Legal Feature


Rutherford Institute's appeal brief in Wikipedia et al. v. National Security Agency



February 18, 2016

The Rutherford Institute and a coalition of educational, legal, human rights and media organizations, including the ACLU, Wikipedia, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, have asked the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals to reinstate a lawsuit challenging the government’s mass surveillance programs.

Despite extensive evidence that the government is systematically copying and substantially reviewing all international text-based communications, a Maryland federal court dismissed the lawsuit, ruling that the coalition of national and international groups does not have standing to bring the First and Fourth Amendment lawsuit against the National Security Agency (NSA), the U.S. Department of Justice and their directors. The Obama administration has argued that the organizations do not have concrete evidence their communications have been monitored under the secret program.

In their appeal brief, The Rutherford Institute and its coalition cite a vast array of sources rebutting the administration’s claim, including statements by former intelligence officials such as Edward Snowden, that corroborate allegations that the NSA’s program involves copying and sifting through the contents of international internet traffic.

Click here to read the appeal brief in Wikipedia et al. v. National Security Agency is available at www.rutherford.org.