 2010?
69. DH: I invoke.
70. PM: Do you know what a hackerspace is?
71. DH: I invoke.
72. PM: Do you know what BUILDS is, the acronym?
73. DH: I invoke.
74. Bob Wiechering: Mr. House, I notice you are taking notes. Attempting to create your own transcript is a violation of rule 6(e) of this grand jury. We have brought this to the attention of your counsel, and although he feels differently on the matter, we assert that you must stop taking notes at this time.
75. DH: Let me consult with my attorney.
76. [House leaves the grand jury room and returns one minute later]
77. DH: My lawyer asks that you refer all questions about notes to him.
78. BW: Let’s continue.
79. PM: Mr. House, are you involved with the Bradley Manning Support Network?
80. DH: I invoke.
81. PM: Did you respond in the affirmative when asked by the FBI if you had heard of known WikiLeaks associate Jacob Appelbaum?
82. PM: I would like to state for the record that Mr. House is not answering the question and is instead taking notes.
83. DH: I invoke.
84. PM: Do you intend to answer any of my questions, aside from your date of birth and your name?
85. DH: I invoke.
86. PM: Is that because of the phalanx of attorneys present here today?
87. Court Stenographer: I’m sorry, the what of attorneys?
88. PM: Phalanx… the phalanx of attorneys.
89. DH: As to the phalanx of attorneys, I invoke.
90. PM: At this time, I will let Deborah Curtis ask a few questions.
91. DC: Mr. House, have you ever been to the Oxford Spa restaurant in Cambridge, MA?
92. DH: Allow me to consult with my attorney.
93. [House leaves the grand jury and returns one minute later.]
94. DH: As to the previous question, I invoke.
95. DC: You admitted to federal agents in Boston that you had met Bradley Manning in January 2010, is that correct?
96. DH: I invoke.
97. DC: Isn’t it true that you spent the night of January 27 2010 with Daniel Clark and Bradley Manning?
98. DH: Can you repeat the question?
99. DC: Isn’t it true that you spent the night of January 27 2010 with Daniel Clark and Bradley Manning?
100. DH: One more time.
101. DC: Isn’t it true that you spent the night of January 27 2010 with Daniel Clark and Bradley Manning?
102. PM: He’s writing it down.
103. DC: Are you getting this, are you writing it all down?
104. DH: Was the last question a question to be answered?
105. DC: Yes.
106. DH: I invoke.
107. DC: And the question before?
108. DH: I also invoke.
109. DC: Where did Danny Clark have breakfast on the morning of January 28, 2010?
110. DH: Allow me to consult with my attorney.
111. [House leaves the grand jury and returns one minute later.]
112. DH: As to the previous question, I invoke.
113. DC: Do you intend to answer any questions about Daniel Clark?
114. DH: Invoke.
115. DC: Do you intend to answer any questions about Bradley Manning?
116. DH: [Writing] Could you please repeat the question?
117. DC: Do you intend to answer any questions about Jacob Appelbaum?
118. DH: I invoke.
119. DC: At this time, we’d like to stop the proceedings. You are free to leave.

Wikileaks Jacob Appelbaum confounds US customs w Bill of Rights thumbdrive

US-based Wikileaks colleague Jacob Appelbaum has a humorous account of his reentry yesterday to the US. Flying into Newark last July his laptop was searched and his cell phones confiscated. This time Appelbaum tweeted ahead that the ACLU would be his welcoming party, among other measures, recounted through Twitter:

Tweets by ioerror

I am not practically able to transport electronic devices. I will be radio silent before, during, and for some time after my flight.

I think that it is unlikely that there will be any serious trouble. With secret courts and sealed orders… the only way to know is to go.

I’m heading to the airport from Reykjavik and expect to be in the US around 16:40 PST Monday afternoon. Perhaps everything will go smoothly.

I am out of the airport and back in Seattle. Nothing more for now, sleep time.

It’s very frustrating that I have to put so much consideration into talking about the kind of harassment that I am subjected to in airports.

I was detained, searched, and CBP did attempt to question me about the nature of my vacation upon landing in Seattle.

The CBP specifically wanted laptops and cell phones and were visibly unhappy when they discovered nothing of the sort.

I did however have a few USB thumb drives with a copy of the Bill of Rights encoded into the block device. They were unable to copy it.

The forensic specialist (who was friendly) explained that EnCase and FTK, with a write-blocker inline were unable to see the Bill of Rights.

I requested access my lawyer and was again denied. They stated I was I wasn’t under arrest and so I was not able to contact my lawyer.

The CBP (U.S. Customs and Border Protection) agent was waiting for me at the exit gate. Remember when it was our family and loved ones?

When I handed over my customs declaration form, the female agent was initially friendly. After pulling my record, she had a sour face.

She attempted to trick me by putting words into my mouth. She marked my card with a large box with the number 1 inside, sent me on my way.

While waiting for my baggage, I noticed the CBP agent watching me and of course after my bag arrived, I was “randomly” selected for search.

Only US customs has a random number generator worse than a mid-2007 Debian random number generator. Random? Hardly.

During the search, I made it quite clear that I had no laptop and no cell phone. Only USB drives with the Bill of Rights.

The CBP agent stated that I had posted on Twitter before my flight and that slip ended the debate about their random selection process.

The CBP agents in Seattle were nicer than ones in Newark. None of them implied I would be raped in prison for the rest of my life this time.

The CBP agent asked if the ACLU was really waiting. I confirmed the ACLU was waiting and they again denied me contact with legal help.

All in all, the detainment was around thirty minutes long. They all seemed quite distressed that I had no computer and no phone.

They were quite surprised to learn that Iceland had computers and that I didn’t have to bring my own.

There were of course the same lies and threats that I received last time. They even complemented me on work done regarding China and Iran.

I think there’s a major disconnect required to do that job and to also complement me on what they consider to be work against police states.

While it’s true that Communist China has never treated me as badly as CBP, I know this isn’t true for everyone who travels to China.

All in all, if you’re going to be detained, search, and harassed at the border in an extra-legal manner, I guess it’s Seattle over Newark.

It tok a great deal of thought before I posted about my experience because it honestly appears to make things worse for me in the future.

Even if it makes things worse for me, I refuse to be silent about state sponsored systematic detainment, searching, and harassment.

In case it is not abundantly clear: I have not ben arrested, nor charged with any crime, nor indicted in any way. Land of the free? Hardly.

I’m only counting from the time that we opened my luggage until it was closed. The airport was basically empty when I left.

It’s funny that the forensics guy uses EnCase. As it, like CBP, apparently couldn’t find a copy of the Bill of Rights I dd’ed into the disk.

The forensics guy apparently enjoyed the photo with my homeboy Knuth and he was really quite kind. The forensics guy in Newark? Not so much.

The CBP agent asked me for data – was I bringing data into the country? Where was all my data from the trip? Names, numbers, receipts, etc.

The mental environment that this creates for traveling is intense. Nothing is assured, nothing is secure, and nothing provides escape.

I resisted the temptation to give them a disk filled with /dev/random because I knew that reading them the Bill of Rights was enough hassle.

I’m flying to Toronto, Canada for work on Sunday and back through Seattle again a few days later. Should be a joy to meet these guys again.

All of this impacts my ability to work and takes a serious emotional toll on me. It’s absolutely unacceptable.

What happens if I take a device they can’t image? They take it. What about the stuff they give back? Back doored? Who knows?

Does it void a warranty if your government inserts a backdoor into your computer or phone? It certainly voids the trust I have in all of it.

I dread US Customs more than I dreaded walking across the border from Turkey to Iraq in 2005. That’s something worth noting.

I will probably never feel safe about traveling internationally with a computer or phones again.

None the less, safe or not, I won’t stop working on Tor. Nor will I cease traveling. I will adapt and I will win. A hard road worth taking.

A solid argument for free software: To check the integrity of your hardware and your software against tampering. No binary (firmware) blobs.

I’d like to think that when I visit my family in Canada this weekend and attend a work conference that Canada won’t hassle me. Am I dreaming?

Will the Canadian government simply act as an arm of the US policy of detaining, searching, and harassing me? Oh Canada! I hope not.

It’s interesting to note that some media initially reported that I had no trouble because I said nothing at all. Irony abounds.

My border experience reminds me of the old monochrome quote: “Land of the Free? Land of the Free Refill!”

Why do we allow US Customs to lie and to threaten people? It’s a crime to lie to them and they do it as their day job. Why the inequality?