News of the Day ... in Perspective11/10/2003
PATRIOT Act Used Against White-Collar Crime
As AAPS feared, the expanded powers of federal prosecutors under the USA PATRIOT Act are being used against garden-variety criminals, not just suspected terrorists.
According to the Las Vegas Review Journal of Nov. 5, the investigation of strip club owner Michael Galardi and numerous politicians appears to be the first time federal authorities have used the Act in a public corruption probe. Subpoenas were faxed to stockbrokers, seeking evidence of hidden proceeds that might provide evidence of bribery.
Mark Corallo, spokesman for the Justice Department, said that lawmakers were fully aware of the far-reaching implications of the Act when it was passed.
Gary Peck, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada, said that “Those comments are disingenuous at best and do little to inspire confidence that the act won’t be systematically abused.”
While Congressional Democrats have called for changes to some sections of the “antiterrorism” law, Al Gore is the first to call for outright repeal. His concerns are focused on immigrants and foreign citizens, including detainees at Guantanamo Bay.