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News The Patriot Act? Unconstitutional? No, never

  1. Sep 30, 2004 #1
    Unless you're a judge that is...

    "Responding to the latest court ruling against the act, Mr Ashcroft said, 'We believe the act to be completely consistent with the US constitution.'

    New York District Judge Victor Marrero said on Wednesday that the act violated the constitution by allowing federal investigators to gather telephone and internet records from private companies and then prevent those companies from revealing that they disclosed this information about their customers.

    He said the act also violates the constitution's Fourth Amendment by preventing any legal challenge to such surveillance.

    Judge Marrero acknowledged the government must be empowered to defend national security, but warned that this must not be at the cost of personal security, which is 'especially prized in our system of justice'.
    - http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/3703676.stm

    The BBC had the most comprehensive story I could find, most others were like less than 100 word blurbs.

    I heard on Fox News (Studio B) it was a Federal Judge, and he ruled against the FBI being able to write their own search warrants without consulting a judge, but most other accounts seem to be that it was a New York District Judge, and he ruled against the part about demanding internet/phone records from companies without their consent.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 30, 2004 #2


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    The federal courts are divided into Circuit and Appellate (plus the Supremes, of course). The news story could have meant a Circuit Court judge for the federal district that includes New York (the first? I don't know).

    Added in edit: I googled a circuit map; New York is the Second District.
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2004
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