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A tale of two decisions (or, how the FBI gets you to confess)

The general public does not read court decisions, and that is a shame, because some of these decisions can be best-sellers. If you consider that some of the most successful authors of the last 20 years are legal fiction writers, it's a shame that some of the court rulings never become widely publicized considering the drama and human depravity that often surfaces through even a single lawsuit over civil rights or some other injustice.

The Federal courts do us a favor in writing their decisions: they write out the events leading up to the lawsuit at great length, really giving us a sense of what happened and why the case is important. A judge who can write well is able to suck the reader into reading the decision and a skilled legal writer can also write out the legal concepts in a way that makes sense to normal people.

In addition to this blog, I also maintain a legal blog covering the civil rights decisions of the United States Court of Appeals in Manhattan. Last week, my eyes lit up when I checked the daily decisions and saw that one case involved a guy who claimed he was forced to confess to a crime that he did not commit. This scenario surfaces from time to time for murders and other crimes, but this case was different because it involved the crime of the century: the 9/11 hijackings which launched this country into a new era.

The long and the short of it was that an Egpytian national, Abdallah Higazy, was staying in a hotel in New York City on September 11 and the hotel emptied out when the planes hit the towers. The hotel later found in the closet of his room a device that allows you to communicate with airline pilots. Investigators thought this guy had something to do with 9/11 so they questioned him. According to Higazi, the investigators coerced him into confessing to a role in 9/11. Higazi first adamantly denied any involvement with 9/11 and could not believe what was happening to him. Then, he says, the investigator said his family would go through hell in Egypt, where they torture people like Saddam Hussein. Higazy then realized he had a choice: he could continue denying the radio was his and his family suffers ungodly torture in Egypt or he confesses and his family is spared. Of course, by confessing, Higazy's life is worth garbage at that point, but ... well, that's why coerced confessions are outlawed in the United States.

So Higazy "confesses" and he's processed by the criminal justice system. His future is quite bleak. Meanwhile, an airline pilot later shows up at the hotel and asks for his radio back. This is like something out of the movies. The radio belonged to the pilot, not Higazy, and Higazy was free to go, the victim of horrible timing. Higazi was innocent! He next sued the hotel and the FBI agent for coercing his confession. The bottom line in the Court of Appeals: Higazy has a case and may recover damages for this injustice.

As I read the opinion I realized it was a 44 page epic, too long for me to print out. I blogged about the opinion while I read it online and then posted the blog as I ate lunch. Then something strange happened: a few minutes after I posted the blog, the opinion vanished from the Court of Appeals website! I had never seen this before, and what made all the more strange was that it involved a coerced confession over 9/11. What the hell was going on?

I let some other legal bloggers know about this, particulary the How Appealing blog and Appellate Law and Practice. They both ran a commentary on the missing opinion. Then someone sent How Appealing a PDF of the decision (probably very few of them were floating around since the opinion was posted for a brief period of time) and How Appealing posted the decison.

Then things got even stranger. The Court of Appeals actually phoned How Appealing to request that he remove the opinion from his website since it contained classified information. The Court said that a revised opinion would come out the next day without the classified information. How Appealing actually refused to remove the opinion. Through it all, hundreds of people came to my legal blog to see my summary of the opinion. It was either my blog or printing out and reading a 44 page epic.

The next day, the Court of Appeals reissued the Higazy opinion. With a redaction. The court simply omitted from the revised decision facts about how the FBI agent extracted the false confession from Higazy. For some reason, this information is classified. Just as the opinion gets interesting, when we are about to learn how an FBI agent named Templeton squeezed the "truth" out of Higazy, the opinion reads at page 7: "This opinion has been redacted because portions of the record are under seal. For the purposes of the summary judgment motion, Templeton did not contest that Higazy's statements were coerced."

So the opinion, while interesting, is much less interesting because now we don't know how the FBI extracts false confessions from people. Looking at things from another angle, we don't know how the FBI gets suspected terrorists to tell the truth. Except that we do know this, because the opinion is still available from the How Appealing website. The horse is out of the barn, and the classified portion of the opinion is embedded in the Internet for all eternity. Not only is this decision not to remove the premature opinion now a subject of debate (people tend to think that How Appealing did the right thing in keeping the opinion available), but now we can see the part of the ruling that the Court redacted:

Higazy alleges that during the polygraph, Templeton told him that he should cooperate, and explained that if Higazy did not cooperate, the FBI would make his brother “live in scrutiny? and would “make sure that Egyptian security gives [his] family hell.? Templeton later admitted that he knew how the Egyptian security forces operated: “that they had a security service, that their laws are different than ours, that they are probably allowed to do things in that country where they don’t advise people of their rights, they don’t – yeah, probably about torture, sure.?

Higazy later said, "I knew that I couldn't prove my innocence, and I knew that my family was in danger." He explained that "[t]he only thing that went through my head was oh, my God, I am screwed and my family's in danger. If I say this device is mine, I'm screwed and my family is going to be safe. If I say this device is not mine, I’m screwed and my family’s in danger. And Agent Templeton made it quite clear that cooperate had to mean saying something else other than this device is not mine.?

Higazy explained why he feared for his family:

The Egyptian government has very little tolerance for anybody who is —they’re suspicious of being a terrorist. To give you an idea, Saddam’s security force—as they later on were called his henchmen—a lot of them learned their methods and techniques in Egypt; torture, rape, some stuff would be even too sick to . . . . My father is 67. My mother is 61. I have a brother who developed arthritis at 19. He still has it today. When the word ‘torture’ comes at least for my brother, I mean, all they have to do is really just press on one of these knuckles. I couldn’t imagine them doing anything to my sister.

And Higazy added:

[L]et’s just say a lot of people in Egypt would stay away from a family that they know or they believe or even rumored to have anything to do with terrorists and by the same token, some people who actually could be —might try to get to them and somebody might actually make a connection. I wasn’t going to risk that. I wasn’t going to risk that, so I thought to myself what could I say that he would believe. What could I say that’s convincing? And I said okay.

That's how they do it, folks. If a foreign national is suspected of terrorist activity, the FBI will threaten to have a brutal foreign government punish his family. And punishment in a place like Egypt is not like punishment here. Punishment here consists of solitary confinement and a very long prison term. Punishment over there is torture.

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» Redactions from Political Animal
REDACTIONS....Shortly after 9/11, an Egyptian national named Abdallah Higazy was rounded up by the FBI and told to confess that he had been part of the plot. If he didn't, he was warned, things would go badly for his family.... [Read More]

» Why not more about the Second Circuit’s censorship? from Appellate Law
I am somewhat surprised to see that there has not been too much blogosopheric coverage of the Second Circuit’s failed attempt to redact details of Higazy v. Millenium Hotel and Resorts, in which the government conceded that an FBI agent [Read More]

» Higazy Revisited from Political Animal
HIGAZY REVISITED....Is there really as little interest in the Higazy redaction story, from both left and right, as a quick search of Google Blog indicates? Long story short, the FBI screwed up, forced a confession out of an innocent man,... [Read More]

» Metagg is tracking this post from Metagg
Find out what Social News Sites are discussing this post over at metagg.com [Read More]

» Evidence Under False Confession, Coercion and Torture Proving Embarrassing from Wizbang Blue
A hat tip to Kevin Drum, today and yesterday, for drawing attention in three posts, to two similar stories on the repercussions of 9/11, and the Bushies zeal to rein in, prosecute and if need be railroad whomever fits the... [Read More]

» A tale of two decisions (or, how the FBI gets you to confess) (PsychSound by Steve Bergstein) from afpkudos.com
The FBI has ways of making you talk. They threaten your family with torture, but wait... you aren't supposed to know that --it's classified. [Read More]

» FBI forces false confession out of man from Boing Boing
Blackandy says: Long story short: Man is staying in hotel in NYC during the 9/11/2001 attacks. Hotel empties after attacks and device is found in man's hotel room closet that allows communication with airline pilots. Man is Egyptian national, and FBI q... [Read More]

» Individuals' Allegations of What Our Government Did to Them Are Not "Classified" Information from Radio Left

Balkinization
Or they shouldn't be, anyway.

I've written about this [Read More]

Comments (45)

PrahaPartizan:

Hmmm, interesting twist on that old interrogation technique - "You haff relatives in de old country?" - that many of us used to watch in B&W movies on TV during our youth.

Xofis:

The new movie Rendition shows Egyptian torture.

Glenn:

The line-up of judges suggests some interesting possibilities of what happened here. The panel was Jacobs, Pooler, and Koeltl, with Pooler writing it. It's no secret that Jacobs would be highly protective of the FBI and the government; obviously the order to redact came from him. Pooler would be much less likely to favor such a redaction, and since she wrote it, I think it's clear that she didn't think it should be redacted.

The interesting possibility is, was there some sort of agreement to redact this (or did Jacobs demand it), and Pooler deliberately left it in so the info would get out there?

MNPundit:

You know, we torture here too. Look at Padilla.

I would say that aside from Guantanamo, US torture usually does take place in foreign countries.

Thank you so much for posting this! Even if they later redacted the opinion (and thanks God they published it first without doing it), it's great to know that the court ruled for Higazy. If only that would make FBI agents hesitate in the future before coercing confessions.

It just seems to be more and more apparent that we are living in a fascist state.

You can put lipstick on a pig...Fascism Lite?

Great work! Keep it up!

Thank goodness. The worst thing I faced back in the UK is extradition to the US!

tedb:

Are you certain that "Punishment here consists of solitary confinement and a very long prison term" and nothing more? That, sadly, is good news. :-(

the x:

um, punishment here is torture, too.

Interesting stuff.

this one is disturbing on three fronts - 1) that a confession was coerced, 2) that is was subsequently deemed confidential, and 3) if it really was confidential it shows an amazingly sloppy system that lets the info out in the first place.

scarshapedstar:

Others haven't quite spelled it out explicitly enough, so I will add that the American prison system is one glorified rape room and torture/execution chamber.

lower tiberius:

A thought occurs to me that the law enforcement agencies involved should have been trained before hand to realize. I dont think it was wrong to arrest Higazy, considering the events and circumstances but .... to who's or what benefit is the necessity of extracting an immediate confession, bogus or accurate? There was reasonable cause to arrest Higazy and if it had ultimately been determined that the device was his it would have been very damning circumstantial evidence to his involvement in the terrible terrorist act. On the other hand either way he'd have been in custody and a process of law (which when given a chance will work better than 70% of the time) would have begun to get to the bottom of the suspect, the evidence, and the facts surrounding or linking both. I don't think we're getting our money's worh in the training of these criminal justice graduates who should know when you are on the side of the law it is likely to work for you unlike when you decide to throw in with working beyond the margins of those laws.

Anonymous:

Before 9/11, I worked at Texas Instruments. I was coerced to admit that I committed a crime (that I was told the FBI was investigating). I denied the crime because I did not do it. However, the interrogator got me to confess because I was told if I did not admit to doing the crime, that I would be put in prison where I would get raped by other men and that when my wife and children came to visit, how would I be able to face them? I was already scared and after that, I just admitted it to get it over with. After the fact, I had to get a federal lawyer who kept me out of prison, but who said that I was more likely going to prison for confessing than not. My lawyer also said that the confession could not be retracted, even though it was coerced. I was so thoroughly screwed, my life ruined. I just do not know even now how I survived. I almost killed myself over the whole deal. It is ten years later and I am just getting my life back in order.

owenz:

It is scary that the Appeals Court agreed to redact this information.

By redacting it, the Appeals Court is implicitly endorsing the FBI's use of threats against the families of terrorists. It is not endorsing the FBI's threats in this specific case because Higazy provied to be an innocent man, but in general - this is an acceptable technique for the government to use during interrogation.

If threatening the families of terrorists is illegal, then the ONLY justification for redacting this information is to cover up government law breaking. I don't believe the Court would redact information for the express purpose of covering up government law breaking. Which means the Court must believe that threatening the familes of terrorism suspects is a legitimate interrogation technique that warrants protection (and therefore redaction).

What is scary about this decision is NOT that the FBI would use such a tried and true method to extract a confession. It's that the Appeals Court has ruled that this technique is a legitimate government activity that warrants protection.

one of my all time favorite redactions

http://www.thememoryhole.org/feds/justice_redaction.htm

I don't know whether to scream or weep. Maybe both.

NoOneYouKnow:

It'd be interesting to see Agent Templeton's career path since the Higazy case; anyone want to bet he's been promoted?

Buckeye Nut Schell:

I am no Bush sympathizer by any stretch of the imagination but I think there may be a more FBI favorable explanation here.

The day after 9/11, people were in a panic for information. What if the interrogator was lying? They are allowed to do that you know. I think an overzealous FBI agent thinking he or she was Jack Bauer (sp) and wanting to save the world could easily make up a story that they were going to have his family tortured to coerce a confession. If the person was guilty and there were additional attacks planned, it would have well been worth it in the eyes of many. You have to remember that these were desperate times and people were willing to take desperate measures. I don’t blame them for that because I do not know if I could have taken the moral high road at that time either. That being said (with the benefit of hind sight and in the midst worst civil rights crisis this country has ever known) I believe that the agent went about it in the wrong manner and this man deserves to be apologized to and compensated.

The judges, however, have had the benefit of hindsight and the awareness of the current situation and none of this should have been redacted. It was, in my opinion, a mistake and unless we really intended to torture this guys family, no way a states secret. If we were going to do it and it is standard practice in our country, then yes it is a state’s secret but one that needed to be exposed. If this country doesn’t start denouncing torture by actions rather than words, the moral high road will never be unachievable again.

Anonymous:

...the land of the free and home of the brave...

Amerika, aint it great?

M:

What a nightmare your country is in!

In case the one poster didn't notice, Guantanamo bay is in Cuba, not the USA -- so all forms of torture can be conducted there without a problem. (That's WHY it is there.)

Of course, probably the next step would have been for this poor schmoe to be sent to Egypt or Syria (good buddies of Uncle Bush) for some tortured confessions just like the Americans did with Canadian citizen Aman Arar who was only passing THROUGH a USA airport on a flight back to his home in Canada.

At the moment, Bush is satisfied to conduct monitoring and surveillance of thousands of Americans -- but if something interesting comes up, you can be sure THEY will be spending the next all-expense-paid trip to Cuba.

doitright:

Recently on the net I have been reading about individuals who have been harassed and/or arrested for;
a. wearing Anti-Bush or anti-war T shirts
b. having their cars sport Anti-Bush or anti-war bumper stickers
c. Heckling politicians like Guilani
d. peacefully demonstrate against the war.

In almost all cases (if there is any reaction on the part of the wronged person) the local police dept. has been sued for wrongful arrest etc.

At least Higazy got it right and sued the officer in question. These would-be GESTAPO acolytes might think twice if they found themselves responsible for paying up on a million dollar damages claim. - Preferably where the employing agency is prevented from paying on the individual's behalf.

To protect the rights of everyone in the world, these mothers must be made to pay.

blog responder:

scarshapedstar remarked, "Others haven't quite spelled it out explicitly enough, so I will add that the American prison system is one glorified rape room and torture/execution chamber."

You can find corroboration here:
Dan Bell, 'They Deserve It' The Nation (July 10, 2006)
subscribers only:
http://www.thenation.com/doc/20060710/bell
archived at Stop Prisoner Rape:
http://www.spr.org/en/sprnews/2006/0710.asp

Also:
"A Letter on Rape in Prisons"
By David Kaiser, Reply by Jason DeParle
New York Review of Books
Volume 54, Number 8 · May 10, 2007
http://www.nybooks.com/articles/20155

paradocs:

In case the one poster didn't notice, Guantanamo bay is in Cuba, not the USA -- so all forms of torture can be conducted there without a problem.

Not exactly.

Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment

Treaties in Force. November 20, 1994.
"Article 3 . 1. No State Party shall expel, return ("refouler") or extradite a person to another State where there are substantial grounds for believing that he would be in danger of being subjected to torture. 2. For the purpose of determining whether there are such grounds, the competent authorities shall take into account all relevant considerations including, where applicable, the existence in the State concerned of a consistent pattern of gross, flagrant or mass violations of human rights.

Article 4. 1. Each State Party shall ensure that all acts of torture are offences under its criminal law. The same shall apply to an attempt to commit torture and to an act by any person which constitutes complicity or participation in torture. 2. Each State Party shall make these offences punishable by appropriate penalties which take into account their grave nature.

Article 16. 1. Each State Party shall undertake to prevent in any territory under its jurisdiction other acts of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment which do not amount to torture as defined in article I, when such acts are committed by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. In particular, the obligations contained in articles 10, 11, 12 and 13 shall apply with the substitution for references to torture of references to other forms of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

2. The provisions of this Convention are without prejudice to the provisions of any other international instrument or national law which prohibits cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment or which relates to extradition or expulsion."

Frank:

Buckeye Nut Schell said:

What if the interrogator was lying? They are allowed to do that you know.

Interrogators are allowed to lie, yes, but only the sort of lies that would cause a guilty person to confess: "we've captured your associates, and they've turned on you"; "we have your fingerprints on the device"; etc. They are not allowed to threaten a suspect's family. Such threats cause innocent people to confess, as we see here, and thus produce useless information.

Likewise, mock executions can not be justified by the interrogator saying, "See, I wasn't actually going to shoot him in the head. The gun wasn't loaded when I pulled the trigger. When I told him he was going to meet his maker, I was just fibbing." The threat of death is inhumane, and threatening family members is no different.

Anonymous:

Buckeye Nut Schell said:

The day after 9/11, people were in a panic for information. What if the interrogator was lying?

There is a difference between information and a coerced confession. Information includes "the radio is not mine" as well as "the radio is mine". A coerced confession is devoid of information beyond the effectiveness of coercion at resulting in the required response.

Rubin:

Mr. Bergstein,

Did you take as active an interest in the individual rights of the American Citizens at Ruby Ridge?

Or the abuses of police powers @ Oklahoma and Wacco?

I read the pdf file and for the life of me I am troubled about Abdallah Higazy's multiple "confessions" or accounts as to how he aquired the communication device.

Assuming you believe Higazy's account that he only confessed to ownership of the device under duress to save his family from certain torture back in Egypt, WHY would he change his story so many times in one sitting?

Afterall if you're certain that what you do effects the fate of your entire family then you do what you are told to do, correct.

Another context that most folks don't recognize is that Egyptians especially middle class Egyptians are fully aware of the "legal system" in Egypt.

Either they've tasted the lash themselves or have friends that have. Many of the middle class Egyptians have relatives that are officers in the Armed Forces or manage the security apprat in Egypt.

My point is by comparison they weigh the entire US judicial system, jails and prisons like spending time in a vacation Hotels with recreational facilities. In the USA, Two to a cell at most, where in Egypt 20 or 25 with standing room only is the norm.

It seems to me that the legal system is working pretty fair, Higazy was released in 30 days +/- which is OK.

Higazy is just another victim of the horrendous 2001 terrorist attack on America. But hey he's a savvy victim LOL! Looks like he might come out of this with a few bucks...

God bless the USA!

tejana1:

''Higazy later said, "I knew that I couldn't prove my innocence"

This, along with the redaction and withdrawal from publishing by the court, is the part that gives me the most chills.

I could've sworn that a basic principle on which the United States was founded was "innocent until proven guilty."

No one in this country is supposed to have to prove their OWN innocence. I'd say how appalled I am, but I've said it so many times.

Phil:

Dear Steve,
I can personally attest to the methods of the Egyptian police. I practiced and taught emergency medicine at Yale from 1988-2005. Once, well before 9-11, a college student who had spent a semester in Egypt came to the emergency department to be evaluated for injuries he had sustained while under arrest in Egypt.

He told me that he never knew why he had been arrested, but that he had been held for three days in a stinking hole of a cell with several other prisoners. He underwent interrogation three or four times and in addition to being beaten and slapped, his back, shoulders, and scalp became an ashtray for his chain smoking interrogators. he bore the scars of several cigarette burns which he asked me to photograph. (I have the jpgs somewhere in my mass of computer data. If I ever find them I'll send one of the pictures to you.)

He was clearly traumatized by the whole experience and left Egypt as soon as he was released from jail. He declined any further care and seemed mostly to want someone to hear and document his story.

The fact that this happened to an American college student without any repercussions make me believe that this sort of police behavior is common and is well-known to people who are familiar with the ways of Egyptian society. That is probably why the FBI had no trouble coercing a false confession from Mr.Higazy.

Now consider this: What if the FBI agents threats were real? What if the FBI actually intended to have the Higazy family harassed or worse if Higazy didn't confess? Perhaps that is why there is this clumsy effort to put the horse back in the barn. That is the most chilling thought of all.

Anonymous:

I have one question regarding these proceedings. Is Templeton still employed by an agency supported by my tax dollars? The only acceptable answer is no.

Title 18 USC 4 with Air Force General Gabreski.

http://www.prosefights.org/nmlegal/dcvoid/dcvoid.htm#gabreski

Anonymous:

It's the lie detector examination that the government is afraid of, not as much the coerced confession. Clearly the lie detector was modified to transmit electricity. Templeton told Higazy "even a nine-year-old could tolerate this pain." This shows Templeton knew the lie detector was causing pain.

No aspect of a lie detector is supposed to cause physical pain. Higazy's pain cannot be considered emotional or hysteric in this case because Templeton confirmed it existed for the reasons Higazy complained about.

It's a torture case.

Alex in Toronto:

Thank you for making the public aware of this decision and for making known the attempt by the justice system to hide the crime committed by an agent of the US Government, even though the Commander in Chief of Deceit has spoken that "This government does not torture."

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/10/05/bush.torture/


http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/11/20051107.html
(Toward the bottom almost.)

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/9956644/


Rubin you realize that what you are saying is that the plaintiff was actually guilty and somehow managed to produce a pilot to claim ownership of the radio. I believe that if you are made to falsely confess your guilt under duress you are not preoccupied in keeping your story straight but in avoiding immediate punishment. You are saying he plead guilty because he wanted to avoid a harsher punishment in Egypt. I wonder as to how you would regard your own false incarceration were you to undergo the same injustice as the Egpytian national, Abdallah Higazy.

Daniel Khoo:

I don't understand why confessions cannot be retracted. Is there a reason to think that guilty people will change their mind about confessing, and innocent people will never ever confess, whether coerced or mistakenly?

An innocent person could be misled. They could be pressured into believing that they will be convicted anyway (see where Mr Higazy here says he can't prove his innocence), and it's better to confess and get a lighter punishment. Or they could be misled into thinking that what they did was a crime (where it wasn't). Or they could be coerced.

Is the justice system not interested in getting the "right" decision (convict the guilty and not the innocent), but merely interested in some simplistic goal, like getting the maximum rate of confessions, or failing that, convictions, whether the accused be guilty or not. I feel that this may be due to the adversarial legal system, where the prosecution tries its best to get a conviction, and the defense tries it's best to avoid one, and the police is supposed to help the prosecution; and then magically, everything will turn out right.

Nathan J:

Sick, twisted interrogation techniques, yet another infringement on our rights by the gov't. Add it to the ever-growing list of violations:
They violate the 1st Amendment by opening mail, caging demonstrators and banning books like America Deceived (book) from Amazon.
They violate the 2nd Amendment by confiscating guns during Katrina.
They violate the 4th Amendment by conducting warrant-less wiretaps.
They violate the 5th and 6th Amendment by suspending habeas corpus.
They violate the 8th Amendment by torturing.
They violate the entire Constitution by starting 2 illegal wars based on lies and on behalf of a foriegn gov't.
Support Dr. Ron Paul and save this country.

TerraHertz:

Anon said:
---
It's the lie detector examination that the government is afraid of, not as much the coerced confession. Clearly the lie detector was modified to transmit electricity. Templeton told Higazy "even a nine-year-old could tolerate this pain." This shows Templeton knew the lie detector was causing pain.

No aspect of a lie detector is supposed to cause physical pain. Higazy's pain cannot be considered emotional or hysteric in this case because Templeton confirmed it existed for the reasons Higazy complained about.

It's a torture case.
-----

QUOTED FOR TRUTH

Extracts from the withdrawn pdf:
-------
Higazy’s attorney told the court that Higazy denied owning the radio and was “urgently desirous of taking a lie detector test.?
-------
The government expressed its doubt that a polygraph of Higazy would be useful and opposed Higazy’s request to take one. They explained that if Higazy was a member of al Qaeda, he could pass it.
-------
Nevertheless, on December 27, Templeton—who up until this point was not involved in the investigation—conducted a polygraph examination of Higazy. Templeton began the test by asking Higazy background questions on subjects such as Higazy’s scholarship, homeland, family in Egypt, brother in upstate New York, and girlfriend. He also asked Higazy whether he had anything to do with the attacks of September 11, 2001. The first round of testing allegedly suggested that Higazy’s answers to the questions relating to the September 11 attacks were deceptive. As the second series of questioning was ending, Higazy requested that Templeton stop. He testified that he began “feeling intense pain in my arm. I remember hearing my heartbeat in my head and I just couldn’t breathe. I said, ‘Sir, sir, please, stop. It hurts. Please stop. Please take it off.’? Templeton unhooked the polygraph, and according to Higazy, called Higazy a baby and told him that a nine-year-old could tolerate this pain. Templeton left the room to get Higazy water, and upon his return, Higazy asked whether anybody else had ever suffered physical pain during the polygraph, to which Templeton replied: “[i]t never happened to anyone who told the truth.?
-------end extracts-----

This is why the original document was withdrawn. It clearly reveals that the FBI was using 'modified' polygraph gear, designed to inflict pain under control of the operator.

Not to condone the use of threats against a person's family. But that isn't the primary offical crime revealed in the document.

Garrick:

We already have the same thing happen to US citizens. When a cop threatens to arrest you unless you cooperate with a illegal search, and hints that you better not drop the soap in the jail shower or something like that, that is threatening torture.

David:

Mr. Berstein,

I have not heard any mention of the pain Higazy said he felt during the polygraph. Templeton "told him that a nine-year-old could tolerate this pain." and “[i]t never happened to anyone who told the truth.?

Is it possible that during these test they are sending some kind of negative stimuli when they hear answers they don't like? I think this might be something to look in to. I wouldn't put it past them.

I'm interested in hearing your reply,

David

Anti Nazi:

America does torture obviously and these are international crimes,forget all the "Bush laws",they are crimes committed by a very criminal illegal junta trying to save itself after the facts.
The Pinochet regime tried the same procedure after the fact.
Rumsfeld has just recently been charged with torture in France and previously for war crimes in Germany,amongst other related charges elsewhere.
The world knows what American laws are worth(less) and what International law does to war criminals of any nationality when apprehended.
Many more people around the world now know how the Jews must have felt like after WW2.
Karmic law has no borders or time limit thankfully.

james d. lochli:

When is there going to be any support for disenfranchised FATHERS in the various State Family Courts? Go along with this broken system, or for never be a meaningfull part of your childrens life, during these Minor's developing years?
You can try to influence them after 15-18 years of Parental alienation, after all you must except the Courts best interest interpertation, forget any Constitutional guarantee's. PRO-SE is no longer recognized by any Jurist in this country.

Jack Sigil:

Your weasal wording not withstanding. You are a traitorous pig. Why?
1. You assume that all foreigners have the same legal rights in America as American citizens.
2. You especially seek to protect enemies of the state, terrorists of the Islamic imperialist hue.
3. You semi-disguise your treason by snake-like innuendo.
4. You attempt to inform national enemies regarding every aspect of any possible consequence that they may accrue for human rights violations or mass murder.
5. You seek to hamstring the FBI or any other agency that seeks to protect the people against terrorists.
It is traitors like you that are subverting our freedom. I would like to look into your sneering face!
I curse you with every fiber of my Celtic soul.

anonymous:

Just a note to you Mr. Sigil,
Not to start a flaming match with you, you should re-examine your values - it seems that you have become as complacent and accepting of your governments behavior as the german people of the 30's and 40's were complacent and accepting of the 3rd Reich, and your comment here suggests that your probably great with patriotism and nazionalism. Those people could not believe that their government had murdered jews, even after the war - so really now? Do you even care what your government does? Maybe if you say more bigoted things on here they will let you wear an armband at the ceremonies with a big red swastika on it. spose?

Jay Naicker:

Have you recieved complaints about being tortured in the mind through use of psychics or energy weapons.

And if many people are in my condition then how come nobody does anything.

Pls let me know

fornetti:

I do not believe this

Keith:

I call total BS. You have to be a total dupe to believe that someone would give a "false confession" because they think it would actually make things easier for them. This is a classic CYA tactic performed by guilty parties who only later realize there's not enough evidence against them so they change their story.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on October 21, 2007 11:42 AM.

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