Bank Robbery Suspect Wants NSA Surveillance Records for Defense
Terrance Brown, 40, is on trial in South Florida for allegedly conspiring with four other men to hijack armored trucks delivering cash to banks in 2010. All have pleaded not guilty. But now Brown has come up with a unique defense: he wants the National Security Agency to turn over his phone records to the court to demonstrate his innocence.
The case, which is taking place in federal court, involves phone records – the FBI and prosecutors have been using cellphone records to demonstrate the men’s locations near the robbery attempts. The prosecution said that it was unable to get cellphone records from the time before September 2010 because the phone carrier had destroyed the records.
But Brown has new hope: his lawyer, Marshall Dore Louis, filed documents requesting NSA documents showing phone location records for Brown’s cellphones on the night of one of the robberies. “The president of the United States has recognized this program has been ongoing since 2006,” wrote Louis, “to gather the phone numbers [and related information] of everybody including my client in 2010.”
The judge, Robin Rosenbaum, gave the prosecutors a few weeks to respond. “There are security procedures that must be followed,” said Assistant US Attorney Michael Walleisa. One prosecutor, Michael Gilfarb, said that the information might not be relevant, depending on whether Brown carried his phone that night, given the fact that Brown’s wife said he didn’t have a cellphone at that time.