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NEWS: 19% Spike in Approved Wiretaps in 2004

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posted on Apr, 28 2005 @ 03:26 PM
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The number of wiretaps authorized jumped 19% last year, according to the Administrative Office of the US Courts. The increase was greatest in just four states, which accounted for 75% of the total requests, those states were New York, New Jersey, Florida, and California. The reasons for the wiretaps were not disclosed in the majority of cases. This increased surveillance is in line with expectations, but has proved to be a greater leap than in previous years.
 



www.cbsnews.com
The number of secret court-authorized wiretaps across the country surged by 19 percent last year, records show. As law enforcement authorities scurried to keep apace of improving technology favored by criminals, not a single application was denied.

State and federal judges approved 1,710 applications for wiretaps of wire, oral or electronic communications last year, and four states — New York, California, New Jersey and Florida — accounted for three out of every four surveillance orders, according to the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts. That agency is required to collect the figures and report them to Congress.

Terrorism is not mentioned, probably because most of those wiretaps are authorized by the super-secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act court, not federal judges. Even without terrorism, the 1,754 warrants last year was a record.


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


This announcement follows on the heels of the announcement made that the NSA has dropped the dime on 10k US citizens, and news of the biggest warrant roundup in history, where 10k more were arrested. The police state is here, no question about it.

What seems so strange to me is the concentration of wiretaps in just four states. Why? Are these designed to nip terrorism in the bud at entry points? Are they trying to catch smugglers of weapons and explosives? Is this drug related? Any of those seem plausible explanations, given the locations.

This could also be related to human cargo, but I find that less likely. Little is known about the substance of the warrants, because most were authorized by a secret court under the authority of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. This is a continuation of a worrisome trend in secrecy on the part of the government.

Related News Links:
www.uscourts.gov




posted on Apr, 29 2005 @ 10:13 AM
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www.cdt.org...

According to the above link FISA wiretaps requested on US citizens have to be approved by the Attorney General.

That thought would give me comfort if we had a respectable citizen with sound judgement filling that seat.

Unfortunately, we have a man who has proven his willingness to dodge legality, rewrite the rules of engagement, and use dirty tactics like torture to achieve goals deemed important.

That would make him the perfect inquisitor general, but Attorney general..hmm..I think maybe he is unqualified for a position where he is required to understand and advance ethics in the courts.



posted on Apr, 29 2005 @ 10:22 AM
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I find this disturbing, to put it mildly. What are all these wiretaps for? Indeed, it is interesting that these 4 states have the highest number of requested wiretaps. Of course, you must also remeber that these states not only have the largest populations of all the states, they also tend to be heavy with drug smuggling, organized crime, and other federal offenses.

I do agree though, as far as the current attorney general, there is reason to be concerned as to for what reason were these wiretaps given.

I need more information than what is in this article to determine more specifics.

And of course, anything ivolving the NSA sets off warning bells and whistles.



posted on Apr, 29 2005 @ 10:32 AM
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Great post!!! Good link to the round up. I guess the worse part is thats what they reported right? How much more did go on that didnt get an approval? It no serect most law enforcement officals have been using this taps for year but just cant us the info in court. 20 percent increase in approved 80 percent(a guess) increase in real terms.



posted on Apr, 29 2005 @ 11:08 AM
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skadi
Yeah, I realize the population density could explain it, and the listed cities are major points of entry for illegal drugs, and human cargo. It also could have another explanation though..just not sure what it might be. I wonder if the remaining 25% are by and large southwestern states? I haven't found any data with a complete breakdown, state by state, so I don't know for sure. I suspect if it were drug/human cargo related, that would be the case.

dirk
I tend to agree that wiretaps are like cockroaches, when you see one, there're probably a lot more you're not seeing.

These terrorism trials have been dominated by secret evidence, so who's to say whether or not a wiretap was used, or even more drastic methods...

Microwaves aren't just for burrittos anymore...


Now, the argument that these criminals caught justify the means is a common one. I hear it about a lot of violations in all different spectrums. Then there's the old "if you're not doing anything wrong, you have nothing to worry about" argument. This is only partially true, because those who control the definition of 'wrong' control who is a criminal and who is not. Since laws have been passing rapid fire, with little to no debate, and almost no resistance from the opposition party, it's not unthinkable that the definition of 'criminal behavior' could continue to mutate into even more hideous forms.

Information gathering is a crime now, so I guess we're all eligible for wiretaps by that measure. The definition of criminal gets more broad every day, because lawmakers almost never revise laws, they just add new ones. This is the reason the legal system in this country is such a damn briar patch, because nobody takes the time to trim the hedges. All the better if the peasants don't understand right? We tend to view the legal system as a sort of witchcraft, an arcane science. That instills fear. Fear is helpful in maintaining control.



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