Justice Department says it will no longer seize reporters' records

The reversal follows a pledge last month by President Joe Biden, who had said it was “simply, simply wrong” to seize journalists' records and that his Justice Department would halt the practice.

Associated Press

Jun 5, 2021, 4:21 PM

Updated 1,044 days ago

Share:

The Justice Department said Saturday that it no longer will secretly obtain reporters' records during leak investigations, a policy shift that abandons a practice decried by news organizations and press freedom groups.
The reversal follows a pledge last month by President Joe Biden, who had said it was “simply, simply wrong” to seize journalists' records and that his Justice Department would halt the practice.
The tactic was used by Democratic and Republican administrations alike in an effort to identify sources who revealed classified information to journalists. The policy had received renewed scrutiny over the past month as Justice Department officials had alerted reporters at three different news organizations - The Washington Post, CNN and The New York Times - that their phone records had been obtained.
“Going forward, consistent with the President’s direction, this Department of Justice - in a change to its longstanding practice - will not seek compulsory legal process in leak investigations to obtain source information from members of the news media doing their jobs,” department spokesman Anthony Coley said in a statement.
He added that the "department strongly values a free press, protecting First Amendment values, and is committed to taking all appropriate steps to ensure the independence of journalists.”
By ERIC TUCKER
(Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.)


More from News 12
2:05
Community advocates say they'll call for changes in aftermath of NYPD's decision in Kawaski Trawick case

Community advocates say they'll call for changes in aftermath of NYPD's decision in Kawaski Trawick case

1:47
STORM WATCH: Scattered strong storms overnight in New York City

STORM WATCH: Scattered strong storms overnight in New York City

0:25
Police: Man who punched 9-year-old girl at Grand Central Terminal arrested

Police: Man who punched 9-year-old girl at Grand Central Terminal arrested

0:28
Israel is quiet on next steps against Iran — and on which partners helped shoot down missiles

Israel is quiet on next steps against Iran — and on which partners helped shoot down missiles

0:43
NYPD: Victims identified, arrest made in Fordham crash that killed 2

NYPD: Victims identified, arrest made in Fordham crash that killed 2

1:22
FDNY: Cement truck overturns on Cross Bronx Expressway entrance ramp in West Farms

FDNY: Cement truck overturns on Cross Bronx Expressway entrance ramp in West Farms

1:40
Demonstrators outside Kings Plaza Mall push for changes to immigration policy

Demonstrators outside Kings Plaza Mall push for changes to immigration policy

1:27
NYPD deploys resources to places of worship amid increased Middle East tensions

NYPD deploys resources to places of worship amid increased Middle East tensions

1:27
Lickety Split Ice Cream in City Island to mark 20 years in business

Lickety Split Ice Cream in City Island to mark 20 years in business

0:35
2 men arrested, accused in Fordham jewelry store armed robbery

2 men arrested, accused in Fordham jewelry store armed robbery

2:04
CDC: Most women do not get a mammogram because of financial difficulties

CDC: Most women do not get a mammogram because of financial difficulties

0:58
Police: 3 New York City residents arrested for organized retail theft at New Jersey mall

Police: 3 New York City residents arrested for organized retail theft at New Jersey mall

0:32
MTA police: Man punched 9-year-old girl in face at Grand Central Terminal

MTA police: Man punched 9-year-old girl in face at Grand Central Terminal

1:41
Street vendors on Fordham Road say rise in summonses is making it difficult to make a living

Street vendors on Fordham Road say rise in summonses is making it difficult to make a living

1:32
NYPD: Crash in Fordham leaves 2 men dead

NYPD: Crash in Fordham leaves 2 men dead

1:39
What you need to know about this weekend's L train closure

What you need to know about this weekend's L train closure

0:22
Police: 14-year-old girl from Soundview reported missing

Police: 14-year-old girl from Soundview reported missing

1:38
Community baby shower in Brownsville aims to help underprivileged moms

Community baby shower in Brownsville aims to help underprivileged moms

1:35
CDC: Measles could lose 'elimination status' amid uptick across the U.S.

CDC: Measles could lose 'elimination status' amid uptick across the U.S.

2:12
Family in mourning after loved one fatally struck by car in Concourse Village hit-and-run

Family in mourning after loved one fatally struck by car in Concourse Village hit-and-run