As an investigator one might sometimes be forced to decide when to operate within the law of jurisdictions that do not cooperate with the investigation. This could lead to such uncomfortable choices as to abandoning a productive line of inquiry or violating the statutes of a government. Therefore there are at the very least these two serious issues will need to be weighed when such a situation occurs.

In my opinion the answer to the first question depends on the seriousness of the crime. Offenses such as murder, rape, child abuse, kidnapping or bodily harm do not easily allow for the abandonment of investigation. It should be possible to get the governments to negotiate in such cases, but that process might take excessive time and one might not have that luxury. If it were possible in a reasonable time frame one would need to cooperate with local law-enforcement entities there for further evidence gathering or an apprehension if appropriate. If it were not possible or if it were taking so long the case risked going cold there might still be a considerable amount of evidence that could be gathered from accessible public network infrastructure. Proving a crime or supplying more reliable and incriminating evidence would probably help foster cooperation. But failing that one might be forced to consider violating local statutes.

This may seem a radical tact, but it is not, in fact, very uncommon (Library of Congress, 2008) (Shalev, 2006) (BBC, 2005). What an investigative or governmental body does with the information or culprits acquired by breaking another government's law can lead to international incidents and foreign policy disasters or it may be quietly ignored. As Laureate points out regarding anonymous network services: “since these services are generally provided by organizations that are under different jurisdiction, you will not be able to recover the identity of suspect. For example, most servers for the findnot anonymous service are located in Malaysia.” This presents a very challenging situation. However there are solutions, ranging from exhaustive analysis of what evidence is available to network intrusion, and from diplomatic negotiation to outright violation of other sovereign entities' law(s).

BBC News (2005) 'CIA abduction claims 'credible', 13 December, 2005 [Online]. Available from: (Accessed: 18 July, 2010)

Laureate Online Education (2009) Computer Forensics Seminar for Week 7 – Network Forensics II [Online]. Available from: (Accessed: 14 July, 2010)

Library of Congress (2008) Country Studies – SAVAK [Online]. Available from: (Accessed: 18 July, 2010)

Shalev, N. (2006) 'The Hunt for Red September', BBC News, 26 January 2006 [Online]. Available from: (Accessed: 18 July, 2010)