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Homeland Security - Assignment Example

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To: From: Date: Subject: Homeland Security The legal system of the United States has provisions regarding terrorists and acts of terrorism. These laws cover different aspects of terrorism. Some of these laws include the Foreign Intelligence Security Act, the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act 1996 and the USA Patriot Act…
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Homeland Security
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Download file to see previous pages Foreign Intelligence Security Act (FISA) The 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) allowed agents easy access to warrants if they could show that there was a substantial “foreign intelligence” angle to their work; the warrants would be granted by a special FISA court. FISA can now be used in cases that are entirely crimial in nature, agents can get automatic “admisitrative” FISA warrants as long as agents can assert that there is some foreign intelligence angle to the cases, they receive such warrants on demand (Darmer, 2004). Prior to 9/11, FISA was not considered a law enforcement tool; its function was solely preventative. FISA surveillance powers were available only when the primary purpose of an investigation was to obtain foreign intelligence, including counterespionage and counterterrorism information. FISA authorized surveillance under flexible conditions that are considered unacceptable when the government’s objective is to gather evidence for criminal persecution (Howard, Forest and Moore, 2006). FISA surveilleance is permitted after showing diluted suspicion not equivalent to the traditonal criminal starndard of probable cause. Surveilllance and searches can continue over extensive peiods of time, with less jusicial supervision. The person targeted normallly is never notified that he was subjected to surveillance. If that peron is prosecuted, his attorney normally cannot review the surveillance documents for prurposes of his defense, as they could if surveillance had been conducted under conventional law enforcement standards (Darmer, 2004). If the judge finds that there is probable cause that the individual is indeed a terrorism funder, then he can use the provisions as set by FISA to determine whether this calim is true or not. FISA establishes leagl procedures for electronic surveillance, physical serches as well as the use of trap and trace devices and pen registers to gather jevidence. if this evidence is collected on the activities of the suspect, then it can be used agaist him in court. this law is applicable to anyone who is involved in any way in terrorism activities. this means that anyone found guilty of terririst activities can be tried using this law regardless of whether he is a citizen of the US or not. the Lone Wolf provision of FISA also allows for the prosecution of a suspected terrorist without having to confirm the people he/she is working with. inthis case, if there is enough physical evidence to show that the suspected financier of terrorism is guilty as charged, there is no need to find the people he is working with jfor him to be sentenced. The USA PATRIOT Act This is an Act of the US Congress which became law on 26 October 2001. The letters USA PATRIOT are acronyms for Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001 (Bazan, 2008). This is one important piece of legislation that every judge dealing with a terrorism case should be conversant with. the issues that are likely to come up in regards to this law are discussed below. The Patriot Act has ten titles outlining new powers of government for counterterrorist activities, expands technical support for the FBI, expands electronic intelligence gathering research, and defines presidential authority in response to terrorism. The purpose of Title II is to improve the government’s ability to gather electronic evidence. Title II allows ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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