Federal Appeals Court – Clears domestic spying of a would be bomber
Surveillance to initially identify the suspect did not actually require a warrant in this case according to a US Appeals Court.
Would be Christmas Tree bomber Mohamed Osman Mohamud lost his bid to have his case overturned because of the lack of a warrant, the one that was used to identify him, before he actually blew anything up.
During today’s ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals the Court also rejected an entrapment argument that had been raised by Mohamed’s lawyers.
Mohamed is a Somali-American who was accused of trying to blow up a 2010 lighting ceremony in Portland Oregon.
As luck would have it, undercover FBI agents posed as jihadis and gave Mohamud the means to conduct the operation or so Mohamed thought, the FBI had the forethought to give him bogus stuff.
Mohamed was subsequently found guilty and sentenced to 30 years in prison.
It is believed that Mohamed who came to America when he was just 3, was radicalized over an incident back in 2008 where he felt that he was racially profiled at London Heathrow airport.
As Mohamed’s bad luck turned out, he had made friends with Amro Al-Ali, a Saudi national whom he had met at a Portland Mosque. Amro was being watched by the FBI, which of course Mohamed did not know.
Mohamed’s own father expressed concerns about his son to the FBI and confirmed the email address they had obtained by going over Amro’s emails, as being Mohamed’s.
So with the email address the FBI was able to initiate contact with Mohamed.
From that point on, he gave them everything unbeknownst to him of course.
The FBI was able to pull this off utilizing the little heard about Section 702 of the FISA Amendments Act.
Mohamed really didn’t have a leg to stand on here because his email was only intercepted incidentally, which meant that the FBI did not require a warrant at the time.
Not to mention that Amro, was not a US citizen therefore he and any communications in and out of his email were not protected under the Fourth Amendment Right.
Mohomed and his legal team could, if they wanted to ask the 9th Circuit re-hear the appeal with a full panel of judges or take it to the Supreme Court.
This is a super touchy subject for quite a few people these days.
But this is the perfect example of the Government using domestic spying/surveillance powers the right way.
I’ve often asked my readers if they would change the overall opinion each has towards the Government’s use of domestic spying/ mass surveillance if the Government was able to stop a mass shooting/bombing or other type of attack that threatened the lives of innocent Americans.
I have often posed the argument that in today’s world, domestic spying and mass surveillance are both a necessary evil.
In the case of Mohamed Osman Mohamud, the FBI was able to stop this would be bomber and saved the lives of innocent Americans.
Cristal M Clark