Judge Halts Sentencing After Feds Admit They Failed To Reveal Use Of NSA Data
from the this-is-why-you-reveal-this-stuff-up-front dept
We’ve been following the crazy story of the Solicitor General of the US, Donald Verrilli, making blatantly false statements to the Supreme Court concerning how the feds would have to reveal to defendants that some of the evidence used against them came from secretive NSA data collection methods. In Verrilli’s defense, it is now apparent that lawyers for the intelligence community flat out lied to him, and he is reasonably angry about that — leading to the DOJ to officially change its policy to now be consistent with what Verrilli told the Court: that if NSA data is used against someone, that fact will come out during the process, and the defendant can challenge it. Along with this, the feds have started selectively alerting some lawyers that some NSA data was used on their clients.
In one such case, of “would-be bomber” Mohamed Osman Mohamud, who was accused of wanting to bomb a Portland Christmas tree lighting ceremony, this news has put his sentencing on hold. The details of Mohamud’s case suggest it was yet another case of the FBI stopping a plot of their own making, as the entire “plot” was created with undercover FBI agents. But there are also some questions about how the FBI first targeted Mohamud. Now, it appears that it may have been due to NSA activities. Mohamud had been found guilty earlier this year, and was scheduled to be sentenced in just a few weeks, but the judge — realizing that the NSA revelations throw a big wrench into all of this — has agreed to postpone indefinitely the sentencing. I imagine there will be a flurry of legal documents as his lawyers use this to try to dump the original trial results.
Either way, expect a lot more like this to happen as the DOJ finally starts to come clean.