NIA Denies Hacking Rona Wilson’s Laptop In Bhima Koregaon Case; Says Arsenal Consulting Has No Locus To Give Opinion Of Sub-Judice Matter
Live Law / by Sharmeen Hakim
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has denied the report by digital forensics firm Arsenal Consulting, which concluded that incriminating material, including a conspiracy to kill the Prime Minister and overthrow the government, was planted on Elgaar Parishad – Bhima Koregaon accused, researcher Rona Wilson’s laptop.
The NIA made these claims in an affidavit to oppose interim relief to Wilson, stating his petition before the Bombay High Court was not maintainable. Read more
Rona Wilson can´t rely on Forensic Report by US firm to seek quashing of Case: NIA to Bombay High Court
Bar & Bench / by Neha Joshi
The petitioner can rely upon the same only during the trial when evidence is led and not in a plea seeking quashing, the NIA submitted.
The forensic report by US firm, Arsenal Consulting cited by Bhima Koregaon accused Rona Wilson to claim innocence, is not part of the chargesheet and cannot, therefore, be relied upon by the accused to seek quashing of chargesheet, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) has told the Bombay High Court. Read more
NIA objects to entertaining petition based on Arsenal Consulting Report
The Leaflet / by Nihalsing B Rathod
THE Bhima Koregaon case came into the spotlight again when The Washington Post made a sensational revelation that the electronic evidence being used against the activists in the Bhima Koregaon case was planted. It relied on the report prepared by a digital forensics firm, M/s Arsenal Consulting, which was approached by the defence lawyer of one of the accused, Rona Wilson, for examining an electronic copy of his seized laptop.
Wilson, who has been an under-trial in the Bhima Koregaon case since June 6th, 2018, recently approached the Bombay High Court, invoking Article 226 of the Constitution of India, and Section 482 of the Criminal Procedure Code, 1973, seeking the quashing of sanctions to prosecute him and others under the draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967. Read more
The Telangana government on Friday banned 16 organisations, including the Revolutionary Writers Association, known as Virasam, claiming that these are frontal bodies of the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist), and are engaged in “tactics” that “wage war against the state”. The order was passed by chief secretary Somesh Kumar, with effect from March 30 this year.
… The Government Order also clearly states that the organisations are also being banned for demanding the release of Prof. GN Sai Baba, Rona Wilson, and writer Vara Vara Rao (who is from Virasam), who are all currently in prison with regard to the Elgar Parishad case, on allegations of conspiring to kill Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Read more
The activists had moved the court alleging tampering of evidence in light of the reports published by US cyber forensic firm Arsenal Consulting.
The Bombay High Court on Thursday said it will hear the petitions filed by activists Rona Wilson and Shoma Sen in the Bhima Koregaon case on April 29.
The activists had moved the court alleging tampering of evidence in light of the reports published by US cyber forensic firm Arsenal Consulting and seeking that the charges against them be quashed. Read more
More Proof Of Planted Evidence On Rona Wilson’s Computer / More Damning Signs of Planted Evidence
Forensics Firm Finds More Proof Of Planted Evidence On Rona Wilson’s Computer: Report
Medianama / by Advait Palepu
In its second report, Massachusetts-based digital forensics firm Arsenal Consulting found that a malicious software used by an attacker had planted an additional set of files on prison rights’ activist Rona Wilson’s computer. The firm said that there was no evidence that Wilson interacted with these files and documents, which are cited by the National Investigative Agency (NIA) in its charge-sheet against Wilson and others in the Bhima-Koregaon case.
The Washington Post and The Reporter’s Collective were the first to report on the findings of Arsenal Consulting. Read more
In Bhima-Koregaon Case, More Damning Signs of Planted Evidence
Article 14 / by Shreegiresh Jalihal/THE REPORTERS’ COLLECTIVE
A new report by a leading US digital forensic company offers ‘irrefutable’ proof of arrested activist Rona Wilson’s devices being hacked and explains how 22 files were planted. These files are key evidence in the Bhima-Koregaon case, where 16 academics, lawyers, artistes are imprisoned without bail or trial.
A new report from a US-based digital forensics company has said a hacker planted 22 “incriminating” files in activist Rona Wilson’s computer, days after violence in the Maharashtra town of Bhima-Koregaon in January 2018. Read more
It wants to trace the originator of unlawful messages on apps like WhatsApp, but isn’t doing the same in the Bhima Koregaon case.
On February 25, the Union government notified the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021. Unlike the IT Rules of 2011, the new regulations include video streaming platforms and online news portals within their ambit. Read more
Laws Around Electronic Evidence Compromise India’s Criminal Justice System
Police and investigative agencies currently claim unfettered access to your WhatsApp, private emails or chats with your doctor, lawyer or psychologist. Can they force you to unlock your phone and disclose passwords? In the absence of clear laws, they do what they wish.
… Seize All You Can? The Bhima-Koregaon Case
Recent cases indicate that investigating agencies often search and seize records without demonstrating probable cause, necessity or proportionality. Read more
Government’s game of prosecution – prosecution as a tool to silence critics
(Print edition: March 26, 2021)
The present dispensation uses prosecution as a tool to silence critics and opponents in a way that makes the legal process a punishment in itself.
Julio Ribeiro, a prince among police officers of the highest rank, notable alike for his high integrity and superb efficiency, rendered a great service by bringing home to the Indian reader the allegations of manipulating and planting in the Bhima Koregaon case. He had heard Mark Spencer, head honcho of Arsenal Consulting, a private digital forensics company. Ribeiro had heard Spencer on an Indian national TV channel “certifying that the police in India had been taken for a ride by an extremely clever hacker”. His article in The Indian Express on February 22 is entitled “The truth is out there” under the sub-heading “Allegations of manipulating and planting evidence in Bhima Koregaon case must be investigated. Read more
Former civil servants urge Govt to bring legislative changes to prevent “planting” of incriminating material
A group of former civil servants has expressed concerns at reports alleging the planting of incriminating material in Rona Wilson’s computer, an accused in the Bhima Koregaon case.
“The reports that the police and other investigative agencies may have violated constitutional guarantees and judicial pronouncements in the practices adopted in search and seizure operations, as well as the possibility that they may have been party to planting incriminating material in personal digital devices and harvesting evidence therefrom, have caused us grave concern”, the statement signed by former civil servants reads. Read more
Frontline [print edition March 12] / by Anupama Katakam
Investigations by Arsenal Consulting, a global digital forensics consulting company, have revealed that evidence had been planted in the activist Rona Wilson’s computer, raising larger issues of unethical surveillance and motivated targeting of individuals.
Rona Wilson, the New Delhi-based activist who was arrested in June 2018 for his alleged connections with banned extreme Left organisations, has steadfastly maintained that the evidence against him is fabricated and the charges are false. Read more
The Bhima Koregaon Forensic Report: FAQs answered by Prof. Jedidiah Crandall
The Bhima Koregaon Forensic Report: FAQs answered by Prof. Jedidiah Crandall
… In a statement to The Washington Post the NIA had stated that it had found no malware on Wilson’s computer and other government spokespersons have attempted to label the forensic report as a “distortion.” Media outlets close to the government have attempted to cast aspersions on the report by suggesting that the cloned hard drive was tampered with as it was being transported from India to Boston.
Prof. Jedadiah Crandall from Arizona State University, who is one of the technical experts who has reviewed the Arsenal report in detail has said “to call the forensic report a distortion is unfortunate”. Prof Crandall emphatically added “The Arsenal report conclusively establishes that NetWire was the malware used for incriminating document delivery. There is no room for interpretation or doubt about this.”
To demystify all the technical details, Prof. Jedadiah Crandall has answered the frequently asked questions to help us understand the Bhima Koregaon Forensic Report. Read more
Surveillance on Rona Wilson Aggressive, Long Time Period Very Unusual: Forensics Firm Head
The Wire / by Sukanya Shantha
Last week, a Massachusetts-based digital forensics firm, Arsenal Consulting, released a damning report which posed serious questions about the credibility of the letters that were allegedly found in the computer and other gadgets of arrested prisoners’ rights activist Rona Wilson.
Arsenal Consulting’s director Mark Spencer discussed the findings and his impression of the attack in detail in an interview with The Wire. Read more