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China and NSW Are Increasingly Targeting ‘Future Criminals’

By Paul Gregoire and Ugur NedimSo, what does the far western province of Xinjiang in China have in common with the state of New South Wales? Answer: authorities in both regions are cracking down on future crime, in so far as both are employing policies of predictive policing and detaining people before they offend.


Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported on February 26 that Chinese authorities are currently deploying and expanding a highly pervasive data surveillance system in Xinjiang. The Integrated Joint Operations Platform (IJOP) aggregates data and flags any behaviour the system identifies as suspect.

The IJOP integrates information collected from a range of technologies, including an immense network of CCTV cameras with facial recognition and infrared capabilities and WIFI sniffers, which collect identifying addresses from computers and smartphones.

Information is also gathered at an increasing number of police checkpoints, as well as data systems that store licence number plates and citizen ID cards. Officials also visit people’s homes and fill out forms on smartphone apps, which are submitted to the IJOP.

According to HRW, behaviours that the system identifies as suspicious include an individual suddenly buying more fertilizer than usual, a family storing large amounts of food in their home, or a person who is in possession of a large number of books.

Re-education gulags

If the IJOP flags any behaviour, officials are supposed to act upon this information on the same day. And on inspection, those that “ought to be taken, should be taken.” Two sources told HRW that the IJOP computer generates lists of individuals to be rounded-up by police.

These suspects are then sent to political re-education centres, where they’re held in indefinite detention, without charge or trial. Detainees are then subjected to a secretive investigation. They can later be sentenced to prison or be put through further instruction in Communist doctrine.

This Orwellian system was initiated in Xinjiang in August 2016, as part of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) “Strike Hard” campaign, which seeks to target terrorist threats, but also, takes aim at those not toeing the party line.

Powerless in their homeland

Xinjiang is home to 11 million predominately Muslim Uyghurs. The CCP began its increasingly oppressive occupation of the region back in 1949. After years of Beijing’s encouraged migration, Uyghurs make up 45 percent of the population, while Han Chinese now account for 40 percent.

Following a peaceful protest by Uyghur people that turned into a violent clash with police in the Xinjiang capital of Urumqi in 2009, Chinese authorities further cracked down. And this led to a series of violent reprisals carried out by Uyghurs across the country over the period 2013 to 2014.

Whilst Beijing continues the narrative of a rising terrorist threat in the region, commentators blame the reprisals on the harsh repression Uyghurs suffer under Chinese rule. Authorities have enforced cultural restrictions against growing beards, wearing veils in public, and religious fasting.

Secretary general of the World Uyghur Congress Dolkun Isa told Sydney Criminal Lawyers last March that Chinese authorities have recently implemented an intensive network of “police convenience centres” in the region.

These pseudo-police checkpoints have heavy camera surveillance and carry out 24 hour guard patrols.

NSW predictive policing

Cut to present day New South Wales, which is seemingly a world away from far western China. However, similar policing tactics and surveillance policies are being employed right here.

Take the Suspect Targeting Management Plan (STMP). It allows NSW police officers to place recidivist offenders, as well as people who’ve never been convicted of a crime, but are merely suspected of being at risk of committing future crimes, on a list for targeted intensive policing.

Those on the secretive list are repeatedly stopped and searched by police. And they’re also subjected to regular home visits from officers regardless of which offence, if any, they’ve previously committed.

report released in November last year found the program, which was implemented in 2000, is disproportionately targeting youths. Data examined from ten local area commands over the year 2014-15 showed that 48.8 percent of STMP targets were under the age of 25.

The researchers also found that the largest single group subject to the program were Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people making up 44 percent of all individuals. This is despite Indigenous people accounting for only 2.9 percent of the NSW population, according to 2016 Census figures.

Future crime incarceration

The NSW government passed the Terrorism (High Risk Offenders) Bill last November. This enables adult offenders who are deemed to pose a “risk of committing a serious terrorism offence” can have their prison sentence, or parole period, extended for a period of three years indefinitely.

But, these laws don’t just apply to convicted terrorists. Offenders whose crimes are classed as occurring in a “terrorist context” also come under their reach. They can even apply to inmates who’ve merely associated with those who’ve advocated support for terrorist activities.

In February, NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian said she wouldn’t rule out extending this regime to youth offenders. She made the remark as she was announcing the government was setting up a new countering violent extremism unit within the state juvenile justice system.

Under this new arrangement, young offenders deemed to be a national security threat will receive intensified communications monitoring, as well as undergoing deradicalisation programs.

Mass surveillance down under

And a number of surveillance systems have been implemented at the federal level over recent times, which have all the hallmarks of the Chinese IJOP big data system.

In October 2015, the federal government’s metadata regime came into play. It requires telcos and ISPs to store their customers’ metadata for a period of two years. And the system allows 21 law enforcement agencies warrantless access to this personal information.

While in October last year, the heads of all states and territories signed onto the federal government’s National Facial Biometric Matching Capability, which is a database that allows police and security agencies to match citizens’ driver licence photos with CCTV footage in real time.

Indeed, it seems that regardless of whether its Communist China or democratic NSW, authorities are increasingly applying new technologies in an intrusive manner, whilst calling on law enforcement agencies and corrective services to undertake the dubious task of predicting future crimes.



5 thoughts on “China and NSW Are Increasingly Targeting ‘Future Criminals’

  1. CCTV Cameras with facial recognition:
    They have that technology?
    At what point do we fall about laughing.
    Only that it all costs BILLIONS of Dollars from the Public Purse.
    Australia has money to burn.
    And a FOOL & his nations money are soon parted.

  2. The crackdown on cash:
    They tell us that a cashless economy will eradicate the black economy – they say.
    Today, money can be sent across the planet in seconds.
    The transactions are untraceable.
    We see on TV, police raid a suspect drug seller’s abode to find a million in cash, in a cardboard box, hidden in the wardrobe, alas, today the cash will not be there.
    Today a bank robbery happens via electronic methods & millions are shunted across the world to a safe haven.
    Today, corporate crime is thus, a new employee downloads the companies information onto a memory stick. They pass this information on to those who then infiltrate the company & bleed it indefinitely.
    The clever planners of security have, as yet not – even imagined the possibility – let alone the reality of such successful & safe criminal pursuits.
    All of the above that you have mentioned are THUGGERY on the part of Primitive minds of government.
    Primitive minds that live id the dark past.

    1. For switched on criminals of today – it is indeed an exciting & lucrative time to do business.
      Hey, they gave us the technology, in fact, they forces it upon us.
      Never look a gift horse in the mouth.

  3. Today, a computer program send you your power bill.
    Today a computer program sends you a reminder to pay.
    The energy companies human element is notified, by the software program that you exist & are drawing power, that you are in default, etc.
    But for the computer program – they do not know you exist.
    If a glitch erased you from the billing aspect of the equation – how would they know you existed & your energy would be given you free.

  4. We must be very clear about Communism.
    All Communism is controlled and fed by the elite Corporations.
    This then makes for Corporate Communism as the original Communist Russian Revolution was financed by the Wall Street Bankers…. Rothschild, Schiff, Warburg etc. and ongoing to this day.
    Democracy was given to us as a front for Corporate Communism….. frog in boiling water routine.
    Democracy is Corporate Socialism….. it\’s the slow boil again and again yet we think our tan is from the sun.
    Maybe it\’s the shit from the Corporate Fan!

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