Chemical Weapons at Home

If you do this:

Bond pleaded guilty to harassment charges in state court, but was not deterred. She quickly moved on to more dangerous conduct. Over the next eight months, Bond stole toxic chemicals from the chemical manufacturing company where she worked and ordered other chemicals over the Internet. She combined the chemicals into a compound that is potentially lethal in small amounts — and is also bright orange. Bond spread the toxic material on her rival’s mail, mailbox, front doorknob, car door and other surfaces.

Then you might have to face this:

The federal government prosecuted Bond for violating the Chemical Weapons Convention, a treaty signed by the United States that bans the unauthorized use or storage of dangerous chemicals. Bond was convicted and sentenced to six years in prison — three times the sentence she could have received if the state had chosen to prosecute her. Via NPR.org

This is an amazing discussion of whether government can use an international treaty in a domestic, criminal case–international law comes home, and what it means to be “peaceful.”

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2 thoughts on “Chemical Weapons at Home

  1. shannonmelissa22 says:

    I’m really surprised that there isn’t a national law against this that Bond could be prosecuted for. However, I do think that it is sometimes necessary to prosecute a domestic criminal with an international law if their crime is harming the international community. In Bond’s case it isn’t that black and white because her actions only hurt people domestically, but I’m not completely convinced that the government was wrong in prosecuting her.

  2. jmmorgan242 says:

    I don’t think that a country’s domestic policy should be dictated by international law as that would infringe on a nation’s autonomy, however, I think that international law should be given due consideration by domestic governments. Obviously, though this case we have found a gap in our own law that, luckily, was covered by international law. We should look at the international laws and adapt them to fit the needs of our nation. This woman was not manufacturing chemical weapons as a means to wipe out a government or rebel faction, but she was manufacturing them on a small scale with an intent to harm others. There should definitely be a domestic policy concerning chemical weapons.

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