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Supreme Court denies review of NSA bulk data collection case, grants federal court transferal case

[JURIST] The US Supreme Court [official website] on Monday denied early review [order list, PDF] of a constitutional challenge to the National Security Agency's (NSA) [official website] PRISM [JURIST backgrounder] telephony bulk data collection program. Last December, a judge for the US District Court for the District of Columbia [official website] ruled [opinion] that the NSA's program is likely unconstitutional [JURIST report] after Larry Klayman, founder of the political advocacy group Freedom Watch [advocacy website], filed a lawsuit [JURIST report] claiming the surveillance practices violate citizens' reasonable expectation of privacy, rights to free speech and freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures, and due process rights. However, the district court judge stayed his order for injunction pending appeal of the case to the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit [official website]. Klayman sought certiorari directly to the Supreme Court because of the public importance of the lawsuit. The Supreme Court's denial of his petition means the lower court decision will stand until the DC Circuit Court issues a ruling on the appeal.

The Supreme Court granted review for one new case concerning the information necessary to transfer a case from a state court to a federal court. In deciding Dart Cherokee Basin Operating Co. v. Owens [docket], brought under the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 [text, PDF], the Supreme Court will settle a circuit split on what information is in court documents prior to a case being moved to a federal court: whether the party seeking removal must require evidence to support federal jurisdiction in the notice, or whether it is enough to allege a "short and plain statement of the grounds for removal." The petition [text, PDF] was filed December 13, 2013.

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