Former Justice Department prosecutor Larry Klayman amended an existing lawsuit against Verizon and a slew of Obama administration officials Monday to make it the first class-action lawsuit in response to the publication of a secret court order instructing Verizon to hand over the phone records of millions of American customers on an “ongoing, daily basis.”
Klayman told U.S. News he will file a second class-action lawsuit Wednesday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia targeting government officials and each of the nine companies listed in a leaked National Security Agency slideshow as participants in the government’s PRISM program.
According to the slideshow, the PRISM program allows government agents direct, real-time access to the servers of nine major tech companies, including AOL, Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, PalTalk, Skype, Yahoo! and YouTube.
U.S. News did not seek comment from the companies, all of which have denied any knowledge of or participation in the PRISM program.
Klayman said he hopes the two lawsuits will be considered jointly as companion cases.
The class-action lawsuit against Verizon says the defendants violated customers’ “reasonable expectation of privacy, free speech and association, right to be free of unreasonable searches and seizures and due process rights.”
“This case challenges the legality of Defendants’ participation and conduct in a secret and illegal government scheme to intercept and analyze vast quantities of domestic telephone communications,” says the lawsuit against Verizon, which also names as defendants President Barack Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, NSA director Keith Alexander and federal judge Roger Vinson, the FISA court judge who approved the leaked April order.
Read More: http://www.usnews.com