The US Justice Department will soon issue a report which charges that the FBI repeatedly broke the law by invoking terrorism emergencies that did not exist in order to obtain more than 2,000 telephone call records over the four years from 2002, including calls made by journalists. The bureau also issued authorizations for the seizure of records after the fact, in order to justify unwarranted seizures. FBI general counsel, Valerie Caproni, told the Washington Post that the agency violated privacy laws by inventing non-existent terrorist threats to justify collecting the phone records. “We should have stopped those requests from being made that way.” She explained issuing of authorizations after the fact as a “good-hearted but not well thought out” move.” Really, exactly what was “good-hearted” about breaking the law”
The Washington Post article notes a few FBI agents were concerned about violations of law, but they were working in an organization that issued a blanket authorization covering all past searches, even though the legality of this act was questioned. This story only once again emphasizes the importance of an investigating committee in the United States like the
Chilcot inquiry in the UK.