Rare opportunity to challenge warrantless government spying proceeds in criminal case

We've discussed before the threats to privacy posed by secret government data collection programs of various kinds (see, for instance, here and here). Challenges to such programs are hard to bring because of the difficulty of establishing standing — i.e., the challenger must show (to a very high likelihood or certainty) that his or her own data has been intercepted.

Two challenges to the government's program of collecting metadata of Verizon customers are pending in the D.C. and Second Circuits (see here and here).

Now a federal judge in New York will consider a new challenge to a different aspect of the government's surveillance regime — warrantless eavesdropping on the content of calls between an American and an non-American who is abroad. The challenge arises in the context of a criminal case in which the government wishes to rely on such evidence in prosecuting Agron Hasbajrami, a U.S. permanent resident, on terrorism charges. Reuters has the story.

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