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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005

    FBI Abuses Use of the PATRIOT ACT...

    hm... anybody surprised by this?? :rolleyes:

    Looks like there are thousands of Americans out there now with their name on freaking terrorist watch list of some kind that's just sitting there... some, no doubt, don't belong there at all - while others could be an actual threat. :rolleyes:

    I hope this makes you Bush supporters feel safer...

    FBI Underreported Use of USA Patriot Act

    WASHINGTON (AP) - The FBI underreported its use of the USA Patriot Act to force businesses to turn over customer information in suspected terrorism cases, according to a Justice Department audit.

    One government official familiar with the report said shoddy bookkeeping and records management led to the problems. The FBI agents appeared to be overwhelmed by the volume of demands for information over a two-year period, the official said.

    ``They lost track,'' said the official who like others interviewed late Thursday spoke on condition of anonymity because the report was not being released until Friday.

    The FBI in 2005 reported to Congress that its agents had delivered a total of 9,254 national security letters seeking e-mail, telephone or financial information on 3,501 U.S. citizens and legal residents over the previous two years.

    Justice Department Inspector General Glenn A. Fine's report says that number was underreported by 20 percent, according to the officials.

    Fine conducted the audit as required by Congress and over the objections of the Bush administration.

    It was unclear late Thursday whether the omissions could be considered a criminal offense. One government official who read the report said it concluded the problems appeared to be unintentional and that FBI agents would probably face administrative sanctions instead of criminal charges.

    The FBI has taken steps to correct some of the problems, the official said.

    The Justice Department, already facing congressional criticism over its firing of eight U.S. attorneys, began notifying lawmakers of the audit's damning contents late Thursday. Spokesmen at the Justice Department and FBI declined to comment on the findings.

    Sen. Charles Schumer, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee that oversees the FBI, called the reported findings ``a profoundly disturbing breach of public trust.''

    ``Somebody has a lot of explaining to do,'' said Schumer, D-N.Y.

    Fine's audit also says the FBI failed to send follow-up subpoenas to telecommunications companies that were told to expect them, the officials said.

    Those cases involved so-called exigent letters to alert the companies that subpoenas would be issued shortly to gather more information, the officials said. But in many examples, the subpoenas were never sent, the officials said.

    The FBI has since caught up with those omissions, either with national security letters or subpoenas, one official said.

    National security letters have been the subject of legal battles in two federal courts because recipients were barred from telling anyone about them.

    The American Civil Liberties Union sued the Bush administration over what the ACLU described as the security letter's gag on free speech.

    A federal appeals judge in New York warned in May that government's ability to force companies to turn over information about its customers and keep quiet about it was probably unconstitutional.

  2. #2
    sojustask's Avatar
    sojustask is offline The Late, Great Lady Mod - Retired User Rank
    Join Date
    Feb 2005

    Re: FBI Abuses Use of the PATRIOT ACT...

    Well, Grim will be. Until it's his business or employer that gets raided. LOL. Of course, I doubt he's too concerned with his coworkers or neighbors. Crooks and terrorists are only black and only Muslim in grimster's world.

    Lady Mod

  3. #3
    sojustask's Avatar
    sojustask is offline The Late, Great Lady Mod - Retired User Rank
    Join Date
    Feb 2005

    Re: FBI Abuses Use of the PATRIOT ACT...

    U.S. Report to Fault F.B.I. on Subpoenas

    Published: March 9, 2007

    WASHINGTON, March 8 — The Justice Department’s inspector general has prepared a scathing report criticizing how the F.B.I. uses a form of administrative subpoena to obtain thousands of telephone, business and financial records without prior judicial approval.

    The report, expected to be issued on Friday, says that the bureau lacks sufficient controls to make sure the subpoenas, which do not require a judge’s prior approval, are properly issued and that it does not follow even some of the rules it does have.

    Under the USA Patriot Act, the bureau each year has issued more than 20,000 of the national security letters, as the demands for information are known. The report is said to conclude that the program lacks effective management, monitoring and reporting procedures, officials who have been briefed on its contents said.

    Details of the report emerged on Thursday as Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales and other officials struggled to tamp down a Congressional uproar over another issue, the ousters of eight United States attorneys.

    Mr. Gonzales told Democratic and Republican senators that the Justice Department would drop its opposition to a change in a one-year-old rule for replacing federal prosecutors, senators and Justice Department officials said.

    Mr. Gonzales offered the concession at a private meeting on Capitol Hill with members of the Senate Judiciary Committee. Mr. Gonzales also agreed to let the panel question Justice Department officials involved in the removals, Congressional aides said. The officials would testify voluntarily without subpoena.

    Mr. Gonzales’s willingness to give in to Senate demands appeared to underscore how the Justice Department had been put on the defensive by the criticism over the prosecutors’ ousters.

    The use of national security letters since the September 2001 attacks has been a hotly debated domestic intelligence issue. They were once used only in espionage and terrorism cases, and then only against people suspected as agents of a foreign power.

    With the passage of the Patriot Act, their use was greatly expanded and was allowed against Americans who were subjects of any investigation. The law also allowed other agencies like the Homeland Security Department to issue the letters.

    The letters have proved contentious in part because unlike search warrants, they are issued without prior judicial approval and require only the approval of the agent in charge of a local F.B.I. office. A Supreme Court ruling in 2004 forced revisions of the Patriot Act to permit greater judicial review, without requiring advance authorization.

    As problems for the Justice Department appeared to be piling up, criticism of Mr. Gonzales seemed to grow more biting as Republicans senators complained about Mr. Gonzales, some because of a letter in USA Today in which he said he had lost confidence in the ousted prosecutors and regarded the question an “overblown personnel matter.”

    Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, senior Republican on the judiciary panel, said in a telephone interview that those comments were “extraordinarily insensitive” and that the prosecutors were “professionals who are going to have a cloud over them which could last a lifetime.”

    “I have been trying to hold down the rhetoric and try to deal with this on a factual and analytical basis, and his letter was volcanic,” Mr. Specter said. “We don’t need that,” he added.

    Earlier at the Judiciary Committee business meeting, Mr. Specter also had harsh words for Mr. Gonzales, saying, “One day, there will be a new attorney general, maybe sooner rather than later.”

    Mr. Specter said later his remark did not indicate that Mr. Gonzales had any intention of stepping down.

    Other Republican senators expressed strong criticism of the removals and handling by Mr. Gonzales’s aides. Senator John Ensign, Republican of Nevada, was quoted by The Las Vegas Review-Journal as saying the prosecutors’ removals had “been completely mishandled.”

    The United States attorney in Nevada, Daniel G. Bogden, was one of the eight dismissed without explanation until he was told by a senior Justice Department officials that he was being replaced to make room for other appointees. Mr. Ensign said the department fired Mr. Bogden over his objections. Mr. Ensign said last month that he was told that the change was for “performance reasons,” but said he was surprised when a Justice Department official testified at a House hearing on Tuesday that Mr. Bogden’s performance had no serious lapses.

    Even staunch Republican defenders of the department expressed criticism. One ally was Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona, where Paul K. Charlton was among those dismissed.

    “Some people’s reputations are going to suffer needlessly,” Mr. Kyl said. “Hopefully, we can get to the point where we say, ‘These people did a great job.”’

    The withdrawal of objections to changing the rules for the prosecutors appears to assure passage of a measure to restore rules changed last March, when the attorney general was given authority to appoint replacement United States attorneys indefinitely, several senators said.

    “The administration has withdrawn its objections to my legislation,” the sponsor of the bill, Senator Dianne Feinstein, Democrat of California, said. She was one of the senators who met with Mr. Gonzales. Others were Mr. Specter, Charles E. Schumer, Democrat of New York, and Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee.

    Ms. Feinstein said: “My concerns have been that the firing of people with strong performance reviews all at one time, a number of whom were involved in corruption cases, sends an adverse signal to the rest of the U.S. attorneys, as well as to the general public. They may be hired by the president, but they serve the people and they should not be subjected to political pressure.”

    The bill would let the attorney general appoint a temporary replacement for 120 days. If the Senate confirms no one after that time, the appointment of an interim United States attorney would be left to a federal district judge.

    Brian Roehrkasse, a Justice Department spokesman, said Thursday night: “The department stands by the decision to remove the U.S. attorneys. As we have acknowledged in hindsight, we should have provided the U.S. attorneys with specific reasons that led to their dismissal that would have help to avoid the rampant misinformation and wild speculation that currently exits.”


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Re: FBI Abuses Use of the PATRIOT ACT...

    The whole purpose of the Patriot act was to side step the constitution? It was designed for the goal of misuse, and it's main purpose is for political/corporate espionage! This bill is the blueprint for what Nixon did and was his wet dream!

    If not for the 911 attack, this legislation would have never made it to the presidents desk. Paranoia and ignorance has allowed a Gestapo type bill to become law in a free country that should be exempt, of such blatant treachery! It should have never even been submitted by true representatives of citizens of the USA, and it wasn’t. We were betrayed with its conception and we will be betrayed with it's implementation. It is a direct attack on the liberties/rights of our entire nation, and each and every law abiding citizen!

    Anyone who stands by this act does not believe in America, and are blatant political supremacists!! Nothing more, nothing less!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2005

    Re: FBI Abuses Use of the PATRIOT ACT...

    I find it unbelievably interesting that this thread has been viewed only 4 times. It's no wonder this country is in such a mess... :rolleyes:

    Lady Mod and Joe appear to be the only ones here who care that the rights of American citizens are being illegally invaded by the FBI - thanks to Bush's Patriot Act. Thanks for caring guys. ;)

    And to Lady Mod... I remember, a very long time ago, when you expressed your concerns about the Patriot Act, and predicted that things like this would happen because of it! I'm sure you get no satisfaction at all in being right on this one, but you - my dear - were bullseye right.

    If those who argued with you about this ever show up on this thread... You owe them a huge "I told you so"... ;)

    Excellent insight LM.

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