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Chevron wants to prosecute me for trespassing

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Helios, Aug 22, 2014.

  1. Helios

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    Hi everyone!
    I had an incident in July. I went to caprark on Chevron oil factory and started to fly and film with my DJI Phantom 2 Vision+. There were no fences, no warning messages. Just open-enter carpark inside factory. One guard guy came by, asked about my device and after he ensured that I am not employe he called other guardians. Next they called to police, yhere were 3 police cars. After some conversation they let me go.
    After one week one detective called me to police station and noted that Chevron wants to prosecute me and suspects of terrorism.
    Next: FBI agent called to me and asked some questions. After some time he said that I am ok, he belives I am not terrorist.

    Yesterday detective called to me and said that I must come to attorney to some other police station about 555 penalty.

    I am realy afraiding, I worry that they will out me to jail. I read in Internet that it is $1000 fine and/or up to 6 months of jail. And Chevron is powerful corporatoon, what they will do with me?? : (

    I am computer graphic artist, originally I am from Russia, I live in LA almost one year.

    Can somebody advice to me what to do?

    I can give to you an advice: hold yourself as far as possible from those facilities : (
     
  2. OI Photography

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    Get a lawyer, and be sure one or both of you attend any hearing you are called to.
     
  3. SJBrit

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    I'm sorry I don't have amy specific advice to offer except that we should all be rather careful about flying around such places. Energy facilities count as Critical Infrastructure and are subject to significant security and anti-terrorism measures http://www.dhs.gov/critical-infrastructure. You wouldn't fly over the Pentagon without expecting trouble, and neither should you fly around power plants, chemical plants, refineries, etc.
     
  4. Helios

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    Yes now I understand this. But this is very popular area (El Segundo), a lot of tourists there are, a lot of people have quadcopters... I am interesting: will they put me to jail?
     
  5. OI Photography

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    Doubtful, but again that's a question for a lawyer. The law would allow for them to take that measure, but it's rare that the full possible punishment is given in court. I would guess you'll probably get a fine and/or some community service at most. Really just depends on how far Chevron's lawyers want to push it...and how good your lawyer is.

    What you do NOT want to do is miss the court date. Then you'll definitely have to go to jail at some point, even just to be able to appear for the same hearing in the long run any way.
     
  6. Catalina36

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    Seriously doubt you will go to jail for trespassing. Get a lawyer and you will probably just end up with a slap on the hand and good sized bill from the lawyer. Keep us up to date on how this plays out though. Best of luck to you.
     
  7. RedRyderMedia

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    Investigate using a public defender. Not sure why Chevron is trying to make a case here. They have lots of $ , but they have better things to do than haul private citizens I to court for minimal reasons. What they can do and what they will do are probably different. Ask the courts for a defense attorney to represent you. Not clear that you would need a private attorney to represent you.
     
  8. Clipper707

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    +1

    At this point, I figure if they wanted you to go to jail, they would come knocking on your door.

    Call a lawyers office. There's probably a free consultation phone call anyway. Good luck!
     
  9. Helios

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    Thanks!
    Can you advice to me good lawyers office in Santa Monica? How expensive is it?
     
  10. Helios

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    Also one question: the court date is September 18. Can I go to vacation to other country from Sep 1 to Sep 7?
    It all is so disappointing : (
    Today you just turn to refinery car parking and make filming, and tomorrow you are prosecuted and have to go to court. : ( I did not suppose it from USA.

    Any way, thanks guys for your advices. Check also my last video: https://vimeo.com/103113365
     
  11. UrAwFuL

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    Pretty interesting case here. In a way, I kinda have to agree that you should've not have been flying around a refinery since it's as dangerous as an airport in terms of a "probability of damage" and all the paranoia these days of reckless flying. But you mention that it's in a carpark IN the refinery? How did you get inside? I'm really interested on your exact location where you flew it. But no damage has been done and I presume you never even flew into the refinery "airspace" so I think you're OK there.

    I wish you good luck!

    Nice video by the way. ;)
     
  12. MadMitch88

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    Well being an immigrant from Russia doesn't excuse you from knowing the laws of the USA --- and if you lived in America since 9/11 you'd know that energy facilities are now considered prime targets for potential terrorist attacks, so there is a high priority to protect them.

    Cross your fingers and hope for the best, and try to max. out your credit cards hiring a decent attorney. I don't have any legal advice, but I would say that if you tried flying your quad over a nuclear energy plant then you're definitely looking at 1 year minimum prison sentence. Nuclear power stations are probably more heavily guarded these days than Federal Reserve banks.

    Cheers!
    :shock:
     
  13. Helios

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    It was here:
    https://maps.google.com/maps?q=el+segun ... .48,,0,4.4

    I drove to car park (as you can see there is open entrance, no fences, no guard, no warnings), next I started to fly and film around. I flied to circle pound.
     
  14. Redwood

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    You were pretty close to LAX... that facility is probably under extra scrutiny.
    Here's DJI's no fly zone limits BTW
    [​IMG]
     
  15. Khudson7

    Khudson7 Guest

    Wait a minute...sounds to me there might be some stereotyping here on Chevrons part....a person with a Russian accent, only been here a year, flying and filming a refinery. It does sound kind of suspicious. Better get a good lawyer.
     
  16. Noël

    Noël Guest

    Беглый (used google translate to say run away!)
     
  17. kirbinster

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    Not sure what there concern is, as if we go to the map provided and exit street view and go to the aerial view it is highly doubtful that you would get anything much different than what is already on Google.
     
  18. Grandpa Florida

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    I agree with OP. Make a video from Google Earth and compare it to your video. It might help in court.
     
  19. Monte55

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    Was it the fact you were just flying there or taking video also?
     
  20. HarryT

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    Sorry, but this sounds EXTREMELY dangerous and irresponsible to me. A Phantom - heavy and with sharp propellers - flying around a chemical refinery is a potentially deadly combination. Obviously I wish the OP the best of luck in court, but geez, people have to take a bit of personal responsibility for where they're flying, and chemical refineries are just not sensible places to fly.