Documents unsealed in Yahoo’s case against US data requests
The federal government was so determined to collect the Internet communications of Yahoo customers in 2008 that it threatened the company with fines of $250,000 per day if it did not immediately comply with a secret court order to turn over the data.
White House on defensive over prisoner swap
WASHINGTON — The White House argued on Tuesday that the “unique circumstances” presented by the opportunity to return Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl gave President Barack Obama the authority to lawfully bypass a federal statute requiring the Pentagon to notify Congress a month before he transferred the five Taliban detainees necessary to complete the deal.
Obama policy bans employee use of leaked material
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is clamping down on a technique that government officials have long used to join in public discussions of well-known but technically still-secret information: citing news reports based on unauthorized disclosures.
Former FBI agent pleads guilty in leak to the AP
WASHINGTON — A former FBI agent has agreed to plead guilty to leaking classified information to The Associated Press about a foiled bomb plot in Yemen last year, the Justice Department announced Monday. Federal investigators said they identified him after obtaining phone logs of Associated Press reporters.
Manning sentenced to 35 years for leaking government secrets
FORT MEADE, Md. — A military judge sentenced Pfc. Bradley Manning on Wednesday to 35 years in prison for providing more than 700,000 government files to WikiLeaks, a gigantic leak that lifted the veil on U.S. military and diplomatic activities around the world.
Voting law decision could sharply limit scrutiny of rules
WASHINGTON — If the Supreme Court strikes down or otherwise guts a centerpiece of the Voting Rights Act, there will be far less scrutiny of thousands of decisions each year about redrawing district lines, moving or closing polling places, changing voting hours or imposing voter identification requirements in areas that have a history of disenfranchising minority voters, voting law experts say.
Guantanamo defense lawyers seek 48-hour visits
FORT MEADE, Md. — Defense attorneys for Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and four other accused accomplices in the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, asked a military tribunal judge in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, on Tuesday to let them stay in prison with their clients for 48-hour periods every six months. But military prosecutors called that request unreasonable, saying the defense should be allowed to visit just once for two hours.
Senate committee approves stricter privacy for email
WASHINGTON — The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday approved a bill that would strengthen privacy protection for emails by requiring law enforcement officials to obtain a warrant from a judge in most cases before gaining access to messages in individual accounts stored electronically.
In Petraeus case, FBI inquiry into emails raises questions
WASHINGTON — Are a string of angry emails really enough, in an age of boisterous online exchanges, to persuade the FBI to open a cyberstalking investigation?
Sept. 11 war crimes case resumes at Guantanamo Bay
FORT MEADE, Md. — The Sept. 11 war-crimes case before a military commission at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, resumed relatively smoothly Monday as five men accused of being co-conspirators in the attacks were calm and cooperative in the first session of a weeklong pretrial hearing. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the self-described mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, and the other four defendants each spoke directly — some through a translator — with the judge, Army Col. James L. Pohl. The atmosphere on the first day contrasted sharply with a chaotic arraignment hearing in May, when they refused to answer the judge’s questions.
Obama’s top counterterrorism adviser defends drone strikes
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration on Monday offered its first extensive explanation of how U.S. officials decide when to use drones to kill suspected terrorists — a tactic that the government often treats as a classified secret even though it is widely known around the world.
US relaxes some restrictions for counterterrorism analysis
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is moving to relax restrictions on how counterterrorism analysts may retrieve, store and search information about Americans gathered by government agencies for purposes other than national security threats.
Senators issue warning about use of the Patriot Act
WASHINGTON — For more than two years, a handful of Democrats on the Senate intelligence committee have warned that the government is secretly interpreting its surveillance powers under the Patriot Act in a way that would be alarming if the public — or even others in Congress — knew about it.
Man charged with trying to assassinate President Obama
WASHINGTON — Federal authorities charged a 21-year-old Idaho man on Thursday with trying to assassinate President Barack Obama. They said he had told friends that he believed the president was “the Antichrist” and that he “needed to kill him,” according to a complaint filed in federal court.
White House weighs limits of terror fight
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration’s legal team is split over how much latitude the United States has to kill Islamist militants in Yemen and Somalia, a question that could define the limits of the war against al-Qaida and its allies, according to administration and congressional officials.
Administration seeks stay of ruling that halted ‘Don’t Ask’
WASHINGTON — Saying it will appeal a ruling striking down the law that bans gay men and lesbians from serving openly in the U.S. military, the Obama administration Thursday asked the federal judge who issued the ruling for an emergency stay of her decision.
Court ruling on wiretap a challenge for President Obama
WASHINGTON — As a presidential candidate, then-Sen. Barack Obama declared that it was “unconstitutional and illegal” for the Bush administration to conduct warrantless surveillance of Americans. Many of his supporters said likewise.
Attorney General Plans Overhaul At Civil Rights Division
Seven months after taking office, Attorney General Eric Holder is reshaping the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division by pushing it back into some of the most important areas of American political life, including voting rights, housing, employment, bank lending practices and redistricting after the 2010 census.
Judge Says Some at Bagram Can Challenge Their Detention
A federal judge ruled Thursday that some prisoners held by the U.S. military in Afghanistan have a right to challenge their imprisonment, dealing a blow to government efforts to detain terrorism suspects for extended periods without court oversight.
Obama Vows Sparing Use of Signing Statements
Calling into question the legitimacy of all the signing statements that former President George W. Bush used to challenge new laws, President Barack Obama on Monday ordered executive officials to consult Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. before relying on any of them to bypass a statute.