Although these cases rarely involve national security issues, documents reviewed by Reuters show that law enforcement agents have been directed to conceal how such investigations truly begin – not only from defense lawyers but also sometimes from prosecutors and judges.
The undated documents show that federal agents are trained to "recreate" the investigative trail to effectively cover up where the information originated, a practice that some experts say violates a defendant's constitutional right to a fair trial. If defendants don't know how an investigation began, they cannot know to ask to review potential sources of exculpatory evidence – information that could reveal entrapment, mistakes or biased witnesses. | theguardian.com
▶ DEA agents use NSA intercepts to investigate Americans
The Drug Enforcement Agency has a secret unit that has been funneling information from intelligence intercepts, wiretaps, and a massive database of phone records. The unit has been passing this data to law enforcement agencies across the nation and assists in launching criminal investigations against American citizens. Matthew Feeney, assistant editor for Reason 24/7, joins us with more on the findings and how this affects people's Fourth Amendment rights.