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26 July 2014

Cryptokey Refusal Prosecution

Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2014 10:29:02 +0100
From: ianG <iang[at]>
To: cryptography[at]
Subject: Re: [Cryptography] hard to trust all those root CAs

At 05:29 AM 7/25/2014, you wrote:

On 25/07/2014 05:13 am, Peter Gutmann wrote:
John Kelsey <crypto.jmk[at]> writes:

Yeah, and the judge and prosecutor who get your case will be helpless before your clever skills at evading them, because they've never had to deal with literal-minded people trying transparent dodges to get around the law before. You will doubtless enjoy the same success as tax protesters do when they end up in court. And shortly thereafter, you'll enjoy an all-expenses-paid vacation with free room and board, courtesy of the US government.

This should be preserved somewhere as the standard response to the Rumpelstiltskin Defence ("you can't prove I'm using crypto/know the keys so you'll have to let me go"). This perfectly sums up what will happen to anyone who wants to try the Rumpelstiltskin Defence in court.

What's the charge here? Making a false statement? Failing to cooperate? Taking down an untruth?

What's the prosecutor asking the court to order the defendent to do? Lie for the government? Stop interfering with an investigation that didn't exist?

The court will have a hard time of finding a charge of lying on behalf of the prosecutor, or of ordering the defendent to participate in an active deception. Truth is the meat & drink of the court, when the court plays games with the truth, the court impeaches itself.



Hardly that simple. Crypto-use prosecutors reveal a range of grand jury-approved charges to shock and awe the defendant and attorney, supported by NSLs and affidavits from crypto correspondents and associates; statements of relatives and lovers; alleged documented kiddie porn viewing or stalking; retrieved old accusations of minor and major crimes; copies of hidden account bank statements and evidence of tax avoidance; and a battery of the usual (and legal lies) of investigators. Layout the years of imprisonment facing the defendant and an offer of a plea to save the state expense of a trial. Then show how many previous defendants have succumbed to the reality of defiance, its impact on family, friends and career. Then show documents on the sentencing and jailing of brave defiers.

Unless you have been through this, with much of it kept secret to protect means and methods of investigation and prosecution, prepare for an exciting first time on the actual hot seat, not on TV or online where hypnotic disinfo rules and seduces the unwary to believe tickling the comsec tiger's tail is fantasic rep building.

Just in the last few years dozens of comsec-believing tail ticklers have been given that miserable vacation in jail. Thanks to the bountiful promo of delusional comsec by really dedicated civil libertarians who rove free of barbed wire, daily cleaning of toilets and restricted use of computers.

The upside of comsec lessons-learned is to go on the well-paid speakers jaunts worldwide to peddle dos and donts of NSA-proof comsec. NSA will subsidize your start-up and vouch for your credentials, so will prosecutors, wardens, former friends, angry relatives and those crypto-users you ratted on for lesser penalty.


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