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PurpleFloyd

Cessna?

21 posts in this topic

Aviation buff John Zimmerman was at a weekly gathering of neighbors Friday night when he noticed something peculiar: a small plane circling a route overhead that didn’t make sense to him.

It was dark, so a sightseeing flight didn’t make sense, and when Zimmerman pulled up more information on an aviation phone app he routinely checks, he had immediate concerns.

The plane’s flight path, recorded by the HSOforum flightradar24.com, would eventually show that it circled downtown Minneapolis, the Mall of America and Southdale Center at low altitude for hours starting at 10:30 p.m., slipping off radar just after 3 a.m.

“I thought, ‘Holy dump,’ ” said Zimmerman.

Bearing the call sign N361DB, the plane is one of three Cessna 182T Skylanes registered to LCB Leasing of Bristow, Va., according to FAA records. The Virginia secretary of state has no record of an LCB Leasing. Virtually no other information could be learned about the company.

Zimmerman’s curiosity might have ended there if it weren’t for something he heard from his aviation network recently: A plane registered to NG Research — also located in Bristow — that circled Baltimore for hours after recent violent protests there was in fact an FBI plane that’s part of a widespread but little known surveillance program, according to a report by the Washington Post.


Similar flights have since been spotted near Chicago, Boston and in California, according to the American Civil Liberties Union. The ACLU has filed several Freedom of Information Act requests for more information.

It believes the planes use cameras and infrared imaging technology to photograph people and vehicles in a broad swath of the city; technology to sweep up cellphone data from a plane also exists, but it’s not clear if the FBI flights use it.

A spokesman for the Twin Cities FBI office had no comment on the recent flight, saying he couldn’t speak to an “operational matter.” He declined to say if the plane belongs to the FBI or if it was acting at the request of a local law enforcement agency.

However, the FBI acknowledged its role in the earlier Baltimore flights. The agency issued a statement saying the flights “were not there to monitor lawfully protected first amendment activity, and any FBI aviation support to a local law enforcement agency must receive high-level approvals.”

The Minneapolis Police Department, the Bloomington Police Department and the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office said they had no knowledge of the flight. Flying Cloud Airport in Eden Prairie couldn’t confirm past flights, but the same plane was confirmed over the Twin Cities on Thursday.

A similar flight — nighttime, circling at low altitude — in a suburb of Boston after the 2013 marathon bombing generated media coverage and concern among ordinary citizens about the “Quincy mystery plane.” That Cessna 182 Skylane also was traced to Bristow, Va., and registered to a company called RKT Productions, according to news reports and witnesses. It was later reported by the Quincy Patriot Ledger that the plane was tracking Khairullozhon Matanov, a Quincy resident who earlier this year pleaded guilty to obstructing the bombing investigation.

Bristow, just outside Washington, D.C.’s Beltway, has 65 planes registered there, the bulk of them small Cessna 182s registered to a handful of companies with two- or three-letter acronyms in their names, like LCB Leasing.

Zimmerman, who spotted the plane over Bloomington, said he pored through FAA records to find the call letters for each plane and then searched for images of them. He found photographs that show the planes outfitted with “external pods” that could house imagery equipment. He also found some of the planes modified with noise-muffling capability. That’s not common for a small plane, he said.

“The fact is there are several very powerful surveillance technologies that are deployed by fixed-wing aircraft circling over cities,” said Jay Stanley, a senior policy analyst with the ACLU. “These are powerful surveillance technologies that we think the public ought to have a role in discussing and debating.”

The planes use “persistent wide-area surveillance” to photograph large areas for hours at a time, Stanley said. The captured images allow authorities to go back in time, if necessary, to trace pedestrians and vehicles who come to their attention.

Other devices known as “dirtboxes,” “Stingrays” or “IMSI catchers” can capture cellphone data. Stanley said it’s still unclear what technologies have been used in the surveillance flights.

Zimmerman said he’s in favor of using technology to fight crime but criticized the government’s secretive approach, the same criticism that was leveled in Boston when a city made skittish by the marathon bombing had to wonder why planes were flying low overhead at night.

“Why don’t we just say these are official things, rather than clouding them in three-letter contract companies?” Zimmerman asked. “I would feel better if these guys just flew the colors. I think we would all be better off.”

 

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I'm guessing Zimmerman doesn't have a job? And if the FBI had to make it public, then how could they catch/surprise the bad guys?

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And if the FBI had to make it public, then how could they catch/surprise the bad guys?

Don't worry, I'm sure you're being spied on in all sorts of ways that haven't been made public yet.

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They can have at.  They'd be wasting their time but I'if people are doing terroristic things....then they should be monitored!

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Wow, they really spend some time over the Brooklyn's. You have to hand it to the pilot flying South Minneapolis, classic figure 8 pattern. :grin:  

Side note: Anyone seen Leech lately? I believe he was from one of the two Brooklyn's.  One too many Obama meme's??  :lol:

 

 

brooklyn_park.jpg

downtown.jpg

Metro.jpg

PurpleFloyd, Rick and roony like this

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That one's hard to say what is going on, but I know from my own experience, LOTSA foolishness going on out there you're NEVER gonna know about, and the laws mean nothing. I saw it first hand. Just for giggles, I sent the first post to my buddy who was in the Air force for many years, then spent the rest of his career at NASA, working on top-secret projects. Here's his reply to my inquiry:

to me
cleardot.gif
XXX XRXXXXX
 
 
 
The DEA  and NSA can and does do such flights and MANY other things  with complete immunity to ALL LAWS  in this country and EDIT.....
 
 
But then, we already knew that. :whistle:
 
I find this interesting because the Skylane is a 4 seater plane, even has room for 2 jump seats; not the lightest or sneakiest plane to be used for IRS. (Intelligence, Reconnaissance and surveillance.)  Most use the "Duck" or Super Skymaster for quick recons.  Must have a lot of gear on board......hmmm....

 

Edited by RebelSS
MichaelnoX likes this

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That one's hard to say what is going on, but I know from my own experience, LOTSA foolishness going on out there you're NEVER gonna know about, and the laws mean nothing. I saw it first hand. Just for giggles, I sent the first post to my buddy who was in the Air force for many years, then spent the rest of his career at NASA, working on top-secret projects. Here's his reply to my inquiry.

 

Was it sunny out that day?  Might have been some girls sunbathing.  Probably more exciting than sitting in a donut shop, at any rate.

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Video surveillance is legal.  Cell phone tracking with those fake tower things, stingray? More questionable.

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Wow, they really spend some time over the Brooklyn's. You have to hand it to the pilot flying South Minneapolis, classic figure 8 pattern. :grin:  

Side note: Anyone seen Leech lately? I believe he was from one of the two Brooklyn's.  One too many Obama meme's??  :lol:


 

​I think he was looking for your mama working her shift! ;)

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Was it sunny out that day?  Might have been some girls sunbathing.  Probably more exciting than sitting in a donut shop, at any rate.

​Well, if the figure 8 pattern in south Minneapolis was about a mile to the west I would have to agree with you about sunbathers. The lakes have a lot to offer. :grin:

 

Leech - Nice come back :crazy:

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I heard it was Lakemaster creating a new Metro chip.

 

 

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Interesting how after a few pics and widespread articles, the truth suddenly comes out. Another one from today.

 

http://www.cnn.com/2015/06/02/politics/fbi-airplane-surveillance/

 

Funny how that works...they musta picked it up on their intel. :whistle:

Edited by RebelSS

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​I think he was looking for your mama! ;)

​Looks like a need to learn how to edit on this new system. Sorry outdoors247 was trying to delete it.  :P

Edited by leech~~

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They can have at.  They'd be wasting their time but I'if people are doing terroristic things....then they should be monitored!

​Yes, we must all stay very, very afraid and let big brother do what is necessary to save us from all the irreparable harm that is lurking out there!

PurpleFloyd likes this

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They can have at.  They'd be wasting their time but I'if people are doing terroristic things....then they should be monitored!

​If people are doing "terroristic things" they should be jailed, not monitored. You have to monitor a lot of innocent people to find 1 or 2 criminals.

PurpleFloyd likes this

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If they are tracking or monitoring we don't know how many folks they are tracking and monitoring.    

Considering Mpls track record with extremists, perhaps they are doing speech recognition keyword searches....

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they are just flying around spending money because they have it to spend.  the surveillance state is the new military industrial complex.

Edited by bobbymalone

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