April 1st, 2010 | by NIGEL JAQUISS News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, CLEAN UP

Judge Slams Feds for Wiretapping Oregon Charity

scales-of-justice

A federal judge in San Francisco ruled Wednesday that federal officials broke the law when they wire-tapped Al Haramain, an international Islamic charity that had an operation in Ashland.

The New York Times reported today that Judge Vaughan Walker found the National Security Agency illegally engaged in warrantless wiretapping. The ruling comes nearly six years after the feds froze Al Haramain's assets and declared it a "terrorist organization" for alleged ties to Osama bin Laden.

Portland lawyer Tom Nelson originally filed suit on Al Haramain's behalf in 2006, alleging the feds wiretapped conversations between the Oregon charity and two of its Washington lawyers.

Although Al Haramain is long gone from Oregon, Judge Walker's ruling validates Nelson's concerns and marks a major defeat for the government's contention—formulated under the Bush administration and defended by the Obama administration—that warrantless wiretapping is legal.
 
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