Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Off-Hook Telecoms Call for Attorneys' Fees - Disconnected

AT&T, Verizon and other telecoms cannot recover attorneys' fees after ducking claims that they overcharged for electronic surveillance, a federal judge ruled.

Former New York Deputy Attorney General John Prather had filed the lawsuit on behalf of the U.S. government, claiming that AT&T, Verizon, Qwest Communications International and Sprint Nextel overcharged federal, state and city governments for services under the Communications Assistance to Law Enforcement Agencies Act (CALEA), which requires the companies to provide the government with electronic surveillance of their customers in exchange for reasonable expenses.

Prather claimed to have "observed eavesdropping charges increase tenfold after CALEA despite changes in technology that should have made it easier for Telecoms to provide wiretaps, and believed that the Telecoms were overcharging for wiretaps." (more)