The American Civil Liberties Union sued the US Government, after it became known that the National Security Agency has routinely received phone call data pertaining to millions of customers subscribed to the telecom company Verizon.
The Guardian newspaper revealed a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court document compelling Verizon to provide the NSA with metadata on the phone calls of subscribers on a daily basis. Journalist Glenn Greenwald has since published more details about the NSA’s doings, and last week a 29-year-old former CIA contractor named Edward Snowden took credit for the leaks. He has since gone into hiding and is the target of a Department of Justice investigation.
Critics are calling the NSA’s practice an example of blanketing, dragnet surveillance that has the potential to freeze First and Fourth Amendment rights, while others are coming forward with their own lawsuits.
Larry Klayman, the founder of Judicial Watch and Freedom Watch, filed a lawsuit together with Charles and Mary Ann Strange, the parents of Navy SEAL Michael Strange, who was killed in Afghanistan in 2011.
According to the complaint, the plaintiffs allege they were denied “reasonable expectation of privacy, free speech and association, right to be free of unreasonable searches and seizures, and due process rights.”The complaint goes on to say their phone records were accessed in particular because of their“criticism of the Obama administration.”
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