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August 19, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Several British lawmakers are leading an outcry of protest over the detention of Brazilian David Miranda for nine hours at London’s Heathrow airport during a stopover on his way from Berlin to his home in Brazil. Miranda, who lives with Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian writer who was first to report on the Edward Snowden documents that disclosed the NSA’s electronic surveillance programs, also had his laptop, camera, cellphone, memory sticks and other possessions confiscated by the authorities, acting under a provision of the country’s controversial new terrorism laws. Greenwald, however, told the New York Times that Miranda was never questioned about acts of terrorism. “The only thing they were interested in was N.S.A. documents and what I was doing with Laura Poitras,” said Greenwald, referring to a documentary filmmaker, based in Berlin who is working on a film about the Snowden papers. “It’s a total abuse of the law.” Labor MP Tom Watson told the Guardian that he was shocked by the incident. “I’s almost impossible, even without full knowledge of the case, to conclude that Glenn Greenwald’s partner was a terrorist suspect.” Under Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act, police may stop and search individuals even without reasonable suspicion and question them without the presence of an attorney. Refusal to respond to their questions is a criminal offense.” The Guardian quoted Widney Brown, Amnesty International’s senior director of international law, as saying that Miranda “was detained under a law that violates any principle of fairness and his detention shows how the law can be abused for petty, vindictive reasons.”