Lebanese-American Man Alleges FBI Polygraph Abuse

San Diego television station KGTV reports on the case of Ibrahim Nasser in a Yahoo! news story titled “Local Man Feels Threatened by FBI.” This short article is cited here in full:

Lebanon-born U.S. citizen Ibrahim Nasser spent four hours talking with the FBI Monday.

Nasser was first introduced to 10News viewers Sunday, when he told of his experience of having FBI agents search his apartment and accuse him of knowing Osama bin Laden. They also lied to him about his family, Nasser claims, telling him that his ex-wife was in jail and that his brother had been running guns for skinheads.

Nasser told 10News that during his talks Monday with FBI officials he was hooked up to a lie-detector machine as agents swore at him and accused him of lying.

“They kept saying that the results didn’t come out right because I kept lying to them,” Nasser told 10News.

He said that agents were angry with him because he had spoken to 10News.

“I told them, ‘That’s my right,'” Nasser said. “I’m not like a garbage bag. I’m a human being.”

Nasser believes that FBI agents are acting on a false tip from his ex-wife, who he believes is trying to make life difficult for him after the two went through a messy divorce.

“County Uses Lie Detectors to Supervise Sex Offenders”

North County Times staff writer Scott Marshall reports in a lengthy article on the use of polygraph “testing” to supervise sex offenders on probation in San Diego County, California. Be sure to see the full article. Excerpt:

VISTA —- San Diego County probation officers are using lie-detector tests to help them supervise the roughly 600 sex offenders on probation countywide, a probation department official said.

Although state law prohibits the use of polygraph test results in court, probation officers can use the statements sex offenders make during interviews before and after the test is administered.

Those statements can be used to increase the supervision of the offenders, alter the counseling they receive or rearrest them for probation violations, said Susan Storm, a supervising probation officer in San Diego.

“It can help us monitor them when we can’t watch them 24 hours a day,” Storm said. “Bottom line is to provide safer communities.”

However, criminal defense attorneys decry the practice as a violation of the rights of those on probation and a waste of money.

“My argument is it’s a waste of time and money because polygraph results, as a matter of law, are inadmissible in court for any reason because results are unreliable,” said Deputy Public Defender Jack Campbell, who works in the public defender’s North County office in Vista. “Once the defendant knows the result is meaningless, they can lie at will.”

Once a sex offender on probation discovers that polygraphy is a fraud and learns how to beat the polygraph (see Chapters 3 & 4 of The Lie Behind the Lie Detector to find out how), he or she can also lie at will. The use of pseudoscientific polygraph “tests” to supervise sex offenders is bad public policy.