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News Link • Surveillance

Government's right to eavesdrop on Americans challenged as lawsuit against Patriot Act re-instat

A lawsuit challenging the government's right to eavesdrop on Americans without warrants under the Patriot Act was re-instated by an appeals court Monday. Libertarians cheered the decision, which will allow Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other groups to continue questioning the government's ability to listen in on phone calls and to monitor emails. An earlier ruling by District Judge John Koeltl dismissed the lawsuit, saying the plaintiffs didn't show they would be the subject of surveillance. The American Civil Liberties Union and others argued they should be allowed to sue because they feared that "their communications will be monitored, and thus force them to undertake costly and burdensome measures to protect the confidentiality of international communication necessary to carrying out their jobs." The Second Circuit Appeals court ruled in favor of the plaintiffs, finding they have "a reasonable fear of injury."

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