A federal judge in Washington, D.C., who previously ruled the National Security Agency’s spy-on-Americans cell phone monitoring program likely is unconstitutional will have the issue before his court again on Friday.

U.S. District Judge Richard Leon has scheduled a status hearing for several of the ongoing cases naming the NSA – or the CIA – for allegedly violating the Fourth Amendment right against unreasonable searches and seizures.

“As Judge Leon observed, these cases are at the ‘pinnacle of national importance,'” said Larry Klayman of Freedomwatch, who is a plaintiff in one case as well as a lawyer.

“Mass surveillance of the citizenry cannot be permitted when it is likely based on reasons that go far beyond catching terrorists. Indeed, as Judge Leon found on two occasions in issuing his prior preliminary injunctions, Obama and his agents at the spy agencies have not been able to cite one instance when the unconstitutional mass surveillance caught even one terrorist.”

Klayman said that in “the context of the recent political opportunism by some presidential candidates believing that this indiscriminate mass surveillance is necessary for national security in light of Paris and San Bernardino, these cases take on even greater significance.”

“This is not an issue to be used for winning presidential primaries.”

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The hearing is scheduled for noon Friday in Washington.

In Klayman’s case, Leon ruled Dec. 16, 2013, and again Nov. 9, 2015, that the NSA program likely was unconstitutional, barring the government agency and Obama from “conducting mass telephonic metadata surveillance over the plaintiffs.”

Leon described the government’s secret operations as “almost Orwellian.”

Klayman said he would ask Leon to move the case forward to trial, after discovery about the full extent of the defendants’ actions and the damage they may have caused.

The two later cases involve not only telephonic metadata mass surveillance, Klayman said, but mass surveillance of all Americans’ Internet and social media activity.

WND, which has reported extensively on the case, reported at the end of 2015 documented that Klayman was taking the case to an appeals court, arguing “even one day of a constitutional violation is one day too much.”

After Leon ordered the program halted in November, a three-judge panel of the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit stayed the decision while the Obama administration prepared an appeal.

Klayman said the case affects not only the plaintiffs – himself, J.J. Little and J.J. Little & Associates – but “all Americans who have been subjected to the massive, unbridled surveillance by the National Security Agency … without probable cause, and who thus have no connection to terrorists or terrorism.”

Leon has found it “significantly likely” that the feds were violating the Fourth Amendment.

The program’s invasion of privacy “far outweighed any contribution to national security,” he insisted.

Two years ago, when Leon his original ruling, he granted an injunction but stayed it pending the appeals-court decision.

The second time, Leon, irritated that the appeals court took nearly two years to move the case the first time it arrived, issued no stay. But the appellate judges stepped in at the request of the Obama administration, ruling that the spying can continue, even on the two plaintiffs identified as having had their Fourth Amendment rights violated, J.J. Little and J.J. Little & Associates.

Klayman told WND after that ruling that it looks like the program is more about spying on Americans than identifying terrorist threats.

Klayman, a former federal prosecutor, said: “As Judge Leon wrote in his latest preliminary injunction order of November 9, 2015, the D.C. Circuit sat on this case for nearly two years while the constitutional rights of millions of Americans continue to be violated. Now, obviously gun-shy after the Paris terrorist attacks, the appeals court has again put its head in the sand and not stood up for the privacy rights of We the People.”

The program has been in the news since it was exposed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, who has sought refuge in Russia.

The NSA has been taking – without permission and, until Snowden’s leak, without consumers knowing – the records of millions of Americans’ telephone calls.

The data includes the telephone numbers and the length of the call.

The program is being replaced by a new plan from Congress that will have telephone companies keep the metadata and give it to the government on request, according to certain criteria.

“This is one of the most significant cases in the history of litigation against the government,” Klayman said.

“Never before in American history have people been subjected to such egregious violations of their constitutional rights,” he said. “Thank God that there are judges like Leon who will stand up for the American people. Without this, revolution is almost assured if more judges do not start to do their job, like Leon, and protect the citizenry from government tyranny.”

Klayman originally sued the NSA, Barack Obama, then-Attorney General Eric Holder and a number of other federal officials. Other defendants include NSA chief Keith Alexander, U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Judge Roger Vinson, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, CIA chief John Brennan, FBI chief James Comey, the Department of Justice, the CIA and the FBI.

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Plaintiffs in the case include Klayman, Charles and Mary Ann Strange, Michael Ferrari, Matt Garrison and J.J. Little.

Two of America’s influential civil-rights groups, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, have sided with Klayman.

The data that the NSA collects, they explained in a brief, “reveals political affiliation, religious practices and peoples’ most intimate associations.”

“It reveals who calls a suicide prevention line and who calls their elected official; who calls the local tea-party office and who calls Planned Parenthood.”

The groups’ brief said “the relevant fact for whether an expectation of privacy exists is that the comprehensive telephone records the government collects – not just the records of a few calls over a few days but all of a person’s calls over many years – reveals highly personal information about the person and her life.”


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