Lawyers from the Justice Department have urged a judge to halt a lawsuit against the NSA’s spy programs. This comes after the judge’s previous ruling that the NSA’s collection of metadata was likely unconstitutional and “almost Orwellian” in nature.
On Wednesday, government lawyers appealed to US District Court Judge Richard Leon to put court proceedings on hold for two lawsuits against the NSA filed by conservative legal activist, Larry Klayman.
Klayman has challenged the legality of the NSA’s programs that collect and store the metadata of American citizens on a massive scale.
The lawyers argued that if the lawsuits were allowed to go further, they would lead to the disclosure of classified information which would represent a “significant risk” to national security.
“Plaintiffs have made clear their intentions to seek discovery of this kind of still-classified information, concerning targets and subjects, participating providers, and other operational details of the challenged NSA intelligence programs,” said the motion.
In this way, the lawyers want the lawsuits suspended until the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit hears an appeal of Judge Leon’s December-16 ruling that the NSA’s gathering of massive amounts of metadata probably went against the constitution. The US Department of Defense appealed the ruling on January 3.