JUDGE HAD PROMISED TO FAST-TRACK CASE RETURNED TO HIS COURTROOM
by Sharon Rondeau
(Sep. 16, 2015) — In a lawsuit challenging the National Security Agency’s (NSA) collection of phone records on ordinary Americans, on Tuesday plaintiffs’ attorney Larry Klayman announced on his website, FreedomWatchUSA.org, that U.S. District Court Judge Richard C. Leon will hold a hearing on Wednesday to determine further action.
In December 2013, Klayman prevailed in Leon’s courtroom on his claim against Obama, the Department of Justice and others that the NSA violated Americans’ right to privacy by collecting virtually all phone records, whether or not those making them are suspected of engaging in criminal or terrorist activity.
Leon ruled the spying “likely unconstitutional” and “almost Orwellian” in a reference to “1984” and “Animal Farm” author George Orwell. However, he placed a temporary injunction on his ruling which allowed the collection of records to continue pending the Obama regime’s appeal.
In his Tuesday press release, Klayman reported that Wednesday’s hearing will commence at 2:30 PM in Courtroom 18 at the US District courthouse located at Third Avenue and Constitution Avenue, N.W. in Washington, DC.
On August 28, the mainstream media characterized a decision from a three-judge appellate panel as having “overturned” Leon’s ruling of December 2013 when in fact, the appellate court remanded the case back to Leon for further consideration. In a column dated September 4, Klayman wrote that the mainstream media had misled the public in declaring that the appellate court had ruled to “allow NSA sweep of phone records.”
“Rumors of our lawsuit’s end are greatly exaggerated and false, spread by the Obama White House and its friends in the leftist media,” Klayman wrote.
At issue among the appellate judges was whether or not Klayman and the other plaintiffs had demonstrated that they were personally harmed by the data collection. While the appellate court lifted Leon’s injunction, it did not change the status quo, which had permitted data collection by the NSA to continue.
Immediately following that decision, Leon set an aggressive schedule for further deliberation on Klayman’s lawsuit with a hearing on September 2, after which Klayman filed an amended complaint, adding a plaintiff who ostensibly had standing.
On September 4, Klayman predicted that NSA spying will cease “soon.”
In May, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second District agreed with Leon in that it ruled that the surveillance went beyond the intent of 215 the Patriot Act passed by Congress in October 2001 in response to the terrorist attacks of September 11 of that year.
With the passage of the USA Freedom Act in May of this year, Congress changed the manner in which phone records will be maintained, effective on November 29, requiring a warrant for records to be released by the phone companies to the NSA or law enforcement.
In a separate case, Klayman represents former CIA and NSA contractor, Dennis Montgomery, who Klayman reports possesses information about government spying equal in importance to that which was made public by Edward Snowden more than two years ago. In a hearing last month in another case in which Klayman represents Montgomery, Klayman indicated that after having been termed a “con man,” Montgomery has been given immunity by the FBI.
Sharon Rondeau has operated The Post & Email since April 2010, focusing on the Obama birth certificate investigation and other government corruption news. She has reported prolifically on constitutional violations within Tennessee’s prison and judicial systems.