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Judge lifts gag order against ID'ing librarians queried under Patriot Act

[JURIST] US District Court Judge Janet Hall Friday agreed with the American Civil Liberties Union [advocacy website] that a gag order shielding the identity of librarians [JURIST report] who had received an FBI demand for records about library patrons under the Patriot Act prevented their library client from participating in the public Patriot Act [JURIST news archive; JURIST document] debate. The unnamed library and the ACLU sued [complaint; JURIST report ] the federal government in August over the Patriot Act subpoena that led to the gag order. The lifting of the order has been stayed until September 20, giving the government a chance to appeal. The court was not persuaded by the government's argument that revealing the librarians' identity, and hence that of the ACLU's client, could provide "tip offs" to suspects and potentially jeopardize a terrorism investigation. AP has more.

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