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Maryland troopers spied on activist groups

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Shaun Waterman
UPI
Friday, July 18, 2008

Undercover Maryland state troopers infiltrated three groups advocating peace and protesting the death penalty — attending meetings and sending reports on their activities to U.S. intelligence and military agencies, according to documents released Thursday.

The documents show the activities occurred from at least March 2005 to May 2006 and that officers used false names, which the documents referred to as “covert identities” – to open e-mail accounts to receive messages from the groups.

Also included in the 46 pages of documents, obtained by the Maryland chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, is an account of an activist’s name being entered into a federally funded database designed to share information among state, local and federal law-enforcement agencies on terrorist and drug trafficking suspects.

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ACLU attorney David Rocah said state police violated federal laws prohibiting departments that receive federal funds from maintaining databases with information about political activities and affiliations.

The activist was identified as Max Obuszewski. His “primary crime” was entered into the database as “terrorism – anti govern(ment).” His “secondary crime” was listed as “terrorism – anti-war protestors.” The database is known as the Washington-Baltimore High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, or HIDTA.

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This article was posted: Sunday, July 20, 2008 at 5:22 am





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