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Author: Subject: The Chemical Closet
0U812
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[*] posted on 4-4-2008 at 15:21
The Chemical Closet


Customs label looks like this

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0U812
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[*] posted on 4-4-2008 at 15:23
The Chemical Closet


the RP comes in a bag in a can, not the bottle listed on the site!

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anotheronebitesthedust
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[*] posted on 4-4-2008 at 22:05


Ha! This cop registered on January 29th 2008 and has only posted to support TCC.


Quote:
Originally posted by 0U812
www.thechemicalcloset.co.uk worked for me! order of RP&E arrived two days ago with no one watching round the corner (that i know of). Think i'll have it sent to grandmas next time just in case!!!

Quote:
Originally posted by 0U812
I think what is happening is that some people are on the radar for whatever reason and their mail is being watched by big brother. Or, perhaps some of the orders are not clearing customs.

Quote:
Originally posted by 0U812
The R P I ordered came in a can with a sack inside, not the bottle listed on the website. Nevertheless, it did arrive and without unwanted visitors.

Quote:
Originally posted by 0U812
I ordered from the company back in January, after thinking I got ripped off and sweating during the wait, my chems finally arrived. Took three weeks though, so much for "Fast Discrete Delivery"!!

Quote:
Originally posted by 0U812
that stuffs legal in the U.K. and I bet the company is making a killing. Its all about the mighty dollar.

Quote:
Originally posted by 0U812
Dont be so sure about the IP lookup
me agree with the undead_alchemist....i checked out kno3.com prior to ordering and found their IP address was in Florida. My chems for sure came from England though.
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[*] posted on 4-4-2008 at 22:20


It is rather suspicous. why don't you post a pic of your red P?



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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 09:52


To me this thread seems rather useless. Soooo many pages about some shit company. Is it really interesting whether it is a sting operation or not? A real home chemist, who is interested in chemistry, has no business at TCC. There are other MUCH better sources for chemicals out there. Even kno3.com was a 100 times better source for chemicals.

TCC is for cooks only. Forget it and please go back to chemistry again :P.




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Want to wonder? Look at https://woelen.homescience.net
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 11:11


I would be more inclined to agree with you on this woelen, except that by
a) soliciting members of this board with spam, and
b) having their shills post on here
I feel that TCC is actively trying to trick users here (who would hopefully normally have more sense) into something that could get them a harsh prison sentence.

If they had the decency to leave the members of this board alone, I'd be a lot more inclined to leave them alone. :)

Some of their 'products' DO have legit home science uses, and are unavailable in the USA at any price. Anyone tricked by this might well be an aspiring 'cook', but they might also be a real hobbyist, albeit a gullible one. In the first case, I would much prefer the lesson to be: Don't do that, you are going to get caught, and it isn't worth it, and in the second case I am appalled that some otherwise decent persons' life may be wrecked all so some LEO can get another gold star on their record. (So TCC: Fuck off.)

Also, I am kind of fascinated by the process of trying to sleuth the truth out of this.
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 11:45


There is some legal aspect of these sting operations that I simply don't understand. Admittedly I'm pretty much clueless about law and related stuff, but how can somebody who was lured into committing a crime by a law officer even be incriminated? If such a customer would actually be convicted for his crime (which in this case would actually be: having been convicted because not moral enough to resist seduction into crime), then it should logically follow that the law officer is guilty of being an accomplice in crime since he actively and knowingly participated in it. After all, there would have been no such specific crime committed without the assistance of, for example the manager of TCC or similar persons. It should also logically follow that the law enforcement agents could simply just arrest the officer running this charade, since he is already actively and knowingly involved in criminal activities (a criminal by definition). Maybe this the reason the company is based/registered in the UK, since this way the officer running it can not be prosecuted in the USA while the customers from USA can get convicted? Or is there some juristic paradox that actually allows law officers to commit criminal acts without being punished?
I wish a lawyer could explain me this in simple words, as reading law gives me a headache.

(I'm not sure if such a law officer is actually an accomplice or accessory)

[Edited on 5/4/2008 by Nicodem]
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 13:03


Quote:

Admittedly I'm pretty much clueless about law and related stuff,
but how can somebody who was lured into committing a crime
by a law officer even be incriminated?


A policeman luring someone into a crime constitutes entrapment
and is grounds for throwing out charges. However, if someone
was already going to commit a crime or had a record of committing
a certain type of crime then the entrapment defense no longer applies.

So, consider a case where a home chemist happens to receive
spam from a sting operation, then orders dome iodine from them,
then gets arrested for attempted drug manufacture. When the case
came to court, the prosecutor would argue that since the fellow
already had a lab which contained equipment such as the dreaded
three-holed flask and such chemicals as toluene and lithium which
are commonly associated with meth labs so clearly the defendant
had intended to cook drugs before being offered an opportunity to
buy the iodine, so this was not a case of entrapment. Quite likely,
the court would buy the prosecutions claims that possession of a lab
with precursors was evidence of intent to make drugs, the court
would ind the defendant guilty, and the local newspapers would
be filled with stories of how clever police work had discovered that
a seemingly upstanding citizen was actually a meth cook who
tried to hide his activities as a chemistry hobby.

Quote:

I wish a lawyer could explain me this in simple words, as reading law gives me a headache.


I'm a scientist, not a lawyer, but I've spent some time reading
laws and following what courts do, so here is my best guess at
answering your questions. Yes, it does give headaches, but so
does being whopped over the head by a policeman, which is
what I am trying to avoid by reading up on the law.

Quote:

If such a customer would actually be convicted for his crime (which in this case would actually be: having been convicted because not moral enough to resist seduction into crime), then it should logically follow that the law officer is guilty of being an accomplice in crime since he actively and knowingly participated in it. After all, there would have been no such specific crime committed without the assistance of, for example the manager of TCC or similar persons. It should also logically follow that the law enforcement agents could simply just arrest the officer running this charade, since he is already actively and knowingly involved in criminal activities (a criminal by definition)


Remember, we are dealing with laws passed by legislatures, not laws
of physics here, so strict logic need not apply :o (I am reminded of
how, upon obtaining U.S. citizenship, Kurt Goedel pointed out to the
judge in charge of the naturalization ceremony that the U.S law was
not logically consistent.)

Seriously, I am pretty sure that the laws contain clauses saying that
it is legal for the police to do some otherwise illegal acts like offer
contraband for sale during the course of enforcing the law. I haven't
looked at the particular law relevant here, but when reading laws, I
have come across such clauses making exceptions for law enforcement
officers performing their duties in other laws.

Quote:

Or is there some juristic paradox that actually allows law officers to commit criminal acts without being punished?


I am quite sure it is an exception written into the law, not a paradox.

Quote:

Maybe this the reason the company is based/registered in the UK, since this way the officer running it can not be prosecuted in the USA while the customers from USA can get convicted?


My guess as to why a U.S. agent would want to set up a sting operation at
least nominally located in a foreign country is not to avoid being prosecuted,
but rather as a way to make more charges against anyone who falls into
the trap. If the sting operation were located in the same city as the purchaser,
all that the prosecution could raise were charges of attempting to purchase
a controlled substance. If the sting were located in a different state, then
one could add interstate commerce charges whilst, if it were in a foreign
country, one could add charges relating to import. The further away, the more
charges can be leveled and the more serious they will be. As a general
rule, the police want to prosecute on as many charges as possible in the
hope that at least some will stick. Thus, even if the defendant succeeded
in convincing a jury that he was a legitimate amateur scientist who had
nothing to do with the drug trade, they might still convict him for attempting
to import a controlled substance and evade laws about reporting purchases.
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 13:38


Thanks for the explanation. Indeed for a moment I forgot that laws don't need to follow logic nor they need to be consistent. I guess this is one of the reasons lady justice is blindfolded. :cool:
However, are there really such laws, in USA for example, that allow policemen to perform crimes unpunished? Is that only your deduction or is it a fact? I thought only national security agencies are allowed to do crimes without the possibility of being incriminated.
I can't think of any such exception written in a form of a law, except maybe in the pretest of saving someone's life or something like that, since otherwise it would make no sense. I know in most legislatures law officers have the right to skip some warrants, citizen rights or authorizations if it is for saving someone's life or prevent injury, yet that is nearly not the same as actually committing crime or being an accomplice in crime.
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 13:50


|The US has run sting operations before. They (whichever agency) ran a pay porn site for two years then hit all the credit card numbers. Operation ORE it was called in the UK. It backfired a bit when they realised that the porn site was being used for identity fraud on a big scale too.
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 14:45


As far as I am aware, the only sort of porn site that law enforcement is particularly interested in, are the child porn sites, and there they have more sympathy from me.

As to entrapment as a defense: the statement made above is not precise enough. A police officer may propose a crime to an individual who would otherwise be inclined to commit that crime anyway. This does not constute entrapment. For example, an undercover officer might propose a bank robbery to someone who is known to be a bank robber or armed robber. No entrapment in such a case. Entrapment exists where a police officer proposes a crime that an individual would NOT have been inclined to commit anyway. Naturally, the detailed theory and case law will vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction even within the same country, much more so from country to country. But that is a more accurate statement of entrapment's meaning under US law as far as I remember it.




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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 16:27


"I am quite sure it is an exception written into the law, not a paradox."

These "exceptions" are everywhere from guns and explosives to drugs and precursors.

The only thing I don't like about the way the law goes around enforcing the "child porn" thing is they consider porn as being "child porn" if it has anyone under 18. Okay, that's fine and dandy but how the hell is someone supposed to tell the difference between an 18 year old and an older looking 16 year old? Technically, if you had some porn, say, on your computer that had a 17 year old in it, you could be convicted of possession of child pornography even if you didn't know they were underage and they just looked older.

I have no sympathy towards people who enjoy such sick things as REAL child porn I just fear that LE goes after these things with such tenacity that I'm sure some "innocent" people are fucked over. And they can get by with that because most people think someone who looks at porn is "sick" anyway so they don't really care about the details.

I mean, surely some guy who has a huge collection of "ametuer porn" on his computer has at least one where the girl/guy is under 18. Should he deserve to go to jail?

Do you think things like that happen or do they REALLY just bust people that are OBVIOUSLY child porn freaks?




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S.C. Wack
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 16:46


Nicodem, did you follow the link that lead to
"Albuquerque narcotics detectives have arrested their first accused meth-maker caught by setting up an online sting.

The Albuquerque Police Department created its own Web site advertising ingredients to make meth.

It looked just like the thousands out there selling meth ingredients so potential meth makers didn't know who was on the other end, police said.

Vincent Barclay, 43, was the first person to fall for it, according to police who said he ordered 500 grams--about 1.1 pounds--of ephedrine hydrochloride, a common ingredient used to make meth.

However when he went to pick it up at a UPS Store in Rio Rancho, officers were waiting to arrest him"

The guy was in one of those states where you need a permit for various items unless you want to be charged with a felony. In NM it goes beyond RP and iodine, including many listed chemicals, and also includes many chemicals not on any DEA list, yet does not include many DEA listed chemicals.
http://www.nmcpr.state.nm.us/nmac/parts/title16/16.019.0021....

The police do whatever they want because the courts usually do not hold them accountable, and usually do not withhold evidence acquired as a result of improper police actions.

[Edited on 5-4-2008 by S.C. Wack]
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 17:10


Or they use that trick where they present the evidence that is later stricken. The jury can't just throw there memories in the recycling bin like a computer. I always thought it was so unfair how a prosecuter/defender can ask a question or present evidence that is not allowed and just say, "Whoops!". As if striking it from the record negates the fact that it was brought up.

From what I've heard that's a common prosecution (and sometimes defense) strategy.

Is it just me or do prosecuters seem more like snakes than defense attornies even though they don't make as much money? Is it that they think they are right and everyone else is a lying, filthy criminal?

[Edited on 5-4-2008 by MagicJigPipe]




"There must be no barriers to freedom of inquiry ... There is no place for dogma in science. The scientist is free, and must be free to ask any question, to doubt any assertion, to seek for any evidence, to correct any errors. ... We know that the only way to avoid error is to detect it and that the only way to detect it is to be free to inquire. And we know that as long as men are free to ask what they must, free to say what they think, free to think what they will, freedom can never be lost, and science can never regress." -J. Robert Oppenheimer
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microcosmicus
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 19:16


Quote:

Is that only your deduction or is it a fact?


It is my deduction based upon, among other things, the verdict
of Fran's Lunch, Inc. v. Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission
In that case, the police made a sting operation in which they
would send an minor to liquor stores to buy alcoholic beverages.
One of the stores which was caught and had its license revoked
sued on the grounds that the policre and the boy involved had
violated the law against minors purchasing alcohol and lost
the case. Here are some relevant quotes from the opinion of
justice Porada of the Appeals Court of Massachusetts:

Quote:

Relying on Cremins v. Clancy, 415 Mass. 289, 295, 612 N.E.2d 1183 (1993), a Superior Court judge *664 ruled that the commission had not violated the law because properly construed, G.L. c. 138, ยง 34A, prohibits the purchase of alcohol by minors for their consumption or the consumption of others, and here the alcohol was not purchased for consumption but for use as evidence to enforce the law.

It is a generally accepted rule of statutory construction that the word "person" when used in a statute will not ordinarily be construed to include the State or political subdivisions thereof. . . . . . . . . .
It would strain credulity to believe that the Legislature intended the commission or the municipal police force to be included in the definition of a "person" where their actions were designed to promote rather than hinder the purpose of the law.

It is generally recognized that absent entrapment or other abuses violative of fundamental fairness, government involvement in criminal activity for the purpose of investigating possible violations of law is permissible even if technical violations of law occur.

The whole opinion can be found at
http://www.sjhlawfirm.com/published-frans.htm

Based on this precedent and the ones it cites, I feel quite
confident in deducing that a drug agent who runs a
sting operation would not found guilty of violating laws
about selling listed chemicals because the reason for
doing this was to enforce the law. Even if the particular
law in question does not explicitly state an exemption
for police, the courts are likely to read such an exception
into the law as described above.

What Sauron mentioned about the bank robbers is a textbook
example. As he rightly pointed out, my description was
oversimplified, so I now provide more detailed referennces
for those interested in acquiring a better understanding of this
area of the law. Also note that merely proposing the crime may
not be enough even if one were not otherwise inclined to commit
a crime --- coercive or threatening behavior on the part of the
police or abuse of authority is required to constitute entrapment.

http://www.lectlaw.com/def/e024.htm

http://www.slate.com/id/1003657/

http://www.grayarea.com/entrap.htm

Entrapment and the Problem of Deterring Police Misconduct
Dru Stevenson, South Texas College of Law
http://works.bepress.com/dru_stevenson/10/

In particular, some quotes from the third reference might be interesting:

Quote:

Numerous federal courts have held there is no Federal Constitutional requirement for any level of suspicion to initiate undercover operations. The courts have ruled there is no constitutional right to be free of investigation and that the fact of an undercover investigation having been initiated without suspicion does not bar the convictions of those who rise to its bait.

To claim inducement, a defendant must prove he or she was unduly persuaded, threatened, coerced, harassed or offered pleas based on sympathy or friendship by police. A defendant must demonstrate that the government conduct created a situation in which an otherwise law-abiding citizen would commit an offense.


In particular, from this, I draw the conclusion that,, if indeed TCC is
a sting operation, the entrapment defense would not be available to
a hapless home chemist who happened to make a purchase from
them in response to the e-mails they sent out.

As I said earlier, the crux of the problem is that nowadays, simply
having a home laboratory which includes apparatus and reagents
which could be used in drug manufacture is considered as evidence
of intent to produce illegal drugs (written explicitly into Texas law, but
I gather that this situation prevails less formally elsewhere). Without
this issue, there would be no problem.

If you read the law which set up the List I and List II precursors
carefully, it quite clearly states that possession of these is illegal
only when it is done with the intent to manufacture drugs. Well,
if you interpret the possession of these chemicals as proof of intent,
that produces a vicious circle.

Likewise, the issue of entrapment would become moot if it were
generally acknowledged that a private might have legitimate
uses for these chemicals, including home experimentation.
Since obtaining, owning, and using phosphorous is legal provided
it is not done with the intent to produce drugs, what would it
ultimately matter if the prosecutor could not prove intent
of the buyer?

My hope is that, in a few years, when the hysteria about meth
subsides and the restriction on ephedrine will have put the remaining
cooks out of business, the standards of proof of intent will become
more reasonable so that merely having a lab which happens to
include phosphorous and iodine will not mean much. Rather,
intent will mean that someone was clearly building a lab with
the aim of cooking drugs (say the only chemicals present were
ones to be used in cookery) and had otherwise demonstrated
preparing to do something illegal (such as being seen in the presence
of drug dealers and searching the internet for drug recipes) but
was stopped by the police before carrying out these plans. To be
sure, as Polverone said, the restrictions are unlikely to be lifted
soon, but if intent were interpreted in a stricter way, then this would
mean that legitimate home chemists in the U.S. could go about
their business at ease and let the drug cooks and the drug agents
play their cop and robber games without fear of getting mixed up in
the mess by ordering from the wrong supplier.

Quote:

I haven't looked at the particular law relevant here, but when reading
laws, I have come across such clauses making exceptions for law
enforcement officers performing their duties in other laws.


As an example of what such a clause look like, please see
section 16.19.21.17 of the New Mexico law to which S.C. Wack
provided a link above. It is entitled "EXEMPTION OF LAW
ENFORCEMENT OFFICIALS" and pretty explicitly states that
the law in question does not apply to police doing their duty.

[Edited on 5-4-2008 by microcosmicus]
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 20:09


Ah - child porn, one of the major justifications for various LEA actions and budgets. Perhaps the most famous case is Traci Lords, who at the age of 15 obtained fake ID showing her to be 22, including I believe a US passport, and started working as a porn actress. She appeared in Penthouse, followed by roughly 100 movies.

Around the time she reached 18 the government discovered, or 'discovered', she was underage, arresting her, the owners of her movie agency, and the producers-distributors of her videos. She was not charged with a crime, everyone who had accepted her ID as valid experienced various degrees of legal hassles. There were rumors that she had tipped of the government, suspecting that she was under investigation, and other rumours that the LEA had provided her with the fake ID in the first place.

Which leads to some other cases, such as this one http://supreme.justia.com/us/503/540/index.html in which it was ruled that the Feds had used entrapment. The defendant had purchased publications that were legal at the time, but a later 1984 (yup) law made the receipt of such materials. Several government agencies used the mailing list from the bookstore that sold him the original (legal) materials, and through a half dozen dummy companies over several years sent him mail attempting to get him to buy various publications, have penpals, and so on. The guy finally did order something, at which point he was busted.

There were other cases where the target of such efforts repeatedly turned down the offers, was sent unsolicited illegal materials, returned or turned in and reported them to the Post Office, and was arrested and prosecuted. In at least one case the target had taken the materials to the post office, turned them over along with a report, and was arrested when he returned home. In another the target came home from work and was arrested before he open that day's mail, which contained the unrequested illegal materials.

Back in the days of COINTELPRO and similar, it was not uncommon for a newer member of a radical group to start pushing for more violent actions, offering to obtain arms and explosives, and in a few cases showing up with them unrequested by any other member. The group would soon be raided and the firearms and explosives used as evidence.

Given those events don't be surprised if there's not some blatant entrapment with mail order chemicals, certainly fishing expeditions are going on. Given what has been done of the child porn front, this would be expected to include mailings offering "specials", and possibly the inclusion of "extras" in orders. I'd keep well away from any outfit you have the least suspicion of.

I seriously doubt that methamphetamine production is going to fade away, there are too many routes to that fairly simple molecule. Nor are LEAs and courts likely to back off on the loose interpretation of intent; certainly not while property seizure penalties reward the LEAs for performing such arrests, in some cases providing a significant portion of their budgets. Furthermore it's pretty rare that laws put into place are removed or loosened, especially if they don't inconvenience the wealthy and politically connected. Expect paperwork requirements for solvents and such to increase to the point small businesses can't afford to keep going.
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anotheronebitesthedust
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 20:27


Quote:
Originally posted by Geezmeister
The law on entrapment has not changed. Officers have always been allowed to create an opportunity for one who has the predisposition to commit a crime to commit the crime. What the law does not allow is for the officer to encourage or entice someone who lacks the propensity to commit the crime to commit the crime.

One of the classic examples arises from the prohibition era, when a cop went to get some whiskey from an old soldier, told him they were in the same unit in France, and asked him to get him some whiskey. The old soldier said he didn't drink anymore, and didn't care to violate the law. The cop, acting like a fellow soldier, began to talk about the war and the troubles they went through, and begged the old soldier to get him some whiskey, and the old soldier did. The case was dismissed on entrapment grounds. The old soldier did not have the propensity to commit the crime but was persuaded to commit it by the officer.

We have in my state the concept of sentence entrapment as well. This occurs when police persuade someone to do a bigger deal than they otherwise would be willing to do, which brings them into a more serious level of punishment. The police approach someone who will provide an eight ball of meth... the cops pressure him to bring twenty grams instead, he resists, they pressure him to do the bigger deal, he does, and is charged with trafficking.


Also, it's not like the police officers at TCC actually have stock of all these restricted chems and are selling them. (That's why some of the pics at their site are incorrect). They simply set up a website and are gathering evidence in order to get search warrants and make busts. They may ask the DEA to actually deliver Ephedrine to help make a better case, or find where the lab is, but they could probably also get a conviction by simply delivering a package full of salt and wait til the target opens it. Sometimes they'll wire the package so that as soon as it is opened they send in the storm troopers. Other times they'll follow the package to see where it ends up.

Another factor in all of this is how difficult it actually is to get these chems. I don't think many companies would supply iodine and red phosphorus together. Not to mention the other 20 or 30 suspicious chems. Ephedrine used to be legal in Canada (before 2003 anyone could buy barrels of it without a license of any kind). But that didn't mean that every company would sell it to anyone. Most companies still had morals and it would take months to find a company to sell to a small unknown company. Imagine a chem distributor took a look at the TCC website? They would laugh.

Methylamine and iodine would be easy to get, but I imagine safrole and p2p would be somewhat hard to get in bulk amounts whether you're in Europe or not.
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 21:52


I see that the word intent has come up here, and as usual another thread has been derailed into a discussion of chemical legality.

Some examples, not even mentioning RP and I, and almost not mentioning ammonia:
In MO, KY, and ND, possession of more than 24 grams of ephedrine or pseudoephedrine is evidence of intent to manufacture methamphetamine. 5 grams of ephedrine or 9 grams of pseudoephedrine in AR. It's 9 in TX, where possession of any amount of liquid ammonia or Li also shows intent. 9 grams of ephedrine/pseudoephedrine is by itself a crime in OR and GA; 12 in UT, LA, MI; 15 in WA; 24 in AZ. No intent necessary. The exemptions that come to mind are the ones in the statutes.

NM law as I linked to here does not require intent, there are no exemptions other than those given. Simple possession of the chemicals on that list without a permit is a crime. LA outright bans some chemicals unrelated to meth manufacture outside of "legitimate" areas, with no permit mechanism or intent required.

As I've said many times, "intent" will be proven if need be. They will bring in "experts" who will testify that there is no doubt as to your intent.

[Edited on 5-4-2008 by S.C. Wack]
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MagicJigPipe
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 22:13


"My hope is that, in a few years, when the hysteria about meth
subsides and the restriction on ephedrine will have put the remaining
cooks out of business"

I don't see it happening. It's been proven time and time again that prohibition of ANYTHING is doomed to failure. The operations will just move or find other ways. Technically, if that was the case then other drugs should be completely gone as well. And as we all know, that is certainly not the case.




"There must be no barriers to freedom of inquiry ... There is no place for dogma in science. The scientist is free, and must be free to ask any question, to doubt any assertion, to seek for any evidence, to correct any errors. ... We know that the only way to avoid error is to detect it and that the only way to detect it is to be free to inquire. And we know that as long as men are free to ask what they must, free to say what they think, free to think what they will, freedom can never be lost, and science can never regress." -J. Robert Oppenheimer
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 22:20


With a few exceptions relating to treason and the tax code (including gun laws) the prosecutorial burden of proof includes criminal intent, mens rae (Latin) is the technical legal term. Absent proof of criminal intent beyond a reasonable doubt, no properly instructed jury can convict.

The federal drug laws are not exempt from this burden of proof. Conspiracy cases and RICO cases are not exempt.

That's the law. (USA). Ask any defense lawyer.

That's basic legal principle. As for motive, means and opportunity, I suppose intent speaks to motive.




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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 22:35


"Absent proof of criminal intent beyond a reasonable doubt, no properly instructed jury can convict."

Therein lies the problem. Jurors bring their emotions and prejudices with them to court. If they think "home chemistry" cannot be legitimate then it is likely they will convict even if intent beyond a reasonable doubt has not been proven. It really depends how the prosecutors portrayal of the activities and the current social, emotional and political climate.

I mean, we know it has happened before.

I certainly WOULD NOT trust the competency of a jury in determining whether or not I was "conspiring to make drugs". They can't help what they feel emotionally and when they hear about all those "deadly toxic" chemicals within 2.234 miles of pregnant women, handicap children, defenseless bunnies, a pre-school and a resevoir lake their emotions just might take over and force them to convict even if it defies logic and reason.

Just like what everyone asks me when I tell them I have an AK-47; "Why do you NEED that?" Apparently, if you don't NEED it, it is wrong to possess unless, of course, it has to do with some kind of current social fad (i.e. A huge SUV, alcohol, "spinnas", "ice" etc...)

[Edited on 6-4-2008 by MagicJigPipe]




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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 22:50


Quote:

I seriously doubt that methamphetamine production is going to fade away,
there are too many routes to that fairly simple molecule.


Sure, there are many possible syntheses, but I think the relevant question
here is how many of them are the sort of thing which could actually be pulled
off by the sort of clueless bumblers who clutter up our organic chemistry
forum with pleas to be spoonfed drug recipies. As I understand it, the
reason we have so many meth shacks going in the backcountry is not
so much because one can make it from readily available chemicals
but because the procedure is simple enough and tolerant enough of
slop that someone with no experience or knowledge of chemistry can
obtain passable results. By contrast, I think a typical organic synthesis
which might involve carefully controlling conditions, non-trivial purification
of intermediaries, or rigorously excluding contaminants would require
levels of skill, knowledge, and patience much higher than what I think the
average cook has. For instance, I somehow just don't see wet dreamers
who can't even spell a sentence properly as pulling off Grignard reactions
even though they could easily enough scrounge up the necessary reagents.

For this reason, I think that, although methamphetamines may remain
with us for some time, the days of the small-time cook shack are numbered
now that ephedrine has been controlled in the U.S.. Rather, I expect that
most of the meth is going to be made in larger places (perhaps using alternate
synthetic routes to avoid suspicious precursors), likely outside the
country (e.g. Mexican meth) and the focus of enforcement is going to
turn towards going after traffickers and big-time producers rather than
worrying about small-time producers.

Quote:

Nor are LEAs and courts likely to back off on the loose interpretation of intent; certainly not while property seizure penalties reward the LEAs for performing such arrests, in some cases providing a significant portion of their budgets.


Sure, I don't expect this to happen too soon. Rather, the type of scenario I have in mind is
that at some time, maybe 5 or 10 years in the future, the small-time meth lab will largely
be a quaint memory and the DEA will instead be making its living by arresting the "mules"
who import the ready-made meth and confiscating their profits. At such a point, I doubt
that they will be nearly as zealous about small quantities of phosphorous or iodine in
private hands because this would no longer be relevant. By then, the only people who
would care about obtaining such things would be a few home chemists and similar oddballs.
At that point, I could see that a legitimate home chemist with no connections to the drug trade
and a decent lawyer would have a chance of convincing a jury that the uses to which
he put his phosphorous and iodine had nothing to do with trying to make drugs. This could
be rationalized on the grounds that the sort of strict enforcement which required in 2007 is
no longer appropriate now that the epidemic has passed.

Quote:

Furthermore it's pretty rare that laws put into place are removed or loosened, especially if they don't inconvenience the wealthy and politically connected. Expect paperwork requirements for solvents and such to increase to the point small businesses can't afford to keep going.


Sure, I agree with you and Polverone that the laws are likely to remain on the books
for quite a while. However, as described above, I see that possibility that nobody will
care to enforce them except in obvious cases where someone is really making and
selling drugs because the problem they were designed to address is no longer
an issue. And yes, alas, paperwork increases like entropy, making the life of
everybody except the bureaucrats whose job was created by the paperwork difficult.
Even should private possession of small quantities of listed chemicals no longer
be seen as suspicious, I expect that the annoying paperwork requirements will reamain
even when it is forgotten why or how they appeared in the first place.

Quote:

I don't see it happening. It's been proven time and time again that prohibition of ANYTHING is doomed to failure. The operations will just move or find other ways. Technically, if that was the case then other drugs should be completely gone as well. And as we all know, that is certainly not the case.


I was only making the more modest claim that the small-scale local
manufacture would go away in favor of trafficking methamphetamine
like most other drugs. With that proviso, I agree with what you said,

[Edited on 6-4-2008 by microcosmicus]
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MagicJigPipe
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[*] posted on 5-4-2008 at 22:59


Microcosmicus, I like that you are optimistic. I am not so sure but I do hope that you are right.



"There must be no barriers to freedom of inquiry ... There is no place for dogma in science. The scientist is free, and must be free to ask any question, to doubt any assertion, to seek for any evidence, to correct any errors. ... We know that the only way to avoid error is to detect it and that the only way to detect it is to be free to inquire. And we know that as long as men are free to ask what they must, free to say what they think, free to think what they will, freedom can never be lost, and science can never regress." -J. Robert Oppenheimer
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[*] posted on 6-4-2008 at 01:12


Quote:
Originally posted by Sauron
mens rae (Latin) is the technical legal term. Absent proof of criminal intent beyond a reasonable doubt, no properly instructed jury can convict.

The federal drug laws are not exempt from this burden of proof. Conspiracy cases and RICO cases are not exempt.

That's the law. (USA). Ask any defense lawyer.

That's basic legal principle.


Does this mean that I can beat the evil neighbor kids as long as I think that a good beating will do them good?

Any defense lawyer will tell you of a basic legal principle that's the law and which you ignore, strict liability. Had the Legislatures intended mens rea to apply, they would have used intent to manufacture wording in the statutes as with other laws. By the absence of such wording in a precursor case, it may not be difficult for the Court to believe that the Legislature intended strict liability to apply. I see little difference between this and laws that say that I must license a machine gun or silencer, or dog; or that a felon cannot have a firearm regardless of his intent. Apparently one cannot live legally in most places in most cities if they are a sex offender. How is living 2 blocks from a church criminal intent?

In the specific case of the NM guy and their drug precursor laws, the statute is written that those drug precursors require permits. Let us say that mens rea does apply here, what exactly does that mean? The crime is not possession with intent to manufacture, it is possession, period. So no intent to manufacture should be necessary. What is needed then to satisfy a mens rea requirement - the person knowingly and willfully possessed indole?

[Edited on 6-4-2008 by S.C. Wack]
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[*] posted on 6-4-2008 at 09:43


"Does this mean that I can beat the evil neighbor kids as long as I think that a good beating will do them good?"

I don't understand what you mean by this. Please explain.




"There must be no barriers to freedom of inquiry ... There is no place for dogma in science. The scientist is free, and must be free to ask any question, to doubt any assertion, to seek for any evidence, to correct any errors. ... We know that the only way to avoid error is to detect it and that the only way to detect it is to be free to inquire. And we know that as long as men are free to ask what they must, free to say what they think, free to think what they will, freedom can never be lost, and science can never regress." -J. Robert Oppenheimer
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