Decrying the FBI's "law enforcement gone rogue", Garrison Center director Thomas L. Knapp points out that the Federal Bureau of Investigation broke the law by running an illegal website distributing child pornography.
Similar to other sting operations, in which a large amount of the harm is done by the FBI itself, (such as persuading extremists to commit acts of terror so they can then be arrested) this one involved the FBI taking it upon itself to run an illegal website - a type of cyber sting operation.
Choosing not to "cheer on the white knights who protect society from the scourge of child pornography" this time, considering their methods, the Garrison director sums up how the scandal transpired in a recent March 22 post, as follows:
The Federal Bureau of Investigation, it seems, has been moonlighting as a provider of child pornography. After locating and seizing the servers of a child porn site on the “dark web,” known as Play Pen and reachable only via the Tor browser, the FBI decided not to shut the site down. Instead, they kept it running for two weeks, using it to spread malware that could identify and locate a handful of the site’s visitors. The vast majority of the 200,000 people downloading child porn from the site went on their way unmolested (pun intended). A few whose computers were mis-configured so as to be vulnerable to the FBI’s trick were arrested.Whistle-blowers (this time Free Talk Live), as usual, came under attack by US law enforcement for exposing the government's tactics. Knapp deems the FBI, in light of these revelations, to be "child pornographers" while "their victims are journalists who exposed the FBI’s role" in the scandal.
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