House Approves Amendment To Limit Pentagon Drones Spying On Americans

Friday, May 18, 2012
By Paul Martin

Congressman wants safeguards for privacy; targets NDAA

Steve Watson
May 18, 2012

The House of Representatives has approved an amendment to the draconian National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that will limit the Department of Defense from using data collected by unmanned spy drones against Americans.

The Amendment, introduced by Congressman Landry (R-LA), will prohibit information collected by DoD drones without a warrant from being used as evidence in court.
The amendment, was approved early Thursday afternoon along with 19 other en bloc amendments, reads:

“Notwithstanding any other provision of law, information acquired by an unmanned aerial vehicle operated by the Department of Defense may not be admitted in a Federal court, State court, or court of a political subdivision of a State as evidence against a United States citizen unless such information was obtained by such unmanned aerial vehicle pursuant to a court order.”
Landry’s amendment is an important one given that a recently uncovered Air Force document contends that the Pentagon can use drones to monitor the activities of Americans.

The instruction, dated April 23, admits that the Air Force cannot legally conduct “nonconsensual surveillance” on Americans, but also states that should the drones”incidentally” capture data while conducting other missions, military intelligence has the right to study it to determine whether the subjects are legitimate targets of domestic surveillance.

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