By Tim Binnall
A pair of men from the Netherlands seemingly got an early start on storming Area 51 this week when they were arrested for trespassing at a government facility located near the secretive military base. Ties Granzier and Govert Sweep were reportedly taken into custody by authorities after they were caught having driven around three miles into the restricted Nevada National Security Site. The two young men likely did not help their case when they admitted that they spoke English and fully understood the signs indicating that trespassing onto the property was illegal, yet chose to ignore them.
When questioned by deputies from the Nye County Sheriff's Office, the duo explained that they were YouTubers from the Netherlands and that they "wanted to look at the facility." Officers subsequently observed that their car contained "several cameras, a phone, a laptop, and a drone." After obtaining permission to search the content of the cameras, authorities saw that the duo had recorded footage from inside the national security site. Granzier and Sweep were then arrested for trespassing onto the property.
In a jailhouse interview with a Nevada TV station, Sweep explained that their misadventure had been partially inspired by the 'Storm Area 51' phenomenon, but that the pair had no intention of actually trying to break into the base and are, in fact, set to return to the Netherlands on September 19th, which is one day before the much-discussed 'siege.' He also groused that they were still in custody for what he called "such a small thing" and argued that they would have been released by now "if I wasn't a YouTuber."
While that is a matter of conjecture, the pair is probably lucky that they only got arrested for trespassing since filming inside a secret military base likely could have led to more serious charges. Time will tell whether they wind up being the only people to run afoul of the law due to the 'Storm Area 51' craze or if Granzier and Sweep are just the first of many individuals who throw caution to the wind and, in turn, find themselves in jail. As for the YouTubers, their arrest has made headlines in their home country and turned them into something of a cause celebre with one politician calling on the country's Minister of Foreign Affairs to secure their release lest they "rot away in an American cell."