Royally Kranked

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Warrantless Wiretapping Gets Smacked Down-HARD

Even more amazing, this is the most conservative court in the country, the 4th Circuit, one which usually goes along with almost any Administration pleading

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Cleric Wins Appeal Ruling Over Wiretaps

An appellate court on Tuesday directed a lower court to consider statements by a Muslim cleric in northern Virginia that he had been illegally wiretapped under the warrantless eavesdropping program that President Bush authorized.

The ruling opened the door to what could be the first ruling by a federal court on whether information obtained under the program, operated by the National Security Agency, had been improperly used in a criminal prosecution.

Not a good sign for Dear Leader's claim that he needs NO approval or warrants to wiretap on US Citizens, an even odder claim to pursue when alleging that we're fighting terrorists who "hate freedom"

How this Administration claims they don't "hate freedom" by ignoring constitutional protections is a logic that quite frankly makes no sense except to the most blithering of idiots-which would be our President

The cleric, Ali al-Timimi, who was sentenced to life in prison last year for inciting his Muslim followers to violence, is challenging his conviction because he says he suspects that the government failed to disclosed illegal wiretaps of his e-mail messages and telephone conversations.

Probably a pretty strongly-founded suspicion, especially after Dear Leader W & his loyal retinue couldn't stop blabbing about how disclosing warrantless wiretapping somehow put this country at risk from another terrorist attack

As if al-Qaeda was completely unaware that the US would be monitoring their communications wherever possible

In an order released on Tuesday, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit did not rule on the merits of Mr. Timimi's assertions about the N.S.A. program, but sent the case back to the federal trial court in Alexandria, Va., for a rehearing.

Ah, and here's the REAL kicker, the punchline to a joke the Administration no doubt finds anything but humorous

The appellate court gave the trial judge in the case, Leonie M. Brinkema, broad latitude, saying the trial court could "order whatever relief or changes in the case, if any, that it considers appropriate."


For an imperial Presidency, such a direct slap to the face must not only sting, but be an unbearable public humiliation to deal with, being told by the most conservaitve Court in the land that there are rules even the Regal President must play by is nothing short of a stunning affront that it never saw coming

Mr. Timimi's case is the first to result in a rehearing on the challenges. The Justice Department did not oppose his motion to vacate his appeal and have the trial court consider the eavesdropping question. Department officials said they saw the appellate decision as largely procedural, but declined to discuss how the case might play out when the trial court rehears it.

The Justice Dept didn't oppose Timimi's decision to cut short his appeal because it figured one less procedural hurdle to navigate was all good, and that exuberation was only heightened for the DoJ when Timimi decided to pursuse the claim of illegal eavesdropping

The DoJ thought the cleric's claim made his conviction a slamdunk

They never saw the possibility that not all others in the US Legal System were as enamored of Dear Leader's power grab, and it resulted in a public repudiation of the highest caliber

"We'll brief the court at the right time and advise the court appropriately," a spokesman for the department, Bryan Sierra, said. "Whenever we have the opportunity to set the record straight, we'll do so."

Seems like NOW is the perfect opportunity for the DoJ to set the record straight and advise the court appropriately-of course, it seems the court decided the DoJ's advice was less than stellar or noteworthy

And the worst part for Dear Leader to deal with-the Defense Team's joy over the ruling at the President's expense

But a lawyer for Mr. Timimi, Jonathan Turley, said the appellate order was a significant and "extraordinary step" because appellate courts did not generally order a rehearing in a criminal case while an appeal was pending.

"This is very good news for us, and we're eager to go back to Judge Brinkema to explore these troubling issues," Mr. Turley said in an interview.

The first appeal of the President's warraantless wiretapping, and it got smacked hard-How's that bitchslapping taste Mr President?


  • Well, here we go! George W. will blame the courts for not allowing him to break the laws.

    By Anonymous justiceguy, at 8:25 AM  

  • This could be very good news for those of us that consider the wiretapping unconstitutional. Lets hope this is just the first step.

    By Anonymous Susan, at 3:17 AM  

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