Crossroads. Chapters 11 and 12
Table of contents:
Sergeant Holmes Caleb examined the faces of the young men sitting in front of him. What is forty years old? This is the time to do things that determine the rest of your life. Such thoughts fussed in his head along with what he heard in the calm presentation of the eldest of them. He rarely made a mistake, and this time he was sure: these guys got into binding not of their own free will, they are not of the same berry field, and he will have to sweat in order to unravel this matter. They are “smart people”, this can be seen per kilometer, and giving them free rein so that they are included in the investigation process will be the right decision.
They said something about recognizing a person from biometric data, he heard about such a method, but in passing - this is from a new, little-known world of new technologies. But in this case, Caleb simply realized with his police sensation that they were saying the matter.
- So, you are saying that the gun in your car could be changed between 23:00 and 00:30 and the car was standing in front of the hotel entrance. We got a record of two cameras recording the figure of a man who was near your car at 23:27. He spent about thirty seconds near the trunk of the car, but in those seconds only his head, covered with a hood, could see the cameras, and it was not clear whether he opened the trunk or not. He then headed north on Farringdon Street and disappeared around a bend. Unfortunately, in the quarter where he turned, the cameras did not capture him. Your version, as I understand it, assumes that this person opened the trunk of your Rover-75 car and made some manipulations with weapons. By the way, it’s strange that your airsoft gun is so indistinguishable from the real Glock.
“Almost indistinguishable,” Ilya looked the constable in the eye. “I know that the police in England do not carry weapons, but your experience allows you to have a gun attached to you.” I know that the metropolitan police are armed with a Glock-17 pistol. I have exactly the same, only in airsoft performance. You can compare them, they are indistinguishable from each other.
Already! - Caleb grinned. - Indeed, it is. I was surprised and consider it a dangerous undertaking - to make game weapons so similar to real ones. These are all global arms companies, profits, advertising, money ... Money is always fully involved in crimes. So what do you want from me?
We need the video you have of the person who appeared near our car. It needs to be received by our friends. We have a special computer program that is able to determine the identity of a person by his way of moving.
According to the gait, - specified Smolkin, - by all the little things that the human eye does not attach importance to.
“True,” Ilya continued, “we will need shots of the person whom we suspect of this crime for comparison with the existing record, but this is the second part of the task, we will think about it, if you allow us.”
Igor and Sergey sat opposite the prisoners and listened carefully to Cohen.
- Constable Holmes shows us the degree of trust that allows us for some short time to try to prove our innocence, and, excuse me for protocol vocabulary, to expose criminals who put human life in real danger. So, listen to me carefully, do not interrupt and move the convolutions. I am convinced on the basis of two logical conclusions that the one who was involved in the setup knew that Sasha and I decided to attract two actors from the cabaret ... in order to remove the layouts from them in this key scene in the gateway, which seemed to me , unlike Smolkin, is not realistic enough.
Wanda and Fitch. We met them on our last visit to London. They agreed to play lovers whom the villain kills, even without payment - just out of friendship, well, for dinner at their restaurant. They were interested to see how it would look in the game, which we told them in a popular way. This arrangement was not discussed by telephone, but was recorded in the plan of our actions in a computer file. And the fact that Smolkin will have to shoot at the artists, I spoke to him on the phone. This means that someone, despite the very serious protection of our computers, was able to penetrate their software and had the opportunity to listen to our phones. To do this, they needed to possess two things: strong personal interest in the “Crossroads” project and a powerful technological base for such a large-scale operation to be implemented in our communications. Therefore, I suspect Halperin’s team of this. To this we can add the attempts of Dima himself to get in touch with us about the sponsor, with whom we signed a contract without his help, and conversations with Sasha, about which Smolkin told me already in the cell. Conversations that related to our idea, conversations in which Elena participated. And I think that she plays the main role in this crime. The Halperins could not help but understand what we would think about them in the first place, but they behaved as desperate people in the hope of getting what they wanted at all costs, going all-in, spitting on any moral decency. To this we can add the attempts of Dima himself to get in touch with us about the sponsor, with whom we signed a contract without his help, and conversations with Sasha, about which Smolkin told me already in the cell. Conversations that related to our idea, conversations in which Elena participated. And I think that she plays the main role in this crime. The Halperins could not help but understand what we would think about them in the first place, but they behaved as desperate people in the hope of getting what they wanted at all costs, going all-in, spitting on any moral decency. To this we can add the attempts of Dima himself to get in touch with us about the sponsor, with whom we signed a contract without his help, and conversations with Sasha, about which Smolkin told me already in the cell. Conversations that related to our idea, conversations in which Elena participated. And I think that she plays the main role in this crime. The Halperins could not help but understand what we would think about them in the first place, but they behaved as desperate people in the hope of getting what they wanted at all costs, going all-in, spitting on any moral decency. that she plays the main role in this crime. The Halperins could not help but understand what we would think about them in the first place, but they behaved as desperate people in the hope of getting what they wanted at all costs, going all-in, spitting on any moral decency. that she plays the main role in this crime. The Halperins could not help but understand what we would think about them in the first place, but they behaved as desperate people in the hope of getting what they wanted at all costs, going all-in, spitting on any moral decency.
“So maybe I'll go to Scrooge and talk to him like a man?” - Sergey clenched his fists, clearly cracking his knuckles.
“No violence, no Krav Maga.” The task is this ... - Ilya unfolded a laptop for the guests, left by the sergeant on the metal table of the meeting room. On the screen, a man in a gray sweatshirt with his face covered in a hood moved at a quick pace from the Rover, the car in which the Glock lay in the trunk, leaving toward the city center.
- I sent this plot to the address of Alla. I don’t think that the people of Scrooge are following her mail, but even if this is so, this record will not be news for them. We need to find out who this person is and prove that he had contact with one of the Halperins: either with both of them, or with people associated with them.
- As I understand it, the subject did not have a telephone in gray, which means that billings will not help. I have an idea, though a little crazy, but that’s just about the topic of billing.
Igor coughed, getting ready to speak after listening carefully to Cohen.
“We know the exact time and the exact location of the presence of this man who, we suspect, opened the Rover’s trunk and changed arms, and we know what direction he moved after he stepped away from the car, despite the fact that time, judging by the record, there was nobody near, the lane is deserted, and we know his further path - and we can imagine where he could go: the office and apartments of Scrooge are only a few blocks from your hotel. True, there are more lively places along the way, and there, most likely, passers-by will come across - our travel companions are incognito and people walking towards him ...
- What the hell are you getting at? - Smolkin got up impatiently.
- Now, do not knock me down, I myself do not really believe in my idea, but listen to the end. Imagine that the antennas of cellular communication, penetrating the space with their signals, stumble upon the obstacle by the radiation of this signal and create some turbidity in this space. If you receive signals from several such antennas - three or more - you can see, I suppose, something like a cloud with coordinates on the ground and with a shape that will distinguish a person in volume and configuration from, say, a car, tree or bench . So, if you get the logs from the providers of these devices, stored in the memory of their programs, related to that place and recorded at the time that interests us, then this idea can well be verified.
“Listen,” Sergei turned to Igor, not hiding his perplexity, “the idea is really crazy, but even if“ this, ”he didn’t immediately find the word for“ this, ”if“ this ”is possible, then how to track such an amorphous cloud? - “Cloud” seemed to him a suitable term for defining a condensing part of space.
- What happens when others appear on the path of our cloud? They will dissolve in each other, and we will lose what we follow.
Serega was a concrete person, and it became easier for him to talk about something when he could imagine the image of what was being discussed.
“I’m sure,” Igor continued, “that our cloud will be different from all the others - albeit microns, but it will be - and for a computer program, a micron is the same as a kilometer for us.” Ask the constable to contact the providers.
Sergeant Caleb was somewhat confused. His disposition towards the detainees was based on his experience of dealing with people in difficult circumstances, and he aimed to achieve success in investigating this strange case, but the "wise men" with each new proposal made him more and more surprised by the unusual way of thinking. Catch a criminal using some obscure image obtained from the radiation of cellular signals? Images in the form of a cloud (and the constable heard how the tall strong guy called him a “ghost”)! Caleb grinned: what his colleagues would say, and his superiors that he, on the threshold of retirement, believed in ghosts. And the pension, which is still not so close, can quickly be very close.
But an inner voice suggested that these guys could be trusted and that this investigation would be truly successful for him.
Sergey once again maintained his reputation as a fan of specifics, when Danik displayed information from logs received from providers. Everyone clapped their hands in joy when they saw on the display an oscillating cloud of gray, irregular in shape, but still having borders.
Time 23:27. Prior to this, not a single “ghost” approached the shadow left by the machine. But at 23:27, first one, then two more clouds sailed near the observed area. One, the first, froze by the car, the other two left without stopping. At that moment, Sergey came up with the idea to mark this suspect, as they suggested, “ghost” with color: the program caught hold of its parameters and, within the framework of these parameters, marked it, painted pale gray in criminal red.
“There is no need to compare millimeters, however, we can duplicate it for convincing,” Sergey Igel explained.
The next day, Sergeant Holmes knocked on the door of Chief Inspector Alsopp Oliver. He was already expecting a sergeant who had previously asked him to meet on an important and, as he added with meaning, an unusual question.
Alsopp watched with interest the three companions of Holmes Caleb, whom the constable introduced to him one by one.
Olsopp, a red-cheeked, full-bodied fifty-year-old man who listened carefully to a short report by his subordinate and old friend Caleb, was intrigued by the unusual way that this police investigation was proposed by representatives of the forefront of technological innovation, and added in a simple way: “terribly smart men. "
Danik opened his laptop and showed the audience the recording of their night view, taken from the logs of five cellular antennas located in their area of attention.
The red "ghost" spent at the "Rover", rented in the name of Alexander Smolkin, no more than a minute and then set off in a northeast direction. It mixed in its path with other clots of dark spots in some blocks and alleys, and the red color turned out to be a reliable marker, which allowed to trace the cloud to the building in which the Halperins' office was located, confirming Cohen’s suggestion about where he could most likely go one whom one could safely call a criminal. The red cloud reached its final point at 23:47. In the office of the Halperin company, as in all other rooms on the second floor of a five-story building, there were no other moving spots suggesting visitors or employees, at such a late time, except for one dark spot that met a red one - and met it like this, that the senior inspector, who, unlike the others, saw the record for the first time, his eyes went up on his forehead. The spots mixed up and continued to be in such a strange state for a long time.
“Is that what I was thinking now?” - He turned to the young man who showed the record. Danik shrugged.
“Yes, Oliver, that's 99 percent what you thought.” These ghosts are fucking on some weakly developed cloud, in the sense - on the table.
Caleb allowed himself to be self-effaced as an old friend, and even with some sly one, hoping to confirm in the minds of superiors the indisputable fact that confirms the assumption that the weapon in the trunk of the Rover was replaced by a person associated with people from the Halperin company, with those who are interested in creating problems for competitors represented by these young people from the Perekrestok startup.
- The picture that we see here can tell us one thing: since we know that the person who performed some manipulations at the car near the entrance to the hotel, where our two prisoners were located, is a man, then the cloud with which his red marker most likely a woman could copulate, unless, of course, he is a homosexual.
Everyone tried to keep a smile. The moment was critical: the outcome of the case, or at least its length of time, depended on whether the senior inspector agreed to continue the investigation, taking into account these methods of evidence that had never been used before.
“Well, good,” Alsopp rubbed his chin with the tip of a fountain pen. He was clearly worried, but tried to look calm.
- As I understand it, you will try to talk with the owners of the office and find out who was at that time in their premises. Suppose you find out, but how do you prove that it was this person who came to the office after he allegedly performed some actions on your car? This red cloud will not be accepted as evidence by any judge.
- Let me? - Igor tactfully turned to the sergeant, trying not to violate his subordination, not to jump over the head of a subordinate, turning to a higher officer. All the guys went through three years of service in Tsakhal and understood the intricacies of relationships among people wearing shoulder straps. Caleb waved his hand permissively:
“Of course, this is your idea.”
“Mr. Officer,” Beller began, sitting across from the Chief Inspector. - The fact is that we are creating a game, and, having met Alsopp's surprised look, he added: - a computer game. In the program, which is the basis of this game, we use some technologies that allow us to identify a person by his movement, features of his gestures, gait, habit, say, to bow his head or twitch his shoulders. Some of the options for such studies using human biometric indicators are known to us, but we consider our determination system to be comparable with identifiers that determine membership in a given individual, such as fingerprints or the cornea of the eyes. If we ask the person who appears in this record as a red cloud, go the same way from the place
Alsopp listened attentively to the interlocutor and turned to his colleague Constable Lehman Wilmot, who, sitting at the next table, listened with interest to the popularized explanation of the strange or rather unusual technology for finding a criminal.
- Wilmot! You are a specialist in telephone recognition. Find out if we can get billing from this address, - and he sent him the email address of the Halperins' office, - from 23:30 to 00:30. In the meantime, the constable will find out who was in the room in which your red cloud formed, I suggest drinking coffee.
Indeed, before the cups with perfectly brewed coffee were empty, Lehman Wilmot informed of what all those present had already guessed. At the indicated time last night, two calls were made from the Halperins' office, both from a telephone belonging to Elena Halperina. She called up with Dmitry Halperin, and both conversations lasted no more than half a minute.
“So Scrooge himself was not directly involved in this matter,” Danik said with relief. “And what are we going to do now?” He looked questioningly at Cohen. Ilya shrugged in surprise and pointed to the chief inspector:
“It is not for us to decide how to conduct a police investigation while sitting in the police station.” Or maybe the constable decides that we ourselves could have a preliminary conversation, well, say, with Dima? And they will confess and tell us everything?
- Judging by Mr. Halperin’s phone billing, he was during these two short conversations at the Great Fosters Hotel, on the outskirts of London in Surrey. We will proceed as follows: I will send Sergeant Holmes to Mrs. Elena Halperina, and he will ask her to come to the police station with him, and you, and he looked at Sergey, you can still phone with Mr. Halperin and talk to him beforehand, that is before we call for the trial of this case and him.
“Seryoga,” he whispered to his friend’s ear, “the observant cop apparently tells you how to talk with Scrooge.”
“Cohen does not recognize my methods,” Igel clenched his fist and unclenched it, showing a limp hand, “I will speak in a friendly manner,” and after a pause: “First.”