DOJ secretly seized two months of Associated Press phone records

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder (Credit: U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder )

The Department of Justice secretly seized two months' worth of phone records of Associated Press journalists after the newswire broke news of a foiled terror plot in Yemen, the AP reported Monday.

The agency's CEO, Gary Pruitt, called the seizure a "massive and unprecedented intrusion" in a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, writing that there "can be no possible justification for such an overbroad collection of the telephone communications of The Associated Press and its reporters."

Pruitt demanded that the records be either returned to the AP or destroyed.

The U.S. Attorney's Office, which notified the AP of the seizure last Friday, said it was "careful and deliberative" when dealing with issues around freedom of the press.

More than 20 phone lines were part of the seizure, including both work and personal phones.


advertisement | advertise on newsday

advertisement | advertise on newsday