DoJ’s Changes to Intelligence-Gathering and Investigative Regulations
On September 29, 2008, the Department of Justice issued new FBI Guidelines on intelligence-gathering and investigative regulations, and has proposed changes to the federal regulation 28 C.F. R. part 23. Learn more about why the Brennan Center objects to the changes, and what we are doing in response.
Department of Justice has relaxed restrictions on when the Federal Bureau
of Investigation can begin investigations, and worked to increase intelligence-sharing
among local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies as well as with federal
(intelligence) agencies in ways that will compromise civil liberties (through
a change in federal regulation 28 C.F.R. part 23).
FBI’s power to investigate people or organizations is not governed by statute,
but determined by internal rules issued by the Attorney General. Attorney
General Mukasey proposed several changes to the FBI guidelines governing
domestic investigations on national security issues. The
August 12, 2008, the
On September 29, 2008, the Department of Justice issued the new guidelines, consolidating the previously separate rules on investigations regarding national security, criminal investigations, and the collection of foreign intelligence into one, overarching document.
- Federal Bureau of Investigation Press Release (10/03/2008)- (PDF version)
- The Attorney General's Guidelines for Domestic FBI Operations (9/29/08)
- Memorandum from the Attorney General on New FBI Guidelines (9/29/08)
- Senator Leahy's Closing Statements from the Senate Judiciary's Hearing on FBI Oversight (9/17/08)- (PDF version)
- Community Letter to Senators Regarding FBI Guidelines (9/16/08)
- Letter from Members of Senate Judiciary Committee Requesting Review of Guidelines (8/20/08)
- Letter from Attorney General Mukasey Granting Request to Delay FBI Guidelines (8/20/08)
- Letter from Senators Leahy and Specter Requesting Delay of Finalizing FBI Guidelines (8/18/08)
- Attorney General Mukasey's Remarks at the Oregon Anti-Terrorism Conference (8/13/08) - (PDF version)
- Community Letter to Attorney General Mukasey Regarding the Proposed FBI Guidelines (8/12/08)
IN THE NEWS
- Letter to the Editor: New FBI Guidelines - Robert Mueller III, FBI Director, New York Times (10/25/08) (PDF version)
- Editorial: Another Invitation to Abuse- New York Times (10/19/08) (PDF version)
- Analysis: New FBI Investigative Guidelines- Middle East Times (10/06/08) (PDF version)
- FBI Given New Rules for Investigations, International Herald Tribune (10/04/08) (PDF version)
- Guidelines Expand FBI's Surveillance Powers- Carrie Johnson, The Washington Post (10/04/08) (PDF version)
- Justice Department Completes Revision of FBI Guidelines for Terrorism Investigations- The New York Times (10/04/08) (PDF version)
- Terror Plan Would Give F.B.I. More Power - Eric Lichtblau, New York Times (9/13/08) (PDF version)
- Proposed New F.B.I. Rules Draw Civil Liberties Worries - James Vicini, Reuters (9/12/08) (PDF version)
- FBI Seeks Sweeping New Powers, Aziz Huq - The Nation (8/22/08) - (PDF version)
- New Guidelines Would Give F.B.I. Broader Powers - Eric Lichtblau, New York Times (8/21/08) - (PDF version)
- U.S. May Ease Police Spy Rules - Spencer S. Hsu & Carrie Johnson, Washington Post (8/16/08) - (PDF version)
- Racial Profiling Eyed for Terror Probes - Lara Jakes Jordan, ABC News/Associated Press (7/02/08) - (PDF version)
28 C.F.R. PART 23
The Department of Justice has proposed changes to 28 C.F.R. part 23 that will eliminate safeguards preventing the collection of false information and will allow for intelligence-gathering by intrusive and offensive means. The sharing of this information with federal law enforcement and agencies may lead to harmful federal actions, such as triggering an investigation against individuals, based on possibly false information, or placing irrelevant names on watch lists.
The DoJ collected comments on the proposed changes to 28
C.F.R. part 23 through September, 2, 2008.