For many years, the FBI has used surveillance planes in investigations.
But we seldom get details about those flights.
Now comes this: Robert Snell of The Detroit News writes that an airplane linked to an FBI surveillance program that tracks suspected terrorists, spies and criminals has flown at least seven times over Metro Detroit, including two lengthy flights over the Dearborn area last weekend, according to public records.
The 2010 single-engine Cessna Skylane is part of a small air force operated by the FBI that uses high-tech cameras and sometimes cellphone surveillance technology. An Associated Press investigation in June revealed that the FBI had flown more than 100 flights in 11 states over a 30-day period.
Flight data reviewed by The Detroit News shows increased flights over Metro Detroit in the past week with prolonged surveillance over Dearborn, a city heavily populated by Muslims and Middle Eastern residents. In all, the FBI surveillance plane has flown over Metro Detroit seven times since Friday, according to the website FlightRadar24.com.
The flights raise privacy concerns because of surveillance technology that often does not require a judge’s approval.