ACLU NSA Spy Hearing Yesterday

Aug 31, 2007
Nicole A. Ozer

Page Media

ACLU of Northern CA

Judge Walker of the Northern District of California heard arguments yesterday on the ACLUs of California case against Verizon for allegedly providing the NSA with California customers' phone records without their consent and without a warrant, court order, or legal process.

Following revelations in an article in USA Today in May of last year, the three California affiliates of the ACLU sued Verizon to stop the company from continuing to provide the National Security Agency (NSA) with the personal phone records of millions of California customers. Numerous private suits were also filed, all of which have been consolidated for pretrial purposes.

The Bush Administration asked the Court to dismiss the case filed against Verizon on the ground that the lawsuit is barred by the state secrets privilege. Verizon sought dismissal of the suit on numerous grounds.

Laurence F. Pulgram, partner at the law firm of Fenwick & West LLP(cooperating counsel for the ACLUs of California) and Ann Brick of the ACLU of Northern California, argued eloquently against the motion to dismiss.

Judge Walker did not rule yesterday, noting that he expects some guidance on state secrets matters from the Ninth Circuit, which heard argument on the Hepting NSA caseearlier this month.

More information about the case is available here.

To hear Ann Brick speak about the case, see here.

For more information about the hearing, see the New York Times and Wired.