Judge Leon Enjoins Bulk Metadata Program; Stays Ruling Pending Appeal

Things just got interesting here in D.C.  In a ruling issued earlier today, Judge Richard Leon has held that Larry Klayman and Charles Strange have standing to challenge the bulk telephony metadata program under section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act, and that they have a sufficiently substantial likelihood of success on the merits of their Fourth Amendment claim, notwithstanding Smith v. Maryland and the third-party doctrine, to justify an injunction of the program. To take a bit of the urgency out of the holding, though, Judge Leon stayed the decision pending the government’s (guaranteed) appeal to the D.C. Circuit.

Suffice it to say, we’ll have much more to say about Judge Leon’s decision as the day / week goes on. 

About the Author(s)

Steve Vladeck

Co-Editor-in-Chief of Just Security and Professor of Law at the University of Texas School of Law. Follow him on Twitter (@steve_vladeck).