“What Happens?” + a CF announcement

July 26, 2011

What Happens?

What happens when cities (predictably) ignore elections?

What happens when their police departments illegally arrest activists – repeatedly – for daring to speak out against rampant surveillance and inappropriate corporate control over entire municipalities?

What happens when entire state governments are unable or unwilling to listen to the will of the people regarding foreign corporations who base their revenue expectations on mail fraud and phony tickets?

What happens when government considers mere movement a privilege instead of an inherent right?

They get painfully exposed by CameraFRAUD.

Again.

New tools. New Features. New Websites —Coming Soon.

It’s time to redefine activism. It’s time to act.

Join us today

as we begin beta testing

the new CameraFRAUD 2012: Forum


BREAKING: Redflex Cameras in Tempe are Coming Down

July 11, 2011

Redflex Scamera in Tempe, soon to be scrap metal.

Redflex just found out what happens when you sue your own client (City of Tempe) to squeeze as many dollars as possible out of them.

As of July 19th, Redflex red light, photo radar and mobile scameras will be shut off and begin collecting dust until they’re ripped out. This comes almost exactly one year after the end of the extremely unpopular Redflex freeway photo radar program with Arizona DPS.

[read more]


American Traffic Solutions, Redflex Double-Down On Fraud

July 3, 2011

A Redflex employee hard at work in the company's North Phoenix processing office. (All tickets are reviewed by multiple "Homers," a derogatory phrase used by corporate managers to refer to the paper processors who usually make little money.)

Ticketing and surveillance giants Redflex and American Traffic Solutions are doubling down on their favorite methods of revenue generation: fraudulent business practices, blatant incompetency, and lawsuits.

Sioux Falls Fail

Beleaguered Redflex is so incompetent that the company mailed out 500 red light camera tickets… to people accused by the machines of speeding:

Michael Evans got the surprise in the mail that no one wants, a ticket for running a red light in Sioux City.

When he looked at the video of his offense he was confused to say the least, because his pickup is clearly on the interstate.

He alerted the police about the mistake, and they sent out a letter of apology to about 500 people who also received the wrong type of ticket, but along with the apology came new tickets for speeding violations.

Town dunce and Sioux City Police’s Cpt. Melvin William was quick to defend the “theft-by-shiny-badge” scheme, presumably at the request of his new private-camera-contractor overlords:

“Because in one spot we didn’t change the wording that the whole thing should be thrown out?  No…There is no error when it comes to the fines that were imposed.  They were the right fines for what had occurred.  There is no error when it comes to the evidence,”

…Except for the whole “accusing 500 people of the wrong crime” thing.

American Traffic Solutions: “Circle Jerk” Lawsuits In Houston

Taking the “American way of justice” further down the shitcan is American Traffic Solutions in Houston. ATS is angry that citizens voted the cameras out, so the company is blatantly engaging in frivolous lawsuits in an effort to block the will of the “voters:”

The ruling was a major victory for the legal strategy of ATS General Counsel George Hittner, who worked with the Houston city attorney to create a lawsuit in which city officials, who want the cameras back, sued ATS, which also wants the cameras back. The case was not filed in state court, which would be the proper venue. Instead, Hittner had the case filed in the federal courthouse where his father happens to serve.

Still voting?

Redflex Mail Fraud In Spokane

“…Spokane County Superior Court Judge Jerome Leveque ruled three tickets issued in Spokane using cameras to detect those running red lights were invalid because the electronic signature on the tickets was generated out of state.”

…Phony signatures. Phony tickets. Phony corporate cops that defend revenue schemes instead of constituents’ life and property.  Phony lawsuits. Laws and due-process ignored.

Happy Phony Forth of July from CameraFRAUD. Because the USA is where your ability to serve as a milking cow to the state and its corporate allies is patriotic job number one. Now get back to work, slave!


Criminal Conspiracy: Redflex, ATS, and Anytown USA

May 4, 2011

"Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master." George Washington

OPINION  – You own a car. One evening, while enjoying your private property, a series of sensors and cameras detect your movement and computationally decide that you are exceeding the speed limit. A for-profit corporation receives high-resolution images of the alleged “violation,” which then forwards the allegations to another series of for-profit corporations.

Municipal corporations have a budget and, lets face it, payroll is a bitch for any corporation. Instead of a co-op where residents are viewed as equal shareholders in their community, they are instead viewed as revenue machines ready for milking. The true shareholders in these muni corporations are the usual suspects: investment banks like Goldman Sachs (which also owns American Traffic Solutions and Geico) and Macquarie which just gobbled up Redflex.

Yes, big banks, the photo firms, and Anytown U.S.A. have a lot of things in common: They care about money, power, and control. 

Lets not forget that a “traffic ticket” in any form goes well beyond the scope of a tax. It is a lawsuit directed at you on behalf of a carefully-vested collective of public and private entities that survive only on their ability to take by force the property of others. This collective includes the very elected officials that are supposed to represent the people and protect their private property: city and town judges, the town prosecutor, police officers etc.

In grade school, this is called stealing. In muni law, it’s considered “revenue enhancement” and your immediate, unquestioning compliance is not requested but demanded. The endgame to this bastardization of law is obvious: corpgov sanctioned theft:

If you’ve got one of the 15,000 traffic camera tickets the city says remain unpaid, you might want to keep an eye on your car. Police will begin seizing or putting boots on vehicles whose owners have unpaid tickets from the five Redflex Traffic Systems cameras around town, the Las Cruces Police Department announced Tuesday. LCPD Police Chief Richard Williams wasn’t available to comment on the new enforcement action, but LCPD spokesman Dan Trujillo pointed out that nothing about the ordinance itself was new.

“Fighting” photo enforcement by trying to change out the politicians who allowed it to happen is like voting for a new board of directors at McDonalds because of a lousy drive-thru cheeseburger. A better solution is to immediately stop patronizing the corporations (City of Scottsdale, City of Mesa, City of Phoenix) and their hired thugs (corrupt police officers, judges, prosecutors).

In Arizona, the advice used to be “careful driving down to Mexico, the corrupt police there will seize your car on a whim.”

In 2011, we can revise the sentiment: “careful driving across town, the corrupt police will seize your car at the command of a private corporation.

—–

Editor’s Note: Received via email, 5/4/2011.


Arizona’s Most Toxic Assets: Redflex and ATS

February 25, 2011

"Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master." George Washington

To: Arizona State Senators and Representatives
From: CameraFRAUD
2/25/2011

Two of the largest automated ticketing vendors on the planet have substantial roots within the State of Arizona. Combined, these corporations employ many Arizonans and generate tens of thousands of dollars in revenue each day.

And there’s never been a better time to finally say goodbye.

Photo ticketing schemes extract enormous amounts of cash from the local economies in which they pretend to serve. Instead of this money staying within our community, Redflex and American Traffic Solutions virtually launder these stolen funds through pseudo-local offices… and back to their respective faceless investment banks.

In one corner, American Traffic Solutions sounds downright patriotic in name. Their surveillance cameras even boast a sticker as being “Made in the USA.” Don’t let the smoke and mirrors fool you though: ATS is a pawn of the massively-corrupt investment firm and former bailout recipient Goldman Sachs.

In the other corner, Redflex is being purchased by Macquarie Ltd and the Carlyle Group, two firms which are equally disinterested in the well-being of Arizonans. These faceless monsters only care about profits, and how every last dime can be extracted from their voiceless victims.

Just like the large, faceless investment banks which helped contribute to our current national recession, ticketing vendors Redflex and ATS also create local booms and busts within local municipalities. Unfortunately, the local elected “leaders” are asleep at the wheel, and aren’t paying attention to this modern game of “Three Cup Shuffle.”

Cities and towns are lured in by the prospect of “free money,” usually to the chipper reminder that such ticketing programs are “violator funded.” Contracts are haphazardly entered into, cameras go up, and the money starts to pour in. But as with any scam, there’s always a catch. Programs which start out profitable usually end up in the red, as is the case with the City of Mesa’s beleaguered relationship with ATS.

Citizens revolt, avoid areas with overzealous enforcement, or simply grow savvy to methods to avoid detection. Unintended consequences include a population that has become savvy to avoiding process service, making a mockery of the supposed “rule of law.” Increases in yellow light timing can and have destroyed these profitable schemes, sometimes incurring the wrath of these money-sucking vampire vendors.

Attempts to cancel contracts administratively are met with threats of lawsuits. Cities actually forced to end their contracts due to citizen’s ballot initiatives have been sued by these vendors, proving that there truly is no honor among thieves once the honey pot runs dry.

When Goldman Sachs dumped $70 million worth of mismanaged assets in 2006-2007, they were called “toxic.” Then Goldman conned its way into receiving $12.9 billion in TARP funds through AIG, while turning around and handing out $14 billion in executive bonuses.

Now, it’s Arizona’s turn to drop two toxic “assets” once and for all: the physical presence of American Traffic Solutions and Redflex within the Grand Canyon State.


Bombshell: ‘Countless’ Served Tickets May Be Invalid

September 17, 2010

CameraFRAUD Demands FBI Investigation
Media Inquiries: media@camerafraud.com

Attorney and CameraFRAUD member Michael Kielsky has uncovered potentially damning information regarding photo enforcement process service within Arizona.

The revelation? Widespread, illegal certificates of service, admittedly completed by office workers instead of the actual server.

Developing…

Just got back from court with another Photo Radar case win — but how I won “shocked” even me.

The case was set for a process server hearing, and the process server was there, seemed to remember the service, and otherwise was a credible witness, leaving me little room to challenge the service.

I then asked if he had notes from the day of service, which he confirmed, and I asked if I could see them. I compared his notes to the certificate of service, and saw that some of the demographic specifics were off (the height was 5″ off, the age was specific instead of the range in the notes, the weight was off by 5 lbs.).

I then asked him about the differences (in that, more than anything else, the height seemed significant).

Bombshell alert:

He answered that he sends his notes in to the process service office, and then someone there fills out the certificate of service with all the details, and adds a digitized image of his signature, and the files it.

My jaw hit the desk. I asked him to confirm that the certificate was completed from his notes, and that he did not review it before it was signed, under penalty of perjury, with his digitized signature, and he confirmed, and said that’s the way they always do it, in 10′s of thousands of cases.

I argued to the judge that I had no issue with the digitized signature, but that the certificate of service was void, as it was completed and signed without his review, and it did not accurately reflect his own notes regarding the service.

The judge questioned the process server some more about this process, and, among other things, he admitted, that, well yes, for eviction service, that’s not how they do it, but for photo radar they do.

Case dismissed.

UPDATE: The FBI is the agency assigned to investigate public and judicial fraud. Their contact information is as follows. We encourage any reader who feels they may be a victim of false service to immediately file a report.

Federal Bureau of Investigation
Special Agent Nathan T. Gray
201 East Indianola Avenue Phoenix, AZ 85012
Phone: (602) 279-5511
Fax: (602) 650-3204
E-mail: phoenix@ic.fbi.gov


Photo Unit Cop Caught Forging Documents

September 6, 2010

Geoffrey Jacobs (Photo: New Times)

A former officer with the Arizona Department of Public Safety’s now-defunct Redflex “photo enforcement unit” was allegedly caught forging documents and using “state” resources — a DPS airplane — to stalk an ex girlfriend.

According to AZCentral, “[Geoffrey] Jacobs wrote a fake obituary regarding another ex-girlfriend and sent it to Hawaiian Airlines, along with a letter detailing how Jacobs was trying to cope with the “huge loss” of his fiancee. The letter was sent so Jacobs could transfer his ex-girlfriend’s ticket to another woman…”

If this officer was corrupt enough to forge documents for an airline ticket change, did any of the members of the public stand a chance when their citations were in his hands?

But wait, there’s more… This one’s for the “if you’re not doing anything wrong, you have nothing to worry about” crowd:

He also was found to have abused DPS resources when he flew a state-owned plane over the neighborhood where he believed an ex-girlfriend lived in an attempt to locate her new home.
And who better to help run the accident-increasing photo enforcement scheme than an officer who had great first-hand experience causing accidents:
Jacobs joined DPS in late 2002. Less than one year later, he was served with his first letter of reprimand for an October 2003 wreck in Tucson. The next year, Jacobs was in another wreck and lost eight hours of vacation pay.

Jacobs, according to the New Times, “was the trooper who arrested Republican Party Executive Director Brett Mecum in May 2009 for criminal speeding. “

Now Jacobs is redefining irony, by suing the state over his dismissal. His claim? “…Defamation and violation of privacy and constitutional rights. “

Perhaps one would be more compassionate for the troubled cop if he didn’t work in a police unit that defamed and violated privacy and constitutional rights on an automated level.

With forgery, stalker-like surveillance, and dangerous driving supposedly under his belt, he would fit in well with the corporate criminal culture at Redflex Group.

(Should a full investigation into this officer’s role in the photo enforcement unit be conducted by AZDPS? Sound off in the comments section)

“Photo Enforcement” Becomes Toxic

August 24, 2010

What do you do when your industry approaches market saturation and increased public opposition?

This is the question the peddlers of automated ticketing will have to start asking themselves in the immediate future if they hope to survive in any form whatsoever.

Almost all large United States cities have been approached by either Redflex or American Traffic Solutions pitching the tired, debunked claims of improved traffic safety.

Unfortunately for these companies, voters and drivers have awakened to the scheme and are opposing new and existing systems worldwide over a variety of reasons, from civil liberties concerns to the proper role of government.

Smaller and smaller communities are being being swindled into signing contracts with these corporations, resulting in millions of dollars being extracted from local economies and sent directly to the profiteering vendors.

The blowback to such installations has ranged from expected opposition to cold-blooded murder. Last week, the confessed shooter of a Redflex photo radar van driver in Arizona was sentenced to 22 years in prison.

Unclear is the liability the State of Arizona will face for their “romp in the bed” with corporatism in the form of photo enforcement. Redflex was contractually obligated to provide “public service announcements” to explain automated ticketing to the public when the statewide ticketing contract was signed with the Department of Public Safety.

DPS is now being sued by the surviving family, and rightfully so. It doesn’t take an overpaid government beancounter to figure out that placing an unarmed civilian in a vehicle falsely marked as law enforcement is a bad idea.

With an onslaught of bad publicity, automated ticketing vendors may remember 2010 as the year their business model went sour. Lawsuits demanding refunds plague Redflex in Minnesota to the tune of millions of dollars while increased legal challenges in Florida and California threaten the very existence of red light cameras and so-called speed enforcement.

The Cameras are Coming Down… but in the end it may be due to the fatally flawed business model based on greed and inconclusive results that ATS and Redflex have depended on for over a decade.


Redflex Sales Hucksters are Commission-Based

August 19, 2010

Hi, Vince here from Redflex! Get ready to "snapshot" your way out of wreckless, drunken government spending with our new ScamWow! It's so easy!

Lobbyists who visit local city councils for Redflex are compensated on a commission-based scheme, and in one instance the cash was promised to be split with the wife of a local judge:

[Redflex] which also operates Victorian red light cameras – is at the centre of several court actions in Louisiana after a local council outside New Orleans turned off the cameras last January amid concerns company lobbyists were earning a share from camera fines…

Redflex Holdings allegedly agreed to pay 3.2 per cent of its share of camera revenue to the former United States councillor, who subsequently arranged to split the cash with the wife of a local judge.

Okay, camera apologi$t$: tell u$ again how it’$ not all about the money?


Kansas City Robbery Botched

October 30, 2009

radar robbery

Artists's rendition of a recent 1.7 million dollar heist. Suspects may be armed and up for re-election.

Stupid Criminals – Municipal authorities in Kansas City, MO have failed at a recent robbery attempt.

The city officials used red light cameras to extort over 1.7 million dollars out of their constituent’s pockets. The cost to install the cameras? 1.7 million dollars.

“The city expected more revenue,” said KMBC reporter Micheal Mahoney. “The program that was designed to make money for the city may end up costing [them] money.”

Proving there’s no honor among thieves, scam cam vendor American Traffic Solutions has pocketed most of the dough:

The city budget director, Troy Schulte, said that most of the income from the fines are going to the vendor, American Traffic Solutions.

No charges have been filed against Kansas City by Kansas City in the failed robbery, although over 3,000 people have decided to fight back by requesting a hearing. The unexpected battle took the attackers off-guard:

There are 3,000 cases waiting to be heard at the (Kansas City) Municipal Court, which means the (Kansas City) police need overtime workers to re-examine the red-light pictures.

Other recent failed ticketing robberies include beleaguered Redflex Group’s statewide Arizona effort.


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