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Report Shows FBI Spied on 3.3 Million Am   The Newsy You: News of Today

Started May-27 by WALTER784; 108 views.
WALTER784
Staff

From: WALTER784

May-27

Report Shows FBI Spied on 3.3 Million Americans Without a Warrant, GOP Demands Answers

By Joseph Lord May 25, 2022
Updated: May 25, 2022

Top House Republicans are demanding answers from the FBI after court-ordered information came to light showing that the federal agency had collected the information of over 3 million Americans without a warrant.
 
In a May 25 letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray, Reps. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) and Mike Turner (R-Ohio) asked Wray to explain why his agency had wiretapped and gathered personal information on over 3.3 million Americans without a warrant (pdf).
 
Limited authority to gather foreign intelligence information is granted by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).
 
Specifically, section 702 of the bill says: “the Attorney General (AG) and the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) may jointly authorize the targeting of (i) non-U.S. persons (ii) who are reasonably believed to be outside of the United States (iii) to acquire foreign intelligence information.”
 
However, this power can grant an expanding circle of possible searches to the FBI and other intel agencies, who can use the same power against American citizens who had any interaction with targeted foreigners.
 
Historically, insight into how FISA has been used against American citizens has been limited and hidden behind classified reports.
 
However, a November 2020 decision by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC)—which serves as a watchdog for U.S. intelligence agencies—required that the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) report “the number of U.S. person queries run by the FBI against Section 702-acquired information.”
 
In accordance with these new requirements, ODNI’s recently-released Annual Statistical Transparency Report included data on how often the FBI gathered information on American citizens using section 702 in 2021.
 
In total, queries against U.S. citizens came out to a jaw-dropping 3,394,053 searches. By comparison, only 1,324,057 such queries were made in 2020, representing around a 250 percent increase during President Joe Biden’s first year in office.
 
According to ODNI more than half of these queries—approximately 1.9 million—were part of the larger investigation of alleged Russian attempts to target or weaken U.S. critical infrastructure.
 
The ODNI report also admitted that on at least four occasions, the FBI failed to get FISC approval before accessing the contents of information collected under section 702.
 
This is not the first time the FBI has been caught red-handed overstepping its legal authority under section 702.
 
In November 2020, the FISC announced that “the government … reported numerous incidents” in which the FBI reviewed information gathered under section 702 without obtaining proper permission from the court.
 
On other occasions, the FISC noted, the FBI used section 702 for issues entirely unrelated to foreign intelligence. These included queries for criminal investigations about healthcare fraud, transnational organized crime, violent gangs, domestic terrorism involving racially motivated violent extremists, as well as investigations relating to public corruption and bribery.”
 
“None of these queries was related to national security, and they returned numerous Section 702-acquired products in response,” the FISC noted.
 
“Rigorous Congressional oversight of the FBI’s Section 702-related activities is essential given FBI’s track record utilizing its FISA authorities,” Jordan and Turner ruled in view of the FBI’s past overreach.
 
FBI Director Christopher Wray testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill, in Washington, on March 2, 2021. (Mandel Ngan-Pool/Getty Images)
In their letter to Wray, Jordan and Turner laid out a laundry list of questions about the report, demanding further transparency and explanations on the revelation that the FBI has often overstepped its legal authority to spy on American citizens.
 
Among other questions, they requested a full accounting of all 3,394,053 citizens who showed up in FBI queries and “[the] number of preliminary or full investigations into any U.S. citizens the FBI has initiated as a result of information obtained through any of these U.
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Showtalk
Host

From: Showtalk

May-27

Were those inquiries related to Trump-Russia collusion and Jan 6?  Were they political or related to real, perceived threats?

WALTER784
Staff

From: WALTER784

May-27

We won't know until answers to the questions asked are answered.

But... and this is just my opinions...

On the Trump related question... I would imagine YES... to get anything they can in their witch hunt to take him out of the 2024 elections. As for whether it's pertaining to Russia... hmmmm... not so sure about that as it's already been debunked, but they might just try it again... who knows for sure.

On the Jan 6 related question... I would also imagine YES... to get anything they can on the over 800 they continue to have locked up so that they can convict them of any kind of criminal charge and force them to agree to some kind of made up false claim so that they can be prosecuted. All 800 continue to be unconstitutionally locked up by the Democrats for more than 16 months. Shesh... what ever happened to a fair and speed trial? 

As for the political related... absolutely... everything for the Democrats and against the Republicans.

As for real or perceived threats... I would imagine 10% or less were actual real threats where as the remaining 90% or more were mistakenly perceived threats.

But we need answers that Wray is not coming forth with just yet so we'll just have to wait and see!

FWIW

Showtalk
Host

From: Showtalk

May-27

Isn't it 26 months now. It happened in 2020.

WALTER784
Staff

From: WALTER784

May-27

Wow... that is correct. 26 months.

FWIW

Showtalk
Host

From: Showtalk

May-29

It’s been a long time.

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