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Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Jewel v. National Security Agency NS-CA-0002
Docket / Court 3:08-cv-04373-JSW ( N.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) National Security
Special Collection Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act -- All Matters
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act -- Internet Metadata
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act -- Telephony Metadata
Case Summary
On September 18, 2008, AT&T customers filed this class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, against the United States. The plaintiffs, represented by the Electronic Frontier Foundation and by private counsel, claimed that the federal government's ... read more >
On September 18, 2008, AT&T customers filed this class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, against the United States. The plaintiffs, represented by the Electronic Frontier Foundation and by private counsel, claimed that the federal government's electronic surveillance program violated the Fourth Amendment, First Amendment, separation of powers, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act ("FISA"), the Wiretap Act, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act or the Stored Communications Act, and the Administrative Procedure Act.

Specifically, the plaintiffs alleged the National Security Agency ("NSA") implemented a massive, indiscriminate, illegal dragnet of the phone calls and email of tens of millions of ordinary Americans since the September 11 terrorist attacks. The core component of the defendants' surveillance program is a nationwide network of sophisticated communication surveillance devices attached to the key facilities of various telecommunication companies that carry Americans' Internet and telephone communications.

On October 28, 2008, Judge Walker marked this case as formally related to Hepting v. AT&T, NS-CA-0004, in this Clearinghouse. The Multi District Litigation (MDL) Panel then consolidated the case as part of a multi-district litigation consolidation, In Re National Security Agency Telecommunications Records Litigation, NS-CA-11, in this Clearinghouse. For information about what happened while this case was a part of that multi-district consolidated matter, see NS-CA-0004.

After dismissals of almost all of the cases in the MDL, this case was one of only two cases remaining. The other case was Shubert v. Obama, see NS-CA-0006, in this Clearinghouse. But in January 21, 2010, Judge Walker dismissed this case, along with Shubert v. Obama, because the plaintiffs failed to establish their standing to bring suit -- that is, they failed to establish that they were personally affected by the alleged violation of law. Jewel v. National Sec Agency, 2010 WL 235075 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 21, 2010). The plaintiffs appealed.

On December 29, 2011, the Ninth Circuit vacated Judge Walker's dismissal decision. Again writing for the Ninth Circuit, Judge McKeown held that the plaintiffs did have standing, and remanded "with instructions to consider, among other claims and defenses, whether the government's assertion that the state secrets privilege bars this litigation." Jewel v. NSA, 673 F.3d 902 (9th Cir. 2011).

In 2012, Judge Walker retired; the matter was reassigned to District Judge Jeffrey S. White on May 18, 2012. Upon remand, the plaintiffs filed their motion for partial summary adjudication requesting that the district court dismiss the defendants' state secret defense. The U.S. cross-moved to dismiss on the basis of sovereign immunity for the statutory claims and for summary judgment on the assertion of the state secrets privilege.

On July 23, 2013, Judge White granted plaintiffs' motion for partial summary adjudication, rejecting the government's state secrets defense. However, Judge White also granted the government's motion to dismiss the plaintiffs' claims for damages under FISA and all statutory claims for injunctive relief on the basis of sovereign immunity. Judge White reserved ruling on the government's motions for summary judgment on remaining non-statutory claims (counts 1-4 of the Jewel Complaint and the fourth cause of action in the Shubert Complaint). Jewel v. Nat'l Sec. Agency, 965 F. Supp. 2d 1090 (N.D. Cal. 2013).

On July 24, 2013, Judge White granted a motion to relate this case with First Unitarian Church of Los Angeles v. NSA, NS-CA-0003, in this Clearinghouse.

Under the "minimization" rules applicable to Section 215 metadata program, the NSA has been required to destroy all metadata within five years of collection. See, e.g., In re Application of the FBI for an Order Requiring the Production of Tangible Things From [Redacted], BR 14-01, NS-DC-0051. In this case, the plaintiffs argued that this data destruction would interfere with their ability to establish the facts needed for their lawsuit. Accordingly, on their request, Judge White entered a temporary restraining order on March 10, 2014, requiring the preservation of relevant evidence pending the parties' further briefing and the Court's final determination of the preservation issues. In its restraining order, the Court required that the government refrain from "destroying any potential evidence relevant to the claims at issue in this action, including but not limited to prohibiting the destruction of any telephone metadata or 'call detail' records, pending further order of the Court." This order applied to this case; Shubert v. Obama; and First Unitarian Church of Los Angeles v. NSA.

This temporary restraining order directly conflicted with the standing Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court order in In re Application of the FBI for an Order Requiring the Production of Tangible Things From [Redacted], BR 14-01 (NS-DC-0051 in this Clearinghouse). To eliminate the conflict, the FISC responded to Judge White's order by granting temporary relief from the five-year destruction requirement but required that telephony metadata being preserved beyond the five-year limitation not be used by the NSA for any purpose.

In the summer of 2014, Plaintiffs moved for partial summary judgment on their Fourth Amendment Claim, and the defendants responded by also moving for partial summary judgment on the Fourth Amendment Claim.

On February 10, 2015, Judge White deniedthe plaintiffs' motion for partial summary judgment and granted the defendants' motion for partial summary judgment. Judge White held that the plaintiffs failed to establish a sufficient factual basis to find that they had standing to sue under the Fourth Amendment regarding the possible interception of their Internet communications. Further, even if the plaintiffs could establish standing, the Claim must be dismissed because any possible defenses would require impermissible disclosure of state secret information. Jewel v. Nat'l Sec. Agency, No. C 07-00693 JSW, 2015 WL 545925 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 10, 2015).

As of February 17, the case is ongoing.

Michael Mirdamadi - 11/19/2013
Jessica Kincaid - 02/17/2015


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Freedom of speech/association
Unreasonable search and seizure
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
General
Record-keeping
Records Disclosure
Terrorism/Post 9-11 issues
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action FISA Title V order (PATRIOT Act § 215, business records or other tangible things), 50 U.S.C. §§ 1861-1862
FISA Title IV order (pen register/trap-and-trace), 50 U.S.C. §§ 1841-1846
FISA Title I Warrant (Electronic Surveillance), 50 U.S.C. §§ 1801-1812
Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201
Bivens
Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.
Defendant(s) United States
Plaintiff Description All present and future United States persons who have been or will be subject to electronic surveillance by the National Security Agency without a search warrant or court order since September 12, 2001
Indexed Lawyer Organizations None on record
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Pending
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration not on record
Case Closing Year n/a
Case Ongoing Yes
Case Listing NS-CA-0003 : First Unitarian Church of Los Angeles v. National Security Agency (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0006 : Shubert v. Obama (N.D. Cal.)
NS-DC-0051 : In re Application of the FBI for an Order Requiring the Production of Tangible Things From [Redacted], BR 14-01 (FISC)
NS-CA-0005 : Center for Constitutional Rights v. Obama (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0004 : Hepting v. AT&T (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0011 : In re National Security Agency Telecommunications Records Litigation (N.D. Cal.)
Additional Resources
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Links Guest Post: New Resource — Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse FISA Archives
Just Security
Posted: Jun. 26, 2014
By: Margo Schlanger
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
3:08−cv−04373 (N.D. Cal.) 02/13/2015
NS-CA-0002-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Order [Granting Motion for Temporary Restraining Order] 03/18/2004 (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0002-0010.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Class Action Complaint 09/17/2008
NS-CA-0002-0001.pdf | Detail
Classified Declaration of Dennis C. Blair Director of National Intelligence 04/03/2009
NS-CA-0002-0011.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Classified Declaration of Deborah A. Bonanni, National Intelligence Agency 04/03/2009
NS-CA-0002-0014.pdf | Detail
Order 01/21/2010 (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0002-0004.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Opinion 12/29/2011 (673 F.3d 902)
NS-CA-0002-0005.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment Rejecting the Government Defendants' State Secret Defense 06/29/2012
NS-CA-0002-0019.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Classified Declaration of James R. Clapper Director of National Intelligence 09/11/2012
NS-CA-0002-0012.pdf | Detail
Classified Declaration of Frances J. Fleisch, National Intelligence Agency 09/11/2012
NS-CA-0002-0015.pdf | Detail
Plaintiffs' Federal Rule of Evidence Section 1006 Summary of Voluminous Evidence Filed in Support of Their motion for Partial Summary Judgment and Opposition to the Government Defendants' Cross-Motion 12/14/2012
NS-CA-0002-0003.pdf | Detail
Document Source: Plaintiffs' counsel
AMENDED ORDER 07/23/2013 (2013 WL 3388503) (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0002-0002.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: Westlaw
Classified Declaration of James R. Clapper, Director of National Intelligence 12/20/2013
NS-CA-0002-0007.pdf | Detail
Document Source: Office of the Director of National Intelligence
Classified Declaration of Frances J. Fleisch, National Security Agency 12/20/2013
NS-CA-0002-0008.pdf | Detail
Document Source: Office of the Director of National Intelligence
Public Classified Declaration of James R. Clapper Director of National Intelligence 12/20/2013
NS-CA-0002-0013.pdf | Detail
Unclassified Declaration of Frances J. Fleisch, National Security Agency 12/20/2013
NS-CA-0002-0016.pdf | Detail
Government Defendants' Supplemental Brief on Threshold Legal Issues as Ordered by the Court at the September 27, 2013, Status Conference 12/20/2013
NS-CA-0002-0018.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Classified Declaration of Teresa H. Shea 03/17/2014
NS-CA-0002-0009.pdf | Detail
Document Source: Office of the Director of National Intelligence
Plaintiffs Brief Re: The Government's Non- Compliance with the Court's Evidence Preservation Orders 05/30/2014
NS-CA-0002-0006.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Emergency Application to Enforce the Court's Temporary Restraining Order 06/05/2014
NS-CA-0002-0024.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order re Emergency Application to Enforce the Court's Temporary Restraining Order 06/05/2014 (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0002-0025.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Opposition to Plaintiffs' Emergency Application to Enforce Court's Temporary Restraining Order 06/06/2014
NS-CA-0002-0023.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Transcript of Proceedings 06/06/2014
NS-CA-0002-0028.pdf | Detail
Plaintiffs' Notice of Motion and Motion for Partial Summary Judgment 07/25/2014
NS-CA-0002-0027.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Government Defendants' Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion for Partial Summary Judgment and Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment on Plaintiffs' Fourth Amendment Claim 09/29/2014
NS-CA-0002-0021.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Combined Reply in Support of their Motion for Partial Summary Judgment and Opposition to the Government Defendant's Cross-Motion for Partial Summary Judgment 10/24/2014
NS-CA-0002-0020.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Government Defendants' Reply in Support of their Cross-Motion for Partial Summary Judgment on Plaintiffs' Fourth Amendment Claim 11/07/2014
NS-CA-0002-0022.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Classified Declaration of Miriam P, National Security Agency, Ex Parte, In Camera Submission 11/07/2014
NS-CA-0002-0026.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Denying Plaintiff's Motion For Partial Summary Judgment And Granting Defendants' Motion For Partial Summary Judgment 02/10/2015 (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0002-0017.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges McKeown, M. Margaret (Ninth Circuit)
NS-CA-0002-0005
Walker, Vaughn R. (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0002-0004
White, Jeffrey Steven (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0002-0002 | NS-CA-0002-0007 | NS-CA-0002-0008 | NS-CA-0002-0009 | NS-CA-0002-0010 | NS-CA-0002-0017 | NS-CA-0002-0025 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Antaramian, Aram Vazken (California)
NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Bankston, Kevin Stuart (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-0001 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Berkowitz, Benjamin (California)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Blizzard, Paula Lenore (California)
NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Cohn, Cindy A. (California)
NS-CA-0002-0001 | NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-0006 | NS-CA-0002-0024 | NS-CA-0002-0028 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Crocker, Andrew (California)
NS-CA-0002-0028 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Greene, David Allen (California)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Kwun, Michael S. (California)
NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Maazel, Ilann M. (New York)
NS-CA-0002-0028
Meny, Rachael Elizabeth (California)
NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Moore, Thomas Edward III (California)
NS-CA-0002-0001 | NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-0028 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Opsahl, Kurt Bradford (California)
NS-CA-0002-0001 | NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-0028 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Rumold, Mark Thomas (California)
NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Sessions, Justina Kahn (California)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Tassin, Phillip James (California)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Tien, Lee (California)
NS-CA-0002-0001 | NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Tyre, James Samuel (California)
NS-CA-0002-0001 | NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Walton−Hadlock, Audrey Helena (California)
NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Wiebe, Richard R. (California)
NS-CA-0002-0001 | NS-CA-0002-0003 | NS-CA-0002-0019 | NS-CA-0002-0020 | NS-CA-0002-0027 | NS-CA-0002-0028 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Ahern, Paul Edward (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Bayse, Chad (Maryland)
NS-CA-0002-0028
Berman, Julia Alexandra (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-0023 | NS-CA-0002-0028 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Berman, Marcia (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-0028 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Coppolino, Anthony J. (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-0023 | NS-CA-0002-0028 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Dearinger, Bryan (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-0028
Freeborne, Paul Gerald (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Gilligan, James J (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-0018 | NS-CA-0002-0021 | NS-CA-0002-0022 | NS-CA-0002-0023 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Haas, Alexander K (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Patton, Rodney (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-0028 | NS-CA-0002-9000
Whitman, James R. (District of Columbia)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Other Lawyers Brown, Bruce D. (Virginia)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Gellis, Catherine Rachel (California)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Koltun, Joshua (California)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Page, Michael Henry (California)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Siavoshy, Babak (California)
NS-CA-0002-9000
Urban, Jennifer M. (California)
NS-CA-0002-9000

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