Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Judge Rules Against U.S. Government in Warrantless Surveillance Cases

Via NewsDay.com (AP).

A federal judge in California ruled Tuesday against the federal government's attempts to stop investigations in five states, including Connecticut, of President Bush's domestic spying program.

U.S. District Chief Judge Vaughn Walker last winter was assigned to hear arguments in the federal government's attempt to stop Maine regulators from forcing Verizon to say whether it provided customer call records to the government without a warrant. Similar cases in Missouri, New Jersey, Connecticut and Vermont were combined with the Maine case.

The Department of Justice was seeking to stop the investigations of phone records based on the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution, the foreign affairs power of the federal government and the state secrets privilege.

In a 35-page ruling, Walker dismissed the government's request to stop the investigations, ruling that neither the Supremacy Clause nor the foreign affairs power of the government prevented a state from asking about phone records.

More here.


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