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DEA may be using illegal surveillance tactics

Recent reports have revealed that the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration may have been using debatably unconstitutional tactics to help law enforcement agencies around the country locate and arrest individuals reportedly involved in drug crimes. If these reports are true, then many criminal charges and arrests may have been based on illegal investigations. Depending on how this plays out, it could eventually lead to some hope for those that have been convicted and sentenced based on investigations that were instigated by the DEA.

Similar to the National Security Agency leaks, it seems the DEA has a database filled with information from telephone records, informants, wiretaps and intelligence intercepts. A secretive division of the DEA, known as the Special Operations Division, analyzes this information and then informs local law enforcement of crimes that are expected to be committed. This practice will likely be seen as unconstitutional, considering the many layers of privacy that it completely neglects. After local officers are informed, in some cases, to be at a specific location, at a specific time, and look for a specific vehicle. If the officers find the tip is accurate, they are told to find an excuse to investigate the vehicle. It might be through a traffic stop or some other procedure relevant to a different situation.

Instead of reporting where the tip came from that started the investigation, the officers are told to neglect any details regarding the tip from the DEA. If what some are saying is true, this practice has been kept from many defendants, as well as judges and prosecutors. If these individuals knew the case began with a tip from the DEA based on information that was garnered through potentially illegal surveillance, the case may have gone a different way.

If you have been charged with a drug crime in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, contact an experienced criminal defense attorney. Your attorney will ensure your rights are protected as you proceed through the criminal court process and will work diligently to build a strong defense on your behalf.

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Source: Huffington Post, "DEA Special Operations Division Covers Up Surveillance Used To Investigate Americans: Report" John Shiffman and Kristina Cooke, Aug. 05, 2013

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