ACLU Urges Senators to Hold FBI Responsible; Says Concerns About National Security Letter Abuses Remain

March 27, 2007 12:00 am

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WASHINGTON – As the Senate Judiciary Committee held an oversight hearing on the FBI, the American Civil Liberties Union today urged lawmakers to hold the agency’s feet to the fire, citing concerns over recent revelations that the FBI abused National Security Letter authority expanded by the Patriot Act.

The following may be attributed to Caroline Fredrickson, Director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office:

“The Inspector General’s report highlighted the 739 ‘exigent’ letters sent by the FBI. The FBI lied by claiming subpoenas would follow when they did not. Director Mueller should tell the committee who is responsible for the FBI sending 739 deliberately misleading letters.

“We urge Director Mueller to be candid in his answers. He must remember that his oath is to uphold the Constitution – not serve as a pawn in this administration’s ongoing abuse of power. When we have a broken system of justice, no one’s interests are served. But it’s also clear that Director Mueller is not the only one responsible for this gross violation of our privacy. Congress must demand accountability from all those involved in violating the law.”

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