Mechanics spot strange things stuck under cars all the time, but when 20-year-old Yasir Afifi's ride was put up on lifts his shop found something that hadn't been kicked up from the road: a cylindrical tube connected to a device with an antenna. An extremely paranoid person would think they'd found a bomb, but the truth isn't much better. It was an FBI tracking device. Afifi posted pictures and his story on Reddit
while a friend contemplated cunning things to do with it, sticking it to someone else's car or selling it on Craigslist. They didn't have long to ponder long before two "sneaky-looking" people were spotted outside his apartment. Afifi got in his car and drove off, only to be pulled over by FBI agents who demanded the device back, threatening "We're going to make this much more difficult for you if you don't cooperate."
Now, we've already given our opinions
on using GPS technology like this and, while it's unknown whether these agents had a warrant to place this device, the 9th US Court of Appeals recently made one unnecessary for this sort of thing. The ACLU is working with Afifi to fight that ruling, and for now we're hoping that he, who is an American with an Egyptian father, is currently able to hit the town without agents following his every move. However, at this point they may not need a tracker: one agent who retrieved the device took the time to list off his favorite restaurants and even congratulated him on his new job.