DOJ to Stop Using Court Orders to Seize Journalists’ Records in Leak Probes: Spokesperson

The Department of Justice (DOJ) on Saturday pledged to stop using court orders to obtain reporters’ records as part of leak probes, marking a policy shift away from an investigative tactic used across numerous administrations. DOJ spokesperson Anthony Coley confirmed the policy turnabout in a statement Saturday, which followed a pledge last month by President Joe Biden, who said it was “simply wrong” to seize journalists’ records. “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,” Coley said in the statement. “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,” he added, noting also that the DOJ had completed a review to determine all instances …

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