Justice, NYPD feuding over terrorist surveillance

NYPD commissioner says feds aren't protecting the city


"New York has been attacked twice," King, top Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee, said Wednesday. "New York has to do what it has to do to survive, and it just appears that the FBI or the Justice Department are throwing too many roadblocks in the way of the NYPD."

He added: "I'd rather have the Justice Department listen to Ray Kelly more often rather than be afraid of getting shot down in court. It's more important to protect New York than have a perfect record in court."

The Justice Department has faced fierce criticism over the now-defunct warrantless wiretapping program and other intrusive investigative methods that civil libertarians say violate the Constitution.

The Terrorist Surveillance Program was secretly authorized by President George W. Bush shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks and was disclosed in late 2005, sparking questions about its legality. The Bush administration vigorously defended the program as essential to national security, but brought it under the FISA Court's purview in January 2006.

Last year the FISA Court approved 2,371 warrants targeting people in the United States believed to be linked to international terror organizations. It denied three warrant applications in full and partially denied one, according to Justice Department data. Additionally, the court sent 86 applications back to the government for changes before approving them.

It was unclear Wednesday how many of the warrant applications were from the NYPD. One official familiar with the situation said the Justice Department has not rejected any of the NYPD's applications. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the issue.