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California in Brief / SAN FRANCISCO

Court strikes down Patriot Act parts

December 11, 2007|From the Associated Press

A federal appeals court ruled Monday that some portions of the U.S. Patriot Act, which governs dealings with foreign terrorist organizations, are unconstitutional because the language is too vague to be understood by a person of ordinary intelligence.

The ruling by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals affirms a 2005 decision by U.S. District Judge Audrey Collins.

Collins ruled on a petition seeking to clear the way for U.S. groups and individuals to assist organizations in Turkey and Sri Lanka with training on applying for disaster relief or conducting peace negotiations.

Collins said language in the Patriot Act was vague on matters involving training, expert advice or assistance, personnel and service to foreign terrorist organizations.

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