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Feb 23

Feds appealing warrantless wiretapping court defeat

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Feds appealing warrantless wiretapping court defeat

The Obama administration is appealing the first and likely only lawsuit resulting in a ruling against the secret National Security Agency warrantless surveillance program adopted in the wake of the 2001 terror attacks.

A San Francisco federal judge in December awarded $20,400 each to two American lawyers illegally wiretapped by the George W. Bush administration, and granted their counsel $2.5 million for the costs litigating the case for more than four years.

Although US District Judge Vaughn Walker had called it “unlawful surveillance,” the judge went soft on the government because the authorities, he said, believed they were protecting the country in the aftermath of the worst terrorist attack on US soil.

Walker did not declare the administration’s so-called Terrorist Surveillance Program unconstitutional, and he declined to issue punitive damages to punish the government for wiretapping in the country without warrants. Instead, the judge granted the two spied-upon lawyers for the now-defunct Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation charity $100 a day for each of the 204 days their telephone calls were wiretapped beginning February 2004, an

  1. dk3music posted this