Secret court endorsed NSA surveillance in July
September 17th, 2013
06:51 PM ET

Secret court endorsed NSA surveillance in July

By Evan Perez

A new legal opinion from the secret court that oversees the National Security Agency's surveillance program endorsed the government's collection of data on nearly every phone call made to and from the United States.

The July legal opinion, after disclosures about the program by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, extended the government's collection of records for another 90 days, as has been done repeatedly since 2006.

The opinion by U.S. District Judge Claire Eagan, a 2001 appointee of President George W. Bush, was declassified on Tuesday, in part to respond to controversy over the Snowden disclosures.

The Obama administration has declassified other opinions, in addition to those provided by Snowden to news organizations, that describe the program in past years. This is the first declassification of a current order.

Eagan made reference to the recent controversy over surveillance but her ruling says "because there is no cognizable Fourth Amendment interest in a telephone company's metadata that it holds in the course of its business, the court finds that there is no constitutional impediment to the requested" data.

She also ruled that the government's data collection is also lawful under statutes that limit such collection to "authorized investigations."

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Filed under: Edward Snowden • NSA
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Abe

    Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power.

    Abraham Lincoln

    September 23, 2013 at 12:33 am | Reply
  2. Abe

    America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.

    Abraham Lincoln

    September 23, 2013 at 12:30 am | Reply
  3. b

    yeah Obama, change we can count on. arming our terrorist friends in syria and lybia.

    September 19, 2013 at 12:22 pm | Reply
  4. Beefburger

    A "secret court" in the "Homeland". Like "secret courts" in the "Motherland" and the "Fatherland"?

    September 19, 2013 at 8:57 am | Reply
  5. Dallas

    Take that secret court to gitmo and find out who there working for.

    September 19, 2013 at 7:17 am | Reply
  6. Guten Tag

    So let's get U.S. District Judge Claire Eagan's information out there in public – home address, phone numbers, metadata and family information. She shouldn't have a problem with this if she has nothing to hide.

    September 18, 2013 at 1:06 pm | Reply
  7. Palle sol Fuoco

    secret court

    September 18, 2013 at 1:43 am | Reply
  8. California Conservative

    SECRET COURT.

    That should scare everyone.

    September 17, 2013 at 11:15 pm | Reply
  9. press inside

    Reblogged this on News-Press.

    September 17, 2013 at 7:24 pm | Reply

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