Dec 042010
 
 December 4, 2010  Court, Surveillance

Robert Chesney writes:

United States v. Kashmiri, a recent decision by a district judge in Illinois, provides a nice illustration of the process by which defendants in criminal cases may object to the admission of evidence derived from Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrants, and the significant obstacles such objections face.  Unfortunately I do not have a pdf of the opinion to which I can link, but I can at least summarize the key points. [Update: Steve Aftergood at Secrecy News has now posted the full opinion here – thanks Steve!]

Tahawwur Hussain Rana has been indicted (along with other defendants, including the more well-known David Headley) on several counts involving the provision of material support to Lashkar e-Taiba, to the Mumbia attacks, and to a plot to carry out an attack in Denmark.  Among other pre-trial maneuvers, Rana moved to suppress FISA-derived evidence.  In an opinion two weeks ago, Judge Leinenweber denied these motions, along the way touching upon several of the key points that may be of interest to those who are curious about how the fruits of FISA surveillance can be used as evidence in a criminal prosecution.  Note that there is nothing novel about the holdings described below; on each point, the opinion in Kashmiri is very much a reflection of the norm in these cases.

Read more on Lawfare.

Hat-tip, @legalift

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