The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

ACLU In Federal Appeals Court In Boston Thursday To Defend Journalists' Rights


American Civil Liberties Union will be in federal appeals court in
Boston Thursday to argue that FBI agents who attacked a group of
journalists without provocation should be held accountable for their
actions. The ACLU filed the lawsuit on behalf of journalists in Puerto
Rico who were kicked, punched and pepper sprayed by FBI agents as they
attempted to report on the search of a San Juan apartment.

In August 2009, a lower court found
that while there was evidence that the FBI agents violated the
journalists' Fourth Amendment rights, the law was not clearly
established enough at the time of the attack to hold the agents
responsible for their actions, and that therefore the reporters could
not seek compensation for the violation. The ACLU is asking the U.S.
Court of Appeals for the First Circuit to overturn that ruling.

Arguments in Normando Valentin, et. al. v. Mueller,
an ACLU lawsuit charging that FBI agents should be held accountable for
violating the constitutional rights of journalists who they attacked

Catherine Crump of the ACLU Speech,
Privacy and Technology Project will argue on behalf of the plaintiffs
before appellate judges Boudin, Howard and Barbadoro. Other attorneys on
the case are Aden Fine of the ACLU, William Ramirez and Josue Gonzalez
of the ACLU of Puerto Rico and Nora Vargas-Acosta.

Thursday, October 7, 2010
9:30 a.m. EDT

U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
1 Courthouse Way, 7th Floor
Boston, MA

The American Civil Liberties Union was founded in 1920 and is our nation's guardian of liberty. The ACLU works in the courts, legislatures and communities to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to all people in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States.

(212) 549-2666