NSA Wiretap Issue Isn't Dead Yet

The Sixth Circuit's decision last week to dismiss a lawsuit brought over the NSA warrantless wiretapping program doesn't end the litigation in the courts.

At least one other suit is pending, and standing to bring the lawsuit isn't at issue and and thus is unlikely to be the basis for dismissal.

Readers may remember that Albany, NY defense lawyer Terry Kindlon, raised a similar challenge to the wiretapping in United States v. Aref (the so-called "terrorism" case from the Northern District of New York).

In December, 2005, while Aref's case was pending, Terry learned from a New York Times article that his client had been tapped by the NSA. He immediately made some demands, followed up with some motions and, basically, got nowhere (although he did enjoy receiving a Government pleading containing a caption at the top of the first page, a signature at the bottom of the third page, and nothing but blank space (marked CLASSIFIED) in between).


Terry filed a writ of mandamus in the Second Circuit and it was dismissed as premature.

In October, 2006, Terry's client in the case, Mr. Yassin, was convicted of 20 out of 30 counts and was sentenced to 15 years.

Terry's appellate brief is now almost done and he expects to file it shortly -- as soon as he can whittle it down to an appropriate length from its current 215 pages.

One of the major points in the Yassin brief is the illegality of the NSA warrantless wiretaps. In light of the 6th Circuit dismissal, Terry's case may be first in line to have the issue reviewed by a mid-level appellate court.Again, under the facts and circumstances of the case, it is extremely unlikely that standing is going to be a problem.

Terry would like it known that " If anybody wants to file an amicus brief we would rejoice." Terry's contact information is available here.

As another one of our defender friends says, "The Fourth Amendment is not dead, it's just sleeping..." Terry believes it's time we woke it up.

Note to Terry: I hope this and this are going to be appellate issues in the case as well.

[A guest post by Terry on the issue of our how we treat our returning soldiers in which he describes his background is here. And don't get him started on Fallujah.]

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    The Supreme Court (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by TomStewart on Sun Jul 08, 2007 at 12:52:06 PM EST
    The SCOTUS is waiting, and these cases will no doubt get there one way or another. I have little faith in their ability to see past their own partisan agenda and rule in favor of the Constitution. The Roberts court has shown little enthusiasm to do so in the past.

    wg (none / 0) (#3)
    by jimakaPPJ on Mon Jul 09, 2007 at 03:07:10 PM EST
    You seem rather eager to give up your liberty...

    appointed.... special people...

    I thought that would the least of what you would want.

    the topic is the NSA illegal wiretaps (none / 0) (#4)
    by Sailor on Mon Jul 09, 2007 at 04:01:18 PM EST
    try to stay on topic and not make personal attacks.