Wednesday, November 23, 2005

North Carolina ... On the Torture Trail?

International attention on the U.S. torture policy of smuggling suspects into friendly countries ("rendition") that routinely practice what El Presidente says we DON'T practice has come to center on the Johnston County Airport in Smithfield, N.C. See this article in the Toronto Star.

Curiouser and curiouser. An enterprising reporter for the Lexington Dispatch has looked into the plane's owner, Devon Holding & Leasing. The N.C. Secretary of State's office lists the principal business offices of Devon Holding & Leasing at an address in Lexington, N.C., and its registered agent is Davidson County Superior Court Judge Mark E. Klass.

What's a sitting superior court judge in Davidson County doing as chief agent for a company strongly rumored to be doing dirty work for the C.I.A.?

Another of Devon Holding and Leasing's planes, bearing the registration number N168D, passed through Danish airspace on October 3 on route from Iceland to Budapest. See this article about an investigation by the Swedish government, and note that Devon Holding and Leasing "reportedly regularly leases planes to the CIA."

Google the company name for yourself, and see all the attention it's attracted recently.

ADDENDUM: Okay, okay, we admit it! We were just plain out to lunch on this whole story, which (turns out) has been known for quite some time. Check out Chris Kromm on Facing South. Hell, there's already been a protest at the Johnston County airport!

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