The United States Department of Justice appears to be operating a fleet of at least 62 [EDIT: Now it appears that number is actually 100] small aircraft and helicopters over cities nationwide. The aircraft have been registered to corporations that do not exist, and the purpose of the aerial operations is not known at this time. The flight patterns of the aircraft indicate they are most likely conducting surveillance, much like the controversial aircraft caught flying circles over the city of Baltimore which has seen many protests recently. See examples from this investigation of similar flight patterns over New York City, Dallas, Minneapolis, Phoenix, Chicago, Seattle, and again, Baltimore.
Tail number N912EX registered to ‘OBR Leasing’ flying unknown mission over New York City.
Registering the aircraft to fake companies, such as ‘FVX Research,’ ‘KQM Aviation,’ and ‘OBR Leasing’ allows the government to hide behind plausible deniability. Initially upon investigating the links between these “companies” and the Department of Justice seemed obvious. A search of aircraft registration in Bristow, Virginia for example shows many three-letter acronym companies and a couple aircraft registered explicitly to the Department of Justice. Then, searching the web for any traces that ‘FVX Research’ was a legitimate company proved fruitless. It was only a matter of time before someone put two and two together.
ARGUS Technologies. Image courtesy spie.org
Given the number of flights conducted by this fleet of aircraft within the last week and month, it is clear this is a large, widespread operation. Take what Jay Stanley of the American Civil Liberties Union describes as their nightmare scenario; “I wrote recently about ARGUS, the high-flying drone technology capable of capturing super-high-definition video of a 15-square mile area and automatically tracking all moving vehicles and people within that area. I pointed out that this makes possible our nightmare scenario for drones: wide-area mass surveillance and location tracking of entire cities and towns.” Speculation has arisen on social media that these aircraft could be equipped with ARGUS or similar technology as well as the equally controversial StingRay, cell-phone exploitation technology or variations thereof, which the Feds maintain tight secrecy around. Speculation will only give way to facts once Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests delving into the matter are returned and examined.
The extent of these revelations should be alarming to anyone who has been paying attention to the growing web of surveillance and national security in the United States. It seems for now that we will have to wait patiently underneath a fleet of secret government aircraft.
Below is a listing of 100 aircraft registered to shell companies that do not exist. The US Department of Justice can claim plausible deniability for owning and operating these aircraft however that is a flimsy defense. At the time of posting, a number of these aircraft may be airborne over American cities, equipped with surveillance, stingray, or other hardware. FOIAs are being drafted and will be submitted so it is only a matter of time before a brighter light is shined upon these secretive operations.
For examples of the flight patterns conducted by many of these aircraft within the last few days, check:
LOCATIONS OF REGISTRATION
BRISTOW, VA; WILMINGTON, DE; NEWARK, DE; KIRKLAND, WA.
LOCATIONS OF REGISTRATION
BRISTOW, VA; WILMINGTON, DE; NEWARK, DE; KIRKLAND, WA;
NORTHEAST AIRCRAFT LEASING CORP:
SOUTHEAST AIRCRAFT LEASING CORP:
NORTHWEST AIRCRAFT LEASING CO:
NATIONAL AIRCRAFT LEASING CORP:
WORLDWIDE AIRCRAFT LEASING CORP: