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Fri Jun 11, 2021, 03:15 PM

Wm Barr first started extra-legally scooping up phone records in 1992. No wonder Trump hired him.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/03/28/review-finds-phone-data-dragnet-dea-doj-began-without-legal-review/3299438002/

WASHINGTON – The Justice Department under Attorney General William Barr launched a vast surveillance program that gathered records of innocent Americans’ international phone calls without first conducting a review of whether it was legal, the department’s inspector general concluded Thursday.

It happened in 1992, the last time Barr served as attorney general.

The secret program, run by the Drug Enforcement Administration, ultimately gathered billions of records of nearly all phone calls from the United States to 116 countries, with little oversight from Congress or the courts, a USA TODAY investigation found. It provided a blueprint for far broader phone-data surveillance the government launched after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

The Justice Department’s inspector general said both the DEA and the Justice Department “failed to conduct a comprehensive legal analysis” of its authority to gather those records.

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