Hearing on NSA Spying in San Francisco District Court

April 23, 2008

Does FISA trump State Secrets? This is the big question that may have an enormous impact on the future of privacy. Guild attorneys Ashlee Albies, Steven Goldberg, Lisa Jaskol, Zaha Hassan, Tom Nelson and others will ask District Court Judge Vaughn to rule on this at a hearing set for next Wednesday, April 23rd at 10:00 a.m. The courtroom is at 450 Golden Gate Ave., 17th Floor, Courtroom 6 in San Francisco.

Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation v. George W. Bush has already been to the Ninth Circuit, which ruled against the Al-Haramain side on the state secrets privilege, holding that the privilege prevented reliance on a classified document that proves standing. However, the Ninth Circuit left open the question of whether the provision in FISA allowing for the use of such documents preempts the state secrets privilege. If Walker rules in favor of Al-Haramain and Goldberg, the case goes on.