Wednesday, July 11, 2007

FBI Patriot Act Abuse Documents: What Special Project Lives in FBI HQ Room 4944?
By Ryan Singel
In March, the Justice Department's Inspector General revealed that FBI agents had sent a flurry of fake emergency letters to phone companies, asking them to turn over phone records immediately by promising that the proper papers had been filed with U.S. attorneys, though in many cases this was a complete lie. More than 60 of these letters were made public today as part of a FBI document dump in response to a government sunshine lawsuit centered on the FBI's abuse of a key Patriot Act power.The most striking thing about these expedited letters (.pdf) (made public via the Electronic Frontier Foundation) is that they all use the same pathetic, passive bureaucratese: "Due to exigent circumstances, it is requested that records for the attached list of telephone numbers be provided."

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