Something I learned this month:
Phillip Morse is the co-owner of Liverpool Football Club. He also runs a company called Richmor Aviation, which supplies chartered jets. Between 2002 and 2005, a company called Sportsflight contracted for use of a Richmor jet. They chartered a number of flights for “government personnel and their invitees”, as the president of Richmor put it in court testimony.
The flights went to various places. One location which frequently appeared on the flight plan was Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.
In case you aren’t filling in the blanks here: SportsFlight was working for the CIA, who hired them through a government contracting company called DynCorp. The plane belonging to the owner of Liverpool FC was used to fly innocent kidnapped people to foreign locations where they could be tortured, as part of the CIA’s illegal ‘rendition’ program.
Apparently the Morse family are now afraid to fly in their own aircraft, because of the negative publicity. They sued SportsFlight, and won $875,000.
We should thank the Morse family. Attempts by the ACLU to obtain information about ‘extraordinary rendition’ flights had been blocked by the courts on the grounds that the details were state secrets. But someone in government wasn’t paying attention this time, and the transcript of the Richmor lawsuit was made public. As a result, we know a lot more about the CIA flights than we would have done.