Friday, February 6, 2009

Throwing the Book at Terrorists, Both Criminal and Civil

If someone is convicted of making a bomb scare, they should become civilly as well as criminally liable for the expenses incurred in checking for bombs. New York City and other areas have had an additional burden placed upon them by Muslim terror groups. Because of threats they have made to hit Jewish targets, additional police protection has been necessary at a time when other forms of crime are on the increase.

Terror groups divide their work. There are those who carry out the attacks. And there are "mouthpieces" who handle everything from threatening attacks to those who claim credit for or applaud the attack after the fact.

Not every threat needs to be carried out to achieve the maximum effect. One Mumbai or Buenos Aires type attack is enough to make law enforcement take additional attacks very seriously. Presbyterians or Catholics who open an office to the public are far less concerned about the unexpected stranger walking in than a Jewish group would be. Jewish schools often have to take additional security measures to meet increasingly credible threats with effective counter measures.

Society as a whole has incurred millions of dollars in added expenses as a result of terrorism and terror threats. New counter measures are called for. Civil action could be very effective.

Organisations that threaten and perpetrate terror should be held civilly liable for their actions if expenses are incurred to protect their targets. Forensic accountants should identify the money trail that makes it possible for these groups to rent safe houses, run web sites and training camps.

It is one thing to protest the political agenda of a group. Threatening violence is another matter entirely. It puts an expense upon the law abiding public. There should be consequences. If Yussuf al Khattab, the Jewish apostate and traitor calls for people to "teach an Islamic lesson" to Lubavitch or Yeshiva University, and to do so by smuggling "Islamic educational materials " into synagogues, it is clear from the context of his web sites that he is not talking about pamphlets. If people like Khattab and terrorist groups faced forfeiture of assets in a civil action, this might prove to be a very potent deterrent. Additionally, RICO statutes,(Racketeering Influenced Corrupt Organizations) could well be applied to terror networks.

Making new laws in response to modern terrorism opens the possibility of constitutional challenges. Old laws that have been tested and used can and should be applied to new situtations. Criminal and also civil law contain powerful deterrents to those who would engage in criminal activities. When we "throw the book" at a defendant, we should be aware of just how big a book it is.

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