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New Report Indicates Drug Enforcement Agency “Snoops” On Americans

Why the DEA is Going Too Far … and How Constitutional Rights Are Being Violated

A slide from a presentation about a secretive information-sharing program run by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s Special Operations Division (SOD) is seen in this undated photo. (Credit: Reuters/John Shiffman)

 

Reuters released news this week likely to shock most Americans, who may view it as a further governmental infringement on personal privacy and a violation of our Constitutional rights.  According to the report, the Drug Enforcement Agency (through its “secretive” Special Operations Division – “SOD”) is directing agents to use wiretapping, phone call data, recorded conversations, Internet monitoring and other surveillance tactics to initiate narcotics arrests – and then to “cover up” the truth from everyone about how they obtained this evidence. In a process benignly known as “parallel construction,” the truth is buried and a parallel fake version of the investigation is manufactured.

In the case of fighting terrorism, using surveillance tactics and collecting data on all Americans’ phone calls is something that is often discussed and debated – yet many concede that national security issues are special situations demanding special rules.   Fewer Americans are comfortable learning of “spying” policies that permit the collection of data on Americans for the purpose of snooping about potential narcotics crimes.  But no American should tolerate a policy in which authorities invent false stories about where the information used against them came from.  For example, it appears to be accepted law enforcement policy to use sensitive information collected through SOD to conduct a traffic stop of a vehicle, but then to create a false account of the investigation, such as by claiming the stop was random or from an anonymous tip.

Are these lies acceptable?  Most Constitutional scholars think not.  How can your defense challenge an investigation that nobody knows about?  When the true facts of an investigation’s origin and development are withheld not only from defense lawyers but even from prosecutors and judges, the rights to a fair trial and to confront one’s accusers are rendered meaningless.

The Constitution protects the rights of the guilty and innocent alike.  When the Government doesn’t play fair, everyone loses. At CMG, we are committed to preserving the Constitutional rights of all Americans.  If you or someone you know is in need of legal counsel, or feel as if your Constitutional rights are being violated, call us 24/7 at 516-294-0300.

Click Here to read the full Reuters report and story.

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