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Anti-terror laws used against common criminals:
A North Carolina county prosecutor charged a man accused of running a methamphetamine lab with breaking a new state law barring the manufacture of chemical weapons. If convicted, Martin Dwayne Miller could get 12 years to life in prison for a crime that usually brings about six months.
Prosecutor Jerry Wilson says he isn't abusing the law, which defines chemical weapons of mass destruction as "any substance that is designed or has the capability to cause death or serious injury" and contains toxic chemicals.
Hmmm...I wonder if that means the feds are going to go after North Carolina's tobacco farmers (whose products kill half a million Americans every year) and hog-lagoon operators (who are poisoning the air and drinking water). Oh, of course not!
Also from the article:
Some of the restrictions on government surveillance that were erased by the Patriot Act had been enacted after past abuses -- including efforts by the FBI to spy on civil rights leaders and anti-war demonstrators during the Cold War. Tim Lynch, director of the Project on Criminal Justice at the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank, said it isn't far fetched to believe that the government might overstep its bounds again.
"I don't think that those are frivolous fears," Lynch said. "We've already heard stories of local police chiefs creating files on people who have protested the (Iraq) war ... The government is constantly trying to expand its jurisdictions, and it needs to be watched very, very closely."
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