Public Safety Community Overwhelmingly Supports Rogue Sites Legislation

by Cybele Daley 10/31/2011 14:19 (UTC-08:00) Pacific Time (US & Canada)

The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), the world's largest organization of sworn law enforcement officers, with more than 325,000 members has been joined by the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF), the largest organization representing fire fighters, in support of legislation to combat foreign based rogue websites.  IAFF and the FOP along with the Major Cities Chiefs, Major County Sheriffs, National Troopers Association, National Association of Attorneys General, National District Attorneys, International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators, and American Society of Industrial Security are among the many organizations joining in this fight.  We applaud this overwhelming support from law enforcement – their collective voices underscore the gravity of this crime and its impact to public safety.

National President for the FOP, Chuck Canterbury, exclaimed, “The preparedness and safety of our members depend on sound, reliable equipment.  Counterfeit batteries, gloves, brake pads, and other equipment put us and the public at risk.  Counterfeit pharmaceuticals, tooth paste, and footwear put our seniors and our children at risk.  Organized gangs use these profits from counterfeit DVDs to fund other criminal enterprises and fuel violent crime in our communities here at home.”

Harold A. Schaitberger, General President stated “We know what shared responsibility is. We live it every day. Every day, our members rely on each other as they confront dangerous situations, and the country depends on our members to promote public safety. This same sense of shared responsibility is essential if we are to effectively disrupt the rogue sites’ business model. Law enforcement needs the authority to enlist the help of other players in the Internet ecosystem to cut these sites off from the American marketplace. Legislation targeting these foreign rogue websites will encourage Internet users to find legitimate sources for goods and content, will ensure that counterfeiters and pirates can no longer profit from this clearly illegal activity, and will stem the flow of dangerous counterfeit goods into the supply chains on which our members depend.

According to the President of the Major Cities Chiefs, Police Commissioner for the City of Philadelphia, Charles H. Ramsey “law enforcement in the United States has few options available to counteract the threat of foreign intellectual property theft and counterfeiting. We therefore encourage you to introduce legislation to help address this growing problem.”

Executive Director for the National Troopers Coalition, Dennis Hallion, explained “law enforcement needs the authority to enlist assistance from providers such as infrastructure providers including ISP’s and financial service providers such as payment processors, to protect US commerce.”

President of the Major County Sheriffs, Sheriff Doug Gillespie explained, “law enforcement’s ability to crack down on counterfeiters and their deception of the general public must be strengthened.  Counterfeiters and other criminals are increasingly turning to the Internet to conduct and enhance their illegal activities.”

“Legislation is needed to disrupt the counterfeiting and pirate business model by cutting those sites off from the American marketplace,” according to our Nation’s attorneys general.  “We cannot let this threat go unanswered,” said Scott Burns, Executive Director for the National District Attorneys Association.

We couldn’t agree more.  Our attorneys general, district attorneys, chiefs, sheriffs, rank and file cops on the streets, campus law enforcement administrators, and private sector security managers, are charged with protecting the public -- disrupting and dismantling crime.  They recognize that foreign based rogue websites threaten public safety.  They recognize the other crimes these thieves feed.  We urge Congress to listen to our boots on the ground in our states and cities and pass rogue sites legislation.

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