Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Surveillance Planes: Eyes in the Sky

Aerial drones will hunt California pot growers in national forests

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Reported by NORML recently: the federal government plans to escalate its eradication of marijuana plantations in the backwoods of national forests this year, beginning in California with the deployment of larger strike teams and the controversial launching of miniature, remote-controlled spy planes to outfox growers. The Forest Service's Law Enforcement and Investigations unit recently purchased the SkySeer craft to assist in remote surveillance efforts. Designed by Octatron, the SkySeer Unmanned Aerial Vehicle can search out points of interest from GPS either programmed or entered from the ground station. It has up to a two-mile range and a night vision thermal imaging feature for nighttime snooping. The SkySeer has a video surveillance camera that captures in real time and can be controlled by the ground; the video can be recorded to DVD or flash media from the ground. Be on the lookout for this technology in cases coming up especially in US Forest Service land.

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