BREAKING: Court Rules Major Victory Against Obama’s Spying

 
supremecourt

BREAKING: Court Rules Major Victory Against Obama’s Spying

The National Security Agency spies on and collects data from everybody in America,including Congress.
This has been going on for some time, but came to the attention of the general public after the leaks by Edward Snowden.
Courts have ruled that thespying is unconstitutional, and the House GOP is working on measures that wouldstop their widespread spying, but the NSA continues to spy and collect data.
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There are numerous lawsuits currently pending against the NSA, and judges have ordered the NSA to preserve evidence that is pertinent to those cases, but the NSA has continued their practice of destroying collected records and information after a certain period of time, despite court orders to discontinue the practice.
Now a federal judge has ruled, once again, that the NSA must stop destroying surveillance records that could be used to challenge their legality in future court proceedings. (H/T Tea Party)

U.S. District Court Judge Jeffrey White’s ruling came at the request of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which is in the midst of a case challenging NSA’s ability to surveil foreign citizen’s U.S.-based email and social media accounts.
According to the EFF, the signals intelligence agency and the Department of Justice were knowingly destroying key evidence in the case by purposefully misinterpreting earlier preservation orders by multiple courts, multiple times.

Back in February, the DOJ acted like they were obeying the court’s orders and asked the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to keep pertinent records beyond the normal five year limit.  However, they purposefully made a weak argument and, as expected, the FISA Court judge forbid the NSA from keeping the records, allowing the DOJ to continue destroying records that could be used against them.
One of the plaintiffs in a lawsuit against them, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, got an emergency temporary restraining order, which told the government, once again, to stop destroying evidence.

“Defendants are ordered not to destroy any documents that may be relevant to the claims at issue in this action, including the [FISA] Section 702 materials,” White wrote. The DOJ was furthered ordered to file an immediate response justifying its actions. It responded with a statement claiming it did not interpret the prior restraining order to include Internet content interceptions, and that the department was under the impression the court was still trying to determine if the order applied to such evidence.
The DOJ further requested that the judge issue a temporary stay on his order, and that failing to do so would ”cause severe operational consequences.”
“It is not credible that, as the government contends, simply refusing to destroy during the next 18 hours the communications it has intercepted will cause ‘the possible suspension of the Section 702 program,’” the EFF said in a statement late Thursday. “How can the preservation of these intercepted communications cause a ‘loss of access to lawfully collected signals intelligence information’? That information will remain accessible even though it is being preserved.”

Government lawyers laughably claimed that they never understood that the court’s intention was for them to preserve vital evidence.

“This, too, lacks any credibility, especially in light of the extensive discussions between Court and counsel at the March 19, 2014 hearing on the evidence preservation dispute,” the statement reads. “The government’s disregard for the past three months of its obligations under the court’s [temporary restraining order] should not be retroactively blessed by granting a stay that permits the government to continue destroying evidence.”

This is a major victory in the fight against unlawful, unethical and unconstitutional mass spying and data collection by the government.  There is little need for the government to collect information on everybody, suspect or not, in massive fishing expeditions looking for the bad guys.
For the government’s lawyers to claim ignorance is infuriating, and proof that they feel they can act with impunity, doing whatever they want to because they are above the law.  That is just not the case though, and hopefully one or more of the lawsuits against the NSA will result in true reforms that put limits on their spying, forcing them to respect the Fourth and Fifth Amendments, and get a warrant before collecting any data or information on anybody.
Related posts:

  1. BREAKING: Judge Rules Obama’s Spying is UNCONSTITUTIONAL
  2. Darrell Issa: Feds Committed “Treason” Spying on Congress
  3. Federal Judge Rules a MAJOR Win for Religious Liberty Against Obamacare

BREAKING: Court Rules Major Victory Against Obama’s Spying
Ben Marquis
Mon, 09 Jun 2014 20:42:27 GMT

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