What is the SOD database, and why you should care.

SOD is the Special Operations Division of the United States Drug Enforcement Agency. The SOD databases collect ‘intelligence’ that is unrelated to drug crimes, and passes that on to other law enfarcement agencies who then use something called parallel construction to create theoretically legitimate cases,

But, according to all legitimate, unpaid, non-law-enfarcement sources, like Nancy Gertner, a Harvard Law School professor and former federal judge,  said parallel construction was “a fancy word for phonying up the course of the investigation.””

From The Daily Dot:

By Joe Kloc on August 07, 2013
The Department of Justice will investigate whether National Security Agency (NSA) intelligence is being misused to arrest American citizens, the Guardian reported.

On Monday, Reuters published a story revealing the data-sharing collaboration between the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the NSA. Through the program, information about Internet users’ browsing history, emails, chats and phone calls—purportedly collected by the NSA for “national security” purposes—is handed over to the DEA for criminal investigations.

The DEA unit responsible for handling the information, known as Special Operations Division (SOD), is made of up representatives from two dozen agencies including the FBI, CIA, and NSA.

On Tuesday, the Department of Justice told the Guardian it would look into potential concerns raised in the Reuters article about the clandestine SOD, one of which is that U.S. citizens’ constitutional right to a fair trial is being violated by the operating procedures of the unit.

The collaboration between the NSA and the DEA has remained a secret in part because the evidence shared between the agencies is not presented at trial, even when it has provided the basis for an arrest.

Instead, evidence is introduced into court using what is called “parallel construction.” In essence, law enforcement agents reconstruct a fake scenario of how their investigation led them to an arrest, one that conceals the fact that NSA data was used.

The information is kept not only from defendants but from lawyers and judges as well.

Nancy Gertner, a Harvard Law School professor and former federal judge, told the Guardian that parallel construction was “a fancy word for phonying up the course of the investigation.”

“When the DEA is concealing what the source of the information is and pretending it came from one place rather than another, there can be no judicial review,” Gertner said.

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