‘UNPRECEDENTED INTRUSION’: Justice Department Secretly Obtains Months Of AP Reporter Phone Records
May 13, 2013
The U.S. Justice Department has secretly obtained two months of AP reporters’ phone records, and the news organization is speculating that it’s tied to an investigation into how the AP found out about an al-Qaida bomb plot in Yemen.
The plot involved smuggling a bomb concealed in underwear onto a plane bound for the U.S. The AP first reported on plans for the attack, but it was later revealed that the plans involved a double agent working for a British intelligence service and the CIA.
Prosecutors seized records for incoming and outgoing calls for both work and personal numbers for reporters and general AP offices in New York, Washington and Hartford, Conn. The Justice Department informed the AP of the seizure on Friday.
Although the letter did not give a reason, the AP cites the FBI’s investigation into the Yemen leaks.
The AP calls this move “an unprecedented intrusion into newsgathering.”