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Grassley Presses for Details about Intentional Abuse of NSA Authorities

Senator Charles Grassley
Senator Charles Grassley
WASHINGTON – Senator Chuck Grassley, Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is asking the Inspector General of the National Security Agency (NSA) to provide additional information about the intentional and willful misuse of surveillance authorities by NSA employees. He’s also asking for the Inspector General to provide as much unclassified information as possible.

The Senate Judiciary Committee has oversight jurisdiction over the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) and the intelligence courts that fall under the act’s authority.

“The American people are questioning the NSA and the FISA court system. Accountability for those who intentionally abused surveillance authorities and greater transparency can help rebuild that trust and ensure that both national security and the Constitution are protected,” Grassley said.

The text of Grassley’s letter is below.

August 27, 2013

Dr. George Ellard, Inspector General
National Security Agency
Office of the Inspector General
9800 Savage Road, Suite 6247
Fort Meade, MD 20755

Dear Dr. Ellard:

I write in response to media reports that your office has documented instances in which NSA personnel intentionally and willfully abused their surveillance authorities.

For each of these instances, I request that you provide the following information:

(1) The specific details of the conduct committed by the NSA employee;

(2) The job title and attendant duties and responsibilities of the NSA employee at the time;

(3) How the conduct was discovered by NSA management and/or your office;

(4) The law or other legal authority – whether it be a statute, executive order, or regulation – that your office concluded was intentionally and willfully violated;

(5) The reasons your office concluded that the conduct was intentional and willful;

(6) The specifics of any internal administrative or disciplinary action that was taken against the employee, including whether the employee was terminated; and

(7) Whether your office referred any of these instances for criminal prosecution, and if not, why not?

Thank you for your prompt attention to this important request. I would appreciate a response by September 11, 2013. I also request that you respond in an unclassified manner to the extent


Charles E. Grassley
Ranking Member

cc: Honorable Patrick Leahy, Chairman

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