From The New Standard, June 22:
Lynne Stewart, a lawyer convicted of terrorism-related charges, has asked a federal court to compel the federal government to disclose whether the National Security Agency’s illegal warrantless domestic-spying program helped the prosecution in its case against her and her co-defendants. Stewart and translator Mohammed Yousry were convicted last year for providing material support for terrorism while representing Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman, convicted of involvement in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.
In a motion filed with a New York District Court, Stewart asks the court to force the government to tell her if any evidence or information used in the investigation or prosecution of the case against her came from the NSA’s surveillance program.
Stewart also says that she and her lawyer used AT&T phone and e-mail communications while preparing her defense in the case, including “identification and discussion of potential witnesses, evaluations of potential jurors and strategies for jury selection, analysis of the government’s evidence, and preparation of the defendant’s testimony.”
In May, USA Today reported that AT&T, along with other major telecommunications companies, had shared client databases with the NSA
The motion also notes that the NSA does not respect attorney-client privilege. A March 2006 letter from Assistant Attorney General William E. Moschella to Representative James Sensenbrenner, chair of the House Judiciary Committee about the NSA surveillance program said it “does not specifically target the communications of attorneys or physicians, calls involving such persons would not be categorically excluded from interception.”